The Google and NBA Pixel Area aims to give fans a virtual experience based on real-time information from the games. App users can access the Pixel Arena through the NBA app by selecting a specific game. Here, you can use your phone’s gyroscope to navigate through the 3D virtual space. The Pixel Arena also allows you to make and customize avatars — including outfitting them in a particular team’s clothing — then share them online. It provides 3D shot recaps of the game in the virtual space, based on live NBA data feeds, available during halftime and after the game.
During halftime, the Pixel Arena also offers trivia based on that specific game. Users can climb the leaderboard and unlock levels and items for their avatars by using the arena during games.
“The experience brings a whole new meaning to courtside,” Daryl Butler, vice president of U.S. Devices and Services Marketing at Google, said in a blog post.
You don’t need a Google Pixel to access the arena — you just need the NBA app, which is available on a range of devices.
This is the first time Google has teamed up with the NBA on an immersive experience like this, Google says. The company is currently partnered with the sports organization in a range of initiatives, including as a sponsor for the NBA Playoffs, which are now “presented by Google Pixel,” and the NBA Finals, which are “presented by YouTube TV.” Last year, Google also announced the Google Pixel was the Official Fan phone of the NBA, NBA G League, and NBA 2K League, while Google was each league’s Official Search Engine and Search Trends and Fan Insights Partner.
The deal between the companies is a multiyear commitment that also included developing immersive experiences, like this new one with the NBA app and others, designed to showcase 3D and AR technology.