With 5G and MEC technology, the live entertainment and sports industries are unlocking a whole new genre of experiences, both at home and in the arena. Hear from experts in the industry who suddenly found themselves working to create safe, socially-distanced environments that replicate the energy and excitement of traditional live experiences.
VERIZON 5G LABS
Verizon's 5G Labs works with startups, academia and enterprise teams to build a 5G-powered world. We work on 5G trials, hackathons, industry partnerships, prototyping challenges and more.
- Cisco Sports and Entertainment
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- Take part in a virtual Capitol Records Tower experience - Every Thursday from October 29th to December 10th, Capitol Royale will roll out unique music-related programming—new content drops, industry-leading conversations, emerging technology, etc. Come , where guests can explore 360 navigable versions of the iconic Hollywood landmark’s lobby, rooftop, and surrounding lot—complete with exclusive content live and on-demand.
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Marlon Anguin 0:00
And thank you for joining us on this Thursday afternoon, maybe Thursday morning, wherever you are. We're so excited to host this event as part of the Verizon 5G Lab series. For those of you who aren't familiar with Verizon 5G Labs, we work with startups, academia, and enterprise teams to build a 5G powered world using the practical application of emergent technologies as part of that mission includes having conversations like these that address barriers of digital inclusion, and create opportunities for communities to thrive and grow. If you're interested in learning more about our work, visit Verizon5GLabs.com. We'd also like to say thank you to Alley for creating the space to host these events. It is a community agency that unites rich and diverse communities around the country with corporate partners to provide the resources and catalyst to drive positive change in technology and in the broader world. Without further ado, let's introduce our incredible panelists. It's a pleasure to have with us today industry leaders, Ken Martin, Executive Director, global digital transformation sports and entertainment consumer industries at Cisco with us as well is Ching-Ching Chen, VP of content, partnerships and strategy at Capitol Records. And I am Marlon Anguin technology manager, sports partnerships and innovation at Verizon. With that said, let's take a minute or two to each introduce ourselves. our org and why is this topic so important to us? So let's start with you Ching-Ching.
Ching-Ching Chen 1:51
Hey, guys, my name is Ching-Ching, I'm the VP of content partnerships and strategy at Capitol. As Marlon mentioned, my role at Capitol really is focused on finding developing new revenue opportunities to exploit and extract value from our copyrights, content, brand, assets, artists. But ultimately, a lot of what my focus has been on is not necessarily traditional partnerships, or brand activations. Really, my role is to find and understand where the future vendors is heading, exploiting technology and partnerships to really help us find new fan engagement opportunities, and ultimately connecting the dots as we're looking at innovation and moving the industry forward. So that's a little bit about myself.
Marlon Anguin 2:33
Alright, thanks Ching-Ching. And Ken
Ken Martin 2:36
Hi, everyone, Ken Martin, I've, I've been focused on this industry for going on 14 years, it seems like a long time within Cisco. But it started our start focus started with us getting technology to become relevant. I mean, when we first started calling in sports, as many as you may know, is, you know, the technology wasn't relevant. And so we'd have to go and find, you know, the people that are in these venues that that you know, had a role in it, and find a way in which we can leverage technology for what Cisco had, and make it Tour. It's not a sunk cost or you know, have to have, but more so an investment in technology that would drive revenue back into the business. And so we've been focused on that for the last, like I say, 14 years. It's a global practice within Cisco. So thanks for having us.
Marlon Anguin 3:37
Awesome. And myself, Marlin Anguin. Here. So my team, I lead a team that focuses on product development, product innovation, specifically sports within the technology product organization at Verizon. We're primarily focused on predicates and on the 5G in the mech technology for sports, NFL, NBA NHL across the board. And our primary focus really is finding those nuggets building those innovative solutions that are 5G MEC base that will drive fan experience, that will certainly keep those butts in the seats, if you will to, to bring that revenue for venues if you will. And that's our team excited to be here with you today. So let's move on with our agenda. I'll remind the audience if you have any questions, please use the Q&A feature within the zoom technology here. And we'll certainly get to those questions at the very end. So with that said, let's jump right in. So today we're talking sports venues. We're talking COVID, we're talking some of the work that we've done in the pre COVID. How have we pivoted as a result of COVID? And what does the future look like? So let's start with the first question here being pre COVID. What was your world like? We'll start with you Ken what were some of the things that you're doing in terms of question. Consume industry in terms of sports? What was that world? like for you? Pre COVID?
Ken Martin 5:04
Yeah, I mean, top of mind, for every executive and this has been around for a long time, it's, it's, let's better the guest experience, let's let's focus on driving revenues or even incremental revenue inside the venue. And then of course, you know, when it comes to technology, anything that we invest in should be, should make for a more efficient way in which we run our buildings. And so with that said, you know, we focused a lot on the consumer facing side of things meaning, the mobile experience, and how somebody would interact with their phone or their mobile device. And they don't just mean you know, by the way of, you know, what's happening inside the venue. But as many of these venues turned to be an ticketless venue or even a cashless operation, that mobile device would, you know, lend an important role. And you know, how the venue itself or you know, executives at the venue would interact with a guest in there. Another critical piece of technology that we created back, you know, in the early days when the Yankees were building their stadium, and some of the stadiums around the world we're doing renovations was the digital signage piece, you know, often referred to as in sports is IPTV because it generates that that live video feed element wrapped with content around the screen. So we're really working with teams on how to generate more revenue. And it was more so from a sales and marketing perspective. And, you know, sponsorship activation, which is super important in sports, and the some of the things that we learned, in doing this for sports and purpose, building these solutions, for sports venues, we were then able to take it outside of the world of sports and into you know, places like retail and hospitality, where he's really seeing value in driven through a digital experience. And so now venues that are that are built today, nobody's just building a stadium anymore, right? They're building a mini city around a stadium. And so we focus on on using the venue as a media platform, really, with generating any type of messaging, whether it be for sales and marketing purposes, informational purposes. So that's, that's really where we've built this business and focus in the world of sports over the last decade is is how to leverage a mobile and digital experience to improve the guests fan experience, as well as driving revenue for the teams.
Marlon Anguin 7:36
Awesome. Thank you. How about you Ching-Ching? What was your world like and Capitol Records just before COVID hit?
Ching-Ching Chen 7:45
So pre COVID, I mean, our rolls have slipped to such drastically over the last, you know, even 18 month period, capital as a whole, we actually began kind of our journey into the intersection of music and technology over 20 months ago, well before COVID. But at that point in time, you know, really a lot of what our focus was on was wrapping around, how do we transform capital as a venue and a destination for, you know, technologists and musicians to come together, whether that be through the hackathon series, whether that be through our conference series, conversations, you know, and ultimately our accelerator program to ensure that our artists had access to the best and newest technologies. At that point in time, it was very much a nice to have in the sense that we were future proofing. Really the stem of what started kind of that journey was a braintrust meeting between our CEO and our head of digital brella BMG to say what does the record label the future look like? And how can we ensure that, you know, we stay relevant through the years that, you know, we go through more ecosystem shifts, suddenly, about March of this year, the world kind of fell apart, and you know, 60% of our business was essentially live driven. And all of a sudden, even though we as a label were as impacted, since we're very much focused on the recorded side, we've had to step up in many ways to think about how to fill those holes, and even a lot of our marketing activations, which were also event driven and fan engagement driven, and having that direct connection, all of that's gone all of a sudden, and so, in many instances, some of these nice to have technologies that were incubating or you know, what, maybe 18 months ago would have been considered a gimmick are suddenly the only options to connect engage with fans. And so over the last really seven months, or however long it's been, I can't keep track of this year. You know, our focus has been on how do we look at you know, live stream capabilities, how can we ensure that you know, as we're marketing, it's not just a music video alert video, and that traditional budgets aren't what they used to be. And how do we break through the noise that's the most difficult thing is you know, the market got quickly oversaturated everyone going live on Instagram 10 times a day really and you know, I think it's more and more difficult to kind of fill, and, you know, break through that noise. So that's kind of what keeps us up. Now these days.
Marlon Anguin 10:08
Okay, great. I would say for, for us at Verizon within the sports partnership program, it, you know, pre pre COVID, we were heavily focused on the state of experience, or our approach really was dependent on having those funds in the venue in stadium, bringing about that sort of digital experience, that destination experience, if you will, you know, continuing to deploy 5G deploying MEC, bringing about those technologies on our roadmap, we had the venue as certainly part of where we were headed. And then COVID hit. And so we quickly had to pivot. And we'll certainly talk more about this in the next section as far as so what are some of the impacts and given the audience at As far as what is it that we're doing differently, but that was that's pretty COVID. And certainly, that has changed. And we're just diligently put in put in the effort in place to quickly address and bridge those gaps. So let's, let's go then into COVID. Now, COVID is here, we're certainly we have our charter, as we have revenue that we certainly have to bring forward, we have the experience the gaps in terms of fan experience in the venue and find find experiences at home, if you if you will, certainly on the music side as well to your point Ching-Ching as far as the the musicians and technologists bringing, bringing about the obvious need to bridge that digital divide, as I like to call it. So with that said, let's just dive a bit into this. So Ken, in terms of and certify a beautiful, beautiful stadium that you guys certainly partnered up with, with, I believe they're the Hollywood I forgot the name exactly off that overall ownership for that. But suffice it to say, where the LA Rams charges that steer home, you guys did an amazing job there. So with that said, What do fans experience? What what's their expectation when they walk into such a venue being this sort of destination? And we'll start to peel it back a bit?
Ken Martin 12:09
Yeah, and well, you know, it's changed from, you know, hey, let's go and have a great time to, you know, now it's going to be am I safe enough to come back to the venues? I mean, we could see that a lot of these venues around the world have already started to open. The question is, is, you know, if I personalize this is do I feel safe going back into the venue? So it's going to be really important for any venue owner operator to ensure that they've gone through the necessary steps in order to make that venue safe. And I think that that experience, you know, now begins, you know, even at home before you leave your house to go to the venue and leveraging 5g and being able to, you know, get real time data and information with regards to the venue itself, where to enter, where to exit, we're certainly going to be able to leverage those same platforms that we've been focused on over the you know, the past, you know, even five years with, you know, a mobile experience, when you get inside the venue and connect to the Wi Fi, for example, we're going to be able to push messaging, not only to the mobile device, but to you know, the screens around the venue as well. And then we can use, you know, technology, like real time analytics, that can count the amount of people that are in any one given area, push triggers, to the digital signage, or to the mobile device that says, hey, look, we've reached our maximum capacity in this area. And that we suggest that you move down to a different VIP club, or you know, a different concession stand in order to, you know, to, you know, buy your food and beverage. So to me, you know, it's not just an in venue experience anymore, it literally starts from your home of feeling safe, feeling secure, knowing that you know, even your mobile device, when you get to the venue, could be something that allows you into the venue, not just from a ticket perspective, but you show your credentials from your mobile device that says, I've been tested, or my temperature is, you know, under the threshold that allows me to, you know, get into the venue. I mean, there, so a lot of the investments that these venues are making, that once served a different purpose of driving revenue, and you know, bettering the the game experience, to now a feeling of safety and security.
Marlon Anguin 14:29
Great, great. And there's a follow up question to that, because obviously, so far, that's already done. We're obviously lots we're playing games. Is there anything differently that you would do if, you know, knowing what you know? And now, would you do anything differently in terms of the type of solutions that you all brought to bear at SoFi just thinking back hindsight, anything that would be different?
Ken Martin 14:51
Well, I think we learned quite a bit along the way, right? I mean, we you know, working with different 400 different stadiums around around the globe. It kind of gives us The well what's worked and what hasn't? I think, you know, in case of SoFi stadium or you know, the let's not ignore the the Las Vegas Raiders, that just opened a $2 billion stadium that, you know, no guests have ventured into with the exception of maybe this weekend with you and me, I don't know that we would do anything differently. And I think it's a little early to, it's a little too early to know, what would we do differently because we really haven't opened the door to guess yet. I mean, so, but it's important to have a flexible infrastructure that allows us to, you know, make changes along the way. So it's not just a, hey, we did this and we can't change, we can't pivot, or we can't even look at other technologies to integrate. That's all part of you know, the design and build from the very beginning.
Marlon Anguin 15:52
Got it. Great. So let's go over to Ching Ching. So we've seen a lot of innovation throughout this year around RTS performances. What's at the top of your mind from the RTS the management perspective changing as we look to music and what you're faced with?
Ching-Ching Chen 16:10
Yeah, absolutely. I think on our side, this year has really forced us to rethink two categories. One is the production process itself. And then the second is the connectivity with fans. So on the production side, you know, even something as simple as a music video used to be hundred people sets, you know, very elaborate, and with COVID, and the restrictions that we've been put under, for a lot of our artists that are known to be visual artists, you know, it's been incredibly difficult. We've had to really get creative. Katy Perry's The best example, you know, she's an artist known for her music videos, absolutely stunning visuals. But in a year where we have, like 10 people max production sets, you know, we've had to get really creative everything from exploring animations to, you know, a hybrid of, you know, in her smile video, it was literally her in one room playing a video game of her life. And the animations of the video game is what brought the story to life. You know, we've also seen artists experiment with XR, you know, backdrops, where they're bringing their life via a green screen backdrop, you know, those are all the types of things that we've really had to kind of experiment with on the production side, given the limitations. I think the second category is as it relates to connectivity, you know, I always joke that when and if I can go back to a stadium for a concert, I will be the first person back, because there's that interpersonal aspect of it that you just can't have. And I think, you know, it's one of the hardest things when we're thinking about live performances, because you have really two categories. You have the artists, you know, you see one virtual performance mix engrosses, as much as an entire four would have had they traveled. And then you have others where, you know, what, what is a fan ultimately looking for when they're looking to engage with this artist? Is it that connection? Is it that storytelling? Or is it the visuals? And ultimately, are they willing to ultimately, you know, pay for and engage in these types of experiences? And so I think those are kind of the two categories that are top of mind when we're thinking from an artists perspective.
Marlon Anguin 18:25
And just as a follow up to that, so you mentioned a few things with like Katy Perry, obviously, you're doing it sounds like some mixed reality. experiences on what have you. Any highlights, any anything else that sticks out to you, as far as rethinking, reimagining find engagement, as you've, you know, engaged in these recent?
Ching-Ching Chen 18:45
This wasn't a project I personally worked on, but to shout out to one of my colleagues because it was one of my favorites of the year. One of my really close friends at Capitol with the test to figure out how to market disclosure, which in a year, we're all clubs are closed down, how do you market dance music, right. And so, you know, what our team ended up putting together was this incredible experience that ended up being the largest immersive musical activation within Minecraft expanded over one mile and 100 million blocks. And the average gameplay session lasted over an hour with the music being top of mind and, you know, part of the discovery process. And for us, with the amount of engagement we got in the hundreds of thousands of areas, like that's huge for us and a time where traditionally this would have been, you know, circulated around clubs and, you know, discovered that way and so, especially as a relates to the EDM market where they're so tour driven, I think that is something that's been incredibly exciting for us. We've also had artists who can't do listening sessions with their fans anymore. Like that's always been a huge payment. album launch. And so we have to experiment with partners, fashion brands, etc. And we're actually doing an activation this Friday, where we're taking over a fashion brands entire web page to do a listening session from within that. So those are the types of things that we've had to kind of experiment with.
Marlon Anguin 20:19
Awesome, thanks. Now, certainly with COVID, as you alluded to earlier, can, you know, safety is is certainly a concern. So I'll ask you both. So what what opportunities are you seeing for for innovators, when it comes to solutions focused on fan safety, security, and the experience in general, maybe spend some time talking to that one? So Ken, want to go first there?
Ken Martin 20:44
Yeah, um, I think the the, you know, to Ching Chings point, you gotta, you got to keep the experience as, as close to, you know, real life is, you know, pre COVID as we possibly can. we're leveraging some, you know, collaboration tools that we have here at Cisco, you know, through WebEx and others that, you know, we just did it a couple weeks ago at the US Open to where, you know, a live interaction with a, with the PGA player, where they stand in front of these mobile, you know, units, that it's not just a broadcast, you know, if you're let's, let's let somebody interview the player, so everybody can see, it's a live interactive, and, you know, and perhaps that's, you know, a new world that we live in, moving forward, you know, at least for the time being, you want that connection, you want to have that ability to feel like, you know, an experience that you just can't get from home. And so how do we how do we deliver, you know, on those types of experience, and, you know, keeping everybody safe, right, specifically, the athletes who, you know, have tough protocols that they have to go through. So, yeah, we're leveraging, you know, things like WebEx, and you've seen them, and, you know, US recording events. Manchester City is another one where we used where the players can, you know, you can have the fans, they're in the stadium virtually, but they're in the stadium, and they have some kind of interaction. So we'll see how it plays out. But, you know, being creative, and keeping that creative mentality, I think is important.
Marlon Anguin 22:22
Absolutely. And there's a quick follow up, what are some of the I mean, as we have the audience here, and startup folks, folks who are looking to certainly solve some of these issues and bring forward innovative solutions? What are maybe one or two opportunities that are gaps that use you see that, you know, folks who are certainly listening? can certainly kind of keen on that to try to solve some of those issues. So just off the top of your head, any gaps that come to mind?
Ken Martin 22:52
Is that for me or Ching Ching?
Marlon Anguin 22:53
Yeah, for you Ken sorry, this is a follow up for you.
Ken Martin 22:56
Yeah, well, look, I mean, it's, um, like, I know that, you know, coming from a technology company, it's, you know, it's somewhat expected to come back to technology, but, you know, it's really having the infrastructure in place, you know, I mean, if we talk about connectivity, it starts with the infrastructure of course, everybody knows Cisco for you know, what we do in the route switch world but it's it's certainly just a layer at times like this to where you know, some of the venues arena specifically that operate year around that have always wanted to do something, you know, but just haven't had the right time to do something you know, even cashless, which we, you know, we spoke about earlier, everybody would love to be able to go through a cashless, you know, type of environment moving forward, but just didn't have the time, or the gaps within that, that window between two teams playing in the next concert that rolls through there, there are ways in which we can help with that right now. Now's the perfect time to to set yourself up to deliver that next real world experience, whatever that may be defined as. But this gap is now you know, a good time to do it. And I, you know, Ching Ching mentioned earlier, people just don't have the money right now, well, don't let that be the barrier, right. There's creative things that, you know, we can do, even within Cisco and leveraging, you know, Cisco capital to be able to help invest in technology, but not necessarily have to pay for it. But I think that, you know, if you establish, establish yourself right now, thinking about what the world maybe, but having a long term strategy as what it could be, you know, eventually hopefully, we get back and we're feeling safe, and we can return to the venue, in somewhat of a normal fashion as we did pre COVID. But now's the window, in my opinion, you know, do something now and allow yourself to, you know, not miss this opportunity.
Marlon Anguin 24:55
No, indeed, I couldn't agree through more. So Ching Ching the same question for you What opportunities are you seeing for innovators when it comes to solutions focused on fan safety, security and experience? And, again, any gaps that you're seeing that we want to highlight here?
Ching-Ching Chen 25:12
Yeah, I mean, absolutely, thanks. Fan safety in particular for us, is, in one respect. I mean, what comes to my head isn't less even about the safety element and more about just the access element, I think we're in a place where inevitably, like, no one can be in 50 places at once, right. And there's always limitations on reach, and that aspect. And so I think there's a huge opportunity, even when things go back to normal for people to realize that, hey, look, with the digital solutions that have been developed and practiced during this time period, there is an ability for me to reach so much more than who I touched by when I land in a particular region or area. You know, in the past, we've always thought of a specific radio promo schedule or specific live tour session. And then you see opportunities like, you know, the incredible ride that Wave XR has had, you know, you saw the first activation he did, like over two years ago, and the difference that the technology and the resolution and the quality have really developed over the last six or seven months. But more importantly, the engagement numbers, these are incredible engagement numbers that, you know, post, when we go back to normal, it may make sense still to be able to have one of these in every campaign. And, you know, historically, when we were so busy just going jumping from city to city, it was just never on the list of potential activations as we were thinking about a campaign. And now suddenly, I think it poses the question of, are these longer term sustainable technologies that we can keep building and, you know, leveraging to really change the way we interact and engage with fans?
Marlon Anguin 26:59
Okay. Any any gaps? Any, any gaps that come to mind? Like from an experience standpoint, in your world? Yeah, I know, you do have the hackathon, you do have the Innovation Center, I'll just call it for lack of a better term at this point. But any any gaps that you're you're solving for gaps that you're you're seeing that needs a solution?
Ching-Ching Chen 27:20
Yeah, I mean, on the gap side, I think the one thing that we still wish we could figure out better was, how to feel that sense of when you're part of a community, um, and how to still have that feels strong of a connection when you are digital. And, you know, I don't have the right answer for that, to be completely honest. But there's nothing that can replace the sense of like being a part of a crowd and having everyone sing the same lyrics together. And it's funny, even like, when the Taylor Swift documentary came on a plus a few months ago, it's just like, oh, my God finally, even though it's a recording of a live performance, you still felt that energy. And, you know, we've seen some cool experimentations, where, you know, you're looking at these virtual worlds that allow, and give participants the ability to come in as avatars. But we haven't seen exactly a solution that really fits that solve yet. So it is something that's top of mind for me, really, anyone knows the answer, please call me.
Marlon Anguin 28:23
Thanks. And I would say, just to sort of add to that, and kind of goes back to your earlier point, too, Ken we when we think about returning to the venue, we think about the pandemic, you know, folks being safe like one, in my opinion, there will be that moment where these venues are going to have to open up otherwise, things are just going to continue to go under. So at some point, folks are going to come back now we'll come back, we'll most likely be different. I think when you look at a few components, so like the network connectivity, right? sensors, data analytics, if you will, being able to predict being able to see things in real time. Certainly the devices, the mobile devices, I think these are the things that are going to have to all come together, they're going to have to be integrated to then say, Well, how do we then let folks back into these into these venues be at the concert goer, or the avid sports goer, and having them feel safe? So when we look at some of the technologies, technologies that my team and I'm sure others across the industry are looking into their things like accelerated access, and frictionless so how do you let folks in to a venue, one with not touching not really being in close proximity? How do you schedule folks to sort of get into a venue? How do you sort of get into that? What analytics as far as the seating arrangement, right? So when you when you scale to like 80,000 type venues when you hold that many fans, it's not the sort of thing I think Where you you just randomly place? People in a venue? I think this is where the technology and analytics will come come to play to say, Well, how do we socially distance and have technology help us in doing so? You know, how do we then also schedule when folks do the part? I mean, traditionally, we all leave the game or the concert at the same time, I think those are the types of things that will be different. And the technology is certainly there and will help us in doing that. You know, you think about other things, like from an experience standpoint, you know, when you, when you look at what happens, even at home today, as an example, there are folks who just, I think, will not go back to these venues. So, again, how do you, it kind of goes back to your point Ching Ching? How do you from a digital standpoint, make that as real as you've been at a venue? And I think there are lots of opportunities there. When we look at like, what Verizon what we just launched with are a Yahoo brand the watch together, right? So they're, traditionally you're at a game, you're at a concert with your friends, and you're celebrating? No, folks, we're not going to go back to the venues. How do you do that at home? So you have things and I'm sure that Cisco products, they do similar things as well. But how do you then sort of crowdsource bring everyone into that second screen experience? and be a part of that game? Or be a part of that concert? How do you then share? And how do you relive the moment, right? Typically, you're taking videos, you're taking screen screen captures, you're posting out on social. So to me, those are some of the gaps that we still have as an opportunity, things that we should and you know, should certainly continue to push. I look at other areas in the in the experience, such as upselling merchandising, when you're at these events, and we're able to do all the above How do you do it at home? in that second screen experience? How would you leverage XR, right? So how do you leverage AR and these types of things to make it very seamless? So just wanted to add that perspective as well. And I'm not sure it Ken or Ching Ching anything else, or adding this in this area? I know, I said quite a lot there. But just to see if you had anything else to follow up on what I just said?
Ken Martin 32:11
Well, yeah, I mean, from my, from my perspective, I mean, nothing is will replace the live experience, especially in a concert, you know, I mean, yeah, if you go to a concert, you feel the music, you know, you don't just see, you know, the performer on stage. In a sporting event, there's nothing like turning to a stranger and giving them a high five, or, you know, jumping up and down like a kid, you know, even though in your mid 40s, it says, you're not going to replace that. But there is technology that that will enable, you know, as good as you know, we can get type of experience you mentioned, so fi Stadium, they are one of the first stadiums out there that will do 4K uncompressed video on the and everybody is experienced at some level 4K, I'm sure at this point. But to see uncompressed video that's coming, you know, right off the cameras into a video wall, for example, and see the clarity. It's just, it's, there's nothing like it, right. And it's going to be as close as you're going to get to the real look and feel. There are some, you know, really cool technologies out there that allows us to do player track and, you know, follow the individuals that you want to most closely associated with. In the venue today, we're giving, we're giving our guests you know, real life experience of being able to click on what camera view they want to enjoy the game from, which you can't get at home. But this is sort of the things that we're working towards, right. Um, you know, what's available today is you know, as more more venues go to in gaming, you know, a game of vacation, or, you know, some states in here in the US that have opened up live sport betting, that's an experience that not only can take place in the venue, but obviously can take place at you know, at home as well. And so it's really finding that connection point. You know, you don't necessarily have to be in the venue in order to enjoy, you know, you're talking virtually talking to somebody you know about the game itself. A man I It breaks my heart to see. So phi and all the money that is put into that venue for not not to have guests come back. That would not be good. We've got to figure it out.
Marlon Anguin 34:33
That's right. That's why we're here. We're all gonna have to figure this out. Otherwise, we're in trouble. Ching Ching, any any follow ups to this point? Any anything you'd like to add?
Ching-Ching Chen 34:43
So, you know, I think the one thing that will last even outside of this period of time one is in terms of the crossover content and the participation in culture across different platforms. That's something that I think While we are doing it out of necessity, like I said in the disclosure example, I actually think, you know, we are more and more in a world where to engage with all kinds of fans. You know, it's not just about the traditional music, you know, everything from lifestyle content, to that gaming content to podcasts, those are all things that we'll be interested to explore, even outside of this period of time, even though in potentials, because we had really, you know, reactionary actions during this period time, then the second category is the next gen of event production. So I know we are experimenting right now with like virtual sets, because we physically have limitations with music videos, but I actually think that might be something we can, you know, leverage for, you know, a lot of what we do in terms of production of content, especially if we're thinking about some of the amazing technologies that you guys and your 5G Labs are building out that stuff that we, as a label just aren't focused on and to be able to kind of bring that to life. That's something that, you know, would be incredibly exciting for us multicast experiences to like, I know, right now, it's part of your 5G marketing language, I actually think I'd love that in terms of when we can go back to a physical concert and be able to actually replay and relive some of those moments, and feel as close to them as possible. Because guess what, there's always going to be people who can't be there in person. And, you know, there's an opportunity to crossover the immersive and the physical. And, you know, even with some of the technology guys are experimenting with in terms of metric capture, and you mentioned AR earlier, Marlon like bringing people into your living room. That's all stuff that I think, you know, would be exciting as a fan, even outside of just my music perspective.
Marlon Anguin 36:43
No, thanks for that, then, yes, multi cam and some of these cool technologies. And Ken you alluded to this as well given fans the opportunity to select an angle of their choice? All things that we're working on? Certainly, well, we'll continue to innovate and bring those kinds of products to market. So no, absolutely, absolutely. Now just sort of moving into the future, right. And sort of what we're just discussing here with regards to like even mixed reality, XR, as you just said, I know in our discussion, Ching Ching we spoke about like volumetric capture, and what are you looking to do? And you know, kind of going forward? So can you just spend a few minutes on that just share with the audience? As far as what were the outlook? Right, what are we trying to do in terms of, you know, bringing that experience into home? You know, at home, if you will just share with us? What are some of the things you're looking at there? And just as we reimagine the future, given the pandemic, and just in general, where we're going with technology as a whole?
Ching-Ching Chen 37:45
Yeah. So on the mixed reality side, we actually over almost two years ago partnered with your 5G Lab, to capture the first volumetric, scan of one of our Motown artists, which, at that point in time, I know, I joked with you about what our artist showed up, and we're like, what is this stage? What are we doing? And it was a new world for us. And it still is very much a new world for us, because a lot of folks that are like, why am I scanning myself? Or why am I getting this? And what Where are you dropping? The version of me? I think where we're starting to do more of is you're seeing, you know, the more gimmicky things pop up, like dance with your favorite artists. You know, I think that's the one spectrum. But on the other side, I do think there's an opportunity to, you know, change the game of like, how Snapchat made AR filters, accessible to everyone, you know, making and being able to leverage that into marketing campaigns. You know, two years ago, when we did that with you guys as prohibitively expensive, you know, we can never just do that for fun for a random campaign. But as technology improves, and as things get better, I think there's an opportunity for us to be able to incorporate that into all of our marketing plans and ensure that you know, whether it's to a specific song that we're promoting or to specific story, that we're telling that there's an opportunity to bring that into the living room, but also use that to place it in a visual environment that actually is the artist's vision and is very authentic and true that what they're trying to pull off.
Marlon Anguin 39:14
I think I think an interesting point there too, as well, is, I think wearables will certainly become that will certainly play a huge role. I think you mentioned maybe Snapchat, but when you reimagine bringing in that mixed reality experience at home, it's not just on that second screen, it's perhaps through some sort of eyeglasses, and you know, those sorts of things. So as we think of the technology and just what's happening now that you look at even folks and we're in the fashion world, right, so how is it that you bring that that whole technology experience into just your everyday life to reimagine and to get as close to the real life experience as possible? I think that something that will be a trend, something that will certainly embark upon, I'm sure. So Ken, to that point, mixed reality, anything what's happening in your world that has reimagined the futur, if it's mixed reality, if it's some other components? What can you share with us as far as how you're thinking, as you lead your global team?
Ken Martin 40:14
Yeah, I mean, we, you know, we do a lot of surveys globally, just to determine, you know, what it is that we should be focused on, Cisco spends a lot of, you know, money on R&D. And it's not just by chance, I mean, it's just a better understanding of what's taking place in the world to know where we invest, you know, money for future technologies and new solutions. One of the things that keeps coming back is this whole notion of having whatever the experience be more personal. So that I don't feel like I'm being broadcasted to, you know, to a general audience, which is obviously difficult in sports, but maybe not. So not so far off in the world of retail, for example, or hospitality, the ability to detect somebody for who they are, right, you know, what, what's my, am I male female, am I, you know, in my middle aged years, or, you know, my somebody that just came out of high school, you know, type of thing, being able to detect that, and then, in real time, process that data, and if it's an information to, you know, to a screen, let that be appropriate for, you know, for me, or, you know, potentially what my care abouts are, or even to my mobile device that says, hey, look, you know, I noticed that, the last time you were in this in the store, or at the stadium, you purchased this, because, you know, I've got this collection, and this database that says, you know, what your past purchases are, and now maybe you might be interested in something along these lines. I mean, it happens online, you know, moral, you know, seeing shopping or, you know, social media, you know, where you get this advertisements that come up and go, how do you know, that that's what I'm interested? I'm creepy, but I think that there's some realization to that, you know, I mean, to where, you know, even sponsors today that in Verizon included, I could say, hey, look, if I'm going to average, if I'm going to spend a lot of money advertising in a venue, um, I want to know how effective it is, I want to know that when I ran this advertisement, you know, was it more effective in the beginning of the event or at the end of the event, and be able to truly measure my brand campaign? And and I think that we can do that, right? I mean, we're not so far off of being able to detect, you know, who's there, when we run these campaigns, how effective it is get real time data back. Even as simple as a fast food restaurant to know that, you know, through analytics and a camera to know who I am, and maybe, you know, advertise appropriately to me. So, I see that, like I say, it's not so far in the, you know, far off future that we can't get our arms wrapped around it. We're trying to solve for those things right now.
Marlon Anguin 43:04
Absolutely. Absolutely. Well said. Thank you. Alright, so I know we're coming up on time. So I'll jump into the last question before we turn it over to I'm going to call it a Q&A session to see what questions we have that came in from the audience. So I'll start with you, Ching Ching as far as 5G and MEC. In terms of these initiatives, why is the network infrastructure a starting point to all this innovation? Why is it Why is this such an important piece in terms of solving these issues? meeting these demands? As we look forward? Well, how does this play a role in your world?
Ching-Ching Chen 43:41
Yeah, so for us, especially since because we've been on this journey for two years, now, when you know, it's funny, we first read the press release 5G available in LA, but it really wasn't, um, you know, for us, as you're thinking about what we mentioned earlier, in terms of the virtual sets, the multi cam experiences, the you know, volumetric experiences, all of that stuff is cool. But it's a chicken in the egg situation, where if there's not the audience, it's just not worth our time, you know. And so, I think, the best way in still to the state, we talk headsets, but ultimately, your mobile device is the most accessible form of content consumption. And I think that's why, you know, especially with the new IPhone launch, and suddenly 5G finally being real, I think there's an incredible opportunity for all of these ideas to not just be a pipe dream, and to really actually be an accessible form for us to experience artists and music in a new way. So that's what we're incredibly excited about.
Marlon Anguin 44:43
Awesome. Thank you. And Ken?
Ken Martin 44:46
I you know, I agree with Ching Ching, I think that you know, connectivity will be a huge part of it. And you know, 5G, if you think about what people are going are using their phones for today, and then even what they're going to be their phones for in the future, you know, it's comes down to throughput, right and 5G or even Wi Fi, you know, when you when you're at a venue that allows you to connect to Wi Fi and Wi Fi six and you know, net now you know, Wi Fi six E that will come out, um, it's about throughput. It's not about you know, cheese, how long is it going to take me to download this video, or, you know, have a live session with somebody, you know, over, you know, FaceTime to tell me how to get into the venue or, you know, answer my questions, you know, that throughput issues not going to be an issue moving forward, and allows us to explore a lot of really cool things that we're going to be able to do on our on our mobile, as it relates to even you know, playback video, I mean, the two, two things that most everybody does in the venue, or stadium when they get there is take a picture, or video and upload the video, because I'm here and you're not right. So let's, let's brag a little bit, my favorite concert or whatever, you know, everybody's got a phone in their hand. So let's not let that throughput be an issue. Let's let this this this new world of being available at any time to whatever we want to do. I think that that's what's exciting about this whole 5G initiative, our partnerships with Apple and Samsung that you enable the phones to do it. And then you have Cisco as the back end to be able to deliver those, those crazy videos that everybody wants to make.
Marlon Anguin 46:33
Awesome, good agree with you both more. I mean, for us, personally, at Verizon, and as we think about sports and innovation, quite frankly, to your point is throughput. It's so low latency, it's having those, you know, that compute power at the edge. You know, I could tell you as an example, with, you know, as we mentioned, the multi camera experience and the way we push the envelope on that in terms of the high fidelity in terms of low latency just doesn't work on some of those lower generation technology. And for us to continue to innovate and to bring, you know, more I would say a higher fidelity type experiences that are friends. We need, we need this sort of infrastructure, 5G MEC as an example. And when I think of gaming, you know, like, last year, we did the whole 5G Gaming challenge for the NFL. And that was certainly delivered ultra toss and something that was showcased this year as Superbowl as we reimagined on the team here, reimagined, reimagined that, you know, you think of the 3D version of such a technology, such gaming just doesn't work without this kind of technology, those, you know, physics engine needs, compute and needed in that real time you want to be that fine at home or in the stadium that we're able to interact really seamlessly in a really low intense, low latency environment. So for us extremely important, and everything that we do rides on 5G. So I just wanted to highlight that here for folks. So to bring it all home together, but alright, so I know we're almost at that time. So let's let's let's look at what sort of questions that we have that came in. And let's see. All right, this one goes to to Ching Ching was twitch streaming Gortnight concerts on Capitol's Radar, pre COVID.
Ching-Ching Chen 48:27
Yeah, so on the capital side, we've actually been in the gaming space since 2018. So, through actually one of my colleagues, Josh Brownsburg, he brought in a relationship with loaded who used to represent Ninja. And at that point in time, you know, we were kind of, in this whole discovery of what is the cross section of music and gaming. And, in particular, I think one of the things we saw a lot of at that point in time was experiences within video games. But more importantly, every gamer loves music, and a lot of them have and a huge influence. And so for us, at that point in time, we kind of partnered to say, how can we make sure we've actually put together a soundtrack together and ensure that everyone of ninja spans on Twitch, an experience, especially curated soundtrack that Ninja himself put together? And so those were early days and foray into the gaming space. And since then, we've really built on that relationship to continue exploring additional forms of crossover content, not just in the whole performance aspect, but again, to what I mentioned earlier, in terms of lifestyle experiences, you know, are there opportunities to have and make sure that you're having these conversations between gamers and musicians? We always joke rock stars wants to meet athletes athletes want to be rock stars. That's the same with like gamers and artists and so many of our artists actually incredible gamers too. And so, you know, for us, it's how do we make sure we're creating that experience and you know, someone asked me I'm the worst sports person. So this is probably my trip, told me about the ESPN carwash model before, like, when they go and paint a ton of content. And that's something we've actually historically done a horrible job of people come up to our building, we get business done, and they're out. And so I think it's been a huge top of mine of how do we ensure that comedic capital something that's fine, and that we can create a, you know, experience out of it every single time?
Marlon Anguin 50:26
Awesome. Thanks. Maybe we Ken all throw this one too. This is from Andrew. Do you see any appetite for a for marketing, surveillance free environment, that is a place that advertisers buy or play, sorry, that advertises it doesn't track its customers and turn all their data. And so the customers can just authentically relax and enjoy without anxiety that their every move is being captured and recorded?
Ken Martin 50:56
Yeah, I mean, like, it's a sensitive subject, right? I mean, you don't want to feel like you're being watched at all times. But at the same time, we want all the services that are available to us whether we're, you know, at a hospitality resort, or, you know, we don't want to miss that there's happy hour at the bar, even though it's a huge resort. And we don't know yet. I mean, it's how do you how do you keep informed but disconnect when it you know, we comes to the sensitive nature of it, I don't know that there's an easy answer to it, to be honest, yet I mean, it if you if you just want to enjoy the concert, and then turn off your phone, you know, and right. And in that way, you're not being tracked, or nobody's listening in. But I think more and more, you know, you're not gonna I think we all personally have to get over this, this sense of, you know, people are gathering information on us, because it's happening, right? It's just a matter of, you know, how do we how do we benefit from it? Right, and, and if it is a more personal experience, so that I don't feel like I'm broadcasted to, or, you know, you know, that, you know, don't advertise a stroller to me, my kids are old enough, now that, you know, we're well past that, that, that stage in life, so do something that's relevant to me, but I think from a venue perspective, our friends at Live Nation or you know, ag or anybody else from a concert going to, you know, the world of sports, give us data that, you know, that can change our overall experience, you know, if it's, if it's sensors in a jersey, or sensors in the equipment itself, the ball and show us that data real time, um, you know, give us something that we're not traditionally used to see. And that's all in this world of connectivity now. So, yeah, the answer Yeah, the answer the question, I'm not sure that I'm answering it. Right. So, but it's just one of those things we're gonna have to deal with.
Marlon Anguin 52:54
It is I think you're spot on with that. No, I very sensitive but I agree. I agree. All right. So I know, we only have a few more minutes. So we'll try to get to two more questions. So this one is for you, Ching Ching? How do experiences like the disclosure example help you connect with fans across generations? Are you seeing these types of activations as ways to engage with groups, you may not have been to pre pre COVID?
Ching-Ching Chen 53:21
Yeah, so I will say the 13 to 17 year old male market is probably the hardest market ever to tap for music. It's something we've historically had a really difficult time engaging with. And, you know, you see these communities being built on to see all these amazing experiences. And it's definitely become top of mind for a ton of us, because it's an incredible, you know, untapped market in many instances for us. So, absolutely, we're looking at various, various experiences, but also, it's not just about Twitch, that's why so many platforms, and so many forums are important for us to consider, you know, everything from, you know, which to the podcast side of things, etc. I think it's all important and all the top of mind for us.
Marlon Anguin 54:11
Okay, so let's see, Ken there was another one here, sorry, wanted to race too, but it's no longer also bringing up. It's really just briefly here. What are you doing, if anything with regards to gamifying? The thing you're, you're working on?
Ken Martin 54:29
Yeah, I mean, we're, I'd like to say we're in the enablement business, right. So the network allows us to enables us to do a lot of things, whether it's connectivity or visual experience. In the gaming, we're working with a lot of different gaming companies. Why? Because I think that that is the next you know, generation of you know, how to interact. People don't just go to a sporting event like they used to anymore. They want to interact at the sporting event, and if that's through gamification, Cisco just You know, have a partnership with quite the right games, you know, to offer real time experience to your point low latency has to be real time. But if if we're talking about in venue betting or even in then you food an ordering or whatever the case may be. It has to be it has to be real time, we can't worry about, you know, the connectivity. And did my order go through? Or did it get placed fast enough simply because the network wasn't good enough. gamification is they're doing some really cool things is you probably know even sponsorship activation, which I mentioned earlier, there's a company that we're working with out of Australia that it's a real interactive games where you're shooting baskets, or you know, you're you're kicking the footy through the goals. That can be not a footy as a traditional sense of a ball. But, you know, a Coke can or Pepsi can, you know, meet to work sponsors are now getting creative with regards to how they interact with, you know, real time gaming and sports betting. So, it's a world that's all coming together. And it's, it's really exciting to see.
Marlon Anguin 56:10
Awesome. All right, No, thank you. So I think we're just out about well, just out of time, in terms of questions. So folks, I guess, post this event, if there if you want to reach out to us certainly do that. I'm sure the alley team here will make this available. We can certainly follow up and answer any of your questions. And then with that said, I want to say on behalf of the Verizon 5G Labs team and the Alley thanks to our speakers, Ken and Ching Ching. And for the audience for you today for joining us. This conversation has been recorded and will be available tomorrow if if anyone would like to share this content within your community. For more information, visit us at Verizon5GLabs.com or at the Alley, Alley.com. It was my pleasure today to be with you all in this discussion looking forward to future discussions. And with that said, be safe and have a great rest of your day and we'll talk again soon. So thank you. Thanks, everyone.