Drones entered the sporting arena a few years back, and as technology advances, the opportunities for expanding their use within the field of e-sports, looks set to speed up and really take off. Pardon the pun.
Drone racing has been around for a while and seemed like a natural progression considering the availability of devices and how anyone can potentially pilot one, and the DRL or Drone Racing League was even created. The league organizes races all over the world and films them to stream online; some events have even been shown on TV stations like ESPN.
With the camera that each racing drone comes equipped with, spectators can see the race from the same viewpoint as the pilot, making it more dramatic as images are streamed live to FPV or ‘first person view’ goggles that the pilots wear. Not only does this make it more thrilling for spectators, but the pilot is given the sensation of sitting right on the tip of the drone as it zooms around the stadium, warehouse or marquee.
Some drones with the newest technology can fly at speeds of up to 160 miles an hour, making it even harder to keep your eyes on the racers and establish who is in the lead. Affordable drones are encouraging sporting pilots:
With the cost of drones and the technology associated with them decreasing swiftly, more and more members of the public will be able to afford to buy a drone and compete with it in a sporting venue. With packages at entry level costing little more than a couple of hundred of bucks, more people will be encouraged to give it a go, and as industry insiders tell us, the best way to start out in drone racing is to take part in one.
Drones and the changing face of how we watch sports:
While helicopters have been used to record sporting events such as surfing competitions and golf tournaments, they will never be able to record events with the dexterity and ease of a drone, and of course the cost and organisation involved is far greater. With their ability to film virtually anywhere, they really are changing the way we watch sports, and spectators are given an intense and far more emotive viewing experience.
Drone sports and social media:
Online channels such as YouTube, Twitch, Facebook and Twitter are important platforms for engaging with today’s modern spectator, and drone sports and other forms of eSports are skilled at maximising their potential for engaging with audiences through such sites.
The future for sporting drones:
Drones are already being used more frequently to film major sporting events and have been used in recent Winter Olympics to cover snowboarding and skiing competitions. With the FAA working on more lenient regulations for drone usage, it will soon mean that more of us can not only get our hands on affordable drones, but fly them with less restrictions, too. This can only be a positive step for drone sports, and their popularity is set to increase tenfold as prices go down, and technology gets better by the day.
So, if you want to be part of the sporting worlds’ newest phenomenon, why not get yourself a drone starter kit and register with your nearest club or association to get in on the high flying action!