Culture Technology

BT Sport kicks off Premier League with optional crowd noise and Watch Together features

BT Sport has laid out plans for upcoming Premier League fixtures, revealing tech innovations that it hopes will engage fans even though matches are to be played behind closed doors.

BT Sport will kick off with a double header of Watford v Leicester City at 12.30pm and Brighton & Hove Albion v Arsenal, the first Premier League game to be shown at 3pm on a Saturday, boh on June 20.  

These will be followed by the midweek games, Newcastle United v Aston Villa and Wolves v Bournemouth on Wednesday June 24, with Chelsea v Manchester City on June 25 and Aston Villa v Wolves on Saturday June 27.

The FA Cup quarter finals will make their return to BT Sport on Sunday June 28.

It remains to be seen which broadcaster, BT or Sky, will have the most convincing faux crowd noise…

BT Sports Premier League fixtures

The broadcaster has confirmed that BT Sport viewers will have the option to watch with or without a pre-recorded dynamic crowd noise feature, using the Red Button. 

BT Sport has already trialled its ‘enhanced fan audio’ for games from the Bundesliga.

Rival Sky Sports will also offer viewers the option of ‘canned’ crowd noise, partnering with EA Sports FIFA game-makers to use crowd specific ambience and chants. It remains to be seen which broadcaster will have the most convincing faux crowd noise.

BT Sport will also be launching Watch Together, new social mode available through the BT Sport app. This will allow viewers to watch, see and chat with friends in a split screen, during a game.  

BT Sport says it will continue to make the majority of games available in 4k HDR with Dolby Atmos, and in 360 degrees on the BT Sport app.

When it comes to production, BT Sport says it’ll use its industry leading remote OB capabilities to minimise the number of people required at a ground or in studio. Presenters, guests and the majority of crew will work remotely or from home.

About Steve May

Creator of Home Cinema Choice magazine, and editor of The Luxe Review, Steve muses and reviews for Trusted Reviews, T3, Yahoo UK, Home Cinema Choice, Games Radar, Ideal Home, Louder Sounds, Channel News and Boat International. He’s also the editor of professional home cinema website Inside CI. He's on Twitter and Instagram as @SteveMay_UK

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