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How FIFA is using AI (Artificial Intelligence) to enhance viewer experience in 2022

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How FIFA is using AI (Artificial Intelligence) to enhance viewer experience in 2022

In this video, "Aneeq Dholakia," co-founder of Edyst, talks about the use of Artificial intelligence (AI) in FIFA, how it is changing the viewer experience, and how FIFA can use AI  to enhance the game's realism. We also discuss the potential limitations and ethical concerns surrounding the use of AI in sports games.

Overall, the use of AI in FIFA is a complex and rapidly evolving area that has the potential to significantly impact the way the game is played and experienced by users.

Artificial intelligence (AI) and Sports

AI refers to the ability of a computer or machine to perform tasks that would typically require human intelligence, such as learning, problem-solving, and decision-making. AI can be divided into two main categories: narrow and general. Narrow AI is designed to perform a specific task, while general AI is intended to be able to perform a wide range of functions.

AI can be used in sports in various ways, including improving player performance, analyzing game footage, assisting referees in making decisions, and enhancing fans' overall viewing experience.

How is FIFA using AI to improve user experience?

FIFA, the international governing body of association football, has been using artificial intelligence (AI) in various ways to improve the user experience for players and fans of the sport. Here are some examples of how FIFA has been using AI:

Video Assistant Referee (VAR): VAR is a system that uses AI and video technology to assist the main referee in making decisions during a football match. VAR can help the referee to identify and correct mistakes that may have been made during the game, such as awarding a penalty kick or red card to the wrong team.

Player and team analysis: FIFA has been using AI to analyze player and team performance data to identify trends and patterns that can help coaches and managers to improve their strategies. This can include data on player movement, passing accuracy, and shooting efficiency, among other metrics.

Fantasy football: AI has been used to power fantasy football platforms, which allow fans to create and manage their virtual football teams. These platforms use AI algorithms to analyze player performance data and generate recommendations for team selection and tactics.

Social media monitoring: FIFA has also been using AI to monitor social media platforms for inappropriate or offensive content related to the sport. This can include identifying and removing hateful or discriminatory language and detecting and mitigating the spread of misinformation.

Overall, FIFA's use of AI has been aimed at enhancing the football experience for players, coaches, and fans by providing more accurate and reliable decision-making and more engaging and interactive features.

FIFA VS ICC, who uses more AI?

It is difficult to determine which sport, but soccer (also known as football), in contrast to cricket, uses less AI overall. Both sports have implemented various forms of AI technology to improve the user experience for players, coaches, and fans.

For example, FIFA, the governing body of international soccer, has implemented video assistant referees (VAR) in significant tournaments, such as the World Cup and the UEFA Champions League. VAR uses multiple cameras and AI algorithms to analyze game footage and provide real-time information to the referee. FIFA has also used AI to analyze game footage and generate insights for coaches and players and has partnered with companies that offer fantasy soccer games that use AI algorithms to analyze player statistics and create scores for fantasy teams.

Similarly, the International Cricket Council (ICC), the governing body of international cricket, has also implemented AI technology in various ways. For example, the ICC has used AI algorithms to analyze player performance and generate insights for coaches and analysts. The ICC has also implemented hawk-eye technology, which uses multiple cameras and AI algorithms to track the ball's path and assist umpires in making decisions.

Both soccer and cricket have implemented various forms of AI technology to improve the user experience and decision-making in their respective sports. The extent of AI usage may vary between different tournaments and leagues, but ICC uses it more than FIFA.

What is the future of AI in FIFA?

It is difficult to predict the exact future of AI in soccer precisely, but it is likely that AI will continue to play a significant role in the sport in the coming years. Here are some potential developments that may occur in the use of AI in soccer:

Improved player tracking: AI algorithms are already being used to track player performance and movement during games. In the future, these algorithms may become more advanced, allowing coaches and analysts to track even more detailed data on player performance.

Enhanced video assistant referees (VAR): VAR technology, which uses AI algorithms to analyze game footage and assist referees in making decisions on the field, is likely to continue to be developed and refined. This may include using even more advanced algorithms and integrating additional data sources, such as player biometric data.

Personalized coaching: AI algorithms may be used to generate personalized coaching plans for players based on their specific strengths and weaknesses. This could help players optimize their training and performance on the field.

Enhanced fan experience: AI may also be used to improve the viewing experience for fans, such as by providing personalized content recommendations or generating real-time statistics and analysis during games.

Overall, AI will continue to play an essential role in soccer and will be used in various ways to improve player performance, assist referees, and enhance the overall viewing experience for fans.

Video Transcript (How FIFA used AI?)

Hey, everyone!

Welcome to this new series called Edyst Explains, where we take the latest that's happening in technology, either in the news or just fun stuff and try to explain it to you. 

Hopefully this will help you in your awareness levels and when you are going for hiring rounds or just having discussions with other people, you will just be more informed in those discussions, being a technology student. 

So today we want to talk to you about the 2022 FIFA World Cup and how FIFA is actually using AI to give a better experience for players, viewers and the management overall. 

Now, I know a lot of you actually watch cricket, and so I'll tell you that football as a whole has not really used technology as much as cricket has. 

Cricket is very advanced in that way, or very forward thinking. 

Like in cricket, we've had DRS right now, but we've earlier also had Hawkeye to figure out LBW. We've had the sound detection to see if there's been an edge on the bat or not. 

There have been video replays that have always been used whenever the umpire is a bit confused and so on. 

So technology has been a part of cricket for a long time. 

But football famously has been very stubborn about not using technology. 

Earlier, the belief was that the referee adds a natural element to the play, what does that mean?

Meaning that there have been all sorts of controversies.

You can go back and look at them. 

For example, there have been cases where teams have claimed that they have scored a goal, 

but the referee didn't see the ball crossed the line, so the goal was not given. 

Or the goal was given, even though the ball never crossed the line. 

Or there is this very special rule in football called offside. 

So those of you, again, who have watched cricket, who don't watch football, there's an offside rule in which as soon as a person plays a pass, let's say I'm passing to somebody ahead of me, that person whom I'm passing to. 

So let's say I'm passing to player B.

Player B should have at least two defenders in front of him, meaning that there should be two people.

Usually this is the goalkeeper, but otherwise there are always two people in front of him. Otherwise it's not fair.

This person will just stand way behind the defense and, you know, just expect a pass. 

So there's something called offside where you can't stand behind the defense. 

You need at least two people standing in front of you. 

Now, as you can imagine, this is a very complicated line to figure out who is in front of the last defender or not. 

Are you behind the person or not? 

Earlier, this used to happen solely based on a side referee, or called as the referee on the by line. 

It used to be always based on that. 

And that person is human.

They've made mistakes a lot of times. 

Very famous goals have been disallowed because of offside, and many famous goals have been allowed even though they were offside. 

It caused a lot of controversy.

I distinctly remember in the 2010 World Cup, it was Argentina playing against Mexico, I believe. 

And even though the goal was offside, the referee gave it as a goal, and later on the replay played on the TV or all the screens on the stadium. 

But the referee couldn't reverse his decision because they are not allowed to consult the technology. 

So this was all back. 

But now FIFA has drastically improved. 

They have really incorporated technology. 

So there are four major ways in which you can see them actually incorporate technology. 

#1 Is offside itself. It's using a lot of artificial intelligence systems to figure out if a player is offsite or not. 

And it's become super accurate. 

Earlier, the accuracy that was not even possible with humans has become possible with these AI systems offside. 

The kind of decisions that are being given now and the fact that there is a proof of what the referee saw and what decision was made is just keeping everybody a little bit less tense.

Otherwise, there used to be a lot of fights earlier on whether there was a right decision or wrong. 

So but this has really helped out in that way. 

Another thing that's happening is this thing called VAR,(or virtual assistant referee), where there is a set of referees sitting remotely somewhere else, and they're constantly monitoring what's happening on the field. 

And if the referee on the pitch has made a wrong call, then the VR referees tell the in referee that, hey, there's something wrong. 

Go ahead, check it out, or reverse your decision or give another decision. 

Now, one thing that has happened because of all these new technology innovations is it takes a little bit of time to figure out the right call, which means that it could so happen that somebody scores a goal, celebrates, and later finds out that their goal was disallowed.

So many celebrations have been stopped like this. 

They thought they scored a goal, and then it's not actually a goal. 

It has been disallowed, but it's all part of the game.

At least it's become more accurate. 

So that's one. 

Another really cool thing that's been introduced just in this World Cup is this thing called ball tracking. 

So the ball being used, developed by Adidas, actually has a chip inside it, and it captures about 500 inputs per second. 

And it's able to detect a lot of different things, like the speed, not only the forward velocity, but also the rotational velocity of the ball. 

And it's also able to check possession stats more accurately. 

So possession is roughly which team had the ball more. 

So, for example, if you look at any of Spain's games, Spain really likes to keep the ball a lot. They like to pass a lot; they generally have like 60% to 80% of possession. 

Now with this ball, the statistic of possession has just become more accurate. 

You come to know which team had the ball most of the time and for how much time. 

The ball was actually not with either of the teams. 

So it just helped there. 

And it's also helped in this goal line technology, that is to figure out whether the ball has really gone outside or whether it's inside, or whether it has crossed the line of the goal or not. 

So it's again improved the goal line technology as well. 

Another way where FIFA is using AI this time is not so much to do with the players, but it's actually to do with the audience itself. 

Qatar being a desert area with a lot of harsh climate. 

It does get hot over there, even during the winters. 

So what they've done is they've installed a lot of temperature sensors all across the stadiums and they come to know which areas are getting too warm, which areas are getting cold, and automatically the coolers start on or off, depending on the temperature at that point. 

So it's a whole automated system over there. 

Another thing that they're doing with the crowd is crowd control. 

You might have seen in the recent news, there have been a lot of stampedes or just a lot of crowds getting out of control, leading to casualties. 

So they're using things like facial detection to identify how many people are in a particular place, whether there are enough exits available for those people, or whether they'll get cramped in one place or not. So that's another way people have or FIFA has been using AI as well. 

And finally, there are just a lot of these different data models that are going around based on the crowd again. 

So if there are certain crowds in one place, certain crowds in another place, will they end up colliding, will they get in each other's way, and so on. 

So they're using a lot of data models to figure out that the crowd doesn't get out of control and generally the crowd can be kept in control. 

So these are some ways in which FIFA is using AI in this 2022 World Cup. 

It's caused the viewer experience, as well as the management as well as the player experience to become much better, a lot less complaints, a lot more focus on the football. 

Let us know in the comments below what you thought of FIFA using AI. 

Did I miss out some use cases of AI here? 

Let me know. And let me know if you're liking such kinds of videos. 

We'd love to create more such videos and help you improve your general awareness.

Thanks a lot for watching. We'll catch you next time.

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