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15 Trends for 2015

January 15, 2015
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With all the seriousness in sports and entertainment these days – lawsuits, suspensions, secret whisperings, data breaches – it’s time for our annual trend predictions. This year, it’s 15 for 15, and while were ready to stand by every one of them, there may be a few that need your help to get momentum – seems like this is the place for the hashtag: #MakeThisHappenNow…

1. Projection Mapping to the ceiling and walls in movie theaters: 3D is so 80’s, 4D, well, that will spill your popcorn. So, by deduction we can only assume that Hollywood will be thinking bigger this year and delivering imagery on the side walls and ceiling of movie theaters. Total immersion. You won’t have a stiff neck from looking up; you’ll have a sore neck from moving it all around to keep up with the action.

2. Pro Sports will up their game: Players are bigger, faster, and stronger than they have ever been. Here is a shotgun list of the 2015 games changers:

• NBA will widen court and raise buckets increasing action in the corners and separating themselves from the mere mortals who can’t dunk on an 11’ rim. #MakeThisHappenNow
• NFL will move a touchback to the 30-yard line. The kickoff has become a boring commercial. Loss of revenue, yes, but more excitement surrounding special teams play.. definitely! #MakeThisHappenNow football-stadium-254435_1280
• Length of games (NFL, NBA, MLB, golf) is too long. Let’s put Tiger on a cart for goodness sakes. #MakeThisHappenNow
• NFL, NBA, MLB in Mexico. All of the focus has been on expanding into Europe. The fatigue of Trans-Atlantic travel is simply too much. Mexico City has the population to support a “time zone” friendly expansion for any League.
• MLS 8-city expansion. We first envisioned an expansion in Spring of 2014. The exponential growth in popularity of soccer will result in a massive expansion that is already slated to begin in 2015. It’s happening.
• Stadiums bringing in food trucks. If you can’t beat them, join them. In other words if you can’t get tailgaters into the stadium early to buy concessions, bring the concessions to the tailgaters. More portable toilets would be great too.

4090201010_818b66f60d_z3. Preventive full body scans: I’m not exactly sure what to call this, but with the progress of 3D printing there is a future where you will have a full body MRI scan to image your body in the case you ever need to replace an organ, appendage, or bone. Can’t find your finger at the bottom of a fumble recovery….no problem, the hospital is already working on printing a new one before you even arrive.

4. 4D stadium seating: An idea only a 13 year old will love. Imagine that your seat recognizes through an RFID tag or Mobile App that your favorite player is Tom Brady. In the 1st quarter, Tom is sacked by Tamba Hali. You will now “feel his pain” in the very literal sense as your seat vibrates in reaction to the on-field action.

5. Aggregated fan and professional social/digital content: Okay, call this one a trend with momentum. Social media interactions will become increasingly integrated into the standard broadcasts of award shows, sporting events, cult movie TV reruns, even 1st run movie theaters. Instead of silencing your phones, imagine #thismovierocks

6. Return of the helmet cam: With a vengeance. GoPro and Red Bull are turning themselves into Media conglomerates with POV footage of action sports. The Leagues have dabbled but have been slow to incorporate this popular medium into their game time productions.

7. Man vs. robot competitions: Skynet has become self-aware and it is time for battle. Okay, that is being a little dramatic, but let’s start putting some of this technology to the test. Google Self Driving Racecar vs. Jimmie Johnson…let’s see it.

espionage-407392_12808. Drones: Personally, I’m tired of hearing the word. I would propose changing their name, but I’m hoping the French come up with something first. While drones are already hard at work farming, filming, and in combat, they have yet to really serve the average family. 2015 will see the rise of the personal drone assistant. One to get the paper at the end of the drive, scare rabbits out of the garden, or follow my daughter and her boyfriend on their date. Creepy… yes they are.

9. Mixed-use stadiums: Have you heard of the Notre Dame Crossroads project? If not, look it up. It is the ultimate mixed use project combining the University’s core missions of educating students and winning football games. Other universities will follow this architectural model, but so will developers as public funds run dry for arena and stadium construction. Sports venues have already looked beyond game day to bring in revenue. Fields will become the greenspace between skyscrapers housing the corporations purchasing the limited and exclusive suites.

10. Video advances: From gaming, medicine, storytelling, movie watching, and so on, advances in video technology and the way it’s served up to you is going to continue evolving. YouTube on steroids….and then some.

11. Oculus Rift: Virtual and Augmented reality are about to take a huge step forward. A leap actually. Early adopters will be the gaming community. Tearing your teenager away from an alternate reality will become a concern for many a parent. For the rest of us, there will be some fun new ways to explore museums, see through things, and immerse ourselves in relaxation scenes as beautiful as a Corona commercial.

12. Making STEM cool: Motion/data capture of your favorite sports hero presented in a cool way in real time.

13. Interachonda-other-side-hed-2014tive video: Check out Honda’s ‘The Other Side’, enough said.

14. Less tablet, less phone, more interaction: Perhaps the Internet of everything will allow you to free yourself from your device. Can’t picture it? Futurists from Intel put it like this: “At one time a computer filled a large room, then a few years later it shrunk to a big box and a monitor on your desk, the same computing power was then put into a phone that fit in your hand, and next year we get it in a watch. The supercomputers and server farms powering the cloud and capitalizing on wireless connectivity are shrinking the size of the processing chip you have to carry with you. Soon you will only need to have a very small chip on your body (ooh or maybe in your body) that identifies you to your surroundings. Hello doorknob, I’m home… let me in.” #MakeThisHappenNow

15. Smart Retail: Video killed the radio star and now Amazon killed the Sears store. To survive, traditional brick and mortar retailers will dramatically decrease their physical location footprints to create flexible, adaptive, smart retail store. It’s actually here. You have seen it or walked by the 10sqft. electronic store at the airport. Generation 2 of these endless aisles, 80% experience 20% retail stores, will replace corner newspaper stands and phone booths.

16. OK BONUS one – Royals World Series, 2015! #MakeThisHappenNow

Finally, a disclaimer: If you made it this far, you realize that this list is intended for thought-provocation and (mild) entertainment. While we would love to see many of these come to fruition, we are also looking forward to bold clients with whom we can partner to push experiences even further.

About the Author
Quincy Morris is a Research Strategist for Dimensional Innovations. “I want to give clients a tactical advantage by forecasting trends and inspiring them to be creative, cunning, and prepared.”