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Plans to back startups in the sports, fitness, nutrition and wellness markets.

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📰 Top Stories We’re Reading This Week 

👀 Apple AR smartglasses have been cancelled, according to new report

⌚️DashTag turns your Apple Watch into a football player tracker

⌚️ Honor Band 5 given sneak peek - could dish out blood oxygen data before Fitbit

🎮 Former NFL VP Johanna Faries Named Commissioner of Call of Duty Esports

💸 Latest Investment Trends

📊 Tech Stats of the Week

📸 Snapshots of the Week

Let’s jump right into the insights and upside for all of these top stories


🎮 AR/VR/Video Sports News

👀 Apple AR smartglasses have been cancelled, according to new report | Via: Wearable

Apple has reportedly terminated development of its AR smartglasses, which the company was rumoured to be launching in the next two years.

That's the word from Digitimes, which has been hit and miss when reporting about the inner workings of Apple in the past. According to the report, the team was disbanded in May and reassigned to other projects.

The report, which has now been translated, suggests that the team behind building the glasses could not successfully come up with the necessary lightweight design and that there was issues with 5G networking support.

It also speculates that the AR glasses team was disbanded when project lead Avi Bar-Zeev left the company earlier this year. Bar-Zeev previously worked at Microsoft and helped bring HoloLens to life.

If this information is all accurate, it would be both a surprise and a disappointment in equal measures. After Google tried and failed to break into the mainstream with Glass, we've been waiting for a heavyweight tech company to prove that good AR smartglasses can exist.

⬆️ The Upside: According to our own intel, we don’t believe that Apple has cancelled its AR glasses project. Instead we believe that Apple will unveil its new AR glasses in the fall 2020. Time is in the essence and Apple is set to become a major player in the AR glasses market which is why we do not believe those reports.


🚑 Wearables, Health, Nutrition News

⌚️ DashTag turns your Apple Watch into a football player tracker | Via: Wearable

DashTag wants to make it easier for more footballers to track performances on the pitch with its new Apple Watch app.

The free app makes use of the startup's own algorithms and Apple's onboard sensors to track data, which is largely driven through sprints. So, it'll record top speed, acceleration, distance covered, stamina, number of sprints and steps.

It can then use that data to offer insights for players and coaches into a player's workload, intensity levels and endurance. When we spoke to its co-founder Dirk Van den Berg last year about DashTag's first football tracking device, he gave us some insights on why it's focused on sprints for its algorithms.

"From sprints we can say something about player stamina. So if you cannot maintain high intensity sprints when the match is getting to the end, for instance," he told us.

Before the Watch app, DashTag's software was packed into a clip-on wearable that was worn on your shorts. It opted against the kind of vest and pod-style design that Catapult and StatSports player tracking systems use to track performance. The move to an Apple Watch app for its player-centric system is with a view of making that performance data accessible to more players for the first time.

DashTag is also embracing augmented reality to deliver those performance metrics using Apple's ARKit platform to display how your performances compare to pro players. Users will be able to see how to set up training drills and record sprint videos that can be compared to the game's elite to see how you match up.

The DashTag Apple Watch is set to launch in the Fall and will be available for free. There will be the option of a $1.99 subscription, which gives you access to features like personal coaching and personalized adaptable exercises.

⬆️ The Upside: We believe it is a good move by DashTag. We believe it will help the company scale its business and leverage the large footprint of Apple Watch users. That being said we don’t expect to see pro soccer teams adopting such solution in a big way. Instead we expect solutions from companies like Catapult and StatSports to prevail and remain the leading players there.

DashTag turns your Apple Watch into a football player tracker

Picture: DashTag

⌚️ Honor Band 5 given sneak peek - could dish out blood oxygen data before Fitbit | Via: Wearable

Huawei sub-brand Honor is prepping to launch the Band 5, its next generation fitness tracker that promises to bring a big new feature to the affordable wearable.

The Honor Band 4 successor's existence was confirmed by the company's CEO Zhao Ming, who shared the image (below) on Chinese social media website Weibo. It shows off the new tracker, which looks like it'll have a design not too dissimilar to the Band 4.

What's interesting is the data displayed on the device. Along with a heart rate reading, there is also a percentage reading for blood oxygen levels, according to Ming.

The Band 5 seems likely to include an SpO2 sensor, joining Fitbit in offering the ability to measure blood oxygen levels.

Unlike Fitbit's sensor, which currently lies dormant inside of its Ionic and Versasmartwatches and Charge 3 fitness tracker, it looks like Honor will let you start making use of that sensor for those health and sleep insights straight away.

We fully anticipate that the Band 5 will also offer the same waterproof design, 24/7 activity tracking, PPG cardio tachometer to monitor heart rate and big battery life as the Band 4. The question is whether the addition of that new health monitoring sensor will bump up the price.

Should Honor manage to keep the price of its new tracker super affordable like it has with previous iterations, it could be the cheapest tracker to offer the ability to measure blood oxygen levels.

It seems like we might not have a long time to wait to find out, either. The Honor Band 4 was unveiled the Honor 8X smartphone, and the Band 5 could well join the big Honor 9X reveal, which is expected to go down on 23 July. Like previous launches, it'll likely be on sale in China first before it makes its way to other parts of the world.

⬆️ The Upside: This should come as no surprise that Huawei is moving in that direction by adding new sensor to measure blood oxygen. It makes sense as it will enable Huawei to provide additional value. In this case, it will enable users to detect fatigue, dizziness and poor sleep. In our view, this is much more valuable to users rather than simply providing biometric data like HR, steps counts, etc. We expect other OEMs to follow suit over time.

Picture: Huawei


🎮 eSports & Crypto-Currency News

🎮 Former NFL VP Johanna Faries Named Commissioner of Call of Duty Esports | Via: eSports Observer

Johanna Faries, a former NFL executive who joined Activision Blizzard  in 2018, has been named the new commissioner of Call of Duty  esports, the company announced today.

The move comes ahead of the transition from the current Call of Duty World League (CWL) to a franchised, geolocated league for the first-person shooter series. Seven teams have already secured spots in the league in Los Angeles, New York, Paris, Toronto, Atlanta, Dallas, and Minnesota.

Faries, who was appointed the CWL’s head of product in October, was previously the vice president of club business development at the NFL. In her new role, Faries will oversee further development and execution of the franchised league while working with stakeholders to bring the league to life.

⬆️ The Upside: We think this is a great move by Activison Blizzard. Mrs Faries has a proven track record from her days at the NFL. He is also a great move as it brings more diversity in the world of eSports. Hopefully this will inspire other key players in the eSports world to follow suit and promote female execs to top positions.

Picture: Activision Blizzard


💸 Sports Investment Trends — July, 2019

  • Next Ventures, an investment firm led by Lance Armstrong, has filed to raise $75 million for its debut venture capital fund. Read on here.


📊 Key Tech Sports Stats of The Week

$4B: When we look at the value of the NBA’s most valuable teams has changed over the last 16 years, it is important to notice that the Knicks have gone from being worth $400M to $4B.

$134.6M: Including this weekend's win at Wimbledon, Novak Djokovic has now made $134.6M in career prize money. By comparison, Roger Federer, with his runner up prize, has made $126.2M.

$85M: According to Jeff Zillgitt, Danielle Cantor, Malcolm Brogdon's agent, negotiated the largest contract (four years, $85 million) for a female agent in league history.

$30M: Fifa, the world governing body, doubled the total prize money for the 2019 Women's World Cup from $15M to $30M, but it is still a fraction of the $400M received by the players in the men's tournament last year. The men's champions, France, took home $38M - that's more than all 24 women's teams competed for in 2019. Fifa has since announced it wants to increase the size of the Women's World Cup to 32 teams, with prize money for the next tournament rising to $60M.

$19M: According to Two Circles, attendance across MLB is projected to finish at 68.8M fans by season-end. While that number would be a decrease of 1.3%, ticket revenue for the league is projected to increase by $19M compared to 2018.

14.3M: Last sunday's Women World Cup final drew a total of around 14.3M viewers on Fox's linear and streaming channels.

1.16M: Fifa said prior to the Women soccer World Cup tournament that 950,000 tickets had been sold, and president Gianni Infantino claimed: "We already sold out 20 matches or so." With ticket sales of at least 1.16M, attendance was only just short of the record level of 1.35M set at the 2015 World Cup in Canada.

29%: According to Nielsen, through the first seven days, Wimbledon’s ratings are up 29% over 2018 with an average of 799,000 viewers.


📸 The Upside: Snapshots of The Week

Mobile first. Last week Alexis Morgan made history by producing the major sports event exclusively shot on smartphones.