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Australia-based digital agency Unbnd is teaming up with the US National Basketball Association (NBA) to provide immersive coverage of the 2019/2020 season.

Unbnd and the NBA will incorporate virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) into live games, highlights and original programming through a mixed reality platform, Missing in Action (MIA).

MIA will be available to NBA fans in Australia and Singapore, in time for the 2019/2020 pre-season, through iOS, Android and certain VR headsets.

Antony Arena, chief executive officer and founder of Unbnd, said that MIA “will really appeal to fans and open doors for brands looking to attract and retain consumer attention”.

A key feature of MIA will be fans’ ability to purchase merchandise and apparel during an immersive experience. It will also offer interactive content and statistics.

Arena continued: “As a big fan of the game, this partnership with the NBA is a huge deal for me on a personal and professional level, and we’re excited to take fans from being spectators to actively engaging with the content in a meaningful, relevant and exciting way.”

Unbnd Facebook AR filter for Visa
Unbnd Facebook AR filter for Visa

Ramez Sheikh, head of global content and media distribution in Asia at the NBA, said: “By combining NBA content with Unbnd’s enhancements, we will deliver an immersive and unique experience to further engage fans of the NBA.”

Unbnd has worked with sports organisations before. The agency designed and developed a Facebook AR filter for Visa as an extension of its global ‘One moment can change the game’ campaign for the FIFA 2019 Women’s World Cup.

According to Unbnd, the filter was one of the first experiences to be featured as part of Facebook’s new Facebook Ad offer, “leveraging Visa’s social presence and providing fans with an immersive way to show their support for both Australia and the Women’s World Cup in general”.

Main image credit: JC Gellidon on Unsplash