IBM study shows that 50% of young people see AI as essential to innovate sports

AI (artificial intelligence) is becoming a major player in the world of sports, providing new experiences for fans and revolutionizing the way sporting events are consumed and analyzed.

An IBM study conducted in May 2024 with the participation of more than 18,000 sports fans in 10 countries revealed that 50% of respondents see AI as a potential game-changer for the sports industry. Here is the full research (PDF – 1,346 KB)

The research shows that while 64% of fans still prefer to watch sporting events via traditional live television or streaming services, there is an increase in the use of mobile devices and digital platforms, especially among younger audiences. This reflects a demand for shorter, more personalized content.

Among younger fans, ages 18-29, 58% expressed enthusiasm for AI technology. These fans are also more likely to use smartphones or tablets to watch sporting events and turn to a “second screen” for a better experience. Additionally, 56% of all fans use social media to access additional sports content, seeking out video highlights and post-game analysis.


The survey was conducted in May 2024 and surveyed 18,082 sports fans aged 18+ in the US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, India, UAE and Saudi Arabia. Interviews for each country were conducted online, and the data is unweighted, with around 2,000 responses per market in the US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and India and around 1,000 responses per market in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

To qualify for this survey, respondents had to be at least an average sports fan and follow 1 or more of the following sports: soccer, cricket, tennis, basketball, baseball, rugby, golf, American football, F1 racing, athletics, swimming and the Olympics.


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