Paying print readers get AR access to cricket vision too

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With Australian cricket on both Seven's free-to-air TV and News Corp's dedicated Foxtel pay-TV channel, News has a point to make about anti-siphoning controls.

Last year, Cricket Australia signed a six-year agreement with both Seven - which belongs to rival TV, print and digital media publisher Seven West - and Foxtel to give them access to major cricket events. Australia's anti-siphoning law requires FTA companies to be offered key events before pay-TV channels can buy rights.

Now News is adding a new augmented reality iPhone product to readers of its paid-sale metro tabloids, which it says will "further demonstrate its ability to creatively amplify" its Foxtel cricket broadcasting rights.

The new News Alive AR product was launched for the start of the Big Bash League season last month, with plans to extend it to Test Matches, ODIs, T20s... and eventually classified advertising.

Readers need to open the iPhone app of the News metro mastheads - where cricket is 'subscriber only' - and scan marked photos from the print edition to bring video content, match highlights and updates to life.

Head of content innovation and strategic partnerships Zac Skulander says News Alive "takes the consumer experience of reading the cricket news in our newspapers to a new level. We are effectively bringing the cricket coverage in our printed newspapers to life through AR."

There are also plans to commercialise the product by bringing advertisements to life - showcasing ads for cars, hotels, homes and even lounge suites - in addition to using AR with selected news stories.

News has worked with Plattar on News Alive, where chief executive Rupert Deans claims augmented reality is moving to the mainstream, and will offer a unique approach to engaging customers. "This current campaign is only a small snippet of what is to come," he says.

Pictured: BBL action from News' Sydney Daily Telegraph

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