NFL American football franchise the Denver Broncos has entered into a $6m (£4.6m/€5m) partnership with telecommunications company Verizon to enhance the Wi-Fi at the team’s home stadium, Sports Authority Field at Mile High.
The new network will be supplied and powered by CenturyLink, and will provide the stadium with a full 10gbps internet connection.
Forty per cent of the system has been installed, and it is hoped the network will be completely fitted by late October or early November.
The Broncos said the new system will comprise more than four times as many wireless antennas as the previous version. Three different types of antennas will be fitted: ‘overhead’ mounted, ‘in the rail’ mounted and ‘under the seat’ mounted.
“We have been working with Verizon engineers since last June to select the best possible Wi-Fi system for our fans,” Broncos vice-president of information technology, Russ Trainor, said. “Our Wi-Fi system was last updated more than five years ago and needed an uplift. Wi-Fi technology has made some significant advances in the last few years and we wanted to deliver a more robust system to our fans.”
Trainor added: “The CenturyLink and Cisco teams have stepped up and have gone beyond the normal working relationship and we are very excited for them to help deliver this new system to our fans. The new Cisco technology is state-of-the-art in that each of the access points is capable of driving dual 5Ghz radios. This was a key differentiator in our decision process.”
Supporters can connect to the Wi-Fi network by selecting ‘FreeStadiumWiFi’ when in the venue.
The Broncos’ IT staff will monitor the system throughout the new season, gathering data and metrics to provide the best possible experience for fans.
“As we continue to add more Wi-Fi infrastructure these next few months, we will continuously tweak and tune the system from week to week,” Trainor continued. “We have shored up our back-haul circuits to take on the additional capacity as well with dual 10Gbps circuits. We are increasing the amount of antennas throughout the venue by a significant amount and will primarily be driving a 5Ghz solution. We very excited about this new Wi-Fi platform and the design, and can’t wait to see what the system can do during gamedays.”