Tech Stack: Houston Astros to introduce MLB Go-Ahead Entry

Featured image credit: Ty Welch on Unsplash

Major League Baseball’s Houston Astros will introduce MLB Go-Ahead Entry, the hands-free, free-flow ballpark entry experience, at Minute Maid Park for the 2024 season.

Fans can register to use the system in the MLB Ballpark app. The technology was first introduced at Citizens Bank Park, home of the Philadelphia Phillies, last season and uses facial authentication technology to allow ticket holders to enter the ballpark at dedicated gates without stopping.

Go-Ahead Entry will be available at all entrances at Minute Maid Park this season. Fans will also have the option at all entrances to use traditional ticket scanning methods.

Fans can enrol by following the prompts that capture an image of the user’s face. The image is converted into a unique alphanumeric code, which is associated with the fan’s account. The image itself is deleted.

When an enrolled fan walks through Go-Ahead Entry Lanes, a facial authentication camera scans their face to match with the enrolled tokens in the system and allows access. Once fans have enrolled, they can use the service at any MLB ballpark that has installed the technology.

Karri Zaremba, senior vice-president of product – ballpark experience and ticketing at MLB, said: “After a successful pilot programme last season, we’re excited to bring the Go-Ahead Entry option to more fans this season.

“This technology is the next innovation for the ballpark experience as we continue to remove friction and help fans better enjoy their time at our games. By expanding Go-Ahead Entry to more stadiums across the league, more fans have the opportunity to experience this innovative system and spend more time watching the action on the field.”

In other news, the Los Angeles Rams NFL team has selected integrated payments technology company Shift4 to power its ticket sales through its integration with Ticketmaster.

Dan August, the Rams’ executive vice-president of consumer revenue and strategy, said the deal will help ensure safe and seamless payments for season ticket members.

Meanwhile, the German Football League (DFL) has announced an expanded multi-year partnership with Amazon Web Services (AWS).

AWS will continue as the official technology provider of the DFL and will also serve as the league’s official generative AI provider. Under the expanded agreement, new projects have been identified to drive innovation across fan experience, media production and data services.

The DFL has worked with AWS since 2020.