Public Wi-Fi: digital services for interactive venues
With the objective to build the world’s most connected indoor sports and entertainment venue, NBA’s Sacramento Kings team will offer digital services through public Wi-Fi to fans in the Golden 1 Center arena in California.
Sacramento Kings, an American professional basketball team based in California, will soon move to their new stadium in Golden 1 Center. Vivek Ranadive, the owner of the Sacramento Kings intends to build the most technologically advanced stadium, by offering free Wi-Fi access to visitors. The construction of the Center begun in October 2014 and should end by Fall 2016.
The Golden 1 Center arena , located in downtown Sacramento, is not only a basketball stadium. The plans of this 1.5 million-square-foot site include a shopping mall, hotels, restaurants, and a plaza. Consequently, the infrastructure to furnish Wi-Fi is large in order to cover the entire surface of the Center and to provide enough throughput for visitors in and around the Center. In order to the achieve a high level of throughput, the Sacramento Kings technology installed 650 miles of fiber-optic cable and 300-plus miles of copper throughout the arena, and deployed hundreds of Wi-Fi access points around the building. The broadband connectivity will be provided by an enormous Distributed Antennas System which will increase the bandwidth and bring cell service “to every nook of the building”, enabling visitors to stay connected at all times through multiple social media platforms.
The aim of Investors is to turn Golden 1 Center into an interactive center that offers its visitors real-time updates on stadium services through digital applications on personal devices. The goal is to enhance the user-experience through the Kings application, one can look for tickets, attain a parking pass, search for last-minute ticket upgrades, receive your seat number, request food and game-time memorabilia, replay the game and find information about shops, hotels, and restaurants in the Center.
With more than 17.500 fans expected to come to the stadium, this free access to the public Wi-Fi will feed streams of data back into the system. Those digital services offered in public spaces will be beneficial to not only the visitors, but also the Center’s businesses as it will enable them to make data-driven decisions such as offering contextual marketing, targeted offers, and postgame information and events. This is a good way to optimize a free WI-Fi connection in a public.
As a result of the large size of the area that must be covered and the large number of visitors expected, the deployment of the Wi-Fi infrastructure is one of the bigger challenges in this project. Although a network that never fails does not exist, according to Matt Eclavea, the team vice president of technology, the Sacramento Kings technology will do its best to provide the most advanced infrastructure to make Golden 1 Center ideal arena for all types of events.