As social media continues to influence the way we obtain information, live tweeting and going live has become the go-to way for pop culture icons to interact with their followers, and the sporting arena is no exception. Take the NFL, for example. Antonio Brown thrust the Pittsburgh Steelers into the headlines by broadcasting their postgame celebration in the 2017 playoffs on Facebook Live, which featured head coach Mike Tomlin’s spirited take on their upcoming matchup with the New England Patriots. Though the league prohibits the use of social media 90-minutes prior to kickoff through postgame, its use often makes headlines and elevates the excitement for any given team’s fan base. Even more recently, Odell Beckman Jr. signed a massive contract extension that garnered attention after he and Sterling Shepherd took to Instagram to celebrate.
But what if wireless access within the depths of stadiums in areas such as the locker room weren’t available? Would professional sports still be what it is today?
Sports reporters utilize wireless networks to live Tweet postgame interviews and deliver updates to followers in real-time. Taking into account the average stadium capacity for the NFL is in the tens of thousands on any given Sunday, Wi-Fi networks within these large venues are strained when providing coverage at this scale. More often than not, fans are forced to rely on the in-stadium scoreboard to keep track of games across the league because of spotty wireless connectivity. Considering the booming use of fantasy sports apps, reliable network access improves the spectator experience immensely and can impact how well tickets sell.
Imagine if the current cellular landscape were prevalent in the 2000 sports comedy, The Replacements (spoilers ahead). If Shane Falco were able to take to social media and connect with the Washington Sentinels fan base, he may have never lost his roster spot heading into the playoffs when the players strike ended. By creating a public persona for himself and the replacement team while the media was fixated on the negotiations taking place, ticket sales and support for the team may have never faltered, letting Falco redeem himself from mistakes made during his college career.
At a time when in-home technology like 4K televisions and surround sound are creating ample reasons for sports fans to stay in the comfort of their own homes, it’s incumbent upon team owners and stadium operators to provide an optimal game-day experience – and that includes ubiquitous cellular access. The introduction of new mobile technology and network offerings is driving the expectation for reliable connectivity – an expectation that only a DAS can support while providing the scalability necessary to meet consumer demands. Deploying a DAS solution within large venues, facility operators are able to combat the influx of home technology and provide a one-of-a-kind sports atmosphere. Zinwave’s DAS is the only solution that provides full-spectrum support, including the interoperability with public safety, cellular, and CBRS frequencies. Providing safety and security, while also increasing the spectator experience, allows for organizations to excel well beyond the competition.
Through cellular connectivity, professional athletes will continue to build their brands as fans interact and fall deeper in love with the game, meaning stadium operators will need to figure out how to best solve for access. A wireless infrastructure supported by Zinwave’s DAS allows team owners to focus on what matters most – winning.
Zinwave is ready to lead your team to the Pro Bowl of connectivity and spectator experience – will your stadium make the cut or be left red shirting on the sidelines of the future?