13th November 2018
Stadiums are Getting Smarter with IoT
According to Deloitte, “stadiums need to embrace a combination of team-created and third-party experiences, provide tools and data for fan retention, and ensure there are team-owned set of physical hardware, networking equipment, and software that powers arenas and enables in-arena experiences.”
With an estimated 12,000+ stadiums globally, many are turning to smart technologies in order to reinvent themselves as dynamic platforms, with fan experiences, offerings and capabilities that far exceed that of a traditional stadium. That means incorporating beacons, Wi-Fi access points, and things like dynamic real-time and targeted digitalization, all with the goal of improving and re-energizing the fan experience.
IoT is a real game-changer for stadiums and sponsors
Additionally, the data gleaned from these new stadium ecosystems allows stakeholders to provide new and tangible ways to increase sponsorship and brand collaborations. Adweek succinctly noted that when it comes to IoT, “by using machine learning and artificial intelligence, companies like Dell, Microsoft, Intel and IBM are testing how to turn boring numbers into interesting things.”
So, what exactly do these “interesting” things look like for fans and brands?
Smart stadiums in the wild
For any fan who wants to access real-time player stats, share game time moments, or try to find a parking spot near the venue, smart stadium initiatives like these are real game-changers:
- Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta: AMB Sports & Entertainment partnered with IBM to provide 71,000 fans enough wireless access points to stay connected to the outside world and tweet, stream and share their stadium experience. The platform also handles all the audio and video throughout the stadium, feeding 2,000+ screens throughout the venue, creating innovative touchpoints for ad placements, and includes features to help fans navigate transportation, park their cars, buy tickets and find their way around the facilities. The apps are real-time and location-based, allowing the stadium to deliver relevant and personalized experiences for every fan.
- Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California seats more than 65,000 spectators in two bowl-like structures. Beacons, IoT sensors and sophisticated mobile apps give fans their own personalized “digital butler” for the day; providing information on purchasing parking passes digitally, offering turn-by-turn directions to the visitor’s assigned lot, navigation to help fans quickly and easily find their seats, and features ensuring fans get the food and beverages they want, when they want them. With so many opportunities for fans to navigate the stadium experience online, Verizon offers several branded charging stations around the stadium, a perfect example of sponsorship that benefits its fans.