The Super Bowl. The pinnacle of the professional football season. The smell of the stadium is enough to get some die-hard sports fans very excited. In the modern era, sports events have not just been about the game, but now has reached out to encompass advertising. And no, I do not just mean the big names on the stadium, which Verizon has at the MetLife Stadium where the Super Bowl will be taking place, but rather a new age of advertising. People are always on their smart phones, and with that comes opportunities. Whether it is through Twitter, Instagram, or some other social networking site, people are always in contact with friends. This provides the best advertising possibilities for any company… free word-of-mouth advertising. These benefits, however, are limited by the network coverage of the stadium. For this coming Super Bowl, Verizon has taken some major efforts to make sure that their network, deemed the most reliable in the nation, will not crash with the expected 82,000 people who will be coming to the game.
Verizon, being a sponsor of the MetLife Stadium, as been undergoing operations to make sure their service stays functioning for the last 18 months. They have installed a network of 552 mini antennas all over the stadium that are hidden from plain sight, in an effort to handle more network traffic than ever before. Michelle White, the Verizon Network guru who is one of the people in charge of making sure all goes well, says that the area should be able to handle up to four times the traffic as opposed to a year ago. These antennas have been calibrated such that, should there be another Super Bowl blackout, they can run off external generators that will be standing by. While Verizon wouldn’t reveal how much they spent on the MetLife Stadium specifically, they did say it was a part of the $400 million that they spend on improving coverage in the New York metropolitan area. Verizon, whose claim to fame is their reliability, has quite a bit riding on this. Hopefully, all goes well for them.
Not to be left out, Verizon’s competitors have also been prepping for the big game. The much talked about T-Mobile as been boosting their network coverage in almost every way. They have also begun using cell-sites on wheels (COWs) to boost coverage in practice facilities, or in other locations that are expected to receive really heavy traffic. AT&T says that they have distributed a new antenna systems as well, and that they can handle three times the network traffic as compared to last year. They are also utilizing COWs to increase coverage support. Sprint says that they have been preparing for two years for this day, increasing voice capacity by 53% and data capacity by 52%, which doesn’t seem like much compared to AT&T and Verizon. They are also using COWs, just like the others. Do you have any thoughts about this? Let us know in the comments!