Sprint has announced that it will be bolstering cell coverage in Houston for Super Bowl 51. The improvements do not appear to be city-wide as Sprint had opted to instead focus on event areas where it will have a presence and where it has partnerships. The announcement also did not say how the company will be accomplishing its network boost or whether any of the improved network performance – listed as being brought to Discovery Green, Wortham Center, Rice University Stadium, Minute Maid Park, and Marriott Marquis Hotel, in addition to NRG Stadium – will be permanent. However, the company is taking its approach to gameday a step further than a simple network improvement.
In addition to announcing that it will also have a presence at the Super Street Market Navigation Tailgate, taking place in Houston from February 2-5, Sprint will have a big presence at Sam Houston Race Park on the same days – as the exclusive network provider for the Player's Party being hosted there. The latter event will feature musical performances, current professional players, and "famous foodies." Sprint has even teamed up with Samsung to provide product demonstrations and a "4-D VR experience" at the event. Perhaps better still, Sprint is providing visitors to its local area stores with an opportunity to meet celebrities. Sprint stores around Houston will be hosting local celebrities and former players including – according to the announcement – "Ray Childress, Quentin Demps, Travis Jackson, Jonathan Joseph, and others." Sprint also took the opportunity to talk about an offer available to those switching to the company from another provider. The offer gives switchers up to $200 per line for up to the first four lines, totaling up to $800.
Sprint's tactic is a bit different from other network providers. Both Verizon and T-Mobile are also planning to bolster their own networks in time for Super Bowl 51. Those improvements are to be area-wide and some of them are to be permanent. While the boosts to the local Sprint network are likely not permanent, given that only specific locations are said to be included, Sprint is definitely putting in quite a bit of effort to set itself apart with unique experience opportunities for customers and non-customers alike.