New Report: Inside the technology at SoFi Stadium and Allegiant Stadium

Stadium Tech Report is pleased to announce our FALL 2020 issue, with profiles of two of the most innovative new venues to open – SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles and Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas! While neither venue will host fans this NFL season, our profiles will dig in-depth to tell you about the technologies in place to make these stadiums the most advanced when it comes to the game-day experience. We also have a substantive news analysis story about how venues and product and service suppliers are planning to tackle two of the biggest venue issues when it comes to hosting fans during a pandemic – venue entry and concessions operations.

We’d like to take a quick moment to thank our sponsors, which for this issue include Corning, Boingo, MatSing, Cox Business/Hospitality Network, Comcast Business, American Tower, CommScope, AmpThink and ExteNet Systems. Their generous sponsorship makes it possible for us to offer this content free of charge to our readers. We’d also like to welcome readers from the Inside Towers community, who may have found their way here via our ongoing partnership with the excellent publication Inside Towers. We’d also like to thank the SEAT community for your continued interest and support.

We would like to take a moment here and give some special thanks to the people at SoFi Stadium and at Allegiant Stadium, and to all the other subjects we interviewed for this issue, for their extra help when it came to providing interview time and especially photos to help bring our publications to life. We quite literally couldn’t have done this without your help, and we look forward to visiting venues again in the near future!

Venue Display Report: An in-depth look at SoFi Stadium’s amazing videoboard

STADIUM TECH REPORT is pleased to welcome you to the latest issue of our VENUE DISPLAY REPORT series, with an in-depth report on perhaps the most innovative main stadium video board ever, the new Samsung dual-sided, 4K oval videoboard at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles.

These long-form reports are designed to give stadium and large public venue owners and operators, and digital sports business executives a way to dig deep into the topic of digital display technology, via exclusive research and profiles of successful stadium and large public venue display technology deployments, as well as news and analysis of topics important to this growing market.

As venues seek to improve fan engagement and increase sponsor activation, display technology offers powerful new ways to improve the in-stadium fan experience while also increasing the bottom line for stadium business operations. Read on as we examine not just new display technology and successful deployments, but also study how display technologies can support successful marketing and advertising campaigns!

A special thanks is due here to sponsor Samsung, whose support allows us to make this content free to readers. We’d also like to extend a special thanks to the Samsung staff and the folks at SoFi Stadium for all their help in arranging remote interviews and to provide pictures and video so you can get at least a virtual sense of the amazing new technology that awaits visitors to SoFi Stadium. Looking forward to future visits!

California Governor Newsom says no live-audience sports until ‘therapeutics’ are available

Gavin Newsom, governor of California, tweeted out some information Tuesday on a staged approach California will take toward re-opening the economy following the current coronavirus shutdowns — and it’s not good news for those looking forward to returning to live sports events in the state anytime soon.

In a tweet thread where he said “Our re-opening must be gradual, guided by public health and science,” Newsom outlined four stages of “re-opening,” starting with Stage 1 of “Safety and Preparedness,” which is what the state currently does with stay-at-home measures. In Stage 2 Newsom forsees opening of “lower-risk workplaces,” including retail, manufacturing and some offices. It isn’t until Stage 3 when Newsom foresees opening “higher-risk workplaces,” where his list includes “sports without live audiences.”

Then finally he gets to Stage 4, where the “end of the stay-at-home order” includes live audiences for sports events, but only “once therapeutics have been developed.” According to news reports, Newsom said Phase 3 and Phase 4 are likely “months away.”

According to news reports, the first “Phase 2” openings could be weeks away, Newsom said. It’s not yet apparent whether the Stage 4 phase will require a vaccine, or if “therapeutics” means other kinds of treatments. We will continue to follow this story and provide updates as we get them.

Cisco inks deal for Wi-Fi 6 network, Cisco Vision system at SoFi Stadium

SoFi Stadium

Aerial view of ongoing construction at SoFi Stadium, future home of the NFL’s Rams and Chargers. Credit: LA Rams/Mark Holtzman, West Coast Aerial Photography, Inc.

Cisco announced today that it will supply gear for a Wi-Fi 6 network at SoFi Stadium, the future home of the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers, along with a deployment of its Cisco Vision IPTV display management system.

In an announcement that identifies Cisco as the “official IT network services partner of SoFi Stadium and Hollywood Park,” the networking company said it is slated to install “more than 2,500 Wi-Fi 6 access points” inside the still under-construction stadium, which is scheduled to open ahead of the 2020 NFL season. Hollywood Park, which is being built by Los Angeles Rams owner and chairman Stan Kroenke, is billed as a “298-acre global sports and entertainment destination,” being built on the site of the old Hollywood Park racetrack in Inglewood, to the south and west of downtown L.A. (and on the flight path in to LAX airport).

While Cisco claims that the all-Wi-Fi 6 network will eventually deliver “four times greater capacity than the previous Wi-Fi standard,” it’s worthwhile to note that the benefits of Wi-Fi 6 won’t be realized until the phones in fans’ hands support the new system as well (most phones a year old or older do not have Wi-Fi 6 support). The good news is, many of the newer phones on the market, including the new Apple iPhone 11 line, do support Wi-Fi 6, so fans with newer phones should be able to see the better performance supported by Wi-Fi 6.

If the stadium itself does eventually use 2,500 or more APs it would be among the top if not at the top of the list of venues with the most APs. (We’d like to get a current count from AT&T Stadium before making any definitive calls on this issue.) According to the release, SoFi Stadium will seat approximately 70,000 fans, with capacity expandable up to around 100,000. In addition to Rams and Chargers home games, the stadium is already slated to host Super Bowl LVI in 2022, followed by the College Football National Championship Game in 2023, and the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2028 Summer Olympics.

On the Cisco Vision side, Cisco said the system will be the first all-4K version of Cisco Vision, and it will support “approximately 2,500 screens throughout SoFi Stadium’s concourses, suites, concessions, as well as across Hollywood Park.” The Cisco Vision IPTV display management system allows for centralized control of graphics and video content across all the connected screens.