Wi-Fi 6 research report: Download it now!

As a service to our readers Mobile Sports Report is making the Wi-Fi 6 Research Report we offered earlier this summer as a standalone download, for easier reading, consumption and sharing. Download the report here and start learning more about Wi-Fi 6 today!

With a wide range of technical improvements, Wi-Fi 6 will greatly advance the entire Wi-Fi ecosystem, for all types of uses. But for venue networks the new features are especially important, since Wi-Fi 6 will allow network operators to significantly improve each of the three main things that matter when it comes to in-venue network performance: it will increase the amount of available spectrum and number of channels; it will increase the average data rate for clients; and it will increase the ability to re-use channels in your space. What can Wi-Fi 6 do for your venue network? Find out now by downloading your free copy today!

The Wi-Fi 6 report encapsulated in this report is a joint effort between MSR and our friends at AmpThink, something that grew out of conversations about how to bring more forward-looking expertise on topics like Wi-Fi 6 to the MSR reader audience.

While the meat of this report is based on a Wi-Fi 6 presentation and essay developed by AmpThink, MSR helped clarify the material to make it fit into the report format, with the idea that this report would be just a starting point for deeper discussions into each of the relevant features that we think make Wi-Fi 6 a compelling technology for venues to consider.

More Wi-Fi 6 material coming soon!

When it comes to Wi-Fi 6 and venues, consider Mobile Sports Report your starting point for research, news, analysis and in-depth reporting. In an effort to get as many voices as possible into the discussion, we will also feature more podcasts about the topic — if you haven’t listened yet, our podcast discussion with Aruba’s Chuck Lukaszewski on Wi-Fi 6 is a great place to start.

Look for more profiles of Wi-Fi 6 networks coming soon — and if you want to read about one recent deployment with a lot of Wi-Fi 6 gear that is making headlines this fall, read our Stadium Tech Report profile of the new network at Ohio State — which you can now read online for free (no registration required) or download a PDF version of the report as well.

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.

Aruba’s Chuck Lukaszewski talks Wi-Fi 6 and venues on the Stadium Tech Report Podcast!

Welcome back to the Stadium Tech Report podcast! We are extremely happy to kick off the new series of recorded chats by welcoming Chuck Lukaszewski to talk about the new Wi-Fi 6 standard and how it’s going to help networks inside large public venues like sports stadiums. If you don’t know Chuck, he is Vice President of Wireless Strategy & Standards at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, and has been working with Wi-Fi for a long, long time.

Chuck has also been a fantastic contributor to MSR’s ongoing attempt to educate our readers — his essay on LTE over unlicensed spectrum is always worth a read — and this conversation continues on the learning path. We open up with some general descriptions of what Wi-Fi 6 is, and then dive down into what its new features mean for venues specifically. About halfway through, you can even hear Chuck give me a lesson on the misconceptions I had about security comparisons between Wi-Fi and LTE networks — click above and start listening!

Chuck Lukaszewski is Vice President of Wireless Strategy & Standards at Aruba Networks, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company. For over a decade he has engineered and deployed large-scale 802.11 networks, joining Aruba in 2007.

Chuck has built Wi-Fi systems in stadiums, seaports, rail yards, manufacturing plants and other complex RF environments, including serving as chief engineer for many stadiums ranging from 20,000 to 100,000 seats that provide live video and other online amenities. He is the author of six books and design guides including Very High Density 802.11ac Networks and Outdoor MIMO Wireless Networks.