The Network Game Plan to Prepare for Football’s Biggest Week

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Football fans are sure to be talking about the Big Game’s special teams, defensive zones, spikes and blocks. Verizon Wireless network techs will also use similar terms, but they’ll have little to do with the gridiron and everything to do with providing the best customer experience for wireless users during football’s biggest week.

Verizon Wireless has more than quadrupled 4G LTE data network capacity throughout metro Phoenix for Super Bowl XLIX, the Pro Bowl and the Phoenix Open.  The company added new equipment and technology to carry what it predicts will be an unprecedented volume of Tweeting, web browsing, social media posting, video streaming and more over the Verizon Wireless network before, during and after the big weekends.

The company has worked for nearly two years to boost capacity and coverage at more than 30 major area venues from Glendale to central Phoenix, to Scottsdale using a variety of methods:

  • Built new area cell sites;
  • Boosted capacity by adding new digital carrier systems in many existing sites;
  • Installed indoor and outdoor distributed antenna systems (DAS);
  • Completed preparations to deploy 13 mobile cell sites in high traffic locations;
  • Installed small cell systems; and
  • Added XLTE carrier systems which use Advanced Wireless Services spectrum to increase data capacity.

Additionally, Verizon Wireless has assembled a special team of 12 network technicians to comb the University of Phoenix Stadium to monitor and manage the network in real-time for best performance on Game Day.

During the 2014 Super Bowl, customers at MetLife Stadium used 1.9 terabytes of data and during the busiest hour of the game, the Verizon Wireless data network handled an eight-fold increase in stadium wireless data traffic over the previous Super Bowl. This year’s demand is forecast to be even higher.

All the preparations are made to provide a championship experience for the estimated 1 million visitors expected in greater Phoenix. And long after the last pass is thrown, residents and visitors to Arizona will continue to benefit from the network investment.

Glendale, home of the Super Bowl and Pro Bowl:

  • Quadrupled 4G LTE data capacity in the University of Phoenix Stadium
  • Added a new Outdoor Distributed Antenna System (ODAS) in parking lots outside University of Phoenix Stadium
  • Added a new Distributed Antenna System (DAS) inside the Gila River Arena and the Glendale Renaissance Hotel
  • Added a new ODAS serving the Westgate Entertainment district near the stadium
  • Activated mobile cell sites, or COWs, around the stadium and at Tanger Outlets to further boost capacity

Downtown Phoenix, home of Verizon Super Bowl Central and the NFL Experience:

  • Added macro cell sites to add data capacity and coverage
  • Added small cell systems on light and utility poles throughout the Verizon Super Bowl Central area
  • Added a new DAS inside the Phoenix Convention Center & Symphony Hall
  • Added a new permanent DAS and a temporary Wi-Fi system at the Cityscape venue to support NFL House
  • Added new DAS systems inside the Hyatt Regency and the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown
  • Activated a COW to boost capacity for the Verizon Super Bowl Central concert area

Scottsdale, home of the Waste Management Phoenix Open:

  • Adding small cells across Scottsdale including Old Town and the Promenade shopping areas
  • Deployed a temporary site to support the ESPN Fan Zone event at Scottsdale Fashion Square Mall
  • Deployed three COWs to support the Waste Management Phoenix Open

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