By: Gayle Levin, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company.
The most successful NBA franchise in the past decade, the Golden State Warriors, is not only innovating on the basketball court by winning four NBA titles in the past seven seasons, they are also leading the game of technological innovation. The franchise became the first in North America to install the latest generation of Wi-Fi technology, Wi-Fi 6E, at a live entertainment venue, Chase Center, in San Francisco, Calif.
With Wi-Fi 6E, the franchise is focused on creating unique, immersive fan experiences including the ability to watch streaming videos, listen to live play-by-play commentary, view real-time stats, and order concessions, all part of a curated, digital experience within the seating bowl.
In addition to offering very fast connections that are always available, large entertainment venues have been challenged to accommodate tens of thousands of devices spread across thousands of attendees, staff, and performers within a relatively small geographic area. Wi-Fi 6E solves both problems.
It is ideal for streaming and uploading low latency, high-bandwidth video and sharing high-definition photos. Technically speaking, it extends the efficiency and security improvements of the 802.11ax standard to new, unlicensed spectrum in the 6 GHz band. This nearly triples the amount of capacity available in the US (as well as dozens more countries and counting) and adds more 80MHz and 160MHz wide channels, which better support high-definition video and augmented reality/virtual reality.
“With the addition of Wi-Fi 6E Access Points in the arena bowl, we can provide fans a more immersive experience that we believe is unmatched by any other professional sporting venue,” said Brandon Schneider, Golden State Warriors president and chief operating officer.
Wi-Fi 6E: A Fast Break for Fans
Prior to the start of the 2022-2023 NBA season, Chase Center deployed more than 250 Wi-Fi 6E access points (APs) from Aruba to provide comprehensive Wi-Fi coverage across the arena. The installation will also help future-proof the stadium for years to come as more devices enter the market that can access the new 6 GHz band.
During the past year, the number of devices that support 6 GHz has climbed rapidly – with hundreds of devices achieving Wi-Fi Alliance certification – and organizations, especially in retail, higher education, manufacturing, and now entertainment – are moving quickly to adopt the technology to take advantage of its wider channels and faster speeds.
Aruba – A Market Leader in Wi-Fi 6E APs
Aruba is at the leading edge of Wi-Fi 6E innovation, which began with its advocacy work in collaboration with Wi-Fi Alliance and governments across the globe. That full-court press has helped Aruba to become the market leader in Wi-Fi 6E equipment shipments, according to the 650 Group, an industry analyst firm.
By unlocking the 6 GHz band and supporting Wi-Fi 6E, the Aruba Wi-Fi 6E APs offer more than double the available capacity of the previous generation of Wi-Fi, including comprehensive tri-band coverage across the 2.4 GHz, 5 GHz, and 6 GHz bands. What is more, Wi-Fi 6E adds up to seven 160 MHz channels in 6 GHz to support low-latency, bandwidth-hungry applications.
Additional benefits of Aruba Wi-Fi 6E:
- Less interference: Patented ultra tri-band filtering enables 5 GHz and 6 GHz to operate without restrictions or interference.
- Simple, secure access: Role-based policies can be configured and automatically enforced using Aruba Central, which defines proper access privileges for employees, guests, contractors, and other user groups no matter where users connect on wired and Wireless LANs.
- AIOps and automation: APs steer traffic from the busy 2.4 GHz band to the 5 GHz/6 GHz band to optimize performance and use machine learning for dynamic bandwidth adjustments. AIOps and automation in Aruba Central proactively identify issues and recommend remediation actions based on the largest data lake available for faster troubleshooting.
- Indoor location capabilities: Built-in GPS receivers and intelligent software enable APs to self-locate and act as reference points for accurate indoor location measurements that enable location-based services such as navigation, high-value asset tracking, and proximity-based marketing campaigns.
- Broad IoT support: APs include BLE and 802.15.4/Zigbee radios in addition to USB ports to benefit safety, compliance, digital transformation, and other initiatives, all backed by an ecosystem of more than 200 partners.
Ready For the Opening Tip
The Golden State Warriors understand that the fan experience at Chase Center is critical to the success of the franchise and providing visitors with the myriad benefits of Wi-Fi 6E ensures fans won’t miss a thing as they cheer on their favorite teams.
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