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Big Results at the Biggest Events

It is only a matter of time before all the major sports venues throughout the world will be connected. Consider this – five years ago, Cisco Connected Stadium Wi-Fi, the only high-density solution of its kind, was in the development stage. The pace of innovation has been exponential, and this past month, AT&T Stadium, host of the NCAA National Championship Game, saw nearly five terabytes of data come across the network. To put that in perspective, the entire printed works of the US Library of Congress is 10 terabytes, so half of that amount crossed the network in just a few hours!

Or, look at this past weekend in Arizona as American football’s Big Game took place. It was the sixth consecutive year that a Cisco Connected venue was chosen to host arguably the biggest one day sporting event in the world. And, what did you see? Scores of fans using the network, sharing photos and video, and engaging through technology. Collaborating with CDW and the Arizona Cardinals has been seamless, and our collective expertise makes the experience fans have at University of Phoenix Stadium flawless.

“There is nothing we get more excited about than seeing fans having a fabulous time using their mobile devices to consume, interact and share content at University of Phoenix Stadium,” said Mark Feller, VP, Technology, Arizona Cardinals. “We worked with Cisco and CDW because they have the track record for being the best in the industry at connecting the unconnected. As host of the Big Game at our Stadium, we needed a network and Wi-Fi platform that would be flawless – and Cisco and CDW delivered.”

Not enough? Look at one of the leagues that is hyper-focused on connectivity and innovation – the NBA. This year’s All-Star Weekend will be held in two venues, Barclays Center and Madison Square Garden, both of which are utilizing Cisco Connected Sports solutions, including Connected Stadium Wi-Fi.

Think about where we will be in 2019? The vast majority of venues will be connected, however, during that time people, things, data, processes and more will also become connected as part of the Internet of Everything (IoE), and the opportunities for fans, players and organizations to capitalize on that connectivity will be transformative. The entire fan experience will always be based on the excitement of the live event. Nothing replaces that, but the opportunities to customize that experience, through analysis of data coming from everything being connected to the network, is incredibly powerful, and it excites us about the future.

This is not just a US phenomenon. It is happening globally as already more than 275 venues in 35 plus countries are operating Cisco solutions. We enjoy a global market leadership position because we focus on delivering solutions that work, and giving fans the connected experience they are looking for in this Internet of Everything hyper-connected world of today!

We are incredibly bullish on how the Internet of Everything is going to benefit the sports and entertainment industry; from the emotional and connections that fans will make with their favorite teams and players to how venues and leagues will create new revenue while also creating efficiencies.  Nothing will trump being in a stadium with 20,000 or 80,000 screaming fans as the game comes down to the last play or shot. But there isn’t any reason that experience can’t be enhanced when it is connected  and part of the Internet of Everything.

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Failure is not an Option! Real Madrid & Cisco Continue to Innovate and Partner for a Winning Formula

“We (Real Madrid), with our experience & ideas on how to grow in the sports and entertainment world, and you (Cisco) with your technology, innovation and revenue models… our collaboration, has always resulted in a win- win relationship…and, a proven reference in the world” – Enrique Uriel, CIO, Real Madrid

Eight years ago we embarked on a relationship with Real Madrid to collaborate in transforming the Santiago Bernabeu stadium into the “Ultimate Bernabeu,” which would deliver a fan experience unlike any other. Our first goal was to build a network that would make the stadium the safest, and most secure in the world.

That goal was closely followed by the next phase, which was to support the need for more “things” being connected to the network in the stadium – broadcasting companies, sponsors,  ticketing, hundreds of partners and VIP’s such as the Royal family!  The most recent goal, embarked upon three years ago, was to address the continually evolving need for fans and members to connect with the Club through technology.  Together we innovated, designed, and transformed the fan experience through key Cisco solutions – StadiumVision, Connected Stadium Wi-Fi , and StadiumVision Mobile – to enable the most interactive “live” experience in the world. Read More »

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What an Orchestra and a Mobile Device have in Common

Orchestras are often used as metaphors for all sorts of things–organizational structure, planning sessions and even families.

Have you been to the symphony recently? Musicians sit in a regimented ordering around the stage. The concertmaster sets the tune. The conductor lifts the baton. And then, with the pull of a bow across a string, or breath across a mouthpiece, the music begins. Throughout the performance, each section of the orchestra plays a specific part – either separately or together – to create a harmonized work of art.

The prestigious Czech National Orchestra, known for its versatility, lived up to its reputation during a recent performance (for a new BNP product called Hello Bank!). They put their instruments – some hundreds of years old – aside in favor of newer, more common instruments: smartphones and tablets.

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Connect This With That: What Is Next?

I wonder – what will connect tomorrow? What is going to connect next?

Thinking about the countless ways that different people, process, data and things will connect over upcoming years on the Internet of Everything can be almost overwhelming. As I mentioned in my last blog post, not a moment goes by in the day when I am not thinking of how different objects can work together to improve our world. Some of those connections are realistic; others are more visionary, difficult to grasp outside the context of IoE.

Cisco is already telling the story of these connections. You can explore the potentialities of the future for yourself through Connect This With That, an interactive experience that demonstrates the “how” behind the connections of today and tomorrow. On IoE, it’s possible for any two seemingly unconnected items to work together, creating a new reality for our world’s inhabitants. Imagine, as you pull in for a football game, the stadium automatically sends information to your car about where the best parking is located. As you enter the game, your wallet then talks to the admissions booth, so no tickets are required. What else is possible? For example, what are the technologies and products, current and future, that make it possible for an air quality index to talk to a school desk? Can a health organization connect with your bike, measuring average exercise patterns?

CTWT Screenshot

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An English Premier League First – Manchester City and Cisco

Etihad Stadium 1

A year ago, Manchester City captured its first English Premier League (EPL) title in 44 years with one of the most incredible comebacks ever seen in the history of the sport – scoring two goals in stoppage time, the last in the waning moments of the game.

Take a look at this video, which replays that final incredible goal from multiple angles, and embrace the bedlam, unbridled passion, emotion and joy that unfolded in the stands, on the field, and everywhere in Etihad Stadium.

Now imagine if every fan could watch a replay, from multiple camera angles, on their mobile device, to relive a special moment like this goal time and time again. That will be a reality next season, thanks to O2 and Cisco working with Man City to implement Cisco Connected Stadium Wi-Fi and StadiumVision Mobile. Blues fans will be the first in the EPL to have a more immersive, connected, visual, and engaged experience that places them at the center of the action, no matter where they are in the venue.

It’s another first for Cisco, building on recent wins such as Bayer Leverkusen, the first team in the German Bundesliga, and the Seibu Dome, home of the Seibu Lions Japanese Baseball League team. Add in facilities who implemented our solutions for recent major events, like the Mercedes-Benz Superdome (Super Bowl), and the Georgia Dome (NCAA Final Four), and we’re proud to be at the epicenter of helping our customers and partners deliver an unparalleled experience for fans.

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