Technology / 11.18.20
Why So Many Stadiums Are Racing to Install 5G, Even With Live Events Paused
Adweek (11/16/20) Klara, Robert
Many large arenas are deploying 5G broadband amid the COVID-19 shutdown, in anticipation of the advantages they hope to gain. Commenting on Verizon's announcement of a 5G network buildout in 13 National Football League (NFL) stadiums last year, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said "having this cutting-edge technology in our stadiums will greatly enhance the game-day experience and bring a multitude of benefits to our fans." 5G's return on investment will not be immediate, as some analysts expect that in-person events will not fully return until 2022. For now, 5G's most apparent benefit for fans is a gateway to social media content in real time, while Verizon chief media officer John Nitti also expects augmented reality offerings like "immersive experiences and additional in-stadium enhancements" to be a big hit. 5G is additionally seen as crucial in improving the likelihood that fans will spend more money by enabling targeted, real-time advertising. 5G's branding opportunities for venues are harder to characterize, mainly because its function is to cultivate a favorable impression of the arena in the long term. "Maybe a ticket with 5G enabled is going to be X dollars more," suggested Mario Natarelli with branding agency MBLM. "You can imagine scenarios like that, where I sell you goggles for your seat and in those goggles is augmented reality, and I charge you $20 more for that."
Read the full story from Adweek.
Tags: News , Stadium , COVID-19 , Coronavirus