Mercedes-Benz Stadium using under-seat installations for majority of Wi-Fi APs

Mercedes-Benz Stadium is currently under construction. Image:

Marking further proof that the under-seat installation trend in stadium network deployments is taking off, the soon-to-open Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta is opting to install the majority of its Wi-Fi access points underneath the seats in the stadium’s bowl.

According to Mobile Sports Report, 1,000 of the planned 1,800 Wi-Fi APs will be placed under seats. The network will be using one optical core and will consist of 4,000 miles of optic fiber.

The installation style will follow similar deployments at Texas A&M’s Kyle Field and Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California, site of last February’s Super Bowl 50.

AmpThink also decided to place the majority of Wi-Fi APs under the seats when working on a recent deployment at the Carolina Panther’s Bank of America Stadium.

"Proximity is a key to great network performance," said AmpThink President Bill Anderson in a statement. "At Bank of America Stadium we are placing 65 percent of the access points under-seat as this was the best way to get Wi-Fi access closest to the fans in this particular venue."

Along with Wi-Fi APs, operators have also been looking at installing DAS underneath seats in stadium settings. Verizon used that deployment technique at Levi’s Stadium and plans to do the same thing as it’s updating its DAS at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, site of next year’s Super Bowl.

Vikram Rawat, director of network system performance at Verizon Wireless, previously told FierceInstaller that as data consumption continues to rapidly rise during marquee events like the Super Bowl, more non-traditional network deployment ideas need to be implemented in order to meet the demand.

"If we doubled the traffic [in Santa Clara] we're expecting to do the same thing [in Houston], and nothing traditional will work. So this design will be taken to the next step," Rawat said.

For more:
- read this Mobile Sports Report story

Related articles:
AmpThink places 65% of new Bank of America Stadium Wi-Fi APs under the seats
Verizon's under-seat DAS key in handling expected 10.5 terabytes during next year's Super Bowl