Frustrated when trying to post that selfie during a Jets game? Thanks to Verizon, that’s going to be a lot easier in 2024.
On Aug. 31, the New York City-based communications company announced a deal with MetLife Stadium to provide major network upgrades for 2024 and beyond to accommodate the increase in data customers use during stadium events.
The company is also extending its long-term cornerstone partnership with the stadium, as well as with the New York Giants and New York Jets, which both call the East Rutherford venue home.
Although terms of the deals were not disclosed, Verizon said the investments and network improvements were “unprecedented.”
“As technology evolves, customers want to do more with their wireless technology at games, concerts and other events,” Lynn Cox, Verizon’s senior vice president of Access Engineering and Operations, said in a statement. “When large crowds of people gather in a place like a football stadium, network resources can be strained. So we are very intentional about upgrading technology and infrastructure in places like MetLife Stadium to accommodate our customers’ needs.”
MetLife Stadium is having its busiest summer ever with more than 1.2 million guests and a record 18 concerts, according to Verizon.
Named “Highest Grossing Stadium of the Year” nine times by Billboard, MetLife Stadium is one of the largest stadiums in the NFL, with capacity for 82,500 during a football or soccer game and about 50,000 for concerts. In May, the stadium hosted three nights of Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, which is on track to be the biggest tour in music history. And in July, Beyonce’s loyal following – aka the “BeyHive” – packed the venue for two nights of her Renaissance world tour.
Ron VanDeVeen, president and CEO of MetLife Stadium, said Verizon was a founding cornerstone partner when the $1.6 billion stadium opened in 2010 and that the venue was “excited to extend and expand on that partnership with this renewal.”
“The Verizon upgrades will enhance the overall fan experience and our stadium operations, and are integral to attracting future major events such as FIFA World Cup 26.”
Some of the upgrades include Verizon’s new Distributed Antenna System, a wireless network of antennas throughout the stadium allowing for better performance and greater capacity. The new system will cover the field, bowl, concourse (including the four gate entrances), all clubs/suites and the ticketing areas. The company said it’s also increasing capacity on the fiber connections in and out of the stadium so they can carry 10 times the amount of data.
All of this means fans will be able to do more on their mobile phones during games and other events, including posting on social media, getting refreshments, navigating the stadium and placing bets.