NRL fans will score free Wi-Fi at this weekend’s opening round triple-header at ANZ stadium - thanks to Cisco.
This will give the Sydney's largest stadium the honour of being the first venue in Australia to connect all fans at a stadium event.
Network vendor Cisco will be providing the hardware, which is set to be put to the test as thousands of fans attempt to access Wi-Fi simultaneously.
With more than 700 wireless access points, the ANZ Stadium network has been configured in a similar manner to Metlife Stadium, New York, which in February became the first Superbowl host to provide a high-speed Wi-Fi service.
The stadium service will also extend around the outside of the Stadium in Sydney Olympic Park to further enhance the visitor experience.
As the Wi-Fi features are rolled out this year across all sports and entertainment acts, fans will eventually be able to use their mobile devices to access rich digital content like replays and statistics, order food and beverages from their seats.
The new network will also simplify ticketing, help fans find the quickest way to their seats, and enable them to participate in and share live event action over social media from anywhere in the Stadium.
The triple-header features South Sydney Rabbitohs verses Sydney Roosters on March 6, Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs versus Brisbane Broncos on March 7 and St George Illawarra Dragons versus Wests Tigers on March 9.
ANZ Stadium managing director, Daryl Kerry, said the combination of no-cost train travel and a free and robust Wi-Fi service were the first of many planned initiatives to take the live event experience to the next level.
“The new Wi-Fi technology will allow you to enjoy the biggest events live and continue to be digitally connected.
Special Wi-Fi coaches will be in and around ANZ Stadium across NRL opening weekend to help fans with any questions relating to the new technology.
Kathy-Anne McManus, Telstra enterprise and government, said the project would create a whole new experience for spectators and would have the flexibility to integrate with the latest generation of technology into the future.
“This solution puts ANZ Stadium on par with some of the most iconic venues in the world,” she said.
ANZ Stadium general manager event and business development, Greg Sleigh, said the service would create an environment for fantastic audience engagement, with future potential to stream live video to smartphones and high-definition screens.
“The kick-off to this new era is upon us," he said.