AT&T becomes America’s first stadium to switch on 5G

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The Dallas Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium has been making records ever since it was opened in 2009. Now, it boasts another as it becomes the first sports stadium in the USA to deploy a 5G network.

At the NFL’s highest capacity stadium, up to 100,000 fans will be able to use the next-generation cellular network with access to download speeds of up to 1.5Gbps.

In 2018, AT&T customers visiting the stadium used more than 155TB of mobile data (the equivalent of 400 million selfies) and with mobile device use continuing to rise with the introduction of more technological experiences, supporting this bandwidth demand is crucial.

“Some hear 5G and just think it means faster connection speeds. However, it goes beyond that,” said Igal Elbaz, SVP Wireless Technology. “5G is expected to alter the in-stadium experience in dramatic, exciting ways by blurring the physical and digital experience in ways that are simply not possible on today’s networks.”

What 5G will bring to fans will be the ability to blend physical and virtual worlds by overlaying digital content onto real-world action through augmented reality. Watching the action from a player’s point of view, replays in 360°, or using VR to look inside restricted areas of the stadium such as the locker room could all be possible.

“Since opening AT&T Stadium in 2009, our vision and focus was to remain on the cutting edge in every facet of our building,” said Dallas Cowboys chief brand officer Charlotte Jones Anderson.

“Together with our strong collaboration with AT&T producing the most innovative technology that the world has to offer, we believe this announcement only further enhances the fan experience that can only be offered at AT&T Stadium.”

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James has been Editor of Stadia since 2018 having worked at magazines and websites around the world for the past 10 years covering everything from technology to motoring and more. He also edits Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology International.

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