Network Computing is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

4 Unlikely Places Wi-Fi Access Points Are Hiding

  • (Image: JuralMin/Pixabay)

    Two-thirds of the world's population is connected to mobile devices, and the number continues to increase with the greater adoption of smartphones, wearables, tablets and more. Of course, these devices wouldn't work without a reliable wireless connection. Whether a stadium, school, or supply chain, a robust Wi-Fi network is required to deliver on the connected experience promised to fans, students, and consumers relying on their mobile devices to engage with team apps, access lessons, or browse for coupons on a retailer’s ecommerce site while on-premises.

    Wi-Fi adoption has steadily increased in all types of environments. In fact, 500 million new Wi-Fi networks were deployed across the globe this past year alone. To ensure connectivity is available anywhere, and everywhere, access points (APs) are hiding in the most unlikely places. Here are a few examples where APs have been deployed and how end-users have benefited from each scenario.

  • (Image: Extreme Networks)

    In the scoreboard at your favorite NHL Arena – You may be surprised to learn that the scoreboard in an arena doubles as a Wi-Fi hotspot. For example, at PNC Arena the Carolina Hurricanes opted to deploy APs in their scoreboard to maintain the aesthetics of the arena and provide better Wi-Fi access to fans. Because of the new Wi-Fi deployment at PNC, the average number of unique Wi-Fi users has grown from 18 percent in 2016 to 35 percent in 2018.

  • (Image: Extreme Networks)

    At a temporary loading station for carrier planes – When cargo planes are moving in and out quickly, workers need a reliable connection to unload, track, and fulfill deliveries on time successfully. One major package carrier has deployed APs on the runway to enable accurate tracking so that it can flag delays or issues and address them quickly.

  • (Image: Extreme Networks)

    On flagpoles in a football stadium housing 70,000 fans – It’s no surprise that a venue as large as an NFL stadium requires a LOT of APs (550+) to provide coverage for every fan. But an open-air stadium like the Seattle Seahawks’ CenturyLink field poses its own challenges – the seats closest to the field and those in the “Hawk’s Nest” (otherwise known as the North End Zone) have aluminum bench seating, which doesn’t allow for overhead mounting options. The solution? Directional Antennas mounted on flagpoles meet both the design and Wi-Fi goals of the stadium and assist in providing 100 percent coverage for up to 69,000 fans.

  • (Image: Extreme Networks)

    On an empty highway, when you need it most – When an incident occurs on Indiana’s urban Interstate Highways, emergency personnel are often on the way before anyone even dials 911. That’s all thanks to the 350 camera APs deployed by the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT). The APs monitor roads around the clock for any sign of trouble so they can dispatch the appropriate responders when needed. Furthermore, with those cameras dispatching video across the network, the flow of network traffic at INDOT directly impacts the flow of roadway traffic.