Though Super Bowl 50 is still visible in the rearview mirror, Verizon said it has already begun preparations for next year’s Big Game, which is slated to be held in Houston, Texas.
While it might seem a bit early, the carrier said network improvements will be necessary to meet the demand of increasingly data hungry Super Bowl fans. Last Sunday, fans at Levi’s Stadium used nearly 16 terabytes of data during the game, with seven of that traveling over the Verizon network.
Verizon said it has already invested more than $40 million to construct and activate a new Distributed Antenna System (DAS) at Houston’s NRG Stadium that consists of 783 antennas placed throughout the facility. The system is designed to increase capacity by four times over the previous system, the carrier said.
Verizon has also deployed an Outdoor Distributed Antenna System (ODAS) in the parking and tailgating areas of the stadium to further boost capacity.
But the carrier isn’t neglecting the city of Houston itself.
Verizon said its engineers are planning the deployment of more than 200 small cell solutions, over 30 new macro cell sites and more than 50 in-building solutions in hotels, convention halls, visitor attractions and other venues across downtown Houston.
Verizon said Houston’s Bush International Airport will also get some attention, with added network capacity using PCS spectrum and a new DAS that has already been put in place there.
The carrier said the additional enhancements being put into place will not just improve network performance during the game, but will also “benefit customers living in and traveling to Houston well into the future.”
For the most recent Super Bowl, Verizon said it spent nearly $70 million on preparations, including the construction of 16 new cell sites and installation of 75 new small cells in the San Francisco Bay Area, as well as the deployment of a new antenna system in Levi's Stadium capable of reaching fans in the lower seating areas.