9 August 2022 – This year’s Supercup match at the sold-out Leipzig Red Bull Arena provided the backdrop for the first-ever open trial of 5G mobile network technology. Fans at the stadium were able to try out the features of the 5G In-Stadium App developed jointly by DFL, Vodafone and the French provider Immersiv.io which specialises in augmented reality (AR) technology applications in sport. Using their smartphones, stadium guests could learn at any time during the match how fast players were running across the pitch, how many scoring chances a player had had so far, or who was in possession longest. Many other numbers and statistics collected and provided by Sportec Solutions AG, a joint venture of DFL and majority owner Deltatre, were accessible, as well.
AR app opens up new in-stadium options
Today more and more fans want to have a better understanding of what is happening on the pitch and are eager for context information to discuss facts and figures and take full advantage of everything the AR smartphone app has to offer. In the past however, being at the stadium meant having to accept an information disadvantage compared to fans watching the match on TV where a broad range of live statistics are provided on-screen. Now this extra information is available on demand at the stadium, as well.
5G delivers real-time data
Whether accessing speed, running performance, or completion rates in real-time: The enormous data transmission speed needed to send all this information to the In-Stadium App would be inconceivable without Mobile Edge Computing. Recent modernisation measures implemented at the Red Bull Arena included digitalisation enhancements, such as installation of a comprehensive 5G infrastructure with several antennas as well as a dedicated small data centre. This keeps data transmission paths short and latency at a minimum. Thanks to its enormous bandwidth, 5G technology can deliver a data volume of roughly 500 gigabytes to more than 47,000 fans in the stadium during a single match – creating a host of new opportunities to enhance the live sport experience.
AWS Wavelength – the latest infrastructure for 5G applications
Since the app was first presented in Wolfsburg in 2019, a number of major enhancements have been implemented. The AWS Wavelength service now provides a means to offer the app directly via Mobile Edge Computing on the Vodafone network to build up a flexible, scalable infrastructure for stadiums. AWS Wavelength allows customers to deliver ultra-low-latency applications for 5G devices. It embeds AWS compute and storage services within 5G networks, providing mobile edge computing infrastructure for developing, deploying, and scaling ultra-low-latency applications. Among many use cases, it allows customers to deliver high-resolution live video streaming, high-fidelity audio, and augmented/virtual reality applications. The Bundesliga is among the first AWS Wavelength customers in Germany, once more underlining its ambition to be a 5G technology leader in professional sport.
Wolfsburg’s Volkswagen Arena and Vodafone had jointly conducted an initial 5G pilot test as early as 2019 as a world premiere involving a small selection of guests. Earlier this year visitors of the SportsInnovation 2022 trade fair were able to test the technology in Düsseldorf. Now Leipzig took the next step: For the first time a permanent installation of a 5G stadium network was tested successfully on a broad basis as the Supercup opened the season 2022/23 with a technology highlight.