Verizon to provide Formula 1 fans with new 5G services, experiences at Miami Grand Prix

Verizon says it is ‘laser-focused’ on using 5G and edge to transform industries ranging from sports to retail

Those attending this year’s Formula 1 Miami Grand Prix event might find that their connectivity speeds rival what’s happening down on the track. That’s because for the first time, U.S. racing fans will have access to Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband, the brand name for the carrier’s millimeter wave (mmWave) and C-Band network.

Eighty thousand Formula 1 fans are expected to attend the event per day. Once inside the Miami International Autodrome located at the Hard Rock Stadium, those fans can expect additional experiences beyond improved connectivity that are anchored in convenience and immersion.

For example, attendees can use 5G Multi-View to view up to seven unique, live camera angles in high definition. And for those interested in the musical performances, they can use the event app to access the Hard Rock Beach Club Ultra Pass, which Verizon says lets them “transport themselves into the heart of the action” thanks to an Augmented Reality (AR) 5G portal.

When it comes to Formula 1 fan convenience, Verizon partnered with AiFi and the Miami Dolphins to launch the Hard Rock Stadium Express Shop. Supported by 5G and mobile edge compute, the shop enables fast and easy beverages and food purchases. Users simply tap their credit card upon entering, and then exit when they’re done. Afterwards, they will receive a receipt via text message. While users move around the store, picking out items, AiFi’s computer vision technology tracks these items as they are selected off the shelve.

The autonomous store is also running on Verizon 5G Edge with AWS Wavelength, furthering the pair’s ongoing collaboration. “By bringing compute and storage to the edge of the network, AiFi can move heavy computing done by hardware on premises to the cloud, making the Express Shop more portable, cost efficient, and scalable,” Verizon said.

Srini Kalapala, senior vice president of Verizon Technology and Product Development, summarized the carrier’s approach to this project: “Verizon is laser-focused on creating new 5G-powered innovations, unearthing what’s possible using the power of our network and working with partners to transform industries ranging from sports to retail. This is a great opportunity to reimagine the fan and shopping experience at sporting events. This is only the tip of the iceberg as to the experiences that 5G and edge compute can unlock.”

Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband is currently deployed in more than 75 stadiums and arenas, a dozen airport and more 1700 cities around the country. Verizon 5G Edge with AWS Wavelength has 17 locations and will expand to additional locations this year.

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