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Cisco Wi-Fi Technology Solution Deployed at Minute Maid Park

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Cisco Systems today announced that its Cisco Wi-Fi technology solution has been successfully deployed in conjunction with Wide Area Management Services (WAMS) at Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros Major League Baseball team.

Managed and operated by Time Warner Cable-Houston, the multi-purpose Wi-Fi solution provides highly secure wireless access to fans, vendors, media and staff within the entire ballpark. The primary benefits of this innovative wireless solution include:

– Enhancing fans’ experience and enjoyment of the game — Fans bringing Wi-Fi laptops and personal digital assistants (PDAs) can browse the Web and check the latest pitching and batting statistics when they subscribe to Time Warner Cable’s Road Runner Speed Zone service at prices starting at $3.95 for four hours. Potential future applications will provide game snapshots from other Major League Baseball games and eCards that provide player statistics and accomplishments to fans.

– Helping sports media to deliver the news in real-time — Sports media covering the game can submit photos and video footage to meet publication deadlines. Since launch of this service in June, the total amount of data streamed wirelessly to news desks nationwide was upwards of 129 Gigabytes (GB).

– Establishing a highly secure and flexible wireless network — Minute Maid Park’s Wi-Fi network has the capability to support the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 802.11i standard, Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA2) and many innovative Cisco network security enhancements, thus allowing fans to experience consistent, reliable, and highly secure wireless connections.

“The enterprise-class security and performance of the Cisco Wi-Fi solution, combined with world-class engineering and support from WAMS, provides Time Warner Cable with the ability to deliver a superior public Wi-Fi service to our customers,” said Chuck Sweeney, vice president of Business Broadband Services, Time Warner Cable’s Houston division. “Combining Cisco’s technology with WAMS’ expertise allows us to deploy winning wireless solutions quickly and reliably. They’ve helped us give baseball fans a variety of new ways to enjoy ‘the old ball game.’”

Installation and deployment of the Wi-Fi solution was completed in only two weeks and just in time for its debut at the 75th Annual All-Star Game by Cisco Wireless LAN Specialization Partner WAMS. This is a significant accomplishment considering the complex roll-out that included coverage for nearly 29 acres including all fan seating areas (total seating: 40,950), restaurants, entrances and exits, and common areas.

“The Time Warner Cable team looked to us to make the technology recommendation that would meet the design, installation, network integration and RF consulting requirements of their project,” said Tom Shaw, president and CEO of WAMS. “We had previous experience with the Cisco Aironet(R) wireless LAN solution and believe it to be a best-in-class product. We knew it was the right solution for Time Warner Cable’s needs at Minute Maid Park now and in the future.”

The capability to provide highly secure Wi-Fi access throughout Minute Maid Park was accomplished with more than 90 Cisco Aironet 1200 Series IEEE 802.11b/g Access Points (APs) offering connection speeds of up to 54 megabits per second (Mbps) and the CiscoWorks Wireless LAN Solution Engine (WLSE) for management of the Wi-Fi infrastructure. For the 100 Wi-Fi Hotspots, Cisco Catalyst Series platforms provide switching capability while Cisco Series of Access Routers connect the Cisco Aironet APs to the network.

“With the deployment of Cisco Wi-Fi technology, Time Warner Cable is benefiting from a proven, enterprise-class wireless LAN system that, with the combination of speed and security, delivers an interactive and fun experience for the fans while enhancing ball park operations,” said Ann Sun, senior manager of Wireless/Mobility for Cisco Systems.

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Cisco Wi-Fi Technology Solution Deployed at Minute Maid Park
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