German soccer champions FC Bayern Munich have revealed plans to equip the Allianz Arena with 5G technology in a bid to enhance the fan experience at their home stadium.
The upgrade to the club’s mobile capability is expected to be ready by the spring of 2020 and forms part of a long-term partnership with German telecommunications provider Deutsche Telekom.
When complete, the Bundesliga outfit will become one of Europe’s first soccer clubs to integrate 5G into their infrastructure after Spanish champions FC Barcelona confirmed their own plans earlier this year to install the technology at the Nou Camp in collaboration with Telefónica.
“The Allianz Arena stands for quality, progress and innovation, so we're very glad we can offer our fans this special technology so early with the help of our longstanding partners Deutsche Telekom," said Bayern chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.
“After the comprehensive W-LAN extension in 2015, the 5G technology is the next logical step to make the experience at the stadium even more attractive around the game.”
In providing fans with 5G, Bayern say they want to improve their ability to stream mobile video content faster and in higher resolution from inside the stadium, and also allow for the integration of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) tools into the matchday experience.
In addition, Bayern are also working on ways the technology can be used to allow fans to ‘participate in goal celebrations’, while they also cite virtual competitions as a possibility.
“Together with FC Bayern, we'll enable our fans to experience the 5G technology,” added Michael Hagspihl, Deutsche Telekom’s director of private client relations. "It can offer visitors to the Allianz Arena a new dimension of spectator experience via VR or AR."
As part of their digital roadmap, Bayern also collaborated with Deutsche Telekom on the launch of the FCB Digital & Media Lab, the club’s dedicated multimedia subsidiary which launched in May 2018.