49ers Win Big With Their Super High-Tech, Solar-Powered Levi's Stadium

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2014-08-29 Print this article Print

Silicon Valley's own NFL team, the San Francisco 49ers, introduced its new, state-of-the-art Levi's Stadium on Aug. 17 following more than two years of design and construction. The $1.2 billion venue in Santa Clara, Calif., comprises 1.85 million square feet, seats about 68,500 and features 165 luxury suites. Silicon Valley companies literally helped build this power-efficient and ecologically sustainable stadium. Nowhere will one see more IT-industry sponsors, which include SAP, Intel, Sony, Brocade, Yahoo, Citrix and many others. A noteworthy feature of the facility is the 27,000-square-foot, solar-paneled roof deck atop the suite tower on the west side of the stadium. Three solar bridges connect the main parking area to the stadium, containing hundreds of solar panels. On the tech side, Shoretel is handling all the WiFi at the stadium, and SAP has partnered with the team to provide both enterprise apps and game-day consumer apps, which are described in this slide show. (Photos by Chris Preimesberger, eWEEK)

  • 49ers Win Big With Their Super High-Tech, Solar-Powered Levi's Stadium

    by Chris Preimesberger
    1 - 49ers Win Big With Their Super High-Tech, Solar-Powered Levi's Stadium
  • New-Gen IT for New-Gen Sports Stadium

    Levi's, one of the oldest and most well-known of the old-line San Francisco-based corporate enterprises, has its name on the gleaming new stadium, but many other Silicon Valley corporations are evident inside. Names such as Intel, SP, Citrix, Yahoo, Sony, Brocade and others have staked out claims by sponsoring various sections of the park.
    2 - New-Gen IT for New-Gen Sports Stadium
  • SAP, 49ers Partner for Analytics, Cloud Services

    The 49ers are a highly visible partner/customer for database and cloud services provider SAP. The two enterprises worked together to develop the SAP Scouting app, which uses the HANA solid-state in-memory database to crunch millions of numbers in real time to help the club determine which players to select in the annual NFL draft. More detail on this in the next slide.
    3 - SAP, 49ers Partner for Analytics, Cloud Services
  • A Closer Look at SAP Scouting App

    In sports, winning championships is what it's all about. SAP Scouting v1.0, developed with the 49ers scouting department, aims to improve identification, acquisition and development of talent. The HANA-based app simplifies and speeds up processing of mountains of data from many sources to provide a unified view of a player; enables evaluators to work collaboratively across numerous evaluations; and allows team administrators to spend more time on the game and player and less time on managing data and finding answers to questions. SAP is now marketing versions of the app for other teams (the Washington Redskins in the NFL) and sports (the German national soccer team).
    4 - A Closer Look at SAP Scouting App
  • Trivia Time for Fans

    An example of an interactive game located at Levi's Stadium is "How Well Do You Know the 49ers?" Kiosks are located on the main concourse and enable groups of friends to gather around one of them and challenge each other to see "who really knows what" about the team. Using extensive historic club data housed within the SAP database, fans can tap into three categories (stadium facts, franchise legends and current team) to see how their 49ers Fan IQ stacks up with other fans.
    5 - Trivia Time for Fans
  • Put on a Virtual Helmet, Keep the Photo

    This is a photo-taking application that uses facial recognition software to allow users to place their favorite 49ers helmet on their head for a memorable photo. Located on the 50-yard line, the fan will have a background stadium image behind him or her. This stadium image will update based on the 49ers era selected. When the facial image size is correct and the photo is taken, users then enter their email addresses to have the photo sent to them as a souvenir.
    6 - Put on a Virtual Helmet, Keep the Photo
  • Salary Cap Game

    Consumers will get the unusual opportunity to become the 49ers "general manager" for a few minutes by using an immersive SAP experience. Fans will choose from decades of 49ers players to build the highest performing team, while trying to stay under the current salary cap (total team salary limitation as set by the NFL). Once a fan selects a team, the individual will receive a redemption email highlighting his or her choices.
    7 - Salary Cap Game
  • New-Gen IT in All Those Luxury Boxes

    Levi's Stadium has 165 corporate luxury boxes, each of which as high-tech as can be. Each box features full WiFi, high-definition televisions, device-charging stations and desktops to use your laptop—if you'd rather not watch the actual game on the field.
    8 - New-Gen IT in All Those Luxury Boxes
  • Futuristic Look

    Inside Levi's Stadium is like no other sports venue; in fact, it looks more like a futuristic space station than a football stadium. Gleaming silver and glass is everywhere, and the walkways are plenty wide to accommodate huge crowds of fans.
    9 - Futuristic Look
  • Oh, Yes, There's Also Football Going On

    The 49ers run through a practice session a couple of days before their Levi's Stadium debut against the Denver Broncos. Although it was only a preseason game that didn't count in the standings, the Niners didn't show much offense in a 34-0 loss to the visiting team on Aug. 17.
    10 - Oh, Yes, There's Also Football Going On
  • Silicon Valley's Own Sports Stadium Is Open for Business

    Funded largely by IT corporations eager to affiliate with the highly successful 49ers franchise, Levi's Stadium is a gem of a sports venue that will showcase not only NFL football, but NCAA football (the University of California will play a few games there in 2014) and international soccer as well.
    11 - Silicon Valley's Own Sports Stadium Is Open for Business

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