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Comcast Business pitches Ethernet for Oakland A’s

Wed, 10/02/2013 - 12:35pm
Mike Robuck

The Oakland Athletics will head into Friday’s night’s playoff game with the Detroit Tigers with bandwidth to spare thanks to a recent upgrade by Comcast Business.

Comcast Business outfitted Oakland’s O.co Coliseum, which also houses the team’s executive and administrative offices, with a fiber-based Ethernet connection. The new Ethernet connection increased Oakland’s bandwidth tenfold.

With a horde of media members descending on the stadium, Oakland has more bandwidth to provision real-time uploads of photos and video files, as well as for Internet access in the press box to support reporting, research, writing and social media activities. 

Comcast Business’ 100 Mbps Ethernet dedicated Internet connection also helps the front office staff support the team’s efforts.

The Athletics finished first in their division in the 2012 season and needed additional bandwidth to support four times as many members of the media covering each game during the playoffs. Up to 175 employees already utilize the team’s Internet connection on non-game days, and that number more than doubles to 400 when the team is in town, necessitating a fast, reliable connection that allows them to work efficiently without any drops in performance.

Previously, the organization consistently ran at 98 percent utilization of its old 9 Mbps Internet connection from early in the morning through the end of night games played at the stadium.

Because of bandwidth constraints, large uploads of files were scheduled during off-hours to avoid impacting employees’ ability to conduct business during normal work hours. The team needed an Internet service that could scale rapidly as new initiatives were started and as temporary spikes in bandwidth demand presented themselves during the playoffs and other special events.

The Athletics were also looking for a service that would enable them to easily add bandwidth as their IT staff transitions to tapeless disaster recovery technology and as other bandwidth-intensive needs arise. With the Ethernet connection, the team has the flexibility to scale up to 10 Gbps by making a single phone call to Comcast Business.

“Like any other business, the Athletics are heavily dependent on technology to operate efficiently and that dependence only increases as time passes,” said Nathan Hayes, director of information technology for the Oakland Athletics. “It goes without saying that we needed a fast, reliable connection that would allow us to focus on other aspects of the business. With our previous connection, we couldn’t even let our staff stream away games at their desks due to its limited capacity. 

“Our current service from Comcast Business not only provides a dramatically faster user experience for our staff and members of the media, but it is also able to scale easily, allowing us to pursue additional projects without fear that we’ll outgrow its capacity anytime soon.”

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