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Sundance Film Festival Offers High-Speed Wi-Fi Services for the First Time Using Advanced Technology From Ruckus Wireless

PARK CITY, Utah SUNNYVALE, Calif. Jan. 18, 2011

January 20 – 30 Park City, Utah

The large-scale, multi-site Wi-Fi infrastructure will cover 12 indoor and outdoor venues and be offered as a free service to festival patrons. Sundance Film Festival will actively use the network to provide schedule and movie information to movie-goers through its popular iPhone application that lets movie-goers check show times, event information and history, read articles, view videos and learn about past winners and films. Staff and operations personnel will also use the Wi-Fi network for a variety of administrative purposes.

According to Sundance Institute, Wi-Fi plays an ever-important role in enhancing the experience of festival-goers by enabling on-demand distribution of information. According to organizers, the Wi-Fi network is also essential for offloading capacity from local cellular networks to give users much faster and more ubiquitous wireless access.

To blanket festival venues with powerful Wi-Fi, Sundance Institute IT staff selected Ruckus "Smart Wi-Fi" systems and technology because of its unique ability to support high-density user environments and deliver more reliable wireless connectivity at longer ranges. This is achieved through advanced dynamic beamforming technology that automatically picks the fastest transmission path for each client while steering Wi-Fi signals around interference, which often causes connection problems.

The Mobile Internet is Driving Strong Demand for Better Wi-Fi Connectivity

Joe Beyer

Justin Simmons

Simmons noted that high-speed Wi-Fi coverage within high-density areas helps mitigate connection problems people experience when trying to connect to the Internet using conventional 3G cellular technology. "The first thing people do is pull out their phones and try to get online," said Simmons. "Cellular networks just can’t keep up with the data needs and density festival-goers are demanding, so we needed a high-bandwidth Wi-Fi network to support the influx of media hungry users all trying to connect at the same time."

Unplugging Sundance Film Festival with "Smarter Wi-Fi"

Working with its integration partner Cinergy Wi-Fi, the Sundance Film Festival will provide high-performance, reliable Wi-Fi coverage to 12 festival venues, including the 1,200-seat Eccles Theatre, which includes an outdoor wait list tent and ticketholder queue; the Festival Headquarters located at the Park City Marriott, where more than 2,200 event staff and volunteers are centralized; and the New Frontier venue and Filmmaker Lodge, where patrons can meet filmmakers and attend panel discussions about the movies being showcased.

Park City

Nichols Park City

For Sundance Institute, the Ruckus ZoneFlex system provides a number of advanced features that help optimize the wireless environment. For some venues where wiring does not exist, Sundance Institute will leverage Ruckus Smart Meshing capabilities.  Smart Meshing allows wireless connectivity without having to run Ethernet cables to every AP.  Where service is desired, an AP can simply be plugged into a power source. The APs then automatically establish a reliable Wi-Fi connection to a nearby AP.  

To ensure that the wireless system doesn’t become a problem at movie screenings, Sundance Institute can define specific times for the entire system when Wi-Fi APs can be in service. During show times, the system can automatically turn off the Wi-Fi radios at specific locations where movies are playing, with no human intervention.

And to better deal with a high-density of concurrent users, Sundance Institute will leverage new Ruckus Wi-Fi technology that automatically directs end devices to less congested bands or channels while constantly balancing traffic loads among APs to give users the best possible experience.

To ensure secure mobility for its staff, Sundance Institute will take advantage of Ruckus’ patented Dynamic Pre-shared Key (PSK) technology.  Dynamic PSK simplifies the laborious process of manually configuring a shared encryption key (that can be easily compromised) on each user device.  After users successfully authenticate to Sundance Institute’s Active Directory database, the Ruckus ZoneFlex system will dynamically generate a strong, unique security key for each authenticated user.  This encryption key, and the requisite Wi-Fi network information, is then automatically installed on end user devices with little or no human intervention.  


Media Contacts

Nancy MacGregor Hill

RealTime Communications

[email protected]

+1-510-733-6228 office

+1-415-309-5185 mobile

SOURCE Ruckus Wireless

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