Canada’s Largest Convention Center Deploys a Differentiated WLAN Service

Introduction

Metro Toronto Convention Centre (MTCC) is Canada’s largest convention complex located in the heart of Toronto’s entertainment district. Comprised of more than 600,000 square feet of space and home to the 1232-seat John Bassett Theatre, MTCC hosts 500 to 600 events per year as large and high-profile as the G20 and G7 Summits and as small as 40-seat seminars. Visitors from all over the globe come to the venue for conferences, tradeshows, special events and seminars.

Whether big or small, the MTCC aims to provide a superior event experience for all attendees, which is dependent on having a reliable network. With as many as 10,000 total users accessing the network during the venue’s largest events, MTCC needed to ensure that it selected a reliable provider to meet the facility’s needs, from a business perspective and a guest perspective. MTCC selected Extreme Networks because of its proven record in delivering superior network performance for its customers.

A Robust Wireless Network for a High-Traffic Venue

With audiences comprised of global leaders, business executives and tradeshow attendees, MTCC has customers with high expectations for uninterrupted wireless service at each event it hosts. To provide this, MTCC needed to ensure that the network provider selected would be able to deliver comprehensive Wi-Fi capabilities that could scale based on need.

With a small staff consisting of just four full-time and four hourly networking IT professionals, MTCC knew that it needed to make the right decision to properly manage network activity and avoid user complaints about poor connections. Additionally, MTCC required visibility into the network to enable its IT team with the ability to resolve issues in real-time, identify bottlenecks and determine the locations that require bandwidth provisioning. With this in mind, MTCC needed a vendor that would provide a robust and agile network to support a high volume of users, be managed easily and deliver granular visibility into the network across the venue.

Reliability and Responsiveness Is Paramount

MTCC put out an RFP and received responses from major vendors in the industry. After evaluating vendor proposals, MTCC ultimately selected Extreme Networks for the project. Having developed a longstanding relationship with Extreme, MTCC had already experienced the quality and reliability of Extreme’s end-to-end solution offering. Coupling that with Extreme’s commitment to customer service, which was an integral component of the vendor selection process, MTCC knew Extreme was the best company for the job.

MTCC has deployed ExtremeWireless, ExtremeSwitching, ExtremeControl, ExtremeManagement, and ExtremeAnalytics to improve the overall performance and management of its network. A total of 250 access points are positioned across the venue, including in the facility’s meeting rooms and exhibit halls. In addition, MTCC extended their network into the John W. H. Basset theatre, a self-contained venue that is part of the overall campus. Additionally, the data pulled from ExtremeAnalyticsTM has been used to measure adoption and performance across the facility, and MTCC has shared the findings with other convention centers to use as a best practice when allocating resources within a network to support the needs of specific conferences and trade shows.

Results

The high-density network equipped with Extreme’s solutions provides the venue with a superior network performance that supports the needs of customers today as well as in the future. MTCC is now able to distribute bandwidth appropriately, deliver on a better wireless experience for event attendees and yield significant cost savings:

  • Better Network Visibility
    Increased visibility into the network supported by ExtremeControl and ExtremeAnalytics helps MTCC identify bottlenecks and allocate resources based on bandwidth concerns. By seeing data ow in real-time, the networking staff is able to be proactive in addressing IT issues to deliver satisfaction to the network’s users.
  • Ease of Use
    Using ExtremeManagement, MTCC’s network administrators are easily able to see the AP a device is connected to through the tool’s dashboard. With this visibility, MTCC’s networking staff has more time to develop and implement new initiatives, ensuring a positive network experience for all event attendees. MTCC is also able to promote productivity using this solution.
  • Data-Driven Decisions
    Data from ExtremeAnalytics and ExtremeManagement support and drive every day decisions by identifying misused resources. Because these solutions provide a broader perspective of network activity, IT teams are able to allocate resources to projects that deserve immediate attention all while planning for future investments.

To learn more, please visit Extreme’s Hospitality, Sports, and Entertainment landing page at: http://www.extremenetworks.com/sports-and-entertainment. To speak with a member of Extreme’s hospitality team directly, or to schedule a demo of our solutions, send an email to hospitality@extremenetworks.com.

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