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Wireless Dreaming

November 15, 2006 1:08 PM

The A's have notions of moving out of McAfee Colisseum. It's far from being a done deal, but they are working on a partnership with Cisco, makers of wireless everything. PC World reports that they have some fabulous concepts.

This is some pretty forward thinking. The Twins need to get on this bandwagon right away:

Cisco's Ballpark Will be Wireless Showcase

The A's aren't just leaving Oakland, they're moving to a high-tech ballpark crafted by Cisco Systems to also show off its wireless networking technology.

Cisco CEO John Chambers on Tuesday described plans for the up-to-$500 million ballpark in Fremont, California, 22 miles south of the team's current home. Our IDGNS News Service colleague Robert Mullins filed a report.

The 34,000-seat Cisco Field will feature a wireless network on which fans can use handheld devices to watch instant replays, order food and beverages, communicate with friends, and keep score. Fans will be able to buy tickets online, receive their ticket as a file on a smartphone to show at the gate, and visit kiosks inside the stadium to upgrade their seats. Stadium employees will use other handheld communicators that use radio-frequency identity (RFID) technology to locate and talk to each other.

"This is about how we take America’s favorite pastime and enable it for where the future will be," Chambers at the announcement, accompanied by A's owner Lewis Wolff, Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig and others. He added that as many as 80 technology applications have been considered for the stadium.

Completion of the new stadium, near Cisco's San Jose headquarters, may be three to five years away. Cisco is also weighing which technology companies it will will partner with to develop the platform for Cisco Field. Similar Cisco technology is deployed at Busch Stadium, the home field of baseball's St. Louis Cardinals in St. Louis, Missouri.

"This state-of-the-art ball park that is going to be built will be not only one of our treasures, but it will set the pace for ballparks that come after it," Selig said.

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