As an avid football fan, I read in the press this week that the English Football League has announced that free Wi-Fi, for only a particular set of official apps, will be made available at Championship, League One and League Two stadiums.
Fans on the terraces will be able to access club-branded apps to receive news, social media content, game highlights and betting services – ‘delivering the complete digital match day experience to supporters’, according to the Football League. However, access to the wider internet would not be possible.
British Wi-Fi provider Intechnology will implement the service, with the majority of clubs signing up to participate. Chief Executive Peter Wilkinson states that ‘the free Wi-Fi would benefit fans who had been frustrated with overloaded mobile networks at half-time’.
However, Wi-Fi at sports events does not always prove popular with fans. In 2014, supporters at PSV Eindhoven in the Netherlands protested against the introduction of Wi-Fi at the club’s stadium, saying spectators should pay attention to what is happening on the pitch, not their smartphones.
As much as I do agree, the idea of having the option of free Wi-Fi as opposed to watching my distinctly average League One team does have its perks!