7Signal’s Sapphire Eye Delivers High Density Wi-Fi Performance

High Density User Setting at Milan Expo. Optimised Wi-Fi by Sapphire Eye

Milan Expo’s High Density Wi-Fi Performance Conundrum

Back in 2015, Italy hosted the famous Milan Expo, home to exhibitors across 145 nations and attended by 21 million visitors. But events of this scale often pose a unique challenge to the organizers. The problem that the organizers faced was providing a seamless, high density Wi-Fi Performance for the over 21 million expected attendees. The venue for the event, featured 5 thematic areas and over 70 pavilions, covering a massive area of 1.1 million square meters, thus making it difficult to predict where visitors would congregate. 

Furthermore, the construction for the event had not yet started, making it impossible to conduct an accurate site survey before planning access point placement. The network design also needed to factor in the unique architectural standards of modern buildings. 

Telecom Italia was commissioned to provide the wired and wireless infrastructure for the event and faced challenges such as self-service onboarding, massive surges of users entering and exiting exhibits, and constant Wi-Fi roaming. They needed to deploy a robust and highly efficient wired and wireless network to ensure reliable coverage for Internet Access, VOIP, video streaming, and more. 

With an estimated footfall of about 40,000 visitors per hour, Telecom Italia needed an expert to strategize and oversee the Wi-Fi performance for the prestigious event and deliver an outstanding Wi-Fi experience. 

Milan Expo with High Density Wi-Fi Performance delivered by 7Signal Sapphire Eye

7Signal’s Solution – Deployment of Sapphire Eye

To proactively safeguard against RF conditions, 7Signal was hired to implement its Wi-Fi performance management system at Milan Expo to provide continuous Wi-Fi monitoring and ensure that customer experience did not fall below acceptable levels.

The WLAN implementation at the event consisted of more than a hundred, 802.11n and 802.11ac access points, a majority of which were mounted outdoors. 7Signal configured service levels  

7Signal placed its Sapphire Eye sensors in key locations at the EXPO campus and set service level targets for availability and throughput, the main concerns for highly mobile visitors. Visitors were rate limited to 2 Mbps and performance was monitored to ensure it did not drop below 1.8 Mbps. Automated weekly performance reports were also set up to provide EXPO management with an overview of performance.

Optimizing High Density Wi-Fi Performance with Sapphire Eye

The Sapphire Eye system provided Telecom Italia and the Expo organizers with a complete view of Wi-Fi performance from the end user’s perspective throughout the event. Alerts were received when performance fell below set thresholds, allowing for quick investigation and resolution of issues. The data collected also helped with making adjustments to the wireless LAN configuration to improve throughput and to track performance improvements over time. Reports from the Sapphire Eye showed that Telecom Italia was able to maintain a connection success rate of over 99.7% and an average download and upload throughput for each user of nearly 2Mbps

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