I thought that with us doing a project on hockey arenas - something people here at CalgaryPuck know so well - this would be a great place to come for ideas.
Here's the situation. I am in 2nd year Commerce at Queen's, and we are doing a project on RFID tags for class. Basically, they are chips that can store information and do what seems like endless amazing things. We are charged with coming up with a new use for these chips and doing a business plan on it.
Basically, the idea we came up with was to give season ticket holders of sports teams a bracelet embedded with an RFID chip. What this would allow is that you would never have to worry about having ticket again, you could simply enter the building and the RFID scanner would know you're a season ticket holder and let you straight through.
Not only that though, we envision is giving the attendant there information about you (last game you attended, score of that game, where you sit) in order for them to provide better customer service to you.
From there, we have other uses such as computers being able to know you have arrived in the building, and having any food you have ordered waiting for you upon you arriving to your seat.
What I am looking for is feedback. Do you think this is a good idea? Also, if so, what other features would you like to see this RFID chip do? The idea behind it is that the more information you store about a person, the more personalized you can make the game-day experience.
Logistics may be difficult. Lots of people share season tickets, would they have more than one bracelet? And as to storing information as to what the customer's tastes were, how would they know which person was going to show up (I share my tickets with 4 other people)?
Youve got to consider that the person who bought season tickets often times gives them away to family, friends, clients, etc or sells them.
People also lose things and forget things. A keychain might work better than a bracelet but its something to consider.
One aspect it would be good for would be for ease of getting to your seats - not having to show your tickets to ushers - and also for keeping people out of areas they shouldnt be in - ie. luxury box area - without asking for tickets to be shown on the way up.
What happens if something goes wrong with the bracelet and I can't watch my game?
If I have a ticket, I know the "tech" is working. With a bracelet I would be worried about every time I walked through a metal detector or x-ray I might have a problem next time I went to the rink.
On the flip side, if it were combined with an online database, then I could "opt out" of tickets I wanted to sell. The team could send me those physical tickets (to sell) and put the rest on the bracelet.
I do like the idea of being able to send a food order in advance, and get a beer when I wanted one - perhaps using a handheld while at the game. The order goes to a waiter who can track me via the bracelet.
At any rate, if I were going to worry about Big Brother, I would be more concerned with the smooch cam than an e-bracelet.
"I had only seen the NHL in black and white. My grandfather bought a colour tv. The Flyers were inexplicably wearing orange uniforms. I fiddled with the colour controls until they were wearing proper red uniforms. For some reason, this adjustment screwed up the colours on the other programs. There was only one station to watch. I thought he had got a defective tv. The technology was in its infancy. It took a long time to figure that one out."
I think you are thinking along the same lines as the system that casinos use in Vegas to track their players. You may want to look into that as the types of "services" they offer and the infor they track to come up with other ideas. I think the concept is pretty good if you can overcome the transferability issues mentioned above.
Maybe, being able to order food/beer on your phone and it automatically comes to your seat. Logistically difficult. Maybe for the lower bowl.
However, if x number of people in a section request the beer guy, when it reaches a certain point he can be sent to that section.
Maybe could also be used as a locator for others in your group. Dial in and enter the id and the RFID shows where they are on a map.
Another potential issue is mixing of season and non-season ticket holders. If one group uses a different technology than the other, integration of the two could become a pain (and possibly get expensive).
One possible use for an RFID tag could be ordering something from your seat. Punch in a food or drink order, scan your ID, go pick it up in an express line during intermission or have it brought to you, with charges going through automatically. Hopefully the scanners aren't too sensitive.
Why not embed the RFID tag in the paper tickets? I dont know if a bracelt for the whole season is the way to go.
I wouldnt mind being able to log into a website and order food and drinks for the start of the game. Then when I arrive at the game, the tag identifies that Im there and my food can be brought out to me.
If you are trying to make a detailed business plan for this, I think the limiting factor is going to be building itself especially if its older. I dont think you could do this at the Saddledome. Youd probably get your warm beer and cold hotdog midway thru the 2nd period even though the rfid chip identified you coming in half an hour before the game. i dont think the facilities exist that you could have this run smoothly at the dome.
In terms of lacking customer service - more places to buy food and drink and more choice in terms of selection - so I dont have to wait 20 minutes to get a crappy hot dog. More bathrooms too.
Instead of RFID tags, i would prefer to be able to receive my tickets on my cellphone. I can get my airline boarding pass emailed to me and show it on the screen of my phone to get on a plane, so why not hockey tickets? Cellphones are being used for more and more stuff such as being able to pay for things with them (especially in Asia) so why not this. (yeah yeah... im sure theres tons of technical and security issues that would need to be addressed).
I know some buildings have systems where you can order food and drinks with your cellphone if you have the expensive seats. it would also be neat if you could get the game program and other info on your cellphone when your at the arena. maybe trivia games to win prizes or vote on the 3 stars with your phone.
Location: Close enough to make a beer run during a TV timeout
So heardman, is this something that you need to also work out the logistics of, or just the ideas? Like Titan said, pre-ordering food would be an idea, but I wouldn't trust the people working the Saddledome consessions to get a lot of it right. (No offense to most of them, but to the odd ones who still can't figure out how to put cheese on Nachos in under 17 minutes.)
Being a little more serious with my "wrong seat" issue, the RFID could track your seat number, and then have a display available to the usher. So for me, he could see I'm assigned S202,R23,S8 but I'm just one off, no big deal. So have that info but still have it show green on the usher's screen. But the guy infront of me who belongs in the Sportchek section, he has a red mark on the usher's screen.
Part of our project is feasibility, which would to some extent involve looking at logistics. By no means will we have to look at all implications, since the majority of the project deals with getting comfortable with the RFID technology.
RFID is mainly for storing personal information about a person. So in the context of a hockey stadium, it seems like a little over kill.
Unless you wanted to do something like a "smart ticket". Where season ticket holders are given these for the seats they hold. Allow the season ticket holder to download the games they are going to, along with their name, phone # etc, load it up with some cash for the game through their bank. Then the ushers just have to "scan" the ticket, make sure that the game is loaded on, etc, allow them to pass.
As far as purchases go, just swipe the "smart ticket", and debit the amount on the "ticket" from the kiosks, food & beverage places. Just have the vendor check the persons id when purchases are being made, just to make sure it is in fact the ticket holder, and not some person that happened to find the ticket on the ground.
Maybe allow notifications to come through the smart ticket, on game day deals, 2nd period $5 large beer things. etc.
“I’m sorry, but having a DB9 on the drive and not driving it is a bit like having Keira Knightley in your bed and sleeping on the couch.” -- Jeremy Clarkson
I would love it if we can have a express line for concessions for STHs who just beep their STH ID card/tag to pay (like Esso's speedpass or Shell's easy tag), with the charges billed to your STH account or Credit Card. That would eliminate a lot of wait times for the cashiers trying to give you change.
As far as tickets goes like others said above the logistics are not feasible.