Dubai World Trade Centre overhauls network to pioneer digital event experiences

Cloud-driven networking company Extreme Networks has revealed its key role in the successful completion of a large-scale network overhaul for the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), increasing the venue’s network capacity tenfold.

Founded in 1979, DWTC has played a pivotal role in the growth of Dubai’s business tourism and trade. To make Dubai the world’s leading destination for major exhibitions, conferences and events, including Gitex Global 2021, and in anticipation of a 50% year-on-year increase in network traffic, DWTC turned to Extreme Networks to facilitate the upgrade. The two parties co-designed a converged IP network infrastructure powered by systems such as Extreme Fabric Connect and ExtremeAnalytics.

Extreme says that by using its technology, DWTC will gain greater visibility into foot traffic patterns, congregation areas, concessions traffic and overall app usage throughout events. These insights will allow it to optimise venue operations and provide more personalised experiences for attendees. Other next-generation digital applications that DWTC can offer include media displays and contactless technologies, more robust security and improved health and safety measures.

With more secure, reliable and scalable connectivity, DWTC can now accommodate demand for high-bandwidth digital applications, such as contactless engagement technologies, as well as high-definition video. It can also host multiple CCTV cameras to improve venue security and the enforcement of Covid-19 safety protocols. The new network technologies are also designed to deliver network security features, which eliminate backdoor entry points, prevent lateral movements, and isolate potentially insecure devices.

Network operations have been simplified through having the tools to design, build, manage and troubleshoot networking, and DWTC is said to have a simple and agile way to deploy new services. Also, the capabilities of the VSP switches enable full-featured network virtualisation to be flexibly deployed across a range of network environments.

With regard to real-time insights and analytics, DWTC now has granular visibility into how its users, devices and applications interact with its network. Access to such real-time data enables the centre to gain valuable usage insights to optimise its network’s capabilities as well as identify and mitigate overcrowding.

“With large exhibitions on the horizon, the world is looking to Dubai to set new standards for mega-events,” said Farid Farouq, vice-president, IT, procurement and contracts at the Dubai World Trade Centre. “We have risen to this opportunity to deliver on Dubai World Trade Centre’s mission of being a world-leading venue for conferences, exhibitions and events and providing a world-class business networking platform with integrated end-to-end services. Thanks to Extreme’s networking solutions, we can do just that and offer best-in-class exhibitor and visitor experiences.”

Maan Al-Shakarchi, regional director META at Extreme Networks, added: “The Dubai World Trade Centre is demonstrating how the events industry can emerge stronger and more resilient following the pandemic by leveraging technology to help them broaden their reach and innovative services. While many have waited on the sidelines, DWTC has made confident investments to future-proof and advance its IT infrastructure.”