X Factor final connected to Magnet

Irish firm helps Wembley Arena complex establish itself as a ‘smart city’ for its pioneering use of connectivity technology

Wembley Arena: host to the X Factor final

The company that provided the internet connectivity behind the X Factor final at London's Wembley Arena was Irish telecoms firm Magnet.

During the final, between 3,500 and 4,000 people in the arena and surrounding area were trying to upload content – videos to Facebook, photos to Instagram – at any one time. Magnet had to ensure that the internet could handle all the traffic, said chief executive Mark Kellett.

"The enormous public interest which an event like The X Factor attracts places extreme demands on broadband, in terms of streaming, the digital team and other backstage requirements," he said. "We do all the public-access wifi for the area, as well as Wembley arena itself."

Magnet's broadband network also provided for the Skype calls and tweets that took place on The Xtra Factor, which immediately followed The X Factor.


The X Factor was one of the many 2014 events in Wembley Park powered by Magnet, Mr Kellett said. The complex is establishing itself as a "smart city" for its pioneering use of connectivity technology.

Among the pioneering technologies that Magnet is enabling and providing at Wembley Park are programmable outdoor advertising, which recognises the gender of the target and tailors messages accordingly; car number plate recognition systems for collecting information on travel patterns; and a new-generation wifi zone, which, via heat-mapping, allows tracking of people’s movements in Wembley Park.

The latter enables geo- based targeting of offers and helpful information.

Smart living

According to Mr Kellett, Magnet is working with developers to ensure that new builds are constructed to a specification that enables new forms of smart living at Wembley Park: allowing fridges that text when items need to be replenished; the ability to turn on and off heating remotely and provide home energy data and usage analytics.

Earlier this year Magnet, through its UK subsidiary Velocity 1, was also behind the Riot Games event, which attracted 12,000 gaming fans to Wembley and streamed globally to millions worldwide.

It also provided the internet connectivity for an NFL international series game, which attracted more than 115,000 American football fans to Wembley.