Players who enter Eastside Cannery Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada step into an exciting video environment, with approximately 2,200 displays used for gaming, promotions and advertising entertainment options. Behind the scenes, operators monitor more than 550 video surveillance cameras 24 hours a day, and hotel staff and guests make calls using an advanced VoIP system.
In a development that would have been unthinkable a few short years ago, all of these systems connect to a common, highly stable IP network. The technology making it possible is the Cisco Connected Gaming Solution, which includes the Cisco Video Surveillance Stream Manager platform.
An Edge to Attract Customers
Cannery Casino Resorts (CCR) operates three casinos in the Las Vegas area and one in Pennsylvania. The Eastside Cannery Resort and Casino, which opened in August 2008, is leading the industry's transformation to server-based gaming. Targeted at local residents as opposed to tourists, the casino has 65,000 square feet of gaming space with approximately 2,000 slot machines, 21 table games, a 450-seat bingo hall, poker room, and a race and sports book.
When planning the new property, the CCR IT department knew it needed an underlying network infrastructure that supported Nevada gaming industry requirements for security, operated reliably at all times and minimized management requirements. For help with planning and implementation, the IT department engaged Data Systems Worldwide (DSW) and Cisco Advanced Services. "A casino processing millions in daily wagering is well advised to invest in a reliable network infrastructure," says Ryan Peterson, Chief Technology Officer, Data Systems Worldwide.
The first step was identifying requirements for the property's network foundation:
- Meeting Nevada gaming industry requirements for video surveillance: These include monitoring gaming tables with 24-hour surveillance, providing adequate resolution and frame rate, ensuring redundancy and retaining video for the required number of days.
- Protecting guest information: Customer and gaming information cannot be accessible to hackers who might try to connect their own snooping equipment anywhere on the property.
- Automating incident detection and response: In the future, Eastside Casino wants to integrate its video surveillance systems with other physical security systems, with the goal of accelerating incident detection, assessment and response. An example is using the network to detect if a slot machine door is open and then automatically aim a camera to the appropriate area so that an operator can determine whether a response is required.
- Delivering a personalized guest experience and increasing revenue: The casino wanted to create the "wow" factor that attracts guests by using the property's approximately 2,200 networked video displays to promote restaurants and shows and announce jackpots.
- Offering server-based games: Eastside Cannery envisions its guests walking up to any video console in the gaming area and then choosing the game from an interactive menu. This requires a highly available, secure network with high bandwidth and the quality of service (QoS) to give priority to video traffic.
Eastside Cannery and DSW found the answer in the Cisco Connected Gaming Solution, which includes the network foundation, advanced security technologies and the Cisco Video Surveillance Solution.
The Foundation Network
"In gaming environments, it's critical to have a solid network that supports 24x7 operations," says Mike Day, chief information officer and vice president of IT for Cannery Casinos Resorts. "The Cisco Catalyst switches help to ensure that slot machines and video surveillance can continue operating even in the event of a switch or line failure."