How Taylor Swift is using the Internet of Things in her concerts

tswift iot
Credit: Lucas Jackson/Reuters

LED bracelets at concerts use infrared communications to light up the crowd


If you go to a Taylor Swift concert, you could have a front row seat to an Internet of Things use case.

+MORE AT NETWORK WORLD: After Dell-EMC deal, will VMware’s Pat Gelsinger need a new laptop? | Amazon’s newest cloud competitor is a familiar foe +

On Swift’s 1989 Tour that is criss-crossing the globe, concert-goers receive a wristband upon entrance to the venue. At some point during the show it magically lights up, coordinated to songs from the queen of pop music.

What’s really going on here? As this Slate article explains, its powered by a company named PixMob, which specializes in wireless LED technology. The wristbands use infrared transmitters to control the LEDs on the wristbands (that’s the same infrared that’s used by remote controls to change the channel on your cable box). The PixMob LEDs can also be controlled by RFIDs.

tswift iot fans

Fans wearing LED bracelets at a Taylor Swift concert at Ford Field in Detroit.

Check out Swift’s concert in Detroit from this summer to see the bracelets in action. Here’s another video that shows the bracelets changing colors.

She isn’t the only one to use the technology. Bruno Mars broke it out at the Super Bowl in and even the University of Michigan Marching Band got in on the action.

IoT is all around us.

Must read: Hidden Cause of Slow Internet and how to fix it
View Comments
Join the discussion
Be the first to comment on this article. Our Commenting Policies