Technological Innovations in Music Festivals


Technology has always been an important part of festivals. How else are thousands of visitors able to hear the music that a band is playing on a big stage? Last years, however, some major innovations have taken place in the music festival industry, and these innovations are mainly focused on improving the visitors’ experience of the festival.

Nowadays, every music festival has its own app. These apps, consisting of information about performing artists and a map to indicate where all the stages are, seem to replace the traditional small booklet distributed at the entrance. Furthermore, the number of other apps that are concerned with the visitors of music festivals is rising. Visitors can use apps like ‘Tent Finder’ to find their tents in the middle of the night, or apps like ‘Festvl’ to create your own line-up of the acts you’re dying to see.


Another innovation is the digital festival wristbands. With the help of NFC (Near Field Communication) technology, we can pay with our smartphones or wristbands. More and more festivals are integrating a payment chip in their wristbands in order to increase the efficiency of buying food or drinks at a food truck at their festival. Another advantage of this innovation is that it increases the safety at festivals, since no cash is going over the counter.

There are also some trends that show the fear for technological innovations. One of them is the fact that people like to use a selfie stick to take a selfie with their friends at a concert of their favourite bands. This innovation, however, can lead to irritations to other visitors of the festival. This is exactly why festivals like Coachella, Lollapalooza, Pinkpop and Lowlands don’t permit these selfie sticks. Another innovation that can have some negative effects is the use of apps like ‘Periscope’ or ‘Meerkat’. Whit these apps, visitors can stream live video of the concerts they visit to share it with their friends. This can lead to serious copyright issues.

Concluding, most technological innovations improve visitors’ experiences of the music festival, and we have to continue to try to improve this even more. But we must be careful that these innovations don’t lead to new issues or problems.


de Hooge, M. (2015) “Technologie tijdens festivals” [online] Available at: [Accessed at: 18-10-2015]

van Iersel, F. (2015) “Festivals verbieden selfie sticks” [online] Available at: [Accessed at: 18-10-2015]

Williams, R. (2015) “The 10 best festival apps” [online] Available at: [Accessed at: 18-10-2015]

Matthew van Cooten – 359947


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