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Entire UK town to have free Wi-Fi

updated 04:45 pm EST, Tue November 17, 2009

Swindon, UK residents to get free Wi-Fi access

Swindon Borough Council is planning on offering free Wi-Fi to the entire population of its town by April of next year, says a Tuesday report. The UK town's 186,000 residents will not have to pay any connection charges or subscription fees for the service, due to be called Signal. The project will cost the equivalent of about $1.68 million and is run by newly formed Digital City UK Ltd, 35 percent of which is owned by Swindon's city council.

The free service will offer speeds up to 20Mbps, though paid tiers will be offered which will bump these speeds in exchange for a fee that is said to be significantly less than those offered by conventional broadband providers.

To blanket the city with a Wi-Fi signal, the service will include some 1,400 secure access points. Signal will also allow for free Internet-based phone calls and remote medical consultations. Anti-virus software and often accessed web-based services from Microsoft and Google will be available on the city network as well.

If successful and popular, Digital City UK hopes to expand the Signal service to other UK cities.



By Electronista Staff
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  1. LGgeek

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2009

    +3

    how is it paid for ?

    Sounds good but how is it paid for ? ads ,taxes, fees.
    The money has to come from somewhere.

  1. danviento

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Dec 2005

    +1

    Paid for? Srsly?

    That's a fair amount of up-front infrastructure cost.

    Personally, I wouldn't do any banking over that network.

  1. vanderbeeken

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 2009

    +2

    Venice, Italy was first

    Venice launched free Wifi in July already:
    http://www.muniwireless.com/2009/07/06/venice-italy-muni-wireless-network/
    http://www.veniceconnected.com/veniceconnected-wireless-internet-connection-service

  1. WalterC

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2008

    +3

    Commies

    Those damned socialists. Pooling their resources to build wasteful things like 'free' wireless. For sure, they're gonna use commie tactics and eavesdrop on all traffic. Our providers would never do that. What'll the RIAA have to say. Kinda like those same Brits forcing everyone to pay for their socialistic medical system. I know I don't want to pay for some else to get well. Just me me me.

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