updated 03:20 pm EST, Fri December 16, 2011
Brings Wi-Fi total to 15 out of 26 promised areas
AT&T continues to add free Wi-Fi service to the public parks located throughout the five boroughs of New York City. The carrier has added four new locations in parks, including Tavern on the Green in Central Park and Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park. This brings the total hotspot coverage to 15 out of a total of 26 that AT&T promised it would roll out in a deal it struck with Mayor Bloomberg in June.
The free Wi-Fi service is part of Mayor Bloomberg's grand plan of making NYC the most "digital city" in the country. AT&T has committed to create the hotspots in 20 different city parks. The carrier turned on the free service in three locations when the partnership was launched initially, and added another 11 locations in early November. AT&T has agreed to provide the Wi-Fi as a free service over at least a five-year period.
The free hotspot arrangement benefits both the city and AT&T. Residents and visitors get free wireless data, and AT&T is able to offload some of the traffic from its heavily burdened 3G and 4G networks to higher capacity Wi-Fi.
The Tavern on the Green is the first location in Central Park, the city's largest park, to receive Wi-Fi.