Hotspot Hits for December 12, 2003

By Wi-Fi Planet Staff

December 12, 2003

Cerritos hotspot will 'eclipse' that of Long Beach, Calif.; more east coast marinas going wireless; January 26 marks free use of BT OpenZone for a week; and more.

  • The Press-Telegram of wireless city Long Beach, Calif. said this week that neighboring Cerritos will be getting a hotzone all their own by January 2004 -- which the paper says eclipses what Long Beach has deployed in its downtown and airport. They plan to have 51,000 residents under the Wi-Fi cloud. Access will be through a paid subscription. This is one of the first installations by Aiirnet Wireless, which hopes to provide Wi-Fi as a municipal utility for cities that can't get cable or DSL broadband. Cerritos was an early subject of Metricom's Ricochet wireless service, just before Metricom went under killing Ricochet (the first time). It was former Metricom employees that started Aiirnet hoping to use mesh Wi-Fi to get the same effect. -- December 12, 2003

  • The Stamford Advocate in Connecticut has an article today about how Wi-Fi is transforming a once derelict building into a digital paradise. The 147-year-old Lock Building in South Norwalk was a dead factory that has since been turned into a 110,000 square foot space with restaurants, retail outlets, offices, galleries and more -- all served up with 802.11-based Internet access using Trapeze Networks equipment run by Spot On Networks's Commhub division. The building is now called the Lock Art & Technology Center. They offer the wireless Internet service to tenants of the building as well as in common areas. -- December 12, 2003

  • Hotel high-speed Internet access provider StayOnline announced a milestone this week, claiming it is contracted to hit 23,000 hotel rooms with Wi-Fi connections in 203 hotels by the end of 2003. They admit the numbers of 2s, 3s, and zeros is a coincidence. -- December 12, 2003

  • Boaters with Wi-Fi laptops rejoice -- more marinas on the east coast are adding wireless service for patrons such as you. Beacon Wi-Fi of Wilton, Conn., is adding ten new locations to its Aqua Access service. They include: Hudson Point Marina and Jersey City in New Jersey and harbors in the following areas in Florida: Fort Myers, Sarasota, Miami, St. Petersburg, and a total of five in Key West. The cost is $19.95 for three unlimited days, $79.99 a month unlimited, or subscribe for a few months at a time for charges that come each month. -- December 9, 2003

  • The Seattle Times is reporting that Paul Allen's Experience Music Project museum is going Wi-Fi, with the intension of providing wireless for use in internal offices and by patrons (say, for streaming audio to handhelds as they walk about the displays). The article says the building, with curved ceilings and other unique architectural elements -- there's no right angles to be found -- will present a challenge for the network builders. Even so, they expect to have the service installed by January using equipment from Trapeze Networks.

    Trapeze is also working on another big public Wi-Fi rollout at Ohlone College in Fremont, Calif. The school went with Trapeze specifically to get advanced security such as 802.1X authentication with AES encryption, plus they liked the LWAPP specification for thin APs (easier to deploy). Installation should be done by the middle of next year, though the school has already covered the 45,000 square foot Hyman Hall academic and office building. -- December 9, 2003

  • Anyone curious about the service at BT OpenZone hotspots -- meaning those who haven't used it but are too cheap to try it -- will get a chance to check the service out for free next month. On Monday, January 26, and going until the first day of February, anyone who signs up gets seven days of unlimited access for free. They're calling it Wireless Broadband Week and they expect to spend up to a million British pounds promoting it. The week long free access is one upping Intel's One Unwired Day of last October here in the United States and, like Intel, British Telecom hopes other hotspot providers in the UK will join in offering the free access for a week. There are currently 1700 OpenZone locations, and they expect to have 4000 by next summer. The usual price: #6 ($10.37) an hour, but pay-as-you-go pricing is in the offing. The Register, which reported the story above, also said last week that a British government minister is moving ahead with plans to put Wi-Fi access in every library there. -- December 9, 2003

  • Cafe.com reported last week that it would be installing hotspots in the home of the Grand Slam Breakfast, Lenny's. I mean, Denny's (that's funny if you know the old commercials. Trust us.). Forty locations from California to Florida will be installed immediately, with more to come over the course of 2004. The Cafe.com Web site will list the locations, though as of this writing none are shown. They charge $6.95 a day or $15.95 for 200 minutes per month or $34.95 a month for unlimited access. As Cafe.com is a Boingo partner, these new Denny's locations are also open to Boingo subscribers, as well. -- December 9, 2003

  • USURF America of Denver, which specializes in providing Internet services to multi-dwelling units (MDUs... think apartment buildings), is moving to RV Parks. It's working with Carriage Manor RV Resort of Mesa, Ariz., to put in high-speed Internet access (HSIA) using fixed-wireless broadband as the backhaul. Wi-Fi services will be offered in the resort's pool and clubhouse areas. The two expect 20% of the community in the resort to take advantage of the service. USURF is now using Internet Protocol (IP) based software, replacing its earlier proprietary Quick-Cell line of products. -- December 9, 2003

  • South Africa will be unwired by May of 2004 according to Sentech, a telecom and broadcaster in that country. Using technology from IPWireless, Sentech plans to launch "MyWireless" service, to provide Wi-Fi based portable data anywhere, home or work or on the road. The initial rollout will begin in January and cover areas of major cities including Johannesburg. Sentech is getting equipment from Axcera, an IPWireless distribution partner that brands it Axity3G, via their local partner, Fastcomm. IPWireless uses cellular (UMTA TD-CDMA) for backhaul between the Wi-Fi access point and the Internet connection.

    Meanwhile, in South Africa's major airports in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban run by Airports Company South Africa (where'd they get that name?), mobile IP technology from Birdstep is being deployed so customers can roam from WLAN to cellular network (GSM/GPRS/CDMA) that integrated mobile IP. ACSA will be using Birdstep's IP Zone Servers running on equipment from systems integrator OSI Airport Systems. -- December 9, 2003

  • Hotspot aggregator Boingo Wireless has added five airport locations to its network via a deal with Concourse Communications Group. Under the agreement, Boingo Roaming System users will have access to hotspots at LaGuardia Airport and JFK International Airport in New York; Newark Liberty International Airport; Detroit-Wayne County Metropolitan Airport; and the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport. Concourse says it has found that Wi-Fi usage in airports is growing at about 300 percent per year. -- December 2, 2003

  • Dutch WISP WinQ has deployed a citywide wireless network in Kenniswijk Eindhoven, the Netherlands. The "hot zone" is part of a pilot program that began in July. In addition to high-speed Internet access, the network is being used for live broadcasts of city council meetings. WinQ is using gear from Nomadix and Proxim to power the network. -- December 2, 2003

  • College basketball fans on hand to witness Purdue upset Duke in the championship game of the Great Alaska Shootout on Saturday were also treated to real-time game statistics via Wi-Fi. Alaska-based GCI deployed the hotspot using the Nomadix Universal Subscriber Gateway. -- December 2, 2003

  • Last week T-Mobile Hotspot became the largest hotspot provider in Austria. The company is reporting that T-Mobile Austria has taken over the hotspots of partner metronet, which is lists as the fourth largest wireless ISP (WISP) in the world. The company had 300 locations in the country, from cafés to gas (petrol) stations, and even a couple of hotzones, which will all now be added to T-Mobile's footprint. -- December 1, 2003


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