London Underground getting Wi-Fi hotspot treatment

Summary:While New Yorkers wait for the subway to get the Wi-Fi access they've been promised, the London Underground is being outfitted with Wi-Fi hotspots ahead of the 2012 Olympic Games next summer.

While New Yorkers wait for the subway to get the Wi-Fi access they've been promised, the London Underground is being outfitted with Wi-Fi hotspots ahead of the 2012 Olympic Games next summer.

A "successful trial" has already been completed at Charing Cross station, and the service is expected to be active at 120 stations around the city of London by June 2012.

BT Openzone is responsible for that initial test, along with an upcoming six-month trial run on the Northern and Bakerloo line platforms as well as in the ticket hall at the central London station. Thus, BT broadband customers will get to access this service as a freebie. Commuters who are contracted to other providers such as O2 and Vodafone can connect using mobile contracts.

Unfortunately, the Wi-Fi access is only available on the platforms - not on the trains nor in the Tube itself. You can absolutely bet that those Wi-Fi hotspots are going to be unbelievably clogged during the Olympics (or even during a regular commute hour), but it's a welcome addition to the Underground nonetheless.

Topics: Mobility, Networking, Wi-Fi

About

Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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