Broadreach raises cash to push train Wi-Fi

Brief: Britain's mobile workers want access to high-speed wireless when on the railways. Broadreach wants to use the fruits of its latest funding round to get train operators moving

UK wireless operator Broadreach plans to take a larger role in the emerging market for Wi-Fi enabled trains.

The company announced this week that it had raised a multi-million pound slug of investment capital.

Some of this money will be used to set up a subsidiary called Broadreach Train Services, which will offer train operators the chance to upgrade their rolling stock to include 802.11b networks.

As reported last year, Broadreach is already working with Virgin on its West Coast line. This project is currently at the trial phase, but according to a company spokeswoman, commercial rollout is scheduled to kick off in the new year.

Recent research commissioned by Broadreach found that many commuters are crying out for Wi-Fi on trains and in train stations.

GNER, the market leader in this space in the UK, said last week that it is rolling out wireless broadband to its standard as well as first-class carriages on some trains.