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Year-Long Trial to Deliver FREE WiFi Across Central Cambridge City

Monday, June 23rd, 2014 (12:01 am) - Score 874
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The Cloud (BSkyB) has teamed up with the Connecting Cambridgeshire scheme (with help via the “Super-Connected Cities” funding) in order to roll-out free WiFi wireless Internet connectivity across the centre of Cambridge city in England, which means it will also be ready for when the Tour de France comes to the area on Monday 7th July.

The Cambridgeshire County Council, Cambridge City Council and the University of Cambridge have all worked together to set-up the free public access WiFi service, which apparently builds upon existing networks at the University (the University is also investing in the network as part of plans to extend its existing education WiFi networks). Going forward it’s anticipated that the service will also become available in many more locations and surrounding areas.

Initially the project will install more than 20 new WiFi access points on lighting posts, CCTV poles and public buildings at key locations, such as Parker’s Piece, King’s Parade, the Senate House and the market area. Apparently some of the lamp posts have also been “specially engineered” to host the latest WiFi technology discretely.

Steve Count, Leader of Cambridgeshire County Council, said:

Cambridge has always been at the forefront of new technology and evolving the way we interact with the world. This new free public Wi-Fi service in central Cambridge is a fantastic example of the difference we can make for residents, visitors and students by working together.

Developing wider public access Wi-Fi and improving mobile coverage is part of the Connecting Cambridgeshire programme’s drive for better connectivity across the county, which is vital in an increasingly digital world. This trial paves the way for improving wireless connectivity across the city and beyond.”

Users of the new free WiFi service will be able to connect to the Internet by logging in, or registering, via a shared landing page on The Cloud, which will provide links to useful information and event updates. A map of free WiFi coverage in Cambridge can be viewed at http://www.connectingcambridgeshire.co.uk/wifi . The trial will run for a year and monitor usage of the network before being rolled out to a wider area.

Apparently the existing University network can already support up to 25,000 unique visitors each week, of which a third are visitors from other universities, and thousands more are expected to hop online during the Tour de France event.

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