April 5, 2016
Bringing high-speed broadband to the masses is no longer just a want, but a need. For LinkNYC, led by the CityBridge consortium, they are making this a reality. By turning ugly, unused payphones into wireless access points through New York City, residents and tourists alike will be able to have free Wi-Fi through much of the area. In addition to adding connectivity, the access points are ADA-compliant, offers 911, Wi-Fi calling, and USB charging ports.
In an announcement made in November 2014, New York Mayor Bill De Blassio announced the initial winner of a five-borough wide Wi-Fi network, which would eventually become LinkNYC.
“There is a huge amount of pressure on data. There is an explosion of data. We’re all carrying so many devices, wearables these days that it’s really becoming an issue. Also cities in some cases have an aging technological infrastructure, and so, this is a really great example of working with the city of New York to reimagine that aging infrastructure,” said Etherington.
Although the kiosks were slated to begin rolling out in late 2015, they started to make the rounds in January of this year, starting in Manhattan. They eventually plan to install 7,500 Links throughout the city, and at no cost to residents. The program is paid through a $200 million investment through CityBridge.
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