NYC Building Free WiFi

from the isn't-it-already-there? dept

More bad news for the commercial hotspots providers. New York City is following the lead of some other cities in looking to provide free WiFi access in lower Manhattan. Of course, much of Manhattan is already covered by free WiFi access points, but this appears to be somehow sponsored by the city itself. They’re realizing (something that the commercial providers are missing) that by providing free WiFi, it’s attracting more business and more shoppers. They realize the indirect, promotional benefit that free WiFi has on whatever location is providing it (the same way McDonald’s has realized the benefit of offering free WiFi). It will be interesting to see how the commercial hotspot providers deal with this. Will they continue to keep their head in the sand, will they change business models completely, or will they start to focus on “advanced services” such as security that will make it worthwhile for some (though, perhaps not many) customers to actually pay for the service?

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