Thursday, July 06, 2006
The WiFi Downtown Pittsburgh installation phase was unveiled today in Market Square as Mayor Bob O'Connor hung the network's first transmission radio. Installation of the Downtown wireless network, which will be powered by US Wireless Online, will be completed by September 2006. Speaking on behalf of the WiFi initiative, Michael M. Edwards, president and CEO of the PDP, said, "Free outdoor wireless will be a tremendous enhancement for workers, residents and visitors who want to utilize laptops, PDAs and other electronic equipment in Downtown Pittsburgh." As an innovative initiative, WiFi Downtown Pittsburgh will provide wireless access to the Central Business District/Golden Triangle, North Shore and Lower Hill District at various service tiers, including: US Wireless Online FreeConnect, which allows free access for up to two hours each day and US Wireless Online DayConnect, which provides usage at a higher bandwidth and can be purchased in increments of $7.99 per day, $14.95 per month or $119.99 per year. FreeConnect users will be provided a minimum of 512 Kbps of bandwidth, while DayConnect users will receive 1 Mbps. DayConnect users also will benefit from VPN and other security encryption protocol support. ... In addition to its wireless Downtown component, WiFi Downtown Pittsburgh will provide municipal benefits, including four secured mobile command units for the City of Pittsburgh's public safety use, and will address digital- divide issues by providing complimentary connections in partnership with Wireless Neighborhoods, an alliance of community and faith organizations committed to support children's education, promote economic development and address other social barriers.