"Milpitas is turning into a battleground of sorts for the fledgling Wi-Fi industry, with as many as three separate entities planning citywide service there. Earthlink Inc. intends to have a citywide, fee-based Wi-Fi system in place by the end of this year. Mountain View-based MetroFi Inc. has signed a contract with the city of Milpitas to provide a free, advertisement-backed Wi-Fi service by 2007. Then there is MetroConnect, the coalition of IBM Corp., Cisco Systems Inc. and others, to create one gigantic Silicon Valley-wide Wi-Fi hot zone that would include Milpitas. That system is expected to have both a free and a fee-based system."
Do they not get that 3 systems plus the current police/fire encrypted system creates maybe too much noise for any of them to work well?
MetroFi is still committed to Milpitas, Chief Executive Officer Chuck Haas said, but the competition is "most unusual." "Most cities don't have any, no one city needs three," Haas said. "It doesn't make sense economically." [MetroFi may wholesale from ELN].
Earthlink is the furthest along of the three companies vying for Milpitas wireless customers. Its $1 million project is about two-thirds of the way toward installing 400-plus nodes on city lampposts that will provide the necessary signals.