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Tuesday, 10 January 2012 12:59

London gets world's biggest wi-fi hotspot

Written by Nick Farell



Where its not hot, it really is not


London is to get the largest free Wi-Fi hotspot in Europe, following a deal between Westminster City Council, the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea and mobile giant O2.

O2 claims that the deal will run at no cost to the councils and will mean free access to residents and visitors to Westminster and Kensington & Chelsea through a new wireless network infrastructure dubbed 'Metro' and based on hardware wired in to street lights.

O2's chief operating officer Derek McManus of the agreement. "Our longer-term aim is to expand our footprint of O2 Wifi, which is open to everyone, and also intelligently enhance our services at street level, where people need the network the most," he said.

Of course it is being set up in time for next summer's Olympic Games. The network infrastructure for the free Wi-Fi access zone will is being rolled out in what O2 describes as a 'limited number of areas' starting this month, to be followed by a full-scale deployment ahead. Despite looking to the 2012 Olympic Games as a target, O2 has yet to commit to a firm schedule for having the full network operational.

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