|June 26, 2012||Tweet|
The long, halting story of the effort to bring cell phone and Wi-Fi service to the subways has begun to pick up speed. Six West Side stations have begun offering access to Wi-Fi, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and private contractor Transit Wireless announced Monday.
They are the same stations that began offering cell phone service last fall, and are mostly clustered on 14th Street, including the A, C, E and L stops on Eighth Avenue, and the 1, 2, and 3 stops on Seventh Avenue. Stations at Sixth Avenue and 14th Street and Eighth Avenue and 23rd Street have also been wired.
The Wi-Fi access is being provided by Boingo, which is best known for providing Wi-Fi at airports for a fee. Transit Wireless announced its partnership with Boingo last month, but has been testing out the service since January. The entire project's estimated $200 million cost is being paid by Transit Wireless.
The Wi-Fi will be available free of charge through Sept. 7 courtesy of a sponsorship from deals service Google Offers. The free Wi-Fi will likely continue after that point, since Transit Wireless is finding plenty of interest from sponsors.