Mobile
News
5/19/2008
03:17 PM
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%
Repost This

Nine More Municipal Wi-Fi Networks Slated For Closing

MetroFi once had big plans for Portland, Ore., as it intended to cover the city's 134 square miles with an ambitious ad-supported deployment.

The municipal Wi-Fi meltdown is continuing as MetroFi reported that it plans to vacate the muni Wi-Fi field. The company has Wi-Fi networking deals with nine cities, including Portland, Ore., its flagship operation.

The company's chief executive, Chuck Haas, announced Friday MetroFi's decision to sell the networks or, if there are no buyers, then to close the networks down.

MetroFi once had big designs for Portland as it intended to cover the city's 134 square miles with an ambitious ad-supported deployment. Microsoft even got involved and worked to prepare a suite of Portland-oriented applications.

But, like most municipal Wi-Fi deployments in the United States, the Portland deployment never got very far off the ground.

"MetroFi's network never reached beyond downtown and close-in eastside neighborhoods, and even there it failed to perform well," wrote a reporter in The Oregonian. "The project didn't attract the advertising MetroFi hoped for, and the company gave up on expanding the network before it reached the low-income parts of the city where city officials hoped it would do the most good."

MetroFi has offered to sell the network to the city for less then $900,000, but Portland officials haven't shown much interest in purchasing it, the newspaper reported. In a letter to city officials, MetroFi said: "We are looking to understand the city's position as soon as possible, as our intent is to begin network shutdown and equipment removal by the end of June if we do not have a buyer."

Other cities with MetroFi deployments that are facing end-of-life deployment include the California cities of Concord, Cupertino, Foster City, Riverside, San Jose, Santa Clara, and Sunnyvale, as well as Aurora, Ill.

Haas announced MetroFi's decision to sell or gradually close down its municipal networks in Wi-Fi Networking News late last week.

EarthLink, another major deployer of municipal Wi-Fi networks, has also been moving to sell or shut down its deployments in the cities where it has rolled out Wi-Fi networks.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
InformationWeek Elite 100
InformationWeek Elite 100
Our data shows these innovators using digital technology in two key areas: providing better products and cutting costs. Almost half of them expect to introduce a new IT-led product this year, and 46% are using technology to make business processes more efficient.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Elite 100 - 2014
Our InformationWeek Elite 100 issue -- our 26th ranking of technology innovators -- shines a spotlight on businesses that are succeeding because of their digital strategies. We take a close at look at the top five companies in this year's ranking and the eight winners of our Business Innovation awards, and offer 20 great ideas that you can use in your company. We also provide a ranked list of our Elite 100 innovators.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Audio Interviews
Archived Audio Interviews
GE is a leader in combining connected devices and advanced analytics in pursuit of practical goals like less downtime, lower operating costs, and higher throughput. At GIO Power & Water, CIO Jim Fowler is part of the team exploring how to apply these techniques to some of the world's essential infrastructure, from power plants to water treatment systems. Join us, and bring your questions, as we talk about what's ahead.