The remaining part of the SuperConnected Cities programme beyond the voucher scheme for businesses is the target for many of the cities to roll-out a blanket Wi-Fi umbrella so that visitors and residents can be sure of mobile data access.
Cardiff is the latest city to announce a deal, this time with BT (several similar deals have been with Virgin Media) with the aim to bring free Wi-Fi to the city centre in the next month or two and extend to the Cardiff Bay area in 2014. The service will be free for everyone initially (we are seeking clarification on the free period) and those with free BT Wi-Fi access e.g those with BT Broadband will always have free access.
The payback for BT appears to be access to street furniture so that small 3G and 4G masts can be installed and access sold to mobile operators on a wholesale basis.
For those keen to make use of the service it is expected to appear first in Queen Street, The Hayes, the High Street and St Mary Street.