BT to introduce wireless broadband to 12 cities
BT have today announced that it is planning to setup Wi-Fi networks in 12 cities by the of 2006, the first six to cover large areas of Birmingham, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Leeds, Liverpool, and Westminster. The idea is to complement existing hotspots with a large mesh network that will allow customers to "do anything, anytime, anywhere."
Westminster's 'Wireless City' project started in April 2004 and allows Council workers to monitor the environment and CCTV whilst also facilitating remote working from anywhere within the covered area. The second phase of this should enable coverage to a larger area and provide a more secure and resilient communications infrastructure to the area.
One future use of these 'Wireless City' networks is a complement to the BT Fusion product which allows customers to make calls using their BT landline from a mobile phone when in range of the Bluetooth enabled router at their home. A Wi-Fi version that is planned would allow customers to make calls at a cheaper rate using the Wireless network covering the city when in range, and falling back to the standard mobile network when not.