tech - hawg
Thursday, April 13, 2006
  Portland gets free, city-wide Wi-Fi
I'm not sure what this article is all about becuase when I looked at it, all I saw was "Colorado Springs not getting free city-wide WiFi anytime soon...".
I'd heard about this in the local news (I'm from Portland), but didn't hear the whole scoop. At first I heard that slow service would be offered for free, but faster speed would be available at a cost. This article doesn't mention the speed, only ads. Either way, I not sure it will fly. In my ultra-socialist SE Portland neighborhood, just about anyone that had broadband offers it up for free to the community via wifi. It's actually an organized movement. (more info at

It will be interesting to see if people who currently pay Comcast for broadband and share it will be tempted by the free service with banner ads and shut of their Comcast service. If they do, the Personal Telco Project network will get smaller and smaller..
I think speed would be an important factor to consider. If you get a decent speed but have to view some ads, I think people wouldn't mind. Presentation of the ads would be important to me too. If it's a persistant banner or something similarly obtrusive, I would be more apt to spring for a paid service.

That's awsome that people share their broadband connection via WiFi on purpose though. A lot of wireless networks here (colorado springs) are just left way too unprotected.
I just read more about this project in the Oregonian newpaper this morning. The speed will be 1mbps or less. The speed will be the same for all customers, pay or free.

The service isn't fast enough to move broadband customer who are used to 4+mbps, but it may tempt dial-up users. For $20 a month (about the same as dial up), faster service with no ads.

They expect to cover 95% of the city with wifi.
I guess it's better than nothing. Thanks for coming back with more info!
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