New York has begun replacing thousands of telephone booths with 2.9-meter-tall kiosks offering free, lightning-fast internet connections to anyone within 45 meters.
With mobile phones so common, pay phones have become obsolete. Demand for Wi-Fi, on the other hand, is multiplying rapidly. The new internet kiosks will even let people make free phone calls.
When completed over several years, the 7,500 kiosks, called “Links,” will give New York the world’s largest-and-fastest, free, municipal Wi-Fi network, says Mayor Bill de Blasio, and make the Big Apple “a more equal, open and connected city” for residents and visitors alike.
The kiosks won’t cost New York a penny, but rather will earn the city money. LinkNYC, an alliance of internet companies, builds the kiosks on public sidewalks. For that privilege, it shares with New York a portion of the revenues it earns by selling advertising space on the kiosks. The city projects its portion will amount to $500 million over 12 years.
Read more at Share America.