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And in America, Boingo gets Minneapolis airport

Pulling a fast one

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The Register's Wireless LAN Channel

Airports are today's obvious "high price" wireless Internet target; American WISP Boingo Wireless may not be at Munich airport, but it has got the franchise for WiFi service at Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport.

"This extends the largest aggregated hot spot network to almost 90,000 travellers a day who pass through America's 10th largest airport," said the company today.

The company then rather spoiled its image by exaggerating the class of service provided. It claims that its WiFi service, based on the IEEE 802.11b standard "provides speeds of up to 11 megabits per second, over 100 times faster than 56k dial-up service."

Probably, not. Boingo's 1,300-plus location network may well include many major airports - like Los Angeles, LaGuardia International, Baltimore-Washington, and Dallas-Fort Worth, but if any of them runs 100 times faster than a 56K modem, they'd have to be single-user access points connected to 10 megabit leased lines.

The very fastest data rate possible over 802.11b is 5 megabits per second. That's if you're the only user, sitting a few feet away from the access point. That's a hundred times faster than a dialup modem, yes. But you can't get more out of the access point than they put in; and to get 5 megabits through, you'd need a local server connected to a 5 megabit leased line.

Most public access points are on DSL links, or at best, a one or two megabit leased line. And most access points are shared, and reception is usually moderate to poor. You'll get ten times the speed of your dialup modem. On a good day; airports are busy.

"Since business travellers are our primary end-user customer, airports are among the highest use locations in our network," said Dave Hagan, Boingo president.

The press release is here.

© Newswireless.Net

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