London Underground Wi-Fi pusher to be announced in spring
Tube's wireless delivered in time for 2012 Olympics
Transport for London (TfL) is in the final stages of the tender process for the supply of Wi-Fi to up to 120 of its underground stations.
The announcement of the chosen bidder had been scheduled for the end of 2011, but is now expected in early spring.
Gareth Powell, director of strategy and service development, said: "London Underground is continuing with preparations to install the necessary infrastructure and is on schedule to complete the project as planned."
Powell added the contract will be in place "leaving plenty of time for this to be delivered to customers in time for the 2012 Games".
According to a TfL tender document, the Wi-Fi supplier will host and operate a portal for the London Underground Wi-Fi service to provide media rich content free of charge, likely to include real-time travel information, news, sports and entertainment.
Other data services and links to external sites may be subject to a subscription fee, and the supplier will manage all aspects of this service, including billing users.
The contract is expected to last for five years, but could be extended.
The Wi-Fi service will allow commuters to access the internet in deep underground stations, but will not be available on tube trains themselves.
Trials of Wi-Fi access began at Charing Cross underground station in November 2010 to test the service and the reaction of passengers over several months.
According to the tender document, the provider will host and operate a portal for the London Underground Wi-Fi to provide media rich content free of charge. This is likely to include real-time travel information, news, sports and entertainment.
This article was originally published at Guardian Government Computing.
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How long do you really spend on a TFL station??
Personally I'm probably in TFL stations for <5 mins a day on my way in/out of work, and most of that time I'm jostling to get on a train or get out. Standing still time is very limited, by the time I'd connected to the WiFi and gone to a website it'd be time to leave.
Seems like a gigantic waste of time/effort to me, far better that they allowed a data only 3G network on the whole tube not just stations, I don't think voice would be a good idea, it's too noisy to hold much of a conversation and so those shouting down phones would probably annoy more people than it helped, especially when you're often less that a foot away from several people's ears. Most people have so little manners and thought for others as it is on the tube, giving them another way to be irritating would not be good for passenger rage levels.
Pity they can't spend the money on a decent train service first
Instead of wasting it on this. Or perhaps this is just a sop to trapped passengers:
"Hello honey, I'm stuck on a train in a tunnel yet again because the 80 year old signalling equipment they can't be bothered to replace has failed once more, but at least I can email you to tell you about it!"
Its about time LU and TfL got their fscking priorities right, stop dicking about with nonsense like this, video ad boards , projector screens and endless other superfluous rubbish they've spent their (our!) money on in the last few years and concentrate on getting the core system working. Someone should remind them they're a transport organisation, NOT a fscking media one.
Oh how refined. Wi-Fi on the underground. So now we can all sit back in wonderful comfort to use our phones and maybe even a laptop on the Underground. Meanwhile back in reality, the experience for most of us on the London Underground is one of sometimes being so badly packed in like sardines, that there are times we can hardly have room to breath! ... Its illegal to pack in animals as tightly as they pack in humans on the Underground!
Also outside of rush hour (more like rush 4 hours) even in the late evenings (when it is a bit quieter) there are many people who wouldn't want to risk using a laptop or even some a phone, on some parts of the Underground, for fear of being mugged.
So some how, I can't help thinking they have far bigger problems than just wifi as a barrier to us all using more technology on the Underground! ... So is this an Olympics PR move by the London Underground? ... To try to make more people (who have yet to visit) think the underground is some how more refined, just in time for the Olympics this year?
Icon for: Your train is being held (in this hot stinking tunnel, with no fresh air coming into the hot stinking carriages), whilst we (again) wait for the train in front!