BT says that Cardiff will take a further step in its role as a ‘Wireless City’, as it seeks to broaden the range of Wireless Broadband coverage which is already available extensively in the city centre and in specific places including the International Airport, parts of Cardiff Bay, and the city’s Millennium Stadium.
The company is working with the council to identify key areas where the network could be extended to other parts of the city centre, represents the next step in Cardiff’s desire to be a leading Wireless City.
Cardiff’s inclusion in the Wireless Cities programme ensures that all customers – whether consumers, businesses or public sector organisations – can take advantage of the many opportunities wireless technology brings. It should also make the city a more attractive place to do business while having the knock-on effect of attracting new industries.
The move follows similar schemes in London (Westminster and Waltham Forest), Birmingham, Newcastle and Liverpool.
Steve Andrews, BT Group, Chief of Mobility, said: “BT and Cardiff have always had strong links, with the city helping BT to pioneer the new 21CN network. Today’s announcement cements these links further. Cardiff’s decision to work with BT to extend its Wireless City network will open up a raft of new opportunities for local businesses, citizens and visitors to benefit from access to all the high-speed broadband services normally available at home or in the office.
“Through the work BT Openzone is doing in Cardiff, people will be able to get the most out of their Wi-Fi enabled devices. Whether it’s a business person using BT Corporate Fusion , BT Office Anywhere or Intel Centrino Duo enabled laptop to access their emails , right through to a consumer using their BT Fusion Mobile, Internet Tablet or Wi-Fi enabled console to play games online, BT Openzone will help liberate the lifestyles and working practices of those in Cardiff.”
Cllr Mark Stephens, Executive Member for Economic Development and Finance said, “This is very exciting news for Cardiff and demonstrates once again how far the city has come in recent years and is truly a world class quality of life capital city for Wales. I am delighted to be able to say that thanks to our partnership with BT, Cardiff is at the forefront of wireless communication and I am sure this development will be of huge interest to everyone who works, visits and lives in our city.
“This is real boost for the business, residential and leisure markets in the city and I am proud that Cardiff has been chosen to be one of BT’s Wireless Cities.”
BT will be responsible for funding the rollout of the extension of the Wireless Cities network and will include best of breed technology and services from Motorola, Tropos and other suppliers in the process.
Joe Cozzolino, corporate vice president and general manager EMEA, Motorola Home & Networks Mobility said “In addition to managing the ongoing operation of the network, we will supply solutions from our MOTOwi4™ wireless broadband portfolio, which will be deployed across the cities on existing street furniture such as lampposts. Working with BT, our solution allows data to be backhauled wirelessly helping to save time and disruption involved with building a fixed network.”
Ron Sege, President and CEO, Tropos said “”Ease of use is a critical success factor to encourage a wide range of users to take full advantage of the growing number of Tropos MetroMesh networks being deployed worldwide. This principle will be at the core of the work we do with BT and Cardiff City Council.”
The development and operational costs of the network will be borne entirely by BT – with no cost burden on the taxpayer for the provision and management of the network.