WiFi Upgrade 9.0: Six Up, Three to Go!

After my first post on this subject, I was worried. After all, we were having serious issues with our Internet provider. For example, instead of sending one technician to work with Sky-Packets, our WiFi provider, to visit all of the sites, our Internet provider sent several. Suddenly, I found myself running out of the office to meet them at various sites, making sure we wouldn’t have to reschedule again — and probably not for several weeks. (I was so busy that I hardly had time to chill at my favorite Downtown hangout.) I imagined our provider having addresses that didn’t make any sense that were blocks away from the actual hotspot, or were in buildings that didn’t exist. I began to wonder if it would be possible to pull it all together in time for New Years, let alone Thanksgiving.

Fortunately, Sky-Packets has done this kind of thing before. Plus, once a site had Internet access, it often took Sky-Packets less than a day to set it up.

And, despite my fears that our users would forget about us during the lag in service, they came back right away in droves.

Before we go any further, here are the sites that are live:

Bowling Green
Stone Street
British Memorial Garden
60 Wall Street Atrium
55 Water – Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Plaza
City Hall Park

We’re still working on 7 World Trade Center, the Winter Garden at the World Financial Center, and the South Street Seaport, and hope to have those up within another week. But it all depends upon our Internet provider.

And If you go to the live sites, you’ill find greatly expanded service.

But that’s not all!

When we did finally get Internet service at the site, we were able to increase the bandwidth – often two or three times (in one case, 7 WTC, it will be almost 20 times). This means when you’re online at these hotspots, you’ll be able to do more, see more, watch more — and more quickly than before.

We’ve also created a new WiFi portal page for you to make it easier to find what you want Downtown.

The Downtown Alliance has been hosting these free WiFi hotspots for more than six years, though this is our first major upgrade in almost three. Please let us know what you think. If you have any comments or suggestions about our free WiFi program, send me an email at jschneider@downtownny.com.

I hope you get a chance to get out and log on.