CBS Launches Free Wi-fi in Manhattan

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CBS Launches Free Wi-fi in Manhattan

Nov 19, 2007 4:21 PM

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The intended coverage area of the project superimposed on a Google map.

New York - Nov 19, 2007 - CBS has launched the CBS Mobile Zone, a free 36-block Wi-fi area in Midtown Manhattan. Coverage of the hotspot will ultimately range from Central Park South to 42nd Street between 8th Avenue and the Avenue of the Americas.

The project is a collaboration of CBS, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and New York City Transit. The effort is ad-supported, and Citi and have already signed on as sponsors.

Upon logging on, Web surfers will come to a home page with "hyperlocal content such as breaking local and national news, sports highlights, weather reports, music discovery, wallpapers, ring tones, maps, a social network, and the ability to search for nearby restaurants, shops and entertainment complete with geographically-targeted community reviews," CBS said in the announcement.

This Wi-fi network is considered a test project that should last for at least six months. Some areas are live effective immediately and will be joined by the rest of the network by the end of November. Local businesses are also being encouraged to add wireless routers to their buildings to help avoid dark spots inside the area, according to the broadcaster.

The Mobile Zone is not device- or software-specific. VoIP calling and other comparatively high-demand Internet activities will also be acceptable. If successful, the trial may also expand to include other areas where CBS' outdoor division has a presence.