Monday, October 17, 2011

Free Wi-Fi coming to Tel Aviv soon

The Tel Aviv-Jaffa municipality announced this week that it will start a pilot to offer free Wi-Fi Internet access to residents, and visitors, in the city. The test will start next month on Ben-Gurion Boulevard, and the city wants to expand it to other commercial and public areas of the city throughout 2012. Among many others, free wireless Internet (Wi-Fi) service is planned to stretch along the length of Dizengoff, Ben-Yehuda, Ibn Gvirol Streets, Ben Gurion, Nordau, Rothschild and Yerusalayim Boulevards as well as along the beach, all the way to Jaffa.

To help pay for the project, the city may allow the operators to show advertising content to users. The pilot will run for three to four months before the city plans on publishing a tender to expand the service. But the city has yet to actually develop the financial model for how to pay for the Wi-Fi service, and the cost to the city is estimated at between almost nothing, if supported by advertising, to a few million shekels a year. The city has yet to choose an Internet service provider for the project.

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