September 11, 2015
BT has extended its Wireless Cities programme to Manchester, Belfast and the London Borough of Waltham Forest.
Birmingham, Liverpool, Newcastle, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Nottingham, Portsmouth, Cardiff, Sheffield, Bristol and London’s City of Westminster are already included in the programme, which provides Wi-Fi connectivity in town centres.
BT creates the Wi-Fi networks by installing a large number of access points on street furniture such as lampposts. These access points are connected to the internet via a point-to-point link or meshed backhaul.
The networks can be accessed via a subscription with BT, or one of its partners. Tariffs include £6 for one hour and £25 per month. The company has completed installation in some areas, which other networks are still at the trial stage.
Widespread rollout of the service would support the company’s converged fixed/mobile offering, Fusion, which allows mobile calls to be made over both Wi-Fi and GSM from the same device. This allows users to take advantage of cheaper Wi-Fi calls.
Fusion is already available to small businesses, but the corporate version is still being trialled.