Philadelphia Chooses Earthlink for City Wi-Fi Service

Oct 4th

Free WiFi equals targeted ads and user data. Philadelphia chose Earthlink [sub req], a company which recently called Google's free Wi-Fi in San Francisco unsustainable. From the Philadelphia article:

In the Philadelphia program, the high-speed service will be available for free in parks and other public places. To get wireless broadband at home, low-income families in the city will be charged $10 a month, while all other households will be charged $20 a month.

Interesting to see the web causing a real world landgrab.

Eventually I predict that these services will not only be wide spread & free, but that web service providers will be willing to pay large cities for the privilege of being able to be their exclusive Wi-Fi partner. It all ends up as a game of margins. With Google's huge advertiser base and cheap computer cycles I wouldn't be placing too many bets elsewhere.

Published: October 4, 2005

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