Free WiFi In Austin’s Public Parks
Last month, at Republic Square Park, a collaborative effort by the Austin Wireless City Project, Austin Parks Foundation, Austin Parks Department, City of Austin, Downtown Austin Alliance, and Schlotzsky’s Deli announced support for the free WiFi movement by extending Austin’s free wireless Internet access to Austin City Parks. Initial parks where free access is provided are Republic Square, Auditorium Shores, Brush Square and Woolridge parks.
“The movement to provide free access to all visitors to Austin parks is a wonderful gift by this collaborative group,” said Jay Stone of the Austin Parks and Recreation Department. “Austinites are by nature high-tech and love the outdoors. Combining the two should expand the use and enjoyment of the public park services.”
The objective of enabling parks and other outdoor locations is to support the availability and quality of free WiFi hotspots within the community and ensure Austin’s position as the “free-est wireless city in the world.”
Access in these parks is accessible to anyone with a wirelessly enabled device and a free Less Networks WiFi account. A laptop or wireless PDA (personal digital assistant) will be the most common devices.
“As free WiFi expands throughout Austin and the surrounding area, access to e-mail and other Web-based activities will make people’s lives easier, safer, and more productive,” says Rich MacKinnon of the Austin Wireless City Project.
According to recent usage statistics from AWCP, there are nearly 10,000 registered users of free WiFi in Austin with 65 new people signing up every day. “Adding Austin parks to the free WiFi movement is a triumph for the collaborative effort between Austin’s government, non-profit and commercial organizations,” says MacKinnon.