LA’s Pershing Square Network Will Provide Free Wireless Internet Service

Tropos Networks, the leading supplier of equipment used to build metro-scale Wi-Fi networks, today announced that Verge Wireless Networks, Inc., a division of CamSoft Data Systems, Inc., has selected Tropos Wi-Fi cells for use in Verge’s recently awarded Pershing Square project in downtown Los Angeles, CA. Expected to be operational in early 2005, the Pershing Square network will provide free, wireless Internet service to visitors to the historic, landmark park in the center of Los Angeles, as well as to nearby residents, workers and tourists. The network will also demonstrate how broadband service might be provided to low-income areas of Los Angeles.

“We’re very excited to partner with Tropos Networks to bring wireless Internet access to Pershing Square,” said Carlo MacDonald, president of Verge Wireless. “Our experience with the Tropos metro-scale Wi-Fi solution in Baton Rouge and New Orleans demonstrated that it offers superior performance, low total cost of ownership and is easy to deploy and operate. We look forward to using Tropos to implement our network in Los Angeles.”

“We are pleased that Verge selected Tropos equipment for this project and are excited that historic Pershing Square will now be unwired with Tropos, thanks to Verge,” said Ron Sege, president and CEO of Tropos. “Verge’s selection of Tropos is further validation that cities are finding metro-scale Wi-Fi to be a great way to address multiple public policy issues including closing the digital divide, encouraging economic development, enhancing competition for broadband access and improving public safety,” added Sege.

Pershing Square is operated by the City of Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Department. The Verge Wireless contract for the Wi-Fi project is with the Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles (CRA/LA) which believes the Wi-Fi project will support its downtown redevelopments goals and provide a valuable amenity for downtown residents, workers, and visitors.

The Pershing Square Wi-Fi network will use Tropos 5110 Wi-Fi cells, an outdoor-optimized and ruggedized wireless mesh router based on the 802.11 standard. The Tropos 5110 quickly and economically uses the intelligent Tropos Predictive Wireless Routing Protocol (PWRP) to provide pervasive coverage over metro areas. The Tropos PWRP routes traffic wirelessly, eliminating up to 95% of the wired backhaul associated with traditional access point solutions. Tropos Wi-Fi cells form a wireless mesh, dynamically routing traffic along the highest throughput path to a wired gateway. This intelligent routing negates effects of radio frequency (RF) interference, wired backhaul failure and node failure. PWRP also scales to thousands of nodes with the lowest routing overhead in the industry. Network support costs are minimized via the central management capabilities of the Tropos Control Element Manager, a configuration, monitoring and maintenance tool.

Los Angeles is the latest in a rapidly growing group of municipalities to deploy metro-scale Wi-Fi from Tropos Networks. Tropos Wi-Fi mesh networking systems are used for a variety of public Internet access and mission critical applications including public safety; database access; residential, business and mobile user Internet access; video surveillance and automated meter reading, to name a few.