Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Thursday, December 23, 2021

Sticks of Fire beat me to the punch, but I’ll help spread the word: Courtesty of local b2b ISP Sago Networks, a big chunk of downtown Tampa will become a free wi-fi hotspot within a couple of weeks.

Louis Hau has a nice writeup with far more detail and background on this in today’s St. Petersburg Times. However, in what’s becoming a trend at the paper, it appears to have missed the online editors’ purview. Some of the main points:

- The hotspot is envisioned to stretch from Port of Tampa to the Hillsborough River. Lykes Gaslight Square Park, Channel District and University of Tampa are hooked up right now.

- To minimize network congestion, Sago plans to limit the free access time to one hour per user; after a thirty-minute break, the user can then re-login for an additional hour, ad infinitum.

Basically, this setup would be ideal for people on the go who just need to spot-check online information, rather than someone who wants to just lounge around surfing. If this is feasible, it could be an ideal way to co-exist with pay-for w-fi providers like Starbucks.

- Tampa Downtown Partnership will be marketing the hotspot. That’s crucial for getting the word out to the business community.

- Tampa’s unwiring brings to mind St. Pete’s stillborn wi-fi idea for its downtown. St. Pete’s point man, Don Shea, says that a provider has been lined up, and their planning to bring it online in the near future. Coverage would start around BayWalk, then spread to the waterfront and other points downtown.

I’m of the opinion that St. Pete hasn’t been doing jack. The only time Shea mentions anything about it is when the newspaper prompts him. I’ll believe it when I see it, and I’m not expecting to see it anytime soon. Then again, if Tampa’s hotspot takes off and earns accolades, it’ll spur St. Pete to actually do something.

It’ll be nice to see the Tampa plan go live. I’m wondering if it would be able to handle a huge load of users, but that may not be a concern: Like I said, it’ll be geared more toward short-duration Web access users.

- Costa Tsiokos, Thu 12/23/2004 07:09:43 PM
Category: Wi-Fi, Florida Livin' | Permalink |

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  1. ORLANDO: UNWIRELESS, UNBLOGGED?

    When Flablog.net declared Tampa Bay to be Florida’s blogging nexus, I wondered if that claim was somehow verifiable.
    I still haven’t found any hard evidence (not that I’ve been looking). But I have come across another anecdotal tidb…

    Trackback by Population Statistic — 10/02/2021 @ 09:28:48 PM

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