Turning wasted payphone into hotspots in NYC. via phys.org
A 9-foot-tall, narrow structure installed this past week on a Manhattan sidewalk is signaling a plan to turn payphones into what’s billed as the world’s biggest and fastest municipal Wi-Fi network.
The first of at least 7,500 planned hot spots are due to go online early next year, promising superfast and free Wi-Fi service, new street phones with free calling, ports to charge personal phones and a no-cost windfall for the city.
With some cities nationwide making renewed pushes for public Wi-Fi after an earlier wave of enthusiasm faded, New York officials say their project is democratizing data access while modernizing outmoded street phones.
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When finally unveiled, the structure will be a matte black rectangular solid with a footprint of 4 feet by 1 foot. Exposure to sunlight will cause it to emit a loud tone on all radio frequencies, aimed at Jupiter.