It looks like local governments are starting to include technology on mass transit… A new wireless internet solution just rolled out in San Jose which has access points next to the track of a light-rail system that the public can connect to as they commute. The article says that CalTrans will not charge extra for the service, but I wonder if that will stick.
The idea of having shared public access to the internet is a wonderful thought, and there are plenty of ways CalTrans could make money off the users even without charging a fee – but will they be that smart? I think they are going to look at it and say “Hey, we could charge a couple bucks a month, and people will pay it!”
Another thought on this is – will the nearby residents or other drivers connect up to the network for free internet access? I’m not against that at all.. but I wonder how it will affect the service. Or, will the access points only be online when a train is approaching and leaving? That could be interesting… Or… do you have to plug in a network cable to the rail car to get access? In any case, I can’t wait to see what happens, and how other areas could roll out this technology…
Wireless train hits rails in California – http://www.msnbc.msn.com/ID/14158034