Network Computing is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

San Francisco Sees Economic Vitality in Citywide Wi-Fi

While lawmakers in some parts of the country are fighting to ban free wireless broadband access, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom is looking at it as a potential tool for fixing community problems.

Newsom announced the city's TechConnect initiative Wednesday, appealing to commercial interests, non-profit organizations, community groups and other interested individuals to help the city provide affordable broadband access. The goal is to make Wi-Fi available in all corners of the city, to all residents.

And, he's not stopping there. Newsom is also looking for ways to provide hardware, software and training to those who cannot afford it on their own.

"TechConnect will connect all San Franciscans to the social, educational, informational and economic opportunities they need to succeed in the increasingly competitive local, national and international economies of the 21st Century," Newsom said in a written statement.

The San Francisco mayor has joined dozens of local government leaders now teaming up with non-profit and grassroots organizations to increase public access. Meanwhile, telecommunications companies are looking to federal officials to stop the trend. Both sides claim their way is the most likely to help the United States catch up in an international race for broadband penetration.

  • 1