NYC Plans Free WiFi via Digital Kiosks Carrying Ads

In one of the more ambitious municipal digital access projects ever undertaken, New York City is planning to bring free public WiFi to the masses with a project that will replace thousands of public pay phones with a network of digital kiosks called LinkNYC.
In addition to the free WiFi, the “Links” — as the kiosks are called — will have touchscreen interfaces and carry digital advertising on large displays on the sides of the rectangular, monolith-style installations.
The LinkNYC plan would massively expand WiFi availability across all five boroughs of New York City through up to 10,000 of these Link stations, which would also offer free charging stations for mobile devices and free voice phone calls anywhere within the U.S., as well as more standard pay phone services like access to information and emergency hotlines.
The plan envisions two versions of the kiosk, a broad model with more display surface for commercial areas, and a narrower, more understated model for residential neighborhoods. Installation is scheduled to begin next year.
Advertising plays a key part in the program, which calls for most of the buildout and day-to-day operations to be funded by ad revenues. The city estimates that digital advertising on the kiosks could generate $500 million over the next twelve years, according to The Wall Street Journal. The display surfaces can also carry public service announcements during major events and emergencies.
Via: Media Post