Richard Bendis is prsident & CEO of Innovation Philaselphia.
Wireless Philadelphia is the local effort to be one of the first totally connected wireless cities in the US. The rollout effort will start this month. Interestingly enough, one of the objectives in the vision statement is to reduce the cost of city government. There will be 2,500 WiFil access points on light poles connected to WiMax installations on rooftops.
The City is viewing this as a way of encouraging and enabling the growth of small and mid-sized businesses throughout the city, as well as enabling learning for students across the city.
Wireless Philadelphia is a separate 501(c)3 nonprofit. It issued an RFP for the network in April. There were two finalists, HP and Earthlink, and decision will be made this month. The entire city network is expected to be available in Summer/Fall 2006. Is this cool, or what?