Friday, January 19, 2007

Local: Wireless Silicon Valley Project Getting Closer to Roll-Out?

Sarah Jane Tribble writes in The Mercury News:

When IBM's Brent Grotz gets asked how soon Silicon Valley's much-anticipated wireless network will be built, the project leader holds up his hands as if to fend off more questions.

He doesn't want to be rushed.

"It's like building a house,'' Grotz said while speaking Friday at a national Wireless Communications Association meeting in San Jose. "You have to get the foundation down right and if you don't get that right then walls will fall down on you.''

Once completed, the network will span 40 cities in four counties and give residents free access to the Internet from their laptop computers or other portable devices. The network is being built to work outside but may work inside some homes close to the wireless access points. Internet access at higher speeds would be available for a fee.

Since Silicon Valley leaders picked IBM and Cisco Systems in September as part of a team that will build the network, few details have been released about how the nuts and bolts of the foundation will be built. Leaders from the 40 participating cities and the technology team, which also includes Azulstar and non-profit SeaKay, have been hashing out a model agreement in closed-door meetings.

More here.


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