NYC’s free Wi-fi will mostly be good for Manhattan

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Maybe you can just set up a tent outside of one.

Hey, were you briefly excited about the city’s LinkNYC plan to turn our payphones into free Wi-fi hotspots, before stopping to think that this couldn’t possibly turn out to be as good as you hoped? Congratulations if you were cynical about this whole mess, because it turns out that poor neighborhoods are gonna start with slower Wi-fi speeds, and a look at a map shows that while huge swathes of Midtown and Times Square will be covered by this, outside of Manhattan will see a lot less free internet.

The news that poor neighborhoods would see slower Wi-fi to start comes from the Daily News, who revealed that since fast internet will be dependent on advertising, and advertisers aren’t fighting each other to get in to poor neighborhoods, poor neighborhoods in the Bronx and Brooklyn will have slower Wi-fi kiosks than the ad-heavy ones in wealthier neighborhoods. Which will make no one happy except for AdBusters, we imagine.

There’s also the matter of payphone placement in the city, which as IQuantNY showed in their attempt to make the city’s first public Wi-fi map, Midtown and Times Square is covered in payphones, and therefore, Wi-fi. Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island, not so much. So, maybe don’t go making plans to call Optimum to tell them to get fucked just yet, since it looks like the city’s super-fast Wi-fi will mostly benefit Fran from Topeka when she uploads her selfie with a Times Square Batman to Facebook.

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