Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Microsoft signs on to Portland's free WiFi network

You may recall back in July when I talked about the City of Portand approving a proposal from a silicon-valley startup to grant free wireless internet (or "WiFi") access to residents (listen: MP3). Now, Microsoft® has teamed up with MetroFi to provide advertising and content support.

According to the recent announcement, Microsoft’s MSN® service will become the "home page" containing local news, information, and (of course!) advertising. The free service, which will be subsidized by ads on this MSN launch page and a 1 inch banner on the top of all web pages viewed during a user’s online session, is slated to be active by mid-2008.

From my friends in Portland: Thanks Microsoft! Now if only we could get free WiFi in Seattle... (and light rail... and tax-free shopping... and... and...)

Listen to my report here: KXL Live Report: Microsoft Signs on to PDX WiFi (11/15/06) (or anytime at: brianwestbrook.com)

For more on this story:
  • Oregonian coverage: http://www.oregonlive.com/news/oregonian/index.ssf?/base/business/1163562913245220.xml&coll=7
  • The Willamette Week chimes in with a report on filtering: http://www.wweek.com/editorial/3251/8136
  • Microsoft official press release: http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2006/nov06/11-14MetroFiPR.mspx

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