Riverside is the latest city to join almost 300 others in jumping onto the "Municipal" WiFi system. I put that in quotes because it's nothing more than adding another monopoly to the existing landscape, albeit one that will offer a freebie service with ads. It doesn't address concerns about telephone monopolies, and it doesn't address concerns about cable monopolies. It won't even offer top-rate speeds, staying at well under what most cable companies will offer. Though WiFi is ubiquitous in laptops right now, the 802.11 spec is starting to reach the end of its lifespan as the industry tries to push WiMax harder and harder. Boston, Atlanta, and even a small city in Israel are also jumping onto the WiFi bandwagon. Ten years from now, they will have wished that they had invested in fiber projects like UTOPIA.
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