July 18, 2011

Santa Clara, Calif. transit offering 4G wireless connectivity

Santa Clara Valley (Calif.) Transportation Authority (VTA) will now offer customers an all 4G wireless network. The launch of the high-capacity 4G network on board VTA's light rail fleet of 100 vehicles gives passengers the ability to download from Wi-Fi hotspots at lightning speeds.

According to VTA, it is the first public transit agency in the world to offer customers an all 4G wireless network.

All VTA light rail vehicles are equipped with a mobile router delivering wireless Internet connectivity over the 4G network, supporting significantly higher speeds and lower latency, which is important as demand increases for content-rich, real-time data.

“With the increase of Wi-Fi enabled portable devices, free onboard Wi-Fi is rapidly becoming expected by passengers across the country and one amenity that has been most requested when it comes to making public transit a more appealing option to non-riders here in Silicon Valley,” said Michael T. Burns, VTA’s general manager.

The onboard Wi-Fi system also is capable of delivering advertising, conducting passenger surveys and collecting usage statistics.

To encourage people to be the first ones to experience the free 4G Wi-Fi service, VTA is sponsored a contest July 16 to 17. Riders who boarded any VTA light rail vehicle and connect to VTA’s 4G Wi-Fi system and submited the provided entry form online have the chance to win two San Francisco Giants tickets for the July 19, 2011 game versus the Los Angeles Dodgers and two Caltrain Day Passes to get to AT&T Park.

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