Transport for London
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London Underground and BT to trial Wi-Fi at Charing Cross Tube station
Customers will be able to log on to the internet from their laptops or mobile phones at Charing Cross Tube station from 1 November. London Underground has teamed up with BT Openzone, the Wi-Fi provider, to launch a six-month trial.
The trial, which will test how the service works and look at customer take-up, will include live Transport for London (TfL) service updates available to all Wi-Fi users including non-BT customers.
The ticket hall area and Northern and Bakerloo line platforms at Charing Cross Tube station will become the latest addition to the 1.6 million BT wireless broadband hotspots in the UK and will allow customers to connect to the web.
Any passengers with a Wi-Fi enabled device such as a smartphone, laptop, netbook or tablet computer will be able to go online or check their emails while they are passing through the Tube station.
The service is free for five million BT broadband customers with unlimited BT FON Wi-Fi minutes and for BT Openzone customers.
O2, Tesco Mobile, Vodafone and Orange and other Wi-Fi-enabled devices with Wi-Fi minutes in their contracts can also use the BT Openzone network.
Other users can buy a BT Openzone voucher online.
Get online underground
Kulveer Ranger, the Mayor of London's Transport Adviser, said: 'An ever growing commuter populous has been clamouring to be able to check their emails and browse the net whilst on the go.
'This trial at Charing Cross will allow them to do just that whilst on the Tube platform.
'This is an important step towards seeing how this could be achieved and is part of the Mayor's ambition to examine ways in which we can use technology to adapt the city's transport system to meet the needs of those using it.'
Richard Parry, Strategy and Commercial Director for London Underground, said: 'Around 68,000 passenger journeys are made a day at Charing Cross Tube station.
'We hope that our customers will find it useful to have access to the internet while they are using the Tube station during this six-month trial.
'Live service updates will allow passengers to check the status of the Tube and other transport services while they are on the move at the station.'
Chris Bruce, CEO, BT Openzone, said: 'Wi-Fi is rapidly becoming the simplest way for people to access the internet when out and about and with the launch of this trial at Charing Cross we are now giving commuters the chance to enjoy the UK's biggest Wi-Fi network.'
This trial is part of TfL's strategy to use innovative and additional channels in order to make information even more accessible to customers.
The trial is being funded through BT with no cost to fare or taxpayers.
Notes to editors:
- London Underground is undertaking a major programme of renewal as part of TfL's Investment Programme. This will inevitably result in some disruption for passengers, but TfL is working hard to provide information and alternative travel options. The work is essential to provide for London's growing transport needs now, and into the future. TfL is urging all Londoners and Tube, London Overground, London Tramlink and Docklands Light Railways passengers to 'check before you travel' at weekends, allowing extra journey time where necessary. Weekend travel news is available on the TfL website
- BT is one of the world's leading providers of communications solutions and services operating in more than 170 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally as well as local, national and international telecommunications services to our customers for use at home, at work and on the move, and broadband, internet products, services and converged fixed/mobile products and services. BT consists principally of four lines of business: BT Global Services, Openreach, BT Retail and BT Wholesale. In the year ended 31 March 2010, BT Group's revenue was £20,911m. British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group.BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York. For more information, visit BT's website
- Wi-Fi is being trialled throughout the entire station - this does not include trains