O2 chosen by Cisco for free public Wifi launch

Natalie Bannerman
Published on:

Cisco and O2 along with Cornerstone Telecommunication Infrastructure and the City of London Corporation partner together to offer free, public access Wifii in London

London Square Mile - 160 x 186Cisco has announced that it has selected O2 as its partner to roll out free, public access Wifi in London.

The project, which is in conjunction with Cornerstone Telecommunication Infrastructure and the City of London Corporation, will enable Cisco to deploy outdoor access point technology for internet connectivity to roughly 400,000 people working in the Square Mile.

"Free Wifi connectivity is now a pre-requisite for any city looking to drive innovation and compete on a globe scale," said Peter Karlstromer, SVP, global service provider for Europe, Middle East, Africa and Russia at Cisco.

"Continued investment in infrastructure is essential to maintain the UK's reputation as a digital leader and we needed a partner that would be able to provide cutting-edge technology to help us realise this," added Derek McManus, chief operating officer at O2.

Utilising Cisco’s Aironet 1560 series to provide the necessary throughput capacity for bandwidth hungry devices, this multi-million pound project is one of the largest investments in wireless infrastructure in London and rivals that of other global finance centres, like New York and Singapore.

The initiative will enable users to enjoy high bandwidth services like video-calling and video streaming over free city Wifi, using a one-time only registration process. 

"The deployment with O2, and partnership with CTIL and the City of London, is a perfect example of the role that cities can play in connecting people. We are excited to continue to support the roll out of free Wifi across London and ensure that next generation connectivity is accessible to everyone," continued Karlstromer.

Set to replace the current cloud based service, full operational deployment is set for autumn 2017. 

“We're pleased to be working with Cisco to support this initiative using its robust, speedy and seamless technology to create a Wifi network and enable the capital to help retain its position as a leading global centre," added McManus.