Wi-Fi

Google Sidewalk to put Wi-Fi hubs in bus stops, phone booths

Google Sidewalk to put Wi-Fi hubs in bus stops, phone booths

Just two weeks ago, Google launched a new subsidiary simply called Sidewalk that will put technology at the service of city building. Now, Sidewalk has announced its first acquisition and also its first project, an ambitious one at that. Called Intersection, the project aims to put Wi-Fi hubs in various public spots and infrastructure, where the intersection of people take place, hence the name. In practice, this means putting up kiosks or reusing bus stops and pay phone booths to provide not just high-speed but also free gigabit Internet to the public.

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Honeywell, Inmarsat successfully test faster in-flight Wi-Fi

Honeywell, Inmarsat successfully test faster in-flight Wi-Fi

The need for better, faster Internet connection is growing, and not just on land. That need extends even when miles above. Whether it be for serious work or well-needed relaxation, plane passengers as well as crews have started to demand for better quality Wi-Fi service while flying over land or sea. Aiming to corner that market before it actually blossoms into a full-blown business, Honeywell Aerospace and Inmarsat have joined forces, a partnership that has just born fruit, reaching that first but critical milestone that paves the way for the rest.

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iOS 9 Continuity to support T-Mobile Wi-Fi calls

iOS 9 Continuity to support T-Mobile Wi-Fi calls

Almost exactly last year, Apple revealed the Continuity feature of the then upcoming OS X Yosemite, a feature that, among other things, allowed Mac users to make and take calls on their Macs as long as their iPhone or iPad is within range. Useful as that may be, there was one subset of users that were left out in the cold. Those on T-Mobile that used Wi-Fi calling couldn't get their hands on Continuity. That is, until later this year when iOS 9 rolls out with that particular feature along for the ride.

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Researchers harness the power of Wi-Fi to charge devices

Researchers harness the power of Wi-Fi to charge devices

A team of researchers from the University of Washington (UW) are working on perfecting a method of charging electronic devices using ambient Wi-Fi signals. They technology, PoWiFi (power over Wi-Fi) makes a small change to routers, so they send out a constant signal that can be harnessed and converted into DC power by a "harvester". The idea isn't new, embodied by Energous's WattUp, but the UW scientists' PoWiFi works with pre-existing hardware, so there is no need to buy a separate device. Their modified routers are able to send data and power over the same signal.

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WiFiMapper app relies on crowdsourcing to find free WiFi

WiFiMapper app relies on crowdsourcing to find free WiFi

UK-based OpenSignal has made a record for themselves of gathering useful mobile network coverage data via crowdsourcing. Then they went on to use the same technique for gathering weather information. Now the company has released a new app that crowdsources the next most useful information: free public WiFi hotspots. WiFiMapper, now available for iOS, not only relies on users submitting information on hotspots, but uses OpenSignal's existing data from Foursquare to identify the type of location.

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LG G Watch, G Watch R, ASUS ZenWatch: no Wi-Fi for you

LG G Watch, G Watch R, ASUS ZenWatch: no Wi-Fi for you

Excited over the prospect of getting your Android Wear smartwatch connected even without a smartphone within range? Better start hoping your wearable computer is one of the supported models. Although the upcoming Android Wear update will include the ability for smartwatches to connect via Wi-Fi, it still boils down to whether the device has the hardware capable of doing that. Sadly, despite appearances and spec sheets, not all of them are created equal, and the ones from LG and ASUS will apparently be left out of the Wi-Fi party.

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Freewheel’s WiFi-only smartphone plan goes nationwide

Freewheel’s WiFi-only smartphone plan goes nationwide

WiFi calling isn’t new, but services that offer it as your only means of communication are quickly on the rise. Freewheel, a WiFi-only service we told you about previously, is now going nationwide, and will turn your phone into a WiFi calling monster. Rather than choose to make a WiFi call, it’s your only option, and might just be cheaper than your existing plan. For as little as $9.95/month, you can snag a plan, which is available on the Moto G, sold via Freewheel.

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Google’s Wireless Service: sooner than later

Google’s Wireless Service: sooner than later

While Google hasn't said anything about a supposed WiFi and Cellular service as of yet, rumors surrounding such a move have been popping up for years. Today we've seen word of Google dealing with both Sprint and T-Mobile USA to create a wireless hot-spot system that'd handle Google's calls, data, and text messaging. This rumor pops up right alongside the real-deal official Cablevision WiFi-only smartphone system Freewheel, a system that'd be very similar to what's rumored for Google in the very near future.

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Cablevision’s WiFi calling service: another reason you don’t need an iPhone

Cablevision’s WiFi calling service: another reason you don’t need an iPhone

This week the folks at Cablevision released a WiFi calling service called Freewheel without the iPhone and without the Samsung Galaxy S5. What does this say to the two biggest names in smartphone manufacturing inside the United States? What does it say to those consumers that seek out Samsung or Apple because they've seen their friends using said brands on phones? It says - clearly - that you don't need a top-end phone to go about your normal, everyday smartphone business. And you don't need a Galaxy phone or an iPhone to launch a nation's-first service like all-WiFi calling.

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Cablevision’s Freewheel is a WiFi-only phone service

Cablevision’s Freewheel is a WiFi-only phone service

While some cable TV providers seem themselves competing with video streaming services, Cablevision will be entering a different arena altogether. The cable operator will be launching a new service next month called Freewheel and it has very little to do with TV. The service, instead, offers mobile phone connectivity, but not just any kind. It will be powered and substantially limited to WiFi connectivity only, taking advantage of the million-strong WiFi hot spot network it has been establishing on its home turf.

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