Saturday, September 19, 2009

A Word About Wireless Access In Public Venues

I'm be going into a local hospital today to provide some platelets.  It is something I do when a close friend of mine got sick a year ago and it doesn't cost me anything.  Well, just wish there wasn't a needle involved.

But the facility is in a trailer.  The main campus, supposedly, has Internet access but they've not gotten the wireless kind yet:  Wi-Fi.  So, while I've got 3G access via my phone, there isn't anything I can do with my iPod Touch.

There wasn't the first time where I've stayed overnight in a hospital.  And contrary what my family and friends think, I am not accident prone nor am I on a first name basis with the local ER staff.  Who do they think I am?  Tim Taylor?  (I don't have a tool show on cable.)

In the past, I've had to rig the phone services there for dial-up and that doesn't work everywhere.  However, some of the newer facilities have ethernet connection.  If a long hospital stay in required, I think something like Apple's Airport Express is a good option for providing local Wi-Fi access.

Hey, don't misunderstand, I don't want any of my fellow mobile warriors to be in hospitals for any reason but things happen, you know?  But mobile tech has made it easier to stay connected.  Eventually, majority of mobile devices will be tethered wireless to the almighty 3G or 4G flavors and this might not be an issue.  But we're still years away from that.

As for other places, here's a short progress report on Wi-Fi access.  I was at Borders last night putting some finishing touches on some writing and I noticed Borders lost its T-Mobile access.  I forgot to ask what happened but word is Borders will be offering free Wi-Fi connectivity pretty soon.  Possibly in October.  This is a defensive move, if true, since Barnes and Noble is offering free Wi-Fi to its customers.

Like a tug of war, some places don't like wireless squatters.  I can understand if I were a business owner but traffic is traffic right?  I'll be watching this closely as I hope to have my own tea and coffee shop some day.

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