In addition to supporting an above the ground city-wide WiFi network for the 2012 Olympics, the Mayor of London (Boris Johnson) has also asked for proposals for a WiFi network in the Tube, the city’s metro system. In a statement to a public debate, he said any financially viable option would be considered.
The mayor said such a network would be “to the benefit of the economy,” though also noted that if voice calls were to be enabled then so-called “quiet carriages” would be made available, discouraging the use of phones. He added: “I think people do want the facility of looking at their Blackberry, or whatever it happens to be.”
Passengers of the London Underground can already pick up mobile signals in many places, but about half the underground network is in deep level tubes, where a dedicated indoor radio network is required.
Previous Mayor, Ken Livingstone, had plans for a test network on a short length of the railway, but that proved as a failure since none of the bidders were able to provide a commercially viable solution.