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NYC has officially started replacing payphones with super-fast, free Wi-Fi

NYC has officially started replacing payphones with super-fast, free Wi-Fi
PHOTO COURTESY OF SHUTTERSTOCK

The next time you're in New York City, you'll notice a one-time iconic fixture found on virtually every city street is disappearing. This isn't a relic you'll be sorry to see go, though.

The once ubiquitous payphone that dotted New York City's streets, and streets in towns and cities around the world, are being replaced. In fact, if you're a frequent traveler, or a New York resident, you'll be able to find Wi-Fi hotspots where payphones used to be.

LinkNYC is replacing those old coin-operated phones with super high-speed, gigabyte Wi-Fi hotspots call CityBridge. In fact, just this week it installed its first one. Eventually, there will be 7,500 LinkNYC Wi-Fi hotspots around the city.

You'll be able to connect to the Internet for free from your Internet-connected smartphone, tablet, computer, or smartwatch. You don't have to stand at the Wi-Fi hotspots, either. You can access the free Wi-Fi from 150 feet away.

But, unlike old payphones, you'll want to get up close to LinkNYC's Wi-Fi hotspots. They'll have charging stations, which are lifesavers for travelers. And, in time, they'll have touch-screen tablets, so you can search online for places to eat, get theater reviews and make free phone calls.

Next page: New York's ambitious broadband plans; the catch
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