U.K. wireless operator O2 is continuing to expand what is being called the free wireless network in Europe, a massive Wi-Fi network that, in part, is aimed at satisfying the ‘Net surfing needs of visitors to the 2012 Summer Olympics in London later this year.
O2 is now in the midst on expanding the network to cover Westminster and Kensington & Chelsea after forging a deal with the Westminster City Council and the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea.
O2 announced its national Wi-Fi strategy a year ago this month. Much has been made of the network not requiring any taxpayer money to be built.
The network also should become a point of competitive contention for O2. Though other operators such as BT OpenZone, The Cloud and Spectrum Interactive have their own public Wi-Fi operations and ambitions in the U.K., the plan is for O2 to eventually deploy about 13,000 Wi-Fi hotspots to make up a network that is aiming to be bigger than the others.
- see this Engadget post
O2 announced its Wi-Fi strategy in January 2011
O2 also is pursuing Wi-Fi offload