VC looking to equip NY livery cars with ad-supported WiFi

The Wall Street Journal reported that venture capitalist Alex Mashinsky wants to equip 1,000 livery cars in New York City with WiFi by the early fall. The purpose will be to provide ad-supported WiFi access to passengers and people within 400 feet; Mashinsky's long-term vision is to equip many more vehicles.

"Our plan is to basically blanket the city with tens of thousands of vehicles," Mashinsky told The Journal. With that in mind, users will be able to access signals from various vehicles. And livery cars often spend half of their time sitting idle, giving them the opportunity to offer free WiFi in the surrounding area, Mashinsky said.

The cars sporting free WiFi will also include outlets for charging laptops, he said, and will offer mobile-phone chargers with 10 different plugs.

The free WiFi offering will begin in cars dispatched and owned by LimoRes Car & Limo Service, UTOG Corporate Car Service and Velocity Limo. GroundLink, a company that manages reservations for livery companies, will provide the service. Mashinsky founded both LimoRes Car & Limo Service and GroundLink.

GroundLink has been testing the systems in 25 cars.

For more:
- see this WSJ article

Related articles:
Chrysler turns cars into WiFi hotspots
Autonet Mobile strikes deal with Advanced Auto Parts for in-car WiFi
Novatel, AutoNet pushing EV-DO Rev. A in vehicles

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