has launched a new Community Wireless Internet Program in Nashville, TN. The store has partnered with local coffee shops to provide wireless access points that the shops can use to allow their customers to go online using an Apple Airport Card, or similar device.
Locations have been given Airport base stations to connect to their existing Internet access. The base stations use the same Wi-Fi technology that’s standard among such devices, so both Mac and PC users can access the network.
“By doing something generous like this for Nashville’s computing community, MacAuthority hopes to help spread the word about wireless networking as well as the very wireless-friendly line of Apple products,” Lucas Leverett, MacAuthority’s art and promotions director, told MacCentral. “Similar efforts have been made by groups of computer users in various large cities, but many have resulted in controversy from Internet Service Providers’ lack of approval of the communal sharing of connections. We feel that by partnering with businesses who already pay for a connection that is intended to be shared, we can create a grass-roots effort to bring this kind of thing to Nashville without the issues had by other groups in other cities.”
Access to the network is free. However, the folks at MacAuthority hope that those taking advantage of the service will spend money at the partner locations and, naturally, remember the Apple specialist for their wireless networking and Mac needs.
“We are going for a community approach to this project,” Leverett said. “We’ve even made up our own ‘warchalk’ to denote the locations at which the network is available. Users can look for the emblem on the front of locations that offer access.”
A map of current locations is available at MacAuthority’s Web site. And any establishment that wants to participate in the Community Wireless Internet Program can