Wireless networks for UK colleges

UK universities are to be targeted by Cisco, T-Mobile, and Intel with a new mobile data service that combines 802.11 wireless Lan...

UK universities are to be targeted by Cisco, T-Mobile, and Intel with a new mobile data service that combines 802.11 wireless Lan networks, 3G and GPRS mobile networks to provide widespread access for students.

At 3GSM the three suppliers announced a live trial for the service at Frankfurt University, and said 100 universities would be targeted around Europe from this summer.

The integration of the three technologies is being promoted as an extension to universities' existing fixed broadband connectivity, enabling students to get internet access anywhere on campus and surrounding areas. The laptops being promoted for the scheme are IBM Thinkpads equipped with Intel's Centrino wireless technology, which will be discounted for students.

The laptops will also be equipped with data cards that allow students to access T-Mobile's GPRS and 3G networks when the university's wireless Lan is not in range - typically 100m from access points. Students will be able to buy preferential access vouchers to roam on the GPRS and 3G networks.

A T-Mobile spokeswoman said the identities of the first UK universities to use the scheme would be revealed "in the next couple of months". The T-Mobile 3G network for data card access in the UK goes live in a few week's time.

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