Deployment of free Wi-Fi on all TransLink buses and trains begins this year

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COVID-19 has slowed the rollout of free Wi-Fi to all vehicles in the Metro Vancouver transit system.

TransLink first announced a partnership with Shaw in 2018 to bring WiFi connectivity to all conventional buses and SkyTrain cars, and eventually all community shuttles, West Coast Express and HandyDart cars.

The initial schedule for the program was initially to launch in 2020, with the goal of completing system-wide connectivity on thousands of buses and train cars by 2025.

Naturally, the harsh conditions of last year’s pandemic have delayed the rollout of the program, which will be free for TransLink. The agreement states that Shaw will be responsible for the costs of installing and operating all WiFi infrastructure.

“We are in close communication with Shaw and plan to launch WiFi on select transit vehicles before the end of this year,” a spokesperson for TransLink told Daily Hive Urbanized.

Shaw has already been a TransLink WiFi partner since 2016, when the company installed free WiFi in both SeaBus terminals and on board ferries.

Under the expanded network-wide deal, TransLink could potentially receive revenue from Shaw, but the transit authority has indicated that revenue generation is not the primary focus of this major convenience. for passengers.

In recent years, TransLink has focused much more on improving customer service – ‘creature comfort’ such as real-time digital signs of the next train on SkyTrain platforms and the introduction of double-decker buses. .

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