Interesting news from the Big Apple, with CBS working with the MTA on a 20-city-block hotzone: The free, ad-supported Wi-Fi network includes a variety of news content. It covers Times Square to Central Park South between 6th and 8th avenues. The Wi-Fi nodes are placed on CBS Outdoor billboards and on Metropolitan Transit Authority "urban panels," which I assume are some kind of advertising vehicle, located above subway station entrances. CBS will also distribute routers to extend the network to provide better indoor coverage, which is unique in my experience for hotzone networks.
The press release is full of bluster and hype, with a CBS Mobile exec calling this "what may be the most advanced wireless and pre-WiMax outdoor offering of it's [sic] kind in the U.S." Now, I don't know that this is the most advanced offering, and it's certainly not pre-WiMax. But it's definitely an interesting project, and one that could benefit commuters and businesspeople in a dense part of the city where people are likely to have handheld Wi-Fi devices.
The release also talks about hyperlocal content, but then lists "local and national news, sports highlights," and other items that have nothing to do with the 20-block area in question. There is a feature to find nearby commerce: restaurants, shops, and entertainment.