City first for wi-fi connection

Preston has become the first English city to offer comprehensive wire-free internet coverage in the city centre.

The technology, known as wi-fi, means people with laptops and PDAs will be able to surf the web or pick up emails in "hotspots" without cables.

The scheme - which is a joint project between the council and the University of Central Lancashire (Uclan) - has a £60 annual subscription fee.

Last month, Cardiff became the first city in the UK to offer the service.

Michael Ahern, Director of Uclan's Information Systems Department, said the level of the subscription charge meant the service was "inclusive".

"The low cost of the project helps to bridge the digital divide and means more people can afford to get online, making this a scheme that really is available to everyone, " he said.

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News source: BBC News

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