A pint and a few Wi-Fi packets please barman!

A company best-known for connecting machines in bingo halls, motorway service stations and bookies is launching a 3,000-site Wi-Fi network in the UK, the biggest roll out of the wireless LAN technology so far in Europe.

With the help of Ericsson, Intel -- on the verge of debuting its Wi-Fi-ready Centrino chip bundle -- and pub groups such as Six Continents and Scottish and Newcastle, Inspired Broadcast Networks will enable commercial Wi-Fi services to be available at 1,000 locations by the end of June this year, and at 3,000 sites by year's end.

Its model is to set up and manage the infrastructure for hot spots -- which it collectively calls The Cloud -- and then let those hot spots be used by service providers. BT Openzone will be the first such provider, starting in July.

Though most of The Cloud's hot spots will be operated out of pubs, Inspired is developing its relationship with Leisure Link, which manages coin-operated machines in all kinds of premises.

News source: Yahoo News UK

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