Reporting Mike Dunn
Filed underGovernment, Heard On, Local, News, Philadelphia, Politics, Syndicated Local, Tech, Watch + Listen
By Mike Dunn
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Mayor Nutter has launched a program that helps residents who lack Internet service find sites that offer free access.
“Connect Philly” is a service that lets users find locations of free WiFi spots or other computer-related services by sending a cell phone text message. It is the brainchild of Brian James Kirk, co-founder of a local firm called “Technically Philly.”
“A user could say ‘I’m at 41st and Lancaster,’ send that text message out, and find where a public center is that provides computer access.”
The service currently has 200 such locations, including retail locations like coffee shops that have free WiFi, and public libraries that offer free desktop computer access.
Kirk says it’s vital to the many Philadelphians who can’t afford internet at home.
“The question is often affordability. But in a lot of ways it’s about do they know what the Internet can provide to them? So it’s about education.”
To find a WiFi spot near you, text your address to 215-240-7296.