The New Normal: Government-Funded Passenger Wi-Fi Benefiting Millions

Millions of people are already making regular use of free Wi-Fi on buses and trams introduced as part of the UK Government’s Superconnected Cities initiative.

Free Wi-Fi services, provided by Icomera, are now available on hundreds of buses, trams, and trains in Edinburgh, Cardiff, Newport, Leeds, Bradford, Oxford, Manchester, Salford, and York, and have attracted over 3 million regular users. Edinburgh alone has seen over 2.5 million unique users connect in less than a year since the scheme was launched. Meanwhile research in Wales has revealed that users are highly engaged with the passenger Wi-Fi, spending an average time of 23 minutes online each time they log in.

Free Wi-Fi is now available on:

  • 24 Trains and a similar number of buses in Leeds and Bradford (with more than 600,000 unique users now using the service)
  • 713 buses and 27 trams in Edinburgh (2.6 million unique users)
  • 112 buses in Newport (more than 25,000 unique users)
  • 224 buses in Cardiff (almost 90,000 unique users)
  • 116 buses and trams in Greater Manchester (more than 265,000 users per month)
  • 80 buses in York (almost 20,000 unique users)
  • Almost 300 buses in Oxford (more than 100,000 users)

Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey said “installing free Wi-Fi on public transport is one of the ways we’re boosting connectivity across our cities and making sure the UK is properly equipped to meet the increasing demands of the digital age.”

This exciting service gives passengers the ability to check the latest news headlines, social media updates, weather reports, send emails, and more, all while using free Wi-Fi installed on the vehicle. This allows passengers to have uninterrupted Internet connectivity and make the most of their commuting time without having to rely on mobile data costs.

Edinburgh economy convener Cllr Frank Ross, said: “Free Wi-Fi on buses and trams has proved extremely popular amongst passengers, allowing them to make better use of their transport time and to keep connected on the go. This is central to our plans to improve access to information and the range of services available online, and is thanks to the Connected Capital Programme.”

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