New York City's first free public Wi-Fi hub was installed this morning, but as is the case with any internet installation, anywhere in the United States, there is a catch: it doesn't work yet.
According to a rep from the Department of Information Technology & Telecommunications, the shiny new LinkNYC kiosk on 3rd Avenue near 15th Street in Manhattan is still in its testing phase. The Wi-Fi's Hotspot 2.0 signal strength—which will have a range of 150 feet and is supposed to be as fast as Google Fiber—is being assessed.
The city has pledged to build 7,500 of the hubs in place of old pay phone booths over the next 8 years, with 4,500 of them coming in the next four years, 499 of which will be installed over the next 6 months. Expect to see a few more pop up on 3rd Avenue in the next few weeks.
Advertising on the screens is expected to generate $500 million in revenue over a 12 year period. In addition to gigabit speeds, the kiosks will have free USB chargers, a touchscreen with internet access, and will enable "Free phone calls to anywhere in the U.S.," according to DoITT's website. Take a gander at them now, before they're smeared in hair and feces.