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Queensland Government Trial Lets Brisbane Go Wireless

  • 08 September, 2003 17:35

<p>Innovation &amp; Information Economy
The Hon. Paul Lucas MP
5 September 2003</p>
<p>Forget plugging into lines and modems, and carrying around suitcases of information.</p>
<p>Thanks to a State Government initiative, Brisbane's CBD is now counting down the days until it goes 'wireless', with 20 sites that will trial highspeed wireless internet facilities.</p>
<p>I.T. Minister Paul Lucas has announced today that Queensland company Hotspot Global heads a consortium of local wireless technology companies and major national partners who have won the contract for the Queensland Government's Wi-Fi pilot.</p>
<p>Mr Lucas said he was looking forward to announcing the 20 sites at the end of October, which will range from government office buildings to public areas in Brisbane's CBD.</p>
<p>"This technology means that people will be able to use wireless-enabled laptops and mobile devices to access the Internet, check emails, download files and access Queensland Government information services at any of these hotspots," Mr Lucas said.</p>
<p>"Access to the Queensland Government Gateway will be free, while other activities such as checking email and surfing the net will cost around 20 cents per minute.</p>
<p>"This trial is all about putting the technology in people's hands and letting them see the enormous potential for business and personal communications in the Smart State.</p>
<p>"It's also about making smarter use of government assets to achieve better outcomes for Queenslanders and helping the Smart State power ahead in the information age.</p>
<p>"What's great about this initiative is that it's using government assets, such as government buildings, to deliver better services to the community at nominal cost."</p>
<p>Mr Lucas said the sites now being trialled include the Roma Street Railway Station, the Law Courts Complex, the Robina Railway Station and Suncorp Stadium.</p>
<p>"Ultimately, once we determine the 'hotspots' and announce the start of the trial, I'm hoping it will be so successful that we can expand it to many more sites across the state," Mr Lucas said.</p>
<p>"The real potential lies in delivering cheap broadband services in regional areas.</p>
<p>"We want to make sure that smart use of technology doesn't happen only in the southeast corner of the state but rather, right across Queensland."</p>
<p>Mr Lucas said the consortium selected for the trial included local companies Hotspot Global, IntraPower, iTEL and SnapGear.</p>
<p>Michael Whitehouse, of Hotspot Global, says the trial will mean people from any member ISP will be able to roam across government hotspots.</p>
<p>"It's a great step forward for our company and the entire wireless ecosystem, and it's a sign of future directions by governments around the world," Mr Whitehouse said.</p>
<p>Mr Lucas said the consortium also had national strength through partnerships with Optus Mobile, Sirocco and WebCentral.</p>
<p>"I'm delighted that global wireless chip manufacturer Intel is also supporting the trial as part of their wireless Internet marketing program," Mr Lucas said.</p>
<p>"Its involvement shows the level of excitement this trial is generating in the wireless communication industry."</p>
<p>Media contact: Alison Smith 3235 4550 / 0407 166 084.</p>

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