London Overground to offer free Wi-Fi


Commuters using London Overground train stations are set to get 60 minutes of free Wi-Fi each day thanks to a deal between the London Overground Rail Operations Limited (LOROL) and BSkyB subsidiary The Cloud.

The rollout across 56 stations will begin in the summer and is scheduled to be completed before the end of 2012. Users will be asked to carry out a one-time registration process and then be able browse the web and access email.

The range and speed of the network is yet to be announced, but The Cloud is confident that users will be able to "stream media within the vicinity of the station". It also remains to be seen how many people the network will support at any one time.

Those who wish to continue browsing the web after the 60 minute time-limit has expired will be able to do so on a pay-as-you-go basis.

The introduction of the Wi-Fi service has been welcomed by Steve Murphy, managing director of LOROL.

"Access to the internet is no longer limited solely to home or to the workplace, and people's expectation is to be able to work and communicate effectively and seamlessly while they're on the move," he said in a statement.

"We're delighted to support this initiative which will bring reliable, free Wi-Fi to London Overground's customers."

Commuters and networks are also likely to welcome the service. Mobile phone users will be able to save their mobile data allowances by using the Wi-Fi at the station. Operators are also likely to benefit as pressure is taken off networks during peak-periods such as the morning commute.

The major stations expected to have the Wi-Fi network in place by the end of 2012 include:

Willesden Junction and West Hampstead - North London

New Cross Gate, Forest Hill, West Croydon and Norwood Junction - South London

Surrey Quays, Dalston, Wapping and Hackney Central - East London

Kensington Olympia and Shepherd's Bush - West London

Khidr Suleman is the Technical Editor at IT Pro, a role he has fulfilled since March 2012. He is responsible for the reviews section on the site  - so get in touch if you have a product you think might be of interest to the business world. He also covers the hardware and operating systems beats. Prior to joining IT Pro, Khidr worked as a reporter at Incisive Media. He studied law at the University of Reading and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism and Online Writing at PMA Training.