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Time Warner Cable Introduces Wi-Fi Service in Charlotte, N.C.

Just in time for the forthcoming Democratic National Convention, Time Warner Cable has launched TWC Wi-Fi in uptown Charlotte and inside the convention venue — the Time Warner Cable Arena.  Republican House Speaker Thom Tillis, who has collected tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from large telecom companies, including Time Warner Cable, was on hand to help celebrate.

More than 90 hot spots around the city are being fired up, and during the convention (Aug. 27-Sept. 7) anyone will be able to connect for free.

Before and after the Democrats arrive in town, the network is available free only to paying Time Warner Cable customers with standard (10Mbps) Internet service or faster or customers with Business Class service. The cable company claims that covers the “vast majority” of its broadband customers.

Tillis

Most of the hotspots are in and around Center City, South End, Myers Park, Dilworth and Midtown.

Non-customers can purchase access at prices starting at $2.95 per hour.

Customers can connect using their Time Warner Cable e-mail address and password.

Based on comments from local residents, many are convinced the government shelled out the money for the service, or customers ultimately will with the next round of rate increases. In fact, this is Time Warner Cable’s attempt to boost subscriber loyalty by offering broadband while on the go.

No government money is financing this particular project, although several local and state officials were on hand to help cut the ribbon on the service, including the Republican Speaker of the House Thom Tillis, who earlier voted to block community-owned broadband in North Carolina. Tillis has deposited $37,000 in campaign contributions during the 2010-2011 cycle from large telecom companies including Time Warner Cable, despite running unopposed.

 

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