Rhode Island to Build Statewide Wireless Network

Rhode Island to Build Statewide Wireless Network

The Rhode Island Wireless Innovation Networks (RI-WINs), a pilot partnership between the public and private sectors, is set to begin construction of a wireless digital networking system that will make Rhode Island the first state in the nation with border-to-border broadband wireless coverage. The project’s advisory committee, created in 2004, includes the Business Innovation Factory (BIF), Brown University, Cox Communications, CVS/ Pharmacy, Ocean State Higher Education Economic Development and Administrative Network (OSHEAN) and the Rhode Island Department of Administration.

“Rhode Island’s location, size and accessible public and private sector networks create a real-world laboratory where wireless technology can flexibly connect and coordinate activities across organizations to transform business models, costs and modes of value delivery,” says Donald Stanford, former chief technology officer for GTECH Holdings Corp. and chair of the BIF board of directors. 

Last month, RI-WINs officials announced that IBM Corp. would manage the project. Physical construction of the pilot network will begin in January 2006 and the pilot will run for about 12 months after the network becomes operational.

“IBM is very excited to be a part of the RI-WINs partnership. The RI-WINs project provides a great opportunity to play a leading a role in defining how networks like this should be created across the country,” says Scott Stainken, general manager of IBM’s Global Wireless Business.

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