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LinkNYC: Free Wi-Fi use at kiosks surpasses 576,000 people

A LinkNYC kiosk, at 3rd Avenue and 15th

A LinkNYC kiosk, at 3rd Avenue and 15th Street in Manhattan, on Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2016. Photo Credit: Linda Rosier

It’s pretty fly for free Wi-Fi.

The administrators of LinkNYC revealed that 576,321 people have signed into the internet service with their devices at the 400 Wi-Fi kiosks that have already replaced the old pay phones in three boroughs. The number of subscribers has surpassed the entire populations of Miami, Atlanta or Oakland.

Jen Hensley, the general manager of LinkNYC, said those 500,000+ users have used the service more than 26 million times since it launched in February, and expects that number to grow as they install 7,500 kiosks in the five boroughs over the next few years.

The modern-day “phone booths” stirred controversy over its free web access on its tablets which were hogged by users at certain locations. Last month, administrators disabled tablet web access and said reports of monopolizing kiosks dropped 82 percent.

They added that tablet use has gone up 12 percent since the change as more users take advantage of the tablet’s other applications, such as maps, 311 and of course, phone calls.

Starting Wednesday, the LinkNYC tablet will also have an app for New Yorkers to register to vote. The app will link directly to the state’s DMV Electronic Voter Registration Application website until the Oct. 14 deadline.

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