Mickey Mouse's hometown to go wireless

Anaheim, Calif., home to Disneyland, has come to the same conclusion Philadelphia did: EarthLink Inc. should build its municipal wireless network.

EarthLink officials today said that Anaheim had picked the Atlanta-based Internet service provider to deploy a 50-square-mile WiFi network, scheduled to be completed by the end of next year. Upon approval of the contract, EarthLink will begin by building a two-square-mile proof of concept for testing and evaluation.

'This is only the first step toward making Anaheim a truly wireless city,' Anaheim mayor Curt Pringle said in a statement. 'By offering innovations such as wireless high-speed broadband connectivity ' I believe you will see other high-tech businesses use Anaheim as a test bed for their emerging technology as well.'

EarthLink plans to use MetroMesh wireless routers from Tropos Networks Inc. of Sunnyvale, Calif. The routers will go on light posts throughout the city, creating a wireless mesh infrastructure that can intelligently route data along the best available network path.

Earlier this month, Philadelphia finally settled on EarthLink to build out its much-publicized WiFi network. EarthLink has also submitted a proposal to do the same for San Francisco.

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