ZenFi Networks, an innovative enabler of digital infrastructure solutions in the New York and New Jersey metro region, has celebrated expansion of its mission to bridge the digital divide throughout the New York City metro area.
ZenFi Networks is currently partnered with CityBridge, which operates one of the world’s largest public Wi-Fi networks, LinkNYC. ZenFi Networks is deploying, operating, and expanding free public Wi-Fi, utilizing LinkNYC smart public communications structures across New York City to ensure reliable 5G network connectivity.
As part of its agreement with the City of New York, CityBridge is obligated to develop publicly accessible digital facilities that can create the potential for social good and is well on its way to fulfilling that responsibility in partnership with ZenFi Networks.
In February of this year, ZenFi Networks attended a ribbon cutting event at the Silicon Harlem Gigabit Center to celebrate the first Gigabit Center in New York City. The Gigabit Center is the first of its kind, and is set to provide high-speed Internet, technology innovation and small business development powered by the free LinkNYC public WiFi. This Gigabit Center was a collaboration between the city of New York, Intersection, ZenFi Networks, CityBridge, LinkNYC, Silicon Harlem and the C-Better Foundation. CityBridge and its partner organizations have big plans for the development of similar gigabit centers across New York City, including Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn and Staten Island. These facilities will provide free public Wi-Fi access via the LinkNYC network, along with digital literacy training, free access to laptops and workstations, and other services to further help bridge the digital divide.
“Since entering our original agreement with CityBridge, we have been actively looking to install and provide these services to underserved communities across New York City,” ZenFi Networks Vice President of Business Development, Walter Cannon said. “As a New York resident, born and raised in the Bronx, this mission is personal for me, and we’re excited about the future of 5G connectivity in New York City.”
In addition to the Gigabit Centers, ZenFi Networks also has plans to build out additional infrastructure across New York City in order to support the development of LinkNYC kiosks in areas identified as “fiber deserts.” According to the New York City Internet Master Plan, approximately 40% of New York City households lack the combination of home and mobile broadband internet connectivity. Among that group, 18% of residents, accounting for over 1.5 million people, currently lack both in their neighborhoods. ZenFi Networks has fiber construction plans to support the deployment of LinkNYC in order to address the disparity in these areas and is also working with wireless broadband service providers to utilize their whole platform to extend their networks to building services.