UK Train Company Offering WiFi Trains

GNER, a UK train operator, will be rolling out WiFi access to all 302 carriages of its Mark 4 fleet. This follows a successful trial launched in December.

Named the GNER Mobile Office, the first trains to run the service will be between Kings Cross and destinations in the East Midlands, Yorkshire, the North East and Scotland.

The on-train WiFi network is connected to a satellite to provide internet access. But what happens when you go into a tunnel? The network drops back to a GPRS connection.

The service is free to first class customers, everyone else pays £4.95 (€7.53) per hour.

“We are confident that the new service will encourage more people to take the train instead of driving or flying,” GNER CEO Christopher Garnett said. Cleaning the toilets once in a while might also be a good low-tech way of getting people to take a train too – just a suggestion.

GNER Mobile Office

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Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?