Wi-fi for Port of Amsterdam

Wi-fi for Port of Amsterdam

The Port of Amsterdam said on Thursday it had installed a fast wireless computer network that covers the harbor's 12 square miles in one of the biggest installations of a technology designed for home usage.

The Amsterdam network is based on the so-called Wi-Fi standard, a technology used in homes, coffee shops and hotels to give customers fast access to the Internet. Many computer makers build into their products as a standard feature.

The port authority will use it as an internal network for fast access to the documentation of ships in the harbor, and to provide up-to-date and confidential information on port security, weather and traffic conditions to harbor patrol vessels and terminal operators.

The network cover the whole Port of Amsterdam harbor and extend mobile wireless network access to port authority vessels when it is completed later this month.

Wi-Fi was designed for small areas of approximately 120 square yards. Users cannot usually switch between base stations without losing the connection, which is hundreds of times faster than a mobile phone link.

The Amsterdam port network was built with equipment from closely held Radionet from Finland, which uses a supercharged Wi-Fi version that needed just 19 base stations. Users can roam between the base stations and stay connected.