Earthlink is still in business

Earthlink sells WiFi business

WLAN provider Earthlink has announced the sale of its WLAN access business. The company now has several options: Earthlink could sell parts of the network to regional operators in the cities where it is already established. The network could also be completely assigned to large WLAN providers such as AT&T or T-Mobile. So far, however, there is no buyer in sight.

The future of the WLAN access business therefore remains questionable for the time being. It would be conceivable that the service will not be used by conventional consumers across the city as planned, but that it will rather supply the police authorities and government institutions in small towns. "Many cities see the benefits of WiFi and are willing to invest in this technology," says independent WiFi consultant Craig Settles.

It is unclear what will happen to the cities in which Earthlink has already established an extensive network - for example in Philadelphia, where 80 percent of the network is already installed. "We're not particularly surprised, but it's certainly a very unfortunate development," said Greg Goldman, executive director of the municipal nonprofit Wireless Philadelphia.

According to Goldmans, Wireless Philadelphia and the city are negotiating with corporations in and out of the community as well as with local universities to find a way to continue funding the network. “In the future, the city should be responsible for financing the project, where it was previously completely independent of taxpayers' money. That's why we're still looking for creative solutions at the moment, ”explains Goldman.