Return of the Phone Booth

Superman is going to have a hard time changing in the modern day phone booth considering that they aren’t actually enclosed cubes anymore. Nope I’m not joking, phone booths really are making a comeback, and this is how…

New York City officials announced plans for free, city-wide Wi-Fi, including designs for Wi-Fi-enabled phone booths. The recent development will need final approval, but if all goes well New Yorkers will be have access to Wi-Fi and phone system towards the end of 2015.
City planners are calling the next generation phone booths LinkNYC. They will feature Wi-Fi speeds up to 1 Gig while offering free calls to any of the 50 states. Don’t worry about buddying up to others using the kiosk – the Wi-Fi will feature a 150 foot range which should give you plenty of breathing space.
The devices will rely on advertisements for funding and feature bright ads on the sides and face of the unit. It is estimated that ad generation could pull in up to $20 million dollars annually, with no cost to the taxpayer.
LinkNYC were designed by a newly-formed business conglomerate, City Bridge, with an estimate of 10,000 individual units planned for installation. This marks a very proud moment for New York where free Wi-Fi has been a plan two years in the making. Initial plans began to take shape in 2012 with numerous stalls and pauses along the way.
City Bridge member, Scott Goldsmith, said that “this is a revolutionary moment for the city and for advertising companies”.
The network’s actual speed and capacity through a Wi-Fi connection has been heavily scrutinized but City Bridge insists that the hardware and infrastructure can support more than the average household Wi-Fi network. The specifics remain to be seen but we will give city planners two thumbs up for the sake of progress.
Privacy concerns have also been raised: Goldsmith claims that LinkNYC will encrypt user data to provide “the most robust privacy policy of any public Wi-Fi”. The network will be set up so users only need to log in once and should be able to move freely from kiosk to kiosk while maintaining connection.
This momentous achievement leads one to wonder: whatever will New Yorkers do with all that free Wi-Fi? Don’t worry New York, we’ve got your back. Here are the top ten things you can do from a LinkNYC kiosk:

  1. Buy tickets to Wicked.
  2. Pull up a map for a tour of the haunted histories of 13 famous New York City places.
  3. Watch a YouTube video on how to sound like a real New Yorker.
  4. Order a pizza and have it delivered to your LinkNYC hub.
  5. Hitch a ride with Uber.
  6. Download this app to help you explore the Museum of Modern Art.
  7. Read The New Yorker.
  8. Watch every episode of Sex in the City on Netflix.
  9. Learn all the lyrics to “New York, New York”.
  10. Design your newly-registered .nyc domain from

Don’t worry Superman, New York officials announced that the hundreds of existing phone booths will stay intact as a part of New York’s history. The new plans for construction should not prevent you from saving humanity yet again, but you really should find a new place to change.
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