Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

12.09 28 May 2021


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More than 30 free public wifi hotspots are to be set up across Dublin city.

Virgin Media and Dublin City Council have entered a three-year partnership to provide 500 megabytes per second connections across the capital.

It's part of the Europe-wide, €120 million WiFi-4-EU initiative, aimed at improving connectivity in public spaces.

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Newstalk's technology correspondent Jess Kelly said there'll definitely be people who'll benefit from the free hotspots.

More than 30 free public wifi hotspots to be set up around Dublin

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Speaking on Newstalk Breakfast, she said: "You may be wondering - do we really need it with 'all you can eat data' mobile plans?

"I can give you an example. My data limit was reached on Tuesday... I'm still on one of those old-school plans.

"I needed to check my emails urgently. I stopped off in Sandyford, which already has this public wifi in place - I was able to check my emails.

"It's also trying to give the option for more community-based activity - you could be doing stuff with AR and VR games to try to get out in nature."

She said ideally the National Broadband Plan will see more cities around the country become 'smart cities', not just the capital.

However, she said it's vital people need to be careful when using public wifi.

She explained: "I would never do things like banking, or put in encrypted passwords.

"It's very handy if you need to update your Google Maps, or download a PDF for work. But you do need to be incredibly careful.

"What I'd recommend people do if they're using these public ports... download a VPN, which is a virtual private network. That just puts an extra barrier of protection around your device."

However, she said this particular initiative seems to be designed around smaller, more casual wifi interactions.

Main image: File photo. Picture by: Peter Endig/DPA/PA Images

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