New digital corridor brings free Wi-Fi to Galway city centre

29 Aug 2017

High Street, Galway City. Image: John Chica/Shutterstock

Galway City to receive free Wi-Fi from Spanish Arch to Eyre Square as part of new scheme.

A collaboration between Magnet Networks and the thriving business community in Galway City has led to an exciting step in the city’s digital development.

For more than a year, Magnet Networks has provided free Wi-Fi at Spanish Arch, kicking in just before the Galway Food Festival. With Galway 2020 looming large, the company has decided to support the connectivity initiative across the entire city centre.

Galway 2020 a major accelerator

Regional sales director at Magnet, Philip Clapperton, said that residents and businesses alike had been hoping for citywide free Wi-Fi “but it had never materialised”.

He cited the city’s European Capital of Culture win as the major catalyst for the new scheme to get up and running

“When Galway 2020 was announced last year, there was a great push locally to get behind the initiative, so we decided to see what it would take to expand the Wi-Fi to the city centre as a whole,” he explained.

“Now, with positive engagement from local businesses such as Anthony Ryan’s and Lazlo Jewellers we have installed the second phase of the Wi-Fi service which provides coverage along Shop Street and William Street.”

Local merchants and businesses allowed Magnet Networks to install on-premises access points, providing connectivity across the entire city centre. Future iterations of the project will involve the completion of a digital corridor from Spanish Arch, up Shop Street and onto Eyre Square.

A connected city

Local businesses will finance the project by advertising on the log-in page, with a promotional offer sent to each person after log-in is completed.

ICT manager at Galway City Council, Alfie Jones, said, “Magnet Networks’ Wi-Fi will add to the already vibrant experience that only Galway City can offer.

“The record-breaking Galway International Arts Festival attracted 210,000 visitors to the city in July with free Wi-Fi in the Big Top provided by Magnet for the event. We are delighted with the response from the business community and look forward to watching the service grow to more areas of the city.”

Hopefully the success of this scheme, and the evident demand for similar networks around the country, will see a connected Ireland continue to flourish.

High Street, Galway City. Image: John Chica/Shutterstock

Ellen Tannam was a journalist with Silicon Republic, covering all manner of business and tech subjects