San Jose Mercury News reports Mountain View City Council last night approved a new five-year deal with Google that will see the company revamp its aging free WiFi network in the city:
Council members also accepted a $500,000 grant from the Mountain View-based company to install and maintain Wi-Fi networks at the community center, library, teen center, senior center and Rengstorff Park.
The agreement paves the way for Google to dismantle the existing wireless system that covers 80 to 90 percent of the city. Among the first of its kind in the U.S. when it was launched eight years ago, the system is now plagued with reliability and performance issues.
The news follows a report earlier this month that claimed Google was planning to roll out more WiFi hotspots around the US and Canada as part of the ongoing “Google WiFi” effort that it’s now revamping in Mountain View after launching back in 2006. That report also claimed Google was testing a new app for iOS and Android that would let users automatically join WiFi networks and possibly launch alongside Google’s roll out of WIFi at 7000 Starbucks locations by the end of the year.