City of Oneonta Goes Wireless

By Mike Trim

July 22, 2010 Updated Feb 7, 2006 at 9:58 PM EDT

"As technology moves forward, everybody feels the need to be connected with cell phones, laptops, PDA's," says Jerry Reusch of Pragmeta Networks.

Pragmeta Networks is offering that connection in the city of Oneonta, with plans to eventually make all of Otsego County a wireless internet community.

It starts on Main Street, between Elm and Chestnut.

With a laptop computer and wireless internet card, anyone can access high speed internet.

It's a service that Mayor John Nader believes will help the city economically.

"Encourage people to visit our downtown area. Perhaps spend more time in our restaurants and cafe's. And really, perhaps, down the line, as we expand this, encourage businesses to locate there because of their access to the web," says Oneonta Mayor John Nader.

People visiting downtown agree, wireless is the way to go.

"I think it's spectacular. I think being able to come down here, have a cup of coffee, and bring a computer and get a little fun time, or a little work time in is great," says Anna Meyer of Oneonta.

"Encourages people to sit in the cafe's and surf the net and do there business here, I guess. Keep them downtown," says Adam Niebanck of Franklin.

Pragmeta says its network will almost never go down.

It's communications towers run off wind and solar power, separate from the city's power grid.

And the company hopes to keep expanding from Main Street, so all of Otsego County can enjoy wireless web access.

Pragmeta does not have a time line for its wireless expansion yet.

It charges 5 dollars for the 1st 24 hours of use, or 180 dollars for a full year.

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