Press release from Johnson County Transit

Johnson County Transit is partnering with Sprint to provide wireless capabilities on the on county commuter transit buses.  The free Wi-Fi service was first available on fifteen of The JO’s busses starting on Aug. 2.

In 2009, JCT conducted a pilot program offering Wi-Fi on selected routes. The response was very positive and the decision was made to deploy equipment and Internet capabilities on a large portion of the fleet.  The wireless system will allow riders to use their notebook computers and other wireless mobile devices on the bus.  This will provide the opportunity for those that ride The JO to check e-mail, surf the Internet, or work while commuting.

Sprint, Kansas City’s hometown wireless provider, will provide the Wi-Fi equipment and network capabilities to Johnson County Transit, bringing the freedom of mobility to The JO’s passengers.  Sprint is offering the Wi-Fi service as another way to give back to the community where so many of its customers and employees live and work.  Sprint is the first national carrier to offer 4G wireless services, the next generation of broadband technology, in 48 markets.

In a unique partnership, the cost to provide the WiFi service will come from advertising revenue, instead of from The JO’s operating budget. SinglePoint Communications, a major distributor of Internet access services to the private and public transportation markets in the United States and Europe, will provide Internet service to The JO’s transit buses. SinglePoint has offered to place virtual advertisements on the opening pages, allowing advertising revenue from these virtual ads to pay for the internet access. All advertisements are subject to Johnson County’s strict advertising policy.

“The JO’s commitment today to expand on-board Internet across their fleet sets a standard for other transit operators to follow,” said Niki Taylo, SinglePoint VP.  “Furthermore, by underwriting the cost of deployment with revenues from in-hotspot advertising, the JO has demonstrated that there are creative ways of approaching operating cost that benefit passengers while minimizing overhead.”

To access Wi-Fi on the bus, a rider will simply open their Internet browser and it should detect the Wi-Fi. Once the rider has accepted the Terms of Use, they may access any site by typing in a web address directly into the Internet browser’s address bar. Riders, who have questions or concerns about how to use Wi-Fi on The JO buses, can click on www.thejo.com/riders/wifi.shtml for more information.

“Time is an important commodity in today’s fast-paced society.  Having Wi-Fi on our buses is a feature that riders can utilize and appreciate,” said Alice M. Amrein, Director of Transportation.  Amrein added that while the Wi-FI service will not be on every JO vehicle initially, most of the longer trips should have Wi-Fi service most of the time.

Additional services for other commuter routes in Johnson County are being explored.  For route information call the regional call center at (816) 221-0660 or go to www.thejo.com.