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Wireless internet takes off at Birmingham Airport

Public access to Wi-Fi web aimed at business passengers

Birmingham Airport joins the Starbucks coffee shops as one of the few public places where people can hook up to a high-speed internet service wirelessly.

The service is available airside in Terminal 2, and has been implemented by adding wireless transmitters to the nine existing internet booths. It allows anyone with a Wi-Fi-equipped notebook or PDA to surf the net without the need to plug in extra cables.

The service is mainly aimed at business customers, who are most likely to own the necessary equipment and require wireless internet access. "Wi-Fi will predominantly appeal to our business travellers, which is why we have installed our first transmitter in this largely business passenger terminal," explains Ray Savage, Birmingham Airport head of market development.

The wireless service is provided by UK Explorer, and to access it users simply have enter their credit card details into its encrypted payment page. There is no need to sign up for any kind of user account.

Pricing for unlimited use starts at £4 for 30 minutes, rising to £39 for a month's worth of use — although the latter will surely be limited to very frequent flyers. Companies can also set up corporate accounts.

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