Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Communter Rail WiFi

Yes, I had heard it was coming and was disappointed to see that the Worcester/Framingham Line was getting it first but lucked out yesterday and today by catching a train with one of the pilot cars on the Franklin Line.

Connection was easy.

Connection speed is okay (better today than yesterday).

I wouldn't count on downloading anything of significant size.

The T should also reconsider the accessiblity of their own website. They have posted maps perporting to show the WiFi coverage for each line. I tried opening one yesterday and one stop later gave up. I'll go back some time to see (on a real good connection) just how large the file is. I don't dare waste any more time on this connection.

I was in the main car on the train yesterday and had an "Excellent" connection (Microsoft terms). I was one car in front of the pilot car today and had a "Very Good" connection.

The connection both times was reported to be 11Mbps. The connection was similar to a real good dial up and okay for text emails. Anything with heavy graphics (are you listening T!) takes time, more so than on a regular cable connection.

For a free service, occaisional access to email will be helpful and beneficial. I won't plan on getting any real work done at this connection strength.

Oh, and to confirm, this was composed and posted on the train. Wow!

Note: for some reason the spell check is failing on this connection. I'll come back with my normal connection and fix any I miss now.


  1. I'm jealous! I take the Fitchberg Line and we are still waiting for Wifi as well as waiting for our trains to come somewhat closer to the advertised times!

    But hey, as long as the train isn't more than 30 minutes late, it's on time!

    Wonder what the standard is for installing wifi "on time"...

  2. Don't be too jealous, it happened those two times but the remainder of the week. Such is the luck of the draw.

    As for ontime performance, your line did better than the Franklin line as I recall.

    As for the standard for installing WiFi, you probably already have it along the line. You just need the right car on the train to access it. Since the T has yet to publish a schedule, it is anyone's guess. It also allows them to deliver on their time.

    We know from their on-time performance record not to hold our breath for that one! :-)