WAAV Completes First Large-Scale Deployment of Commuter Rail WiFi in US

  • Cambridge, MA
  • June 4, 2009

WAAV, Inc today announced it has completed the largest onboard WiFi installation in the US for Boston’s commuter rail agency. Finished on-time and under-budget WAAV® mobile broadband cellular routers are in use daily on 258 rail coaches that travel from Providence, RI nearly to the New Hampshire border – a rail network of over 1,000 miles.

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) chose to use the AirBox® X2 dual connection cellular router to provide public wireless Internet access on the Massachusetts Bay Commuter Rail (MBCR). This is the first full-scale cellular wireless Internet deployment on a U.S. commuter rail system.

On most commuter trains, half of the individual coaches are “wired” and easily identified by their orange labels. Cellular coverage is provided by AT&T Mobility and made available for free to passengers.
Lt. Gov. Tim Murray praised the MBTA team, and the project’s vendors, for “having accomplished something in a relatively short period of time that has not been done anywhere else in the country.”

WAAV routers were also installed to provide WiFi on MBTA commuter ferries and some of its buses. The company teamed with Brookline-based Terminal Exchange installing WAAV AirBox X2 units, which establish two 3G cellular connections simultaneously. Dual connections increase bandwidth by using both cellular links for data transport simplifying Internet access for thousands of rail passengers who connect through a single access page from mobile phones, computers and other handheld devices.

MBTA manager Mike Bare directed the installation and called the project “a tremendous success” saying he has received “nothing but positive feedback” from users. He described WiFi as a service that people want and an amenity that will put more passengers on trains, particularly on routes where travel times reach an hour or more.

About WAAV:

WAAV (pronounced "wave") offers network communication solutions, applications, and services. WAAV designs, manufactures, and markets the patented AirBox line of rugged cellular routers to provide broadband connectivity, turning vehicles into WiFi hotspots or remote environments into reliable Internet connections. WAAV's Control Room service allows centralized monitoring of all devices in the field. WAAV introduced the first broadband mobile cellular router in 2005 and was the first to offer a multiple-connection cellular router for broader bandwidths, increased coverage area, and redundant connectivity. WAAV continues to develop its product line to improve performance, reliability, and functionality for industry-specific solutions. With world-class reliability, performance, and support, WAAV’s product portfolio covers enterprise, government, fleet, video, original equipment manufacturer (OEM), and machine to machine (M2M) markets. Engineering services are available for custom integration and specific industry solutions.