Mount Beachgoers Enjoy Free Wifi

Thursday 19 December 2019

Mount Maunganui beach goers will enjoy free WiFi this summer thanks to a Tauranga City Council initiative that will make our city more connected for tourists and locals alike.

The council has installed three WiFi units at Mount Main Beach and has been providing the service unofficially since a ‘soft launch’ on December 2.

General Manager: Corporate Services Paul Davidson said users could connect their devices to the WiFi service without needing to log in.

“Tourists increasingly expect to be able to connect with WiFi when they visit a city like ours – especially when there are so many exciting events on this summer,” he said.

“This service will provide a better experience for locals and visitors alike, and that’s got to be good for our city’s economy.”

The move comes as 112 cruise ships are scheduled to visit Tauranga this summer, with the Main Beach considered a key attraction for passengers.

Combined, the three WiFi units can serve 300-500 people using the web for light tasks such as posting to social media.

The WiFi covers much of the area between Moturiki (Leisure Island) and just south of the Mount Maunganui Lifeguard Service. It extends onto the beach almost as far as the water, and inland for one or two streets depending on obstacles.

The council received a request through the annual plan process for a public WiFi trial, and the three- to six-month pilot project will strengthen their understanding of visitor numbers and the way people use this tourist hotspot.

The trial will also provide an understanding of the extent to which the WiFi service slows down during peak times. This can occur when lots of people are logged in, or are using it for data-intensive tasks such as streaming video.

The council has set up a web-page with more information about the project, including a map of the coverage area.