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BART Outfitted With Wireless

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the not-simpson dept.

Wireless Networking 208

wyldeone writes "The San Fransico Chronicle reports that the BART subway system has been completely outfitted with cells to allow cellphone usage everywhere on the line. The network has been paid for entirely by Nextel, who leased out the lines to the other carriers." From the article: "Rae said BART and the wireless companies know some riders will try to make calls over the din as BART roars and screeches through tunnels. But most of the business, he said, will be from people using wireless devices to read and send e-mail or browse the Internet. 'You could use your Blackberry to take care of all your e-mail on your way to work,' he said. 'But the trains are really too noisy (underground) to have an intelligent conversation.'"

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Hmm.... (5, Funny)

Senes (928228) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073362)

I thought Lisa would have been the tech buff.

Re:Hmm.... (-1, Offtopic)

Agarax (864558) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073568)

I see slashdot moderators have no sense of culture.

Hey everybody (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073604)

Do the Bartman!

And this is news? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073366)

DC's Metro has cingular service via Verizon. It's one of their selling points.

Re:And this is news? (1)

Reality Master 201 (578873) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073390)

Are you saying that Cingular is providing service using Verizon wireless?

Curious, is all.

Re:And this is news? (2, Interesting)

bljohnson0 (114084) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073412)

I think the AC means "cellular" service, not cingular. The service is provided by Verizon.

And Metro itself puts up anti-cellphone billboards (2, Interesting)

C10H14N2 (640033) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073419)


Like the one: "Yes, we're all VERY interested in what you're having for dinner."

What? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073367)

Can you hear me now?

Not yet it hasn't (4, Informative)

Fletch (6903) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073374)

...the BART subway system has been completely outfitted with cells to allow cellphone usage everywhere on the line.
Currently only 4 underground stations are wired [sfgate.com] . The same is planned for the other 10.

Re:Not yet it hasn't (2, Informative)

kimo123 (856805) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073656)

Finally (1, Troll)

goldseries (932320) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073376)

This is a necessity. It is always a problem with BART. Now the best transportation system in America will also be wireless. All they need now is to add Wi-Fi, which is also sorely needed.

Re:Finally (1)

pin_gween (870994) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073414)

All they need now is to add Wi-Fi, which is also sorely needed.

Give Google a week, maybe a month, and you may have your wish.

Re:Finally (1)

goldseries (932320) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073425)

They haven't won that contract yet and the Wi-Fi Google is planning on supplying will be slower than 56k dial up; practically useless. We need fast or at least not terribly slow Wi-Fi.

Re:Finally (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073478)

They haven't won that contract yet and the Wi-Fi Google is planning on supplying will be slower than 56k dial up;

Source? I've found 300kbps, and no mention anywhere about a slower speed.

http://www.engadget.com/entry/1234000783061372/ [engadget.com]

not all (2, Funny)

Quadraginta (902985) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073463)

All they need now is...

What about espresso bars, falafel stands, and multilingual whores?

Re:Finally (4, Insightful)

sserendipity (696118) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073486)

This is a necessity. It is always a problem with BART. Now the best transportation system in America will also be wireless. All they need now is to add Wi-Fi, which is also sorely needed.


Best transportation system in america? Are you aware the discussion is in regard to BART? Or as it should more reasonably be known, BAT? Or at least Bay Area Moderately Expensive, Underwhelmingly slow, Usually Mildly Smelly Transportion? BAMEUSUMST?

It's only decent when you compare it to the light rail fiasco of the south bay.

Re:Finally (2, Informative)

goldseries (932320) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073544)

http://www.answers.com/topic/bay-area-rapid-transi t [answers.com] In 2004 Bart was named the best transportation system in America. It is now printed on the side of every BART car. BART is pretty damn good, I moved to LA and miss it all the time, just you wait till you move away and have to deal with crappy public transportation systems. Bart goes to many places and covers a wide area, in SF it stops frequently and goes to many major destinations making it easy to use.

Re:Finally (2, Interesting)

Loconut1389 (455297) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073583)

BART is a decent system in terms of acessibility, diversity in locations, and cost, but BART can be a scary place depending on who you are and what you're carrying.

If I'm by myself, not carrying anything gadgety or money and I'm not dressed for the city, it's not so bad (24 year old white male). When I have to carry a laptop or dress up for the city, especially late at night, it can be a little nerve wracking depending on the people in the car. I usually try to get on in the car behind the driver and sit in the rear facing seats at the front if I really have anything of value. The thought crossed my mind in the past of carrying a taser or similar defense weapon, but despite my and other peoples' fears, BART isn't that bad of a place if you're careful, stuff doesn't happen -that- often.

I think the funniest thing that ever happened to me on bart was some pothead on the platform was trying to sell me weed, but he must have been completely baked because he first asked "hey man, wanna buy some pot?", and when I said no, he continued "then wanna buy some weed?", again I said no and he continued "how about some mary jane?".. he sort of faded out and walked off at that point. It was sort of funny in retrospect.

Re:Finally (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073859)

yeah, bart is really scarry. ooh lots people from the other side of the bay!

MOD PARENT UP (1)

DeafByBeheading (881815) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073549)

The SF Bay Area is not built like the New York or Boston metropolitan areas, so we can't have the same sort of system, but BART is mediocre at best. I don't know whom they bribed to win the transportation award [bart.gov] the other year, but that doesn't change anything. In addition to parent's gripes, I'll add inflexible pricing: there is something like a 2% senior discount, children under three weeks of age are free, and everybody else pays full price. Okay, maybe that's exaggerating. But there are no passes available at all for "volume" riders, like practically all other transportation systems have. You can buy a $48 ticket (i.e., good for $48 worth of rides--pricing is station-to-station) for $45 or something like that, but that's about it.

Re:MOD PARENT UP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073566)

Ok, for what it's worth, Senior discount's actually 75% off. Not bad. The rest of my gripes still stand.

Best in America is highly subjective... (4, Insightful)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073552)

Now the best transportation system in America will also be wireless.

Best is really a subjective term. I recently moved from SF to Chicago, after having lived in SF for close to 20 years. First, in those 20 years I'd seen all sorts of changes done to BART, some for the better, some for the worse.

It's nice that BART finally goes to SFO, after such a long battle with San Mateo.

But that's really the only tangible improvement I've seen from them in a LONG time.

On the other hand, I'm now experiencing the "El" in Chicago. They run 24/7. And to a greater land area. To both airports. Directly.

Now, I don't work the evening shift, but I can completely get by without a car here. I couldn't do that in SF. Ever.

Are you a fucking moron? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073613)

There are thousands in SF without cars. It's easy when it's 60F all year and the city is only 49 square miles.
Shitcago, on the other hand, is a large city and when the temperatures hit -20F or 110F you'll wish you had a car with heat/AC

Re:Finally (2, Insightful)

geniusj (140174) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073626)

Best transportation system? I've lived in San Francisco and rode BART every day. I've also lived in DC, and I've also lived in New York.. BART and DC Metro are roughly even (though BART's interior is more comfortable). But realistically, come on.. New York has the best transit system in the US by far.

Coverage is the most important thing for a transit system, that and affordability. Let me know how BART's coverage map compares to this [nyc.ny.us] . And that's just the subway, not the buses, and not the commuter rails..

New York City puts the rest of the country to shame when it comes to public transit. San Francisco's a nice compared to cities like LA, Phoenix, Denver, etc. But there are definitely some eastern cities that have it beat.

BART is to OS X as MTA is to Lunix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073643)

Fuck Lunix

Really that loud? (1)

The Nine (320384) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073377)

These trains are really so loud that you can't have a conversation in them? I'd go nuts riding something that noisy to work everyday. At least you wouldn't have to worry about falling asleep and missing your stop, I guess.

Re:Really that loud? (3, Informative)

goldseries (932320) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073389)

Not true, it is easy to fall asleep on BART. It is not any noisier than a subway. We have cell phone conversations when above ground all the time and are annoyed when the train goes under. Also, will it just be the stations or the underground tubes (transbay, Caldecott, etc.) also?

Re:Really that loud? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073574)

Have you ever been on another subway system? The BART is incredibly loud in the transbay tube and most of the underground in SF.

Incredibly. Loud. My mom had her ear's plugged. I can't have a conversation with the person next to me without shouting. And its rarely on time, and its carpeted, and its pretty freaking expensive. So terrible.

Re:Really that loud? (4, Insightful)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073413)

There's a difference between being able to have a regular conversation in a loud space and being able to have a cellphone conversation in the same space. Particularly, it can be hard for the person on the other side to hear you over the din, even though you can hear them just fine.

Re:Really that loud? (1)

goldseries (932320) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073434)

It has never been a problem for me on Bart before. The only problem is that we lose signal all the time now we won't have to keep calling back after drop outs.

Re:Really that loud? (1)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073575)

it can be hard for the person on the other side to hear you over the din

Actually, if you have a somewhat recent phone, most have background noice cancelling built in. It shouldn't be an issue any longer. I can be in an extremely noisy area, and if I'm not talking on my end, I usually get "Are you still there?"

Phones these days do an amazing job at blocking out extraneous noise.

Re:Really that loud? (2, Insightful)

munpfazy (694689) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073529)

Yup.

I always wear earplugs on BART.

Some sections of track, especially in the tunnel and a few of the underground bits in Oakland are painfully loud. It's really pretty astounding, and far worse than any other subway I've encountered.

Re:Really that loud? (1)

aqua (3874) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073834)

It varies. Some cars are loud. Some sections of track are loud; the tunnels under SF itself tend to be louder than those in the east bay, especially the high-speed sections south of Mission. Tunnels are inherently loud places. BART cars have a sort of trademark squalling sound you hear at speed in tunnels, especially when turning. For the most part it's easy to carry on a conversation with only slightly raised voices, but occasionally it's easiest just to pause for ten seconds until you pass that stretch of track.

Intelligent conversations? (5, Funny)

Jerry Coffin (824726) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073381)

the trains are really too noisy (underground) to have an intelligent conversation.

What percentage of cell phone conversations are intelligent in any case?

--
The universe is a figment of its own imagination.

Great! (-1, Troll)

nxtw (866177) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073387)

Now all the residents of San Francisco can call their friends and family when Al Qaeda attacks [huffingtonpost.com] !

Bart Simpson? (0)

Wingie (554272) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073388)

At first I was like "wait, what? Bart Simpson fitted with wireless? Is this some new commericial tie-in gadget?"

Intelligent conversation? (2, Funny)

Pyromage (19360) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073401)

'But the trains are really too noisy (underground) to have an intelligent conversation.'

Uhh.... what makes him think that most of the people talking on cell phones are having an intelligent conversation?

Re:Intelligent conversation? (1)

pchan- (118053) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073512)

'But the trains are really too noisy (underground) to have an intelligent conversation.'

Uhh.... what makes him think that most of the people talking on cell phones are having an intelligent conversation?


The submitter obviously meant an intelligible [reference.com] conversation. Or that is what he would have meant had he been more intelligent [reference.com] .

Verizon in D.C. Metro (2, Informative)

thesaint05 (850634) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073402)

It's nice that Nextel leases out their lines to other carriers. Verizon is the only carrier to have built towers for the underground portions of the Washington D.C. Metro system, and they don't share at all with anyone.

market share? (1)

Quadraginta (902985) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073477)

Maybe Verizon doesn't need to share, and Nextel does?

That is, maybe Verizon's share of the underground travellers' cell phone business is high enough that they can make back their investment from revenue from same, while Nextel has to lease the access out to make money, because their own subscribers aren't numerous enough underground to make good use of the bandwidth.

In short, I kinda 'spect both companies made the decision on cold-blooded business grounds, and not because either has a soft spot in their hearts for their competitors.

Re:market share? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073515)

It's possible, but it is hard to imagine Nextel having significantly fewer subscribers. I'd be more comfortable with that claim if I could find information on how many subscribers each company had, I thought Nextel had more than Verizon, now, I am pretty certain now they merged with Sprint.

well thank God for Google (1)

Quadraginta (902985) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073718)

If you visit the companies websites, you can easily get subscriber data from the investor reports.

Verizon is the industry leader, with 49.3 million subscribers.

Nextel used to be number five or so, with 16.2 million subscribers, but they just merged this fall with number three Sprint, and the combined company (known as Sprint) now has 45.6 million subscribers.

Re:well thank God for Google (1)

xeno314 (661565) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073792)

Check again. Verizon is not the industry leader, Cingular is...Verizon is currently #2.

Re:well thank God for Google (1)

Quadraginta (902985) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073832)

right you are, thanks!

Re:market share? (3, Informative)

DDLKermit007 (911046) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073555)

Well actually it's because Verizon is CDMA and almost everyone else is GSM. I bet they would have loved to have been able to lease out bandwith to others, but the tech just does not mix.

Re:market share? (1)

Reality Master 201 (578873) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073591)

They can still lease out tower space; Sprint and ATTWS actually have (had?) and agreemen to codevelop towers to reduce capital expenditures.

And, FWIW, VZW is CDMA, Sprint is CDMA (but a variation that doesn't allow for interoperation with VZW), Nextel is iDEN, and Cingular and T-Mobile are GSM.

I bet the reason why VZW doesn't lease out tower space is either greed or the fact that they're a phenomenally stupid organizatoin in a lot of ways (like, for example, they assign public IP addresses to phones that are using the wireless internet. first, what a waste of IP space, second, unless you specifically arrange for it, you're not firewalled at all - anyone can ping your device and thus eat your bandwidth allotment)

Re:market share? (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073609)

and good old AT&T still chugging along with TDMA

Re:market share? (1)

Reality Master 201 (578873) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073742)

They do both, actually, TDMA and GSM (they're cingular now).

And they're doing away with the TDMA.

Re:market share? (1)

karmatic (776420) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073797)

I bet the reason why VZW doesn't lease out tower space is either greed or the fact that they're a phenomenally stupid organizatoin in a lot of ways (like, for example, they assign public IP addresses to phones that are using the wireless internet.

As does Sprint. This is a good thing, as every so often, some people actually need to run servers (think tied devices, or IDENTD, etc. ). Sure, people can eat your bandwidth, but why would they? There's a lot of IP space out there, so why target you?

Re:Verizon in D.C. Metro (1)

Stagemonkey (860427) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073637)

Y'know, it always amazes me when people in the DC area claim this. My Sprint phone works perfectly fine in the metro. It's on roaming, but I don't pay anything extra to roam on my plan anyway, so no big deal. I know people who pay out the nose for Verizon out here because "It works in the metro" and they really don't have to get robbed for cell service.

It won't make a difference. (2, Funny)

AltGrendel (175092) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073410)

But the trains are really too noisy (underground) to have an intelligent conversation.
Most of the conversations probably won't be intelligent, but you know plenty idiots will try anyway.

In other news... (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073411)

Delcan NET is now tracking traffic through the tunnels...

cell phone coverage != "wireless" (4, Interesting)

kaan (88626) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073433)

After rtfa, I've concluded that this submission is grossly mis-titled.

Yeah, it's nice that you'll be able to use a blackberry or mobile phone to make calls, etc., while riding a BART train, but who calls that "wireless"?

The term "wireless" is usually related to 802.11, wifi, or "wireless networking", not the ability to make cell phone calls. But I guess that's incorrect, and we can now state that most of the planet is already "outfitted with wireless".

Re:cell phone coverage != "wireless" (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073497)

> ...we can now state that most of the planet is already "outfitted
> with wireless".

Since "wireless" means "radio" and has for a hundred years, yes, we can.

Re:cell phone coverage != "wireless" (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073507)

Frankly, I don't see the problem. The cell network is wireless despite you never having heard of it called that. I've seen several corporate promotions referring to the cell network as wireless. Yeah, it's annoying when I am more involved with computer networking than cell phones, but that doesn't make it any less true.

Re:cell phone coverage != "wireless" (2, Informative)

missing000 (602285) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073539)

I disagree. Modern cell coverage is wireless coverage, just expensive wireless coverage. My Blackberry data services are about twice as fast as dialup, and that's over GPRS. It's highly latent, but it is for the most part as fast as dual channel ISDN which supplied via 802.11 is generally referred to as wireless. The article makes no mention of the switching tech used, but it's very likely they are rolling out EDGE, which offers very realistic high speed rates (384 kbit/s). Sprint (Nextel's owner) is also rolling 1xEV-DO in major cities, and that's full 2.4 mbit/s.

Re:cell phone coverage != "wireless" (1)

ajwitte (849122) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073573)

Most cellular telephone providers have started calling their product "wireless", eg "Verizon Wireless". I hate this. IMO, "Wireless" shouldn't be used as a noun except in the early-1900s sense (a receiver or transmitter for 'plain' radio). Any other use is confusing. "Wireless" as an adjective can be confusing too, say "cordless phone" or "cellular phone" unless you want to include both.

What's so damn confusing? (1)

commodoresloat (172735) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073615)

"Wireless" = "without wires." Which part of the word don't you understand?

Re:What's so damn confusing? (1)

ajwitte (849122) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073772)

Then what, pray tell, is "Verizon without wires"?

Re:What's so damn confusing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073808)

hm, i think i understand that you're an idiot. your ass is also wireless, as is your desk. let's write an article about that. "introducing new wireless desk, compatible with wireless ass".

wireless can mean a bajillion things, but that's not the point. and nobody said anything about being confused.

if you approach any person who has any idea about technology and say "i've just added wireless service to [some location]", you're telling me that person is supposed to conclude "i can now use my cell phone there"? that's idiotic. the entire planet is wireless already, thanks to wireless radios, wireless heart rate monitors, wireless walkie talkies, wireless cb radios... and following your excellent definition, we also have wireless coffee cups, wireless pens, wireless windshield wiper, wireless ping pong paddles...

Re:cell phone coverage != "wireless" (1)

wyldeone (785673) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073579)

The title field in the submission form is limited to a very small number of characters. I couldn't think of a way to phrase it to make it more clear that this is cell service.

Re:cell phone coverage != "wireless" (1)

ScottCooperDotNet (929575) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073634)

I thought it was referring to radio. Now will this be banned when some terrorist uses a cell phone to blow up a train?

Re:cell phone coverage != "wireless" (1)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073644)

"The term "wireless" is usually related to 802.11, wifi, or "wireless networking", not the ability to make cell phone calls. But I guess that's incorrect, and we can now state that most of the planet is already "outfitted with wireless".

Wireless was used to describe cell phones long before 802.11. If Slashdot had written the article for slashdotters to read, then I probably wouldn't have bothered replying.

Re:cell phone coverage != "wireless" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073646)

Wireless: Having no wires

Hence the term "wireless", therefore:

cell phone coverage = "wireless"

Intelligent or intelligible? (2, Informative)

Radak (126696) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073435)

It's really too bad people have stopped thinking about the words they use and instead choose to parrot phrases they've misheard elsewhere. Oh well. I guess that's why they're working for the subway system.

Re:Intelligent or intelligible? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073673)

It's really too bad people have stopped thinking about the words they use and instead choose to parrot phrases they've misheard elsewhere. Oh well. I guess that's why they're working for the subway system.

You need more important things to worry about.

Intelligent? (0)

doi (584455) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073438)

the trains are really too noisy (underground) to have an intelligent conversation

Or perhaps the passengers are too dumb?

Re:Intelligent? (1)

X-Bahamut (623007) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073622)

Considering the number of people who scream into their phones on every other sort of public transit around, this would surprise very little.

Woohoo! (0)

DuranDuran (252246) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073451)

Woohoo! Simpsons wherever I go!!

Stupid. (1)

Universe Man (73250) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073458)

"But most of the business, he said, will be from people using wireless devices to read and send e-mail or browse the Internet."

Sounds peaceful and relaxing. Also sounds like BS. I think that's something they tell people who are afraid of the subway cars becoming a place where everyone is yelling, "What? WHAT??" into their phones.

I like riding the subway in NYC because more often than not, no one says a damn word.

Spellcheck! (3, Insightful)

saj_s (667330) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073459)

> "The network has been payed for entirely by Nextel"

I'm pretty sure you meant "paid for"

Punctuation check. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073616)

It's back to correcting the correctors for me. Thus, I'm pretty sure you meant to put a period on the end of that statement.

That is, you meant: "I'm pretty sure you meant "paid for"."

Re:Re:rereading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073746)

The period should go inside the quotes. When you were correcting the correction of the corrector, I'm pretty sure you meant to type, "That is, you meant: `I'm pretty sure you meant "paid for."'"

I love these stories (1)

jessecurry (820286) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073468)

I love seeing stories like this, anything that increases the reach of our communications networks frees knowledge and information that much more.
Although I am always aware of the privacy concerns raised by new infrastructures I am somewhat of the mind that if you aren't doing anything wrong or anything that you are ashamed of there is no reason to fear others knowing about it. Perhaps one day the world will be open-minded enough not to pass negative judgment on those things that people do during their private time.

Re:I love these stories (1)

ClearlyPennsylvania (918245) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073638)

While I kind of agree with you, it's also not always that simple. Generally, the only reason to fear someone over hearing your conversations is embarrassment over what you're talking about, but not always. For example, a CEO talking about a potential merger, someone giving credit card info over the phone (yes, you're not supposed to do that, but there isn't always a better way), and many other cases you can think of. Worse yet - what if someone can write an app to specifically scan for things like credit card numbers?

Sound buffering... (2, Insightful)

creimer (824291) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073472)

Wouldn't it be a better technology upgrade to reduce the noise on BART while traveling underground so people can talk to each other? Of course, you would have to ban cell phones since it's so damn annoying as some people don't care if everyone knows about their sex life play-by-play.

Re:Sound buffering... (2, Interesting)

Reverberant (303566) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073496)

Wouldn't it be a better technology upgrade to reduce the noise on BART while traveling underground so people can talk to each other?

Easier said than done. FWIW, BART spends a lot of money of noise & vibration mitigation - in fact, some of the excessive noise in tunnel sections may be caused by the ground-borne vibration mitigation measures (floating slab track) that is used in several locations on the BART system.

too loud? (2, Insightful)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073480)

When I was in Paris [last november] I was making calls in the subway without excessive noise or trouble.

I'm glad they're getting wireless though. So I'm not complaining, just comparing :-)

Tom

NOOO! This must be stopped (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073482)

My last refuge from cell phone users was the subway.

Sh (0, Flamebait)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073493)

They should roll it out with signs showing people telling noisy chatterers to shut up.

Re:Sh (1)

aqua (3874) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073799)

Already do. BART has had ads in the stations and in the cars for at least the past year, encouraging cellphone users to maintain civil volumes.

For the most part the cellphone users on BART (and there are a fair number of them) seem to be pretty decent about it. I ride BART twice a day, and encounter two or three cellphone calls per trip. Perhaps once a week the user is loud enough to be a bother.

BART Outfitted With Wireless (1)

cgenman (325138) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073501)

BART Outfitted With Wireless

Like this? [bartfan.com]

DC Metro had you beat for years... (1)

mekkab (133181) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073545)

Welcome to the 21st century!

We switched cell carriers because of it!

Re:DC Metro had you beat for years... (1)

Phroggy (441) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073739)

We switched cell carriers because of it!

As another poster pointed out, that's one of the differences here - unlike VZW in DC, Nextel will be letting other cell carriers use it too, so you won't have to switch carriers.

Noise problem? (1)

SpeedBump0619 (324581) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073547)

But the trains are really too noisy (underground) to have an intelligent conversation.

Maybe that will make noise cancelling headsets [thetravelinsider.info] more popular

Re:Noise problem? (1)

kimo123 (856805) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073745)

I wonder if the various Noise Reduction Codecs coming out would make Cell Phone calls on BART actually reasonable. Heck the trains are so loud at times, that might be the only way to talk to the person next to you - that is by calling them on their cell. http://www.nctclearspeech.com/noise-cancellation.h tm [nctclearspeech.com]

Good for bombers too? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073550)

They want cellphone coverage to set off their bombs (well the ranks of suicide bombers are always decreasing)..

Zonk, your post kinda sucks (3, Informative)

Reality Master 201 (578873) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073564)

two things:
  1. Actual geeks will find the title misleading. It's not wireless, it's cellular. There's a difference that your audience is going to make; wireless means 802.11, not cellular. I used to work for a company that specialized cellular data applications, and I immediately though wi-fi
  2. Nextel HASN'T leased anything to anyone. From TFA: Nextel serves as the coordinator, planning, paying for and overseeing the work. Other carriers have the right to buy in and to strike agreements to reimburse Nextel and pay annual fees to BART. There's a big difference therebecause: at present, the only carrier is Nextel, and there's no mention that they've done any integration with another carrier yet. (Presumably it'll just be a tower sharing kind of arrangement).

As an aside, I wonder what kind of restrictions were placed in the contract in terms of sharing with other carriers. From what I hear, VZW has the cell towers in the DC metro, and doesn't allow other carriers to use them (maybe selfishness; maybe gross institutional incompetence on VZW's part - it's hard to tell with them). If it's a public place like a subway, the people who build the network should be required to lease out to other people; it's in the public interest that everyone get to play, not just the people with service from the carrier that gets the contract. Of course, if we'd just used a single wireless standard like in Europe, then the point would be moot.

Re:Zonk, your post kinda sucks (1)

Lilkeeney (131454) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073619)

Verizon is not GSM therefore not much would be gained if they shared with Cingular, T-Mobile, etc.

Re:Zonk, your post kinda sucks (1)

wyldeone (785673) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073760)

Nextel HASN'T leased anything to anyone. From TFA: Nextel serves as the coordinator, planning, paying for and overseeing the work. Other carriers have the right to buy in and to strike agreements to reimburse Nextel and pay annual fees to BART. There's a big difference therebecause: at present, the only carrier is Nextel, and there's no mention that they've done any integration with another carrier yet. (Presumably it'll just be a tower sharing kind of arrangement).

Yes they have. You just have to read further down the article:

Five of the Bay Area's six wireless companies have signed up to use the system, Rae said, and the sixth is in negotiations. The arrangement will generate hundreds of thousands of dollars, and eventually millions, for BART.

NYC Subways (1)

vmxeo (173325) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073578)

As a current NYC resident (formerly from the SF bay area)... There was talk a while back of implementing this on the NYC subways. For me, the train systems are probably the only public place I can go to were i won't have to listen to people talking loudly and endlessly on their cell phones. Now I'll get it on both coasts.


bah...

"...have an intelligent conversation" (1)

BigZaphod (12942) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073581)

Having an intelligent conversation is hard enough while NOT on a noisy train. Imagine trying to have a conversation that is both intelligent AND intelligible while on the thing!

Please, No! (1)

frenchs (42465) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073636)

I have a daily commute on BART. I can say, without a doubt, the tunnel between Orinda and Rockridge is my most savored moment of the ride. I seriously hate people yammering on their phone about crap. I swear, I had some girl start getting into some dirty talk on the phone a few weeks back. I really need to remember to charge the iPod so I don't have to hear these people.

Re:Please, No! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073848)

/begin qoute:
  I had some girl start getting into some dirty talk on the phone a few weeks back. /end quote

  I find her ideas intriguing and I wish to subscribe to her newsletter :-)

 

Get a car! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073659)

Public transportation is for niggers.
Are you a nigger?

just me? (1)

pintomp3 (882811) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073678)

i read the heading as BART getting WiFi. i guess the term wireless is starting to become vague.

You guys mean cellular mobile not Wireless, right? (1)

freitasm (444970) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073734)

I guess the OP meant cellular mobile not Wireless, right?

argh (1)

jfruhlinger (470035) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073762)

I used to live in the SF area and commute on BART. I always dreaded the moments when the train would come out of the tunnel because half of the passengers would whip our their cell phones and start desperately dialing. "Hey, it's me ... I'm at West Oakland ... be home in 20 miniutes ... OK, bye!" Then, 10 MINUTES LATER, we'd come out of the tunnel again and they'd do the SAME DAMN THING. "Hey, it's me ... I'm at Macarthur ... be home in 10 minutes ... OK, bye!" I hated them all so much. So glad not to have to be there when they can do the inane blow-by-blow of their commute IN the tunnels too.

jf

Noise or not, they'll use it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14073785)

Hong Kong's subway system and virtually all tunnels have been wired for cell phones for quite a while now. To be honest, it's really nice when you need to meet up with someone and you have to switch directions in route. Being connected while you're moving makes life that much easier.

Here's more info on the coverage on the MTR
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MTR#Telecommunication s_network_coverage [wikipedia.org]

Over here in Chicago... (1)

lpangelrob (714473) | more than 8 years ago | (#14073789)

...the CTA [transitchicago.com] is thinking about doing it. Frankly, I hope they don't, but they will if only because they can earn money by making the cell carriers pay to provide cell service underground.

Only about 20% of Chicago's transit system is underground, so it's not a big deal. I just happen to enjoy the sounds of the rails and nothing else.

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