The state-of-the-art replacements for London payphones finally launched this week, with Camden the first borough to turn on the shiny new machines.
The new InLinkUK kiosks, which allow hundreds of users to access Wi-Fi, will also provide free landline calls and marks the next step in the evolution of payphones in the capital. Created via a partnership with BT, Primesight and Intersection, they will provide free Wi-Fi, calls and phone charging services – all funded by the incorporated digital advertising.
The free services supplied by the kiosks will be funded by the ad revenue generated, but other “premium services” such as maps, directions and local services will also be available.
Sensors will feature on the new Links, which can capture real-time data relating to the local environment, including air and noise pollution, outdoor temperature and traffic conditions. This could potentially introduce a new range of “smart services” to local councils and communities based on the Internet of Things, says BT.
Only two 55-inch digital ad display Links have been installed on Camden High Street so far, with at least 1,000 InLinks being installed across central London and major cities across the UK over the next few years.
Advertisers will be able to buy on a ‘share of time’ basis in the kiosks placed only in high footfall, inner-city locations. They have also been designed to be seen by pedestrians as well as motorists.
InLink will offer advertising for national brands, but will also support “community commerce” allowing local advertisers to buy screen time. It also offers opportunities to tailor ads to the weather and can promote local businesses with timely offers and directions.
London is second only to New York in bringing InLinks to its streets, which were first installed in January 2016 as part of LinkNYC. Over 1.8 million users have registered to use the Wi-Fi service in the US.
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