Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Toronto One Zone Wireless Network Review

Toronto's wireless network, One Zone, was launched with great fanfare two months ago (and previously mentioned in a previous blog posting Free WiFi in Downtown Toronto). That ought to be sufficient time for Toronto Hydro Telecom to shake out most of the bugs, so it's time for my thoughts about this service.

All in all, this wireless network delivers on what it was designed to do. When I am in the service zone, as indicated in the map below, service is decent. However, I pretty much have to be standing still. If I walk at a normal pace, it isn't long before the signal sometimes drops as I exit one access point's area and enter an adjacent access point's area. At times, I wish that the signal would penerate further into the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (south side of Front Street, just west of Simcoe Street) as One Zone, with its price of $0 (until March 2007) is just a tad cheaper than the Convention Centre's wireless access price of $400 (yes, four hundred dollars) for 24 hours of access.

One major issue that Toronto Hydro Telecom needs to resolve is the 'bad certificate' issue that appears on their log in portal. Essentially, Toronto Hydro Telecom needs to ensure that the certificate granted to their https server is from a Trusted Certificate Authority. At the moment, Toronto Hydro is issuing the certificate with their own Certificate Authority that isn't trusted. This is why you'll get errors (regardless of web browser) similar to the following prior to the log in screen (click the picture to expand it):

After two months, this issue should have been fixed. With One Zone being free until March 2007, hopefully this problem is not indicative of how Toronto Hydro Telecom plans on operating this service once they start charging customers. It should not be too hard to fix (i.e. ensure that Toronto Hydro Telecom's own certificate authority is recognized by an already trusted certficate authority), so hopefully, it is resolved ASAP.

For more information about certificates, see the following pages:

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bad reception in almost the entire OneZone, even wind or leaf-falling can interrupt the service.