Amtrak’s Capitol Corridor is the first U.S. intercity rail operator to offer Wi-Fi as a differentiated onboard service. It has installed PointShot Wireless’ RailPoint Wi-Fi solution on one car to gauge demand for Wi-Fi, establish operational parameters and determine the feasibility of expanding the program. The Wi-Fi solution will debut on Train 534 today, and cycle through other trains within the service. The first month of the Wi-Fi pilot will be free, with minor usage charges for the remaining two months. Amtrak’s Capitol Corridor passengers only need a Wi-Fi-enabled laptop computer or PDA to access the broadband wireless service.
The pilot program provides an opportunity for Amtrak’s Capitol Corridor to better serve the community of business and leisure travelers in the corridor. Informal polling of passengers by Amtrak’s Capitol Corridor found that customers, many of whom are technologically savvy, are eager to be more productive while in transit, leaving more time for family and other interests when they arrive home.