Michigan Amtrak Service to Get Wi-Fi in 2014

Amtrak’s Michigan corridor trains will soon be the first in the Midwest to offer Wi-Fi service. The Michigan Transportation Commission signed a contract this week with a provider.

“The installation of Wi-Fi service on Amtrak trains in Michigan makes passenger rail travel more attractive, efficient and productive throughout the state,” said Tim Hoeffner, director of the Michigan Department of Transportation Office of Rail, in a news release. “We are proud Michigan is the first Midwestern state to offer Wi-Fi service on all its Amtrak lines.”

Amtrak’s Michigan service includes the Wolverine Service between Chicago and Pontiac via Detroit, the Blue Water between Chicago and Port Huron and the Pere Marquette between Chicago and Grand Rapids.

The Wi-Fi service, known as AmtrakConnect, will be provided at no cost to passengers and is expected to support between 30 and 50 percent of those onboard any given train. The service is expected to be launched in early 2014.

Data-heavy activities that can slow everyone down, such as streaming video and music, and file downloads larger than 10MB, will be restricted in order to ensure high-volume data users onboard the train are not able to degrade the experience for others.

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