Google has won the right to provide free basic Wi-Fi internet service for the city of San Francisco. You have surely been around long enough to know that nothing comes for free. The company has partnered with Earthlink to provide the service. They will be charging a fee for premium service. That, though, isn’t what attracted Google to the proposition.
The search giant makes as much as 99% of their gigantic revenue from advertising. Thanks to the free service they will be able to track the location of their users and geographically target the ads with unprecedented accuracy. In other words, as you sit on that bench surfing the web on your laptop, the ad you see will be for the coffee shop across the street. That, of course, means that they can charge more for the ad. It’s a powerful and intriguing idea, but one that surely will raise more than a few alarms amongst those who are determined to protect freedom.