Early this year after completing a strategic review of its business, Shaw Communications announced that it had cancelled its plans to build a wireless network in Western Canada. In its place, the company would invest in building a broadband wireless network using WiFi technologies.

Today Shaw and Cisco Systems announced they had reached an agreement to deploy the Wi-Fi network in late 2011, with a customer launch in Spring 2012.

In its announcements to date, Shaw has only vaguely hinted at the capabilities of the WiFi network. The company has not given any specifics saying only that the network will be would be available to Shaw customers in various markets where Wi-Fi access points are deployed.

The number of markets where WiFi technology is going to being deployed and the level of coverage that Shaw customers can expect in those markets has not been announced. Shaw did say they will provide "highly secure coverage in targeted areas like sporting venues and transit systems" which suggests that coverage will be limited to high traffic areas in major metropolitan centers.

Shaw is not the first company to deploy a Wifi Network in a major metropolitan area. In 2006, Toronto Hydro created the One Zone WiFi network in Toronto’s financial district making it the largest WiFi network in Canada.

Discuss the new WiFi network in Digital Home's Shaw High Speed Internet and Home Phone discussion forum.