Each year, the search engine giant recognizes one town in each state for its support of the online business community. These are towns where businesses are “using the web to find new customers, connect with existing customers and fuel their local economies.” This year, Google named Annapolis as the best eCity in Maryland.
Google points to Annapolis offering free city-wide WiFi starting in 2006. Users get one hour of free Internet a month. The service is funded through private advertising and not taxpayer dollars. Annapolis was first city in the country to take that leap.
The city worked out a deal with Annapolis Wireless Internet (AWI), which specializes in providing temporary WiFi in fairs, festivals, the boat shows and such.
The free WiFi is still available in Annapolis and serves more than six-million visitors and residents each year.
The eCity winner in Virginia is Fairfax, because “the city’s comprehensive website offers easy access to school issues, tax assessments, and more,” according to Google.