New York has been placing a multitude of “digital sidewalk kiosks” throughout the city in the last couple years. In the last few months, their reach has spread.
The kiosks are bookended with digital ad space, which pays for the kiosk itself, while the center has a tablet including free local calls via WiFi, city services info, as well as a USB to charge your devices.
They also have cameras, monitoring not only active users, but passers by on the subway. The info is used to “generate more relevant ads” for those that walk past. It is also given to law enforcement.
The NYTimes posted an article this past week, mentioning these kiosks in a facial recognition experiment they ran in a public park. Days later, over 30 of these kiosks were smashed.