Oakland, CA -The Superior Court of California, County of Alameda and Courtroom Connect announced today they are offering high-speed wireless Internet access in all civil departments located in the Administration Building, 1221 Oak Street, Oakland, California. The Superior Court of California, County of Alameda joins San Francisco Superior Court in leading California in the use of wireless technology (see Daily Journal, February 11th issue). The Superior Court of California, County of Alameda expects to be one of a growing trend of California Courts to offer this useful and innovative technology. Arthur Sims, Executive Officer believes the initiative reflects the Court's consistent commitment to providing useful and innovative technology to improve the judicial process.
The wireless data service provided by Courtroom Connect allows lawyers to conduct online research, transfer large office files, send and receive e-mail with attachments, access trial databases and print documents from their laptops - all while sitting in the courtroom. The service is offered in the Administration Building (Departments 14 through 24 and common areas on the 3rd and 4th Floors). Dianna Lyons of Kazan McLain, who has been using the service almost daily during the pre-launch period, says, "The service is terrific. There is no 'down time' spent waiting in court for your case to be called. You can keep working as though you were back at the office. I've used the service while arguing a motion. My opponent cited a case I hadn't read; I quickly found and read the case on Westlaw and was ready with a counter argument by the time my opponent sat down. I've even used it to negotiate settlement language by e-mail when the jury was waiting and counsel were poised to start a jury trial. If I need something from my office, I send an e-mail and have it delivered or go online and retrieve the document from our office computer system and print it to the Courtroom Connect printer on the 4th floor of the courthouse. This service is certain to make lawyers more productive and save clients money."
The Superior Court of California, County of Alameda also hopes, in the future, to allow court reporters to wirelessly transmit real-time transcripts without the inconveniences of setting up cables each day. Attorneys in the courthouse could easily receive the real-time feed from their laptops anywhere within the courthouse.
The new service is being provided by Courtroom Connect (www.courtroomconnect.com
), a wireless ISP specializing in providing Internet access and printing in courthouses. Courtroom Connect utilizes the 802.11b (or Wi-Fi) wireless standard, placing a number of soundless and inconspicuous access points in the courthouse. Connection speeds are 27 times faster than dialup modems and dramatically more powerful than a Blackberry. Courtroom Connect provides VPN encryption to the Internet and encryption and PIN codes for printing at the courthouse. Attorneys can choose from a variety of subscription and daily usage plans, along with loaner wireless cards and set-up provided by Courtroom Connect. Courtroom Connect plans to expand its coverage to include other courthouses in the Bay Area and other major metropolitan areas. CEO Michael Breyer says, "We are excited to enable litigators to effectively bring their office with them to court. The Superior Court of California, County of Alameda is serving as a role model for other courts looking to better serve their practitioners."
Available For Comment: Boris Feldman, Partner, Wilson Sonsini, phone (650) 858-4444. Professor Fred Lederer, Director, Courtroom 21 (a joint project between the College of William & Mary and the National Center for State Courts), phone (757) 221-3792. Louis Goldberg, Courtroom Connect, (415) 762-2108 ext 465.