Garbage Photo: Dean Strelau/Flickr

Turns out that Google’s much-hyped Sidewalk Labs aren’t quite as cutting-edge as we thought. A Massachusetts-based waste management organization called Bigbelly is the latest company to bring Wi-Fi to the masses, and its plans to achieve this are somewhat unconventional.

Engadget reports that Bigbelly has applied for a grant from the Mayor’s Office to turn hundreds of its existing smart trash cans into Wi-Fi hotspots, specifically for low-income? communities in New York City.

Bigbelly already has a foothold in the high-tech trash can market. Its other products include solar-powered recycling containers that can detect how smelly trash is, compress contents and even notify collectors when they become full.

Bigbelly’s Wi-Fi speed promises to reach 50 to 75 megabits per second. Cans will be able to display public announcements and still offer free internet.

An innovator in waste management and recycling, Bigbelly was founded in 2003 with the goal of transforming the global waste collection industry. Its products are used in 47 countries and the company is recognized as a C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group best practice.

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