Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Boingo to Roam onto FON, More Than Doubling Its Hot Spot Network

Boingo Wireless signed a roaming agreement with FON, a Madrid-based start-up building a global community of Wi-Fi access point owners (or "foneros") willing to share their broadband connections. The roaming deal will provide Boingo users with access to an additional 130,000 hot spot locations -- more than doubling the company's network size.



The 130,000 Wi-Fi locations come from businesses and individuals who add their own hot spots to the FON community in exchange for the right to roam on other FON community locations for free or at a reduced rate. For Boingo users, these new locations provide a rich network of Wi-Fi locations in areas that complement Boingo's existing commercial locations.



Boingo said that access to the FON network will also benefit users of Boingo Mobile, its service for Wi-Fi-enabled handsets. Boingo Mobile users pay $7.95 per month for unlimited access to hot spots worldwide to make VoIP calls, use messaging services or surf the Internet from their handset.

http://www.boingo.com

http://www.fon.com/

  • In April 2007, Time Warner Cable agreed to allow and encourage its broadband subscribers to share their home connections as open Wi-Fi hotspots in the FON community. Through a partnership with FON, Time Warner Cable subscribers will be able to create FON access points via their home or business broadband connection.


  • La Fonera router is secure out-of-the-box and offers two distinct WiFi channels. One channel is for the exclusive use of its owner; the second channel is shared with other foneros. The La Fonera increases security through an encrypted private network and Foneros decide how much bandwidth to share. Public users cannot access the private network and there is no anonymous usage.


  • In February 2006, FON, a start-up based in Madrid, Spain, secured EUR 18 million (US$21.7 million for its software that enables users to share their Wi-Fi access points while gaining access to a global community of Wi-Fi hotspots.


  • FON investors include Index Ventures, Google, Sequoia Capital and Skype.

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