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BT Moots FON's Wi-Fi Sharing Technology
By: MarkJ - 02 February, 2007 (1:37 PM)

Reuters reports that BT may be in the brink of announcing a new deal with Wi-Fi sharing experts FON. Such a deal would allow BT's customers to cheaply share out Wi-Fi Internet access, expanding coverage and service options:

A deal would mean that BT customers will start sharing access to their home Wi-Fi networks, and its BT Fusion mobile customers can make cheap calls from their phones when they are in the vicinity of one of these Wi-Fi "hotspots". A deal between the two will be an unprecedented endorsement from a large European telecoms operator for FON's ambitious business model that seeks to turn millions of private home Wi-Fi networks into public wireless "hotspots".

BT Fusion users, who have mobile phones that can connect to a short-range wireless Wi-Fi network as well as the cell phone network, could use their phones on the home networks of around 250,000 global FON members, which it calls "foneros", 10,000 of them are already in Britain.

BT hopes that a tie-up with FON will boost the number of Wi-Fi hotspots for its mobile users, and with it the BT Fusion customer base, which remains under 100,000.

Presently many UK ISP's prohibit such usage through their Terms & Conditions, thus BT would have to relax some of its own rules. It will be interesting to see whether anything comes of the talks, although it's presently too early to tell.

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