I have Internet connectivity everywhere I go. I use my Smartphone as a modem to get my Netbook on-line. No comment as to whether this is allowed by my wireless phone provider; there are legitimate ways to do it, and others that are … let’s just call it “questionable”.
I’ve told you about problems with Free Wi-Fi at Panera Bread. By now you know that Starbucks is not only giving away Wi-Fi, but also giving away content. But even with companies like those making your search for a Wi-Fi signal as easy as they can, there are limits. Wouldn’t it be great if Wi-Fi was everywhere?
FON is bringing Wi-Fi everywhere. They aren’t kidding; take a look at this map to see where FON is available right now.
You might look at that map and be unimpressed. Think again. FON has sold over two million of their little devices to create a Wi-Fi Network, and they’ve got big telecommunications companies signed on to move FON Wi-Fi devices into their customers’ hands.
The FON device, assuming you buy one rather than wait for someone to offer you a FON, costs $49 US (39€). It’s a wireless router with two channels, meaning you can have a secure, password-protected Wi-Fi network, and also broadcast an open signal for FON users who can get Internet over your Wi-Fi connection. If you’re one of those people who’s always wanted to help out others by sharing your Internet connection but was afraid of the security risks, FON is your solution.
There’s more—or maybe less: the FON device isn’t a completely open Wi-Fi connection; only people who themselves are running a FON can get access to your FON ‘s open signal.
Here’s why FON ought to succeed: aside from being an inexpensive, easy-to-use solution to several problems that regular people have and understand they have, FON is also a way for wireless carriers to encourage their users to connect to the Internet over Wi-Fi rather than directly through the wireless phone network. FON saves on wireless bandwidth. Telecommunications carriers like that.
Of course, there’s still the question of whether the government where you live thinks it should be legal to have an open Wi-Fi Connection. FON takes care of that too, because since only other FON users can access your FON device it’s not completely open!
FON is a business change that makes sense. The next time you need a new Wi-Fi router, please, please consider making it a FON.