AT&T today announced that qualifying LaptopConnect customers (using HSPA) can now access more than 17,000 Wi-Fi hot spots free of charge. Users can access Wi-Fi at nearly 7,000 participating Starbucks locations plus thousands more AT&T Wi-Fi locations, including restaurants, airports, hotels and other convenient locations across the United States.
AT&T LaptopConnect uses AT&T’s cellular network to keep customers connected almost anywhere they can make a phone call. Qualifying LaptopConnect customers will now automatically receive a pop-up message alerting them to Wi-Fi availability when in range of an AT&T hot spot.
When not in a hot spot, AT&T LaptopConnect cards operate on AT&T’s wireless network, which provides DSL-like speeds in more than 275 markets in the U.S.
Starbucks Card holders can get up to two hours of free Wi-Fi service per day at Starbucks, while more than 12 million qualifying AT&T broadband and AT&T U-verse Internet customers will have unlimited free access to the Wi-Fi service.
Starbucks and Barnes and Noble Wi-Fi hotspots are also expected to provide free internet access for iPhone users. Panasonic’s DMC-TZ50 Wi-Fi enabled camera ($450) includes twelve months of free access to T-Mobile’s Hotspots, after which time continued access requires a subscription. The $129 Eye-Fi Explorer SD card has a similar deal.
Glenn Fleishman says; Free Wi-Fi from Starbucks? Ha! Ain’t. Gunna. Happen.