Boingo is offering consumers free Wi-Fi at more than 4,000 hotspots across America, through the end of September. It is a collaboration with Google Play. However, it looks like iOS, Windows Phone and Blackberry users aren’t invited, says Next Web.
The free hotspots will be available at 15 airports, including New York’s John F. Kennedy, Chicago O’Hare, and Seattle-Tacoma as well as as hotels, shopping malls, cafes, recreational areas, and certain Manhattan subway stations.
Boingo last month acquired Cloud Nine Media, a Wi-Fi sponsorship and location-based advertising company. It adds sponsored access to its managed Wi-Fi hotspots.
The hotspots will be available for OS X and Windows computers as well as Android devices. But Boingo’s announcement makes no reference to either Apple or Microsoft’s mobile operating systems.
Boingo says anyone accessing the Wi-Fi hotspot will also have access to some “free content” – although it doesn’t specify what that is – as well as access to apps, music, movies and e-books available on Google Play.
Boingo Wireless and Google sponsored free Wi-Fi across New York City from June 25 through September 7, 2012 in select New York City subway stations and at Boingo hotzones across Manhattan, courtesy of Google Offers.
The Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Passpoint program enables mobile devices to automatically discover and connect to Wi-Fi networks, without the manual fiddling of wireless settings. Passpoint allows cell companies to enable roaming agreements with hotspot providers, enabling new revenue streams and making Wi-Fi an extension of paid service provider networks. Passpoint-certified devices work across vendors and have Wi-Fi Protected Access 2 (WPA2) security protections.
Gartner says mobile ads generated close to $3.3 billion worldwide in 2011 and projects they will top $20 billion annually by the end of 2015.