08/02/2006

Skype and Google invest in universal Wi-Fi - Network IT Week

Skype and Google invest in universal Wi-Fi - Network IT Week

FON isn't new, it's just achieved noteriety by attracting the attention of big player investors such as Skype and Google.

This idea has been around for a while, there was a (now defunct) service called MyZone which tried this a few years ago in the UK. It never gained traction even though they'd supply the WiFi router and a revenue share. It also broke most ISP T&C's.

One thing FON will have to do is ensure they can authenticate users properly, or people sharing their broadband connections are likely to fall foul of the law if somebody accesses their connection to participate in some illegal activity. If they cant prove it was someone else then the authorities are likely to imply it was the broadband connection user which can lead to some serious headaches.

If it does work out and they can get the service going ensuring compliance with the law and ISP T&C's and it gains a market (which they might well do) then it could offer a valuable service, threatening organisations such as the Cloud or Openzone who have based a business on trying to proivde this kind of service.

If it all fails (and even it doesn't) it's a cheap way of obtaining a Linksys WRT54G WiFi router.
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