Hotspot Hits for December 23, 2003

By Wi-Fi Planet Staff

December 23, 2003

PicoPoint adds 13 million users; Boingo addes 200 new hotels; STSN adds another seven, and more news from the world of public access wireless.

  • Amsterdam-based PicoPoint, founder of the Global Broadband Internet Access (GBIA) network, has added another member. Now 13 million KPN Royal Dutch Telecommunications mobile customers in Belgium and Germany (via E-Plus) can roam on the network's 1,900 hotspots found in countries such as the UK, South Africa, Kuwait and even in the United States (via Surf and Sip locations), though the bulk of partners are from Germany and the Netherlands. The GBIA expects to add another 600 hotspots in early 2004. -- December 23, 2003

  • Boingo Wireless is adding 200 new hotels to its virtual network footprint. The locations have high-speed wireless Internet access from ARESCOM, a Fremont, Calif.-based company currently runs the access from 25,000 hotel rooms and has another 20,000 to come. The access extends to telecoms who offer Wi-Fi to their customers using Boingo's Platform Services, which includes companies like Earthlink, Fiberlink and Telecom Italia. ARESCOM has hotels in several states like Florida, Texas, California, Colorado, and New York, including the Ramada Armonk in N.Y., near IBM's HQ. -- December 22, 2003

  • The Allentown, Pa. Morning Call reports this week that the Lehigh Valley International Airport is the latest U.S. airport to get Wi-Fi for travelers. Previously the airport provided dial-up data ports for anyone who needed it, but the executive director of the agency running the venue says having a Wi-Fi hotspot is "faster and more convenient." Eventually they plan to extend the signal to even the hangars where private corporate jets are located. They have no plans to charge for the Internet access. -- December 18, 2003
  • Another Wi-Fi-ed airport: this time is the McNamara Terminal & Northwest WorldGateway at the Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport. The other terminals at the airport have plug in data-ports on the pay phones, and they might get Wi-Fi in the future. Meanwhile, the McNamara Terminal will offer free hotspot access until the end of this year. After that, the price is $6.95 per 24 hour period. Concourse Communications is responsible for this deployment, which covers not only 802.11b but also PCS/cellular. Users of Boingo, STSN, iPass and Sprint PCS can all roam for free onto any Concourse airport hotspot. -- December 18, 2003

  • Seventy properties in North America owned by Dallas-based La Quinta Inn & Suites will be getting broadband courtesy of STSN's iBAHN service beginning in January 2004. Install is expected to be done by April. Guest rooms will be Ethernet only, but common areas will be Wi-Fi and that Wi-Fi will be free to guests. Conference areas will get a mix of wired and wireless to accommodate all, and both will cost. Franchises of La Quinta -- there's about 280 of them across 33 states -- will also be going this route next summer, with STSN providing connections as needed. -- December 17, 2003

  • MCI said today its making its Access Manager software available for PDAs -- it used to be only available on laptops -- and that in addition to using Wayport's locations for access, MCI's Remote Access customers can now also access the entire Boingo Wireless virtual network. MCI says in addition to the now 2600 locations subscribers can utilize for access, they'll add another 3000 next year. -- December 16, 2003

  • China now has its own online hotspot listing, located at ChinaPulse.com. Its searchable by 802.11 protocol, city, cost, and tells what type of venue the location is in (such as a café or hotel). The Chinese and English-language site is from BDL Media. -- December 16, 2003

  • Netherlands broadcaster Nozema is using a their country's largest Christmas tree to promote their Wi-Fi services. The 375 meter tree -- actually a tower transformed to look like a tree, which they say is in the Guinness Book of Records -- doubles as an antenna for a hotspot in Ijsselstein. The hotspot will, naturally, only be available until the end of the holiday. Nozema is the first Dutch member of the WiMax Forum. -- December 16, 2003


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