Boingo Flattens Pricing

By Eric Griffith

June 25, 2007

Instead of paying metered charges when traveling worldwide, users can now spend $39 per month for total access.

Boingo Wireless has offered $22 flat-rate pricing for a long time – as long as you were in North America. If you went overseas, you could still access many Wi-Fi hotspots in the Boingo virtual network, but the cost would fluctuate based on usage and location. Not any more.

Today, the company announced Boingo Global, a flat-rate pricing scheme for world travelers under which any Boingo hotspot is accessible with no extra fees. The cost is €29, or $39, per month. Subscribers are billed automatically every month until they cancel. The Boingo Unlimited plan for $22 will stay in effect for North American travelers who don’t plan to go overseas.

Anyone can sign up for the service via Users in Europe can sign up at new hotspots Boingo aggregates in through France’s Hub telecom (48 hotspots, including Charles de Gaulle International Airport, Orly International Airport and Holiday Inn/Express hotels) and Norway’s Oslo Lufthavn Tele & Data (at 12 airports, including Oslo International, plus Bergen, Bodoe, Stavanger, Tromsoe and Trondheim).

MarketWatch, reporting on the news, said the cost “is still probably more than most consumers are likely to want to pay. But it's certainly within the budgets of many high-end international road warriors who are obviously the targets of the offer.”

Boingo aggregates more than 100,000 hotspot locations from other providers: 27,000 in North America, 23,000 in Asia, and 51,000 in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The only hotspots it owns itself are in airports, through its ownership of Concourse Communications. The company offers software called GoBoingo to help users easily identify Boingo member hotspots.

The Cloud, a provider of hotspots in Europe, told the International Herald Tribune that it will follow suit later this year with flat-rate pricing for its 8,500 hotspots. It plans to have 15,000 locations by March.

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