Oi Releases Shared WiFi Project in Partnership with Fon
31 OCTOBER 2011. MADRID & RIO DE JANEIRO.- Oi, a pioneer in convergent services in Brazil, today announced the start of a shared broadband WiFi project in Rio de Janeiro. The project was developed in partnership with Fon, a Spanish company responsible for over 4.5 million WiFi hotspots in over 11 countries such as Portugal, Japan and the United Kingdom. This initiative reinforces Oi’s strategy to invest in the expansion of mobile internet coverage to cater to the increasing demand generated by the mass use of smartphones, tablets and laptop computers. The partnership with Fon will stimulate and improve the user experience when logging into broadband WiFi, offering even more quality, mobility and comfort for local internet users.
Use of the service
Oi Velox customers with plans starting at 5 Mb, in addition to Oi Velox 3G clients and those subscribing to Oi data plans starting at 2 Gb, will be able to access all of the network’s hotspots for free until January 2012.
Other Oi customers and those subscribing to any other operator’s data plans will be able to try Oi’s WiFi network for free for 30 minutes upon their first connection. To continue using the network, they will have to buy passes by using their credit cards: one hour for R$ 2.90, one day for R$ 5.90 and five days for R$ 11.90. Active hotspots can be found on the website http://maps.fon.com
Hotspots have been installed in restaurants, clubs, malls, salons, cafés, bars, gyms and homes in the Ipanema and Leblon neighborhoods of Rio de Janeiro. These locations were chosen due to their high concentration of commercial establishments and high foot traffic, both of which are fundamental factors when testing the potential of a WiFi network in the region.
Any Oi Velox customer with speeds of 5 Mb or more can participate in the Fon community. When they opt in to the community, they receive a free WiFi router that allows them to share part of their broadband connection. When they do so, all of Fon’s customers will be able to use a fraction of the shared WiFi when choosing to connect to a user’s hotspot, and in exchange, Oi’s customers gain access to over 4.5 million Fon hotspots all over the world. Connection sharing is done in a secure way, since the private portion of the network is password protected.
Oi is a pioneer company in the provision of bundled services in Brazil. Oi offers local and long-distance voice transmission, mobile telephony, data communication, Internet, and entertainment services. Oi operates nationwide. In September 2011, the company had 67.1 million customers. This total includes 19.1 million landline customers, 42.9 million mobile phone customers, 4.8 million broadband customers, and 330.000 pay-TV customers.
For the third straight year, Oi is part of the ISE – Corporate Sustainability Index portfolio of the BM&F BOVESPA, reflecting the company’s commitment to social responsibility and corporate sustainability. Oi is also part of the IC02 — Carbon Efficiency Index, a partnership between BM&F Bovespa and BNDES.
Fon CEO, entrepreneur and internet pioneer Martin Varsavsky founded Fon in 2006 with the goal of free, ubiquitous WiFi for everyone. Today, Fon is the largest WiFi community in the world, providing WiFi at over 4 million hotspots and to over 7 million users. Fon partners with the world’s leading fixed and mobile telcos, hardware manufacturers and service providers, all who share the vision of a joint WiFi community. Fon’s investors include Atomico, British Telecom, the Coral Group, Google, Index Ventures, Sequoia Capital and Skype. For more information: fon.com