Now here's a concept we can really get behind. Fon, which has been
around for a few years now, is looking to make a big break with the
introduction of the SIMPL router
. It's a rather simple device. It's
quite small for a router, and only has two Ethernet ports. But it's not
your usual router. It's designed with a specific purpose in mind: to
spread Wi-Fi everywhere, so to speak.
Fon's goal is get their sharing routers into the hands of everyone with
an at-home broadband connection. If that were to happen, there would be a
huge umbrella of Wi-Fi coverage that anyone could hop on. Particularly
in cities, where 3G services are often overloaded, this would be
amazing. Of course, it's a great theory, but getting that many routers
out in the open is another matter.
But Fon has recently announced the sale of their two millionth Fonera
SIMPL, mostly with international carriers. The SIMPL also features a
powerful antenna, allowing for a better WiFi connection, WPA encryption,
and a new quick setup that makes it easy to get Fon WiFi right out of
the box. The SIMPL creates two WiFi signals (SSIDs), one private and one
public, allowing users to safely share a bit of their broadband
connection in exchange for free WiFi access at all other hotspots
throughout Fon's global WiFi network.
There's also Android and BlackBerry applications for more advanced
functionality, and if you'd like to join the case, the SIMPL is on sale
now for $49.
Fon Sells 2 Million New Fonera SIMPL WiFi Routers to Telcos Looking to Ease 3G Overloads
MADRID & NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Fon, the world’s largest WiFi network,today announced it has sold 2 million of its latest Fonera SIMPL WiFi router to leading Telcos. The SIMPL, a palm-sized WiFi router targeted towards smartphone and tablet-PC users, is now also available directly to end-users for just $49/€39 at fon.com, making it one of the lowest priced 802.11n routers in the market.
“People want to have fun on their smartphones, but are limited by 3G data restrictions”
“People want to have fun on their smartphones, but are limited by 3G data restrictions,” said Martin Varsavsky, Fon CEO. “With the Fonera SIMPL, when people connect to Fon WiFi at home or on the go, they can listen to Spotify, stream YouTube videos, and download and install heavy applications in a way that’s fast, simple and useful, without eating up their 3G credit or straining 3G networks.”
Fon pursues two partnership models: one for Fixed Telcos who integrate the Fon WiFi sharing feature into their own DSL or Cable modems, and the other for Mobile Telcos who distribute Fon routers to their subscribers. The SIMPL is especially attractive to mobile operators looking for ways to offload heavy data traffic from congested 3G networks. Fon partners with leading companies including British Telecom, MTS-Comstar Russia, SFR France, SoftBank Japan and ZON Cable Portugal.
Customers who receive the SIMPL from a mobile operator, or buy it online, will be asked to plug the router into their fixed internet connection at home or work. After a quick registration process, the user will have Fon WiFi access at home and on the go at close to 3 million Fon Spots.
Fon also offers several connection solutions for the SIMPL to assist users who want a hassle-free connection to Fon WiFi at home and on the go. Smart devices can be easily configured to connect automatically to the public Fon WiFi signal whenever one is within range. Fon offers downloadable connection applications for devices ranging from the Android and Blackberry, based on the WISPr recommendation from the WFA, to the iPhone. New WPS functionality allows users to easily connect smart devices to their private WiFi signal with the touch of a button on the back of the SIMPL.
Fonera SIMPL comes equipped with wireless 802.11n, ideal for accessing media-rich content and transferring files faster. The SIMPL also features a powerful antenna, allowing for a better WiFi connection, WPA encryption, and a new quick setup that makes it easy to get Fon WiFi right out of the box. The SIMPL creates two WiFi signals (SSIDs), one private and one public, allowing users to safely share a bit of their broadband connection in exchange for free WiFi access at all other hotspots throughout Fon’s global WiFi network.
The new Fonera SIMPL, includes:
* 1 WAN Ethernet port (for ADSL/Cable modem)
* 1 LAN Ethernet port (for PC)
* 1 SSID (Open, WEP, WPA, WPA2)
* 1 SSID (Fon network)
* 802.11n (150 Mbps)
* 802.11b/g (54 Mbps) compatible
* Detachable, external antenna
Fon was founded by Martin Varsavsky, a serial entrepreneur and internet pioneer, in 2006, with the goal of free, ubiquitous WiFi for everyone. Today, Fon is the largest WiFi community in the world, with close to 3 million Fon WiFi spots and over 5 million users. Fon partners with the world’s leading broadband providers, hardware manufacturers and Telco operators to offer Fon-ready products and services. Fon’s partners include BT, MTS-Comstar Russia, SFR France, SoftBank Japan and ZON Portugal. Fon’s investors include British Telecom, the Coral Group, Skype, Google, Index Ventures and Sequoia Capital. Learn more at fon.com.