Deutsche Telekom AG (FRA:DTE) (PINK:DTEGY) (ETR:DTE) announced on Monday that it will work with Wi-Fi operator Fon to boost its mobile data offering.
“The partnership with Fon fits perfectly with Telekom’s network expansion strategy,” said Rene Obermann, chief executive of Germany’s largest telecommunications group, at the Cebit information technology fair in Hannover.
Deutsche Telekom also wants to increase its mobile internet offerings in trains. The company aims to cover 5,200 kilometres or railway track by the end of the next year, an increase of 3000 kilometres.
This initiative between Telekom and Fon will be launched this summer as “WLAN TO GO.” Deutsche will launch the Fon service with the help of its national companies in Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, Slovakia and Hungary.
According to Deutsche Telekom, its 12 million broadband subscribers and more than 12, 000 hot spots all over Germany turn out to be a perfect foundation to launch the world’s largest Wi-Fi network.
Deutsche Telekom CEO Rene Obermann said, “This innovative partnership perfectly supports Deutsche Telekom AG (FRA:DTE) (PINK:DTEGY) (ETR:DTE)’s network expansion strategy. The increasing volume of data used by people requires the development of existing high-speed networks, and also the creation of more modern networks.”
Through this deal, Deutsche Telekom will be able to match up with mobile data volumes from Smartphones and tablet computers. Fon, which has it’s headquarter in Madrid, provides Wi-Fi hot spots in many countries. It avails mobile internet to its users at usually faster speeds than that offered by mobile wireless networks.
Fon uses private individual routers, but it does not build its own network. Broadband users who want to share their connection can do so by using other Fon hot spots at zero extra cost. The company get a percentage of the revenue when the broadband connection is used by a non Fon member. Fon accesses 8 million Wi-Fi hot spots, predominantly in Europe.
Broadband users of Deutsche Telekom AG (FRA:DTE) (PINK:DTEGY) (ETR:DTE) can sign up for Fon Online to start sharing the unused capacity of their internet connection with other users. This will enable them to get access to around 7.7 million Fon hotspots all over the world. Users in countries like UK, France, Belgium and Croatia already share their broadband connection in order to access Fon hotspots. There is also a large WiFi community of Fon in Brazil.
Fon was founded in 2006 by serial entrepreneur Martin Varsavsky, and was supported by Index Ventures, Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), Sequoia Capital and Skype. The telecom and ISP provider’s partners include BT Group plc (ADR) (NYSE:BT) (UK), Koninklijke KPN N.V. (AMS:KPN) (Netherlands), Belgacom SA (EBR:BELG) (Belgium), HRVATSKI TELEKOM D.D. GDR (FRA:3HT1) (Croatia), SFR (France) and Softbank Corp (PINK:SFTBF) (Japan), among others.