Together with FON, our partner BT, has reached its goal of building a million-strong WiFi hotspot network in the UK. The vast majority (more than 85%) of BT’s WiFi hotspots are BT FON hotspots and a direct result of a vision Ian Livingston, BT’s CEO, and Gavin Patterson, BT’s CEO Retail, and I, FON’s CEO, had just three years ago.

Back then BT only had some Openzone hotspots in commercial areas. In order to quickly build a truly ubiquitous WiFi network in the UK, BT needed a new approach. BT needed FON.

Teaming up with FON, BT added FON WiFi sharing functionality directly into BT Home Hubs. This made it easy for BT subscribers to become members of the FON community. As members, BT broadband customers who elect to safely share a little of their home WiFi with others, get access to the world’s largest WiFi network in return. Instantly, BT customers who opted in to FON received more access to WiFi, and the joint BT FON network took off, growing faster than anyone expected. In the past six months alone, BT’s WiFi network has doubled. We expect it to continue growing even faster in 2010, thanks in large part to FON.

Follow Martin Varsavsky on Twitter: twitter.com/martinvars

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