We were examining the issue of coverage for Wififons yesterday and we concluded that although the advantage of Wififon over GSM (in terms of calling costs) is incredible, the disadvantage in terms of coverage is also quite important. For this reason, we’re thinking of creating DUAL Wififons that would combine WiFi and GSM. This way, foners would be able to call for free if there’s Wifi and pay if there isn’t. Either way, foneros would always stay connected. In other words, FON would also sell Wififons where you could insert a SIM card and mobile operators would make money.

Although very expensive, there’s no doubt that mobile operators have the best coverage and few people today are willing to completely let go off their GSM.

Follow Martin Varsavsky on Twitter: twitter.com/martinvars

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Paul Jardine on November 10, 2005  · 

Now, if you were an MVNO with a switch, you could use UMA phones and allow users to make calls over wifi (FON) where available. I’m sure the Mobile Operator would not like it though as they would not be able to charge for the Wifi call. You would also have to have a pretty closely linked MVNO, with IN access and switch (but some do! e.g. Virgin).

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