Tonight FON rocked Paris with a real Spanish style fiesta organized by our FON France team and Neuf Cegetel to celebrate the launch of the Neuf WiFi FON Service. We also had the great honor of being hosted by Mr. Jean-Paul Huchon, the President of the Conseil Régional d’Île-de-France (representing some 11 million Parisians). More than six hundred guests attended the event including Neuf’s General Director, Michel Paulin, as well as our friends from the OpenSource community such as Mozilla Europe, Ubuntu, and Mandriva, the guys from FrancoFON and all the other FONatics who showed up.

Neuf Cegetel, the number one alternative carrier in France with over 3.5 million subscribers, and FON have updated the Neuf Box 4 (the latest Neuf Router, based on open source operating system) so Neuf subscribers can activate the new Neuf WiFi FON service, share their WiFi with Foneros around the globe, and get free WiFi access on all FON Spots everywhere. Already more than 600,000 Neuf Boxes have been centrally enabled with this FON software upgrade and the subscribers can now become WiFi sharers and receivers. By the end of 2007, around 1 million Neuf Boxes will have been upgraded with FON functionality.

Neuf also has WiFi mobile telephony and TV. The neuf “TWIN” mobile phones allow its users to do free calls whenever they are connected to a WiFi hotspot. Outside of WiFi, the phone automatically connects to a mobile/cellular network. Today, already 20% of all calls of the TWIN service are WiFi enabled and more than 20 minutes of TV are being watched. With the Neuf WiFi FON, Neuf subscribers will be able to use the free WiFi telephony services at home, at their friends and at all 150,000 FON spots around the world, without any extra connection fees.

Finally, I’d like to thank the FON France team lead by Jean-Bernard Magescas, William Quiviger, and Anthony Aubry for their hard work in making the event and the Neuf WiFi FON launch possible.


Here are some photos from the event.

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