In 5 hours we will make a big announcement in Korea: we will adopt the Fonero promise system in Korea and not charge for our Foneras. As Germans, Koreans have also shown a tremendous community spirit that has led to many Fonera sales, activations and registrations in our maps. In gratitude FON has decided to move from a system based on Fonera (FON social router) sales to a system based on trust and give Foneras away for free in exchange for a simple promise to leave them on, as we are also doing tomorrow in Germany and Austria.
In Korea FON has a fantastic leader, Jin Ho Hur, who not only runs FON Korea but is the CTO of FON in all of the Pacific Rim. I was in Korea together with Jin Ho Hur when we launched FON and the experience was fascinating, but frustrating at the same time, because Fonera sales were so quick that we sold out 3000 foneras in 24 hours, ran out and had to close our shop. It was sad for us to leave so much demand unattended until we manufactured 20K more Foneras for Korea that we will now distribute for free. While I know that 20K does not sound like a large number for members of a community, say compared to our partners at Skype or Google when they build communities, by installing 20K we would be the largest WiFi network in Korea, where we now have over 2500 installed access points.
I would like to end by thanking Korean early Foneros who trusted that the FON movement would spread throughout the country and the world. With FON the proposition is simple, share a little extra bandwidth at home and roam the world with your WiFi gadgets for free.
Follow Martin Varsavsky on Twitter: twitter.com/martinvars