MCI In WiFi Roaming Deal With Boingo

MCI announced their WiFi service footprint is now available internationally. This was achieved not through building out hotspots, but through a roaming deal with Boingo. Kudos to MCI for striking the roaming deal, but more importantly for not trying to spin it as if they actually installed the hotspots themselves. as everyone else seems to do when they re-sell the same Wayport hotspots over and over. Nevertheless, the plethora of roaming deals struck since July are progress for the industry, and are consistent with the arguments I wrote in my paper (free to read) “Who will own the Hotspot customer?” in July’s Broadband Wireless magazine. The thesis was that telcos cannot get positive ROI if they build telco-grade Hotspots, but they can get positive ROI by aggregating service from smaller hotspot builders with lower cost structures. Customers will benefit by simplified access to a wider footprint of hotspots.

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