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Summary:

Verizon Wireless is giving its mobile broadband users free Wi-Fi access through thousands of hotspots throughout North America. That off-loading will be crucial as the carrier’s data traffic ramps up thanks to the Motorola Droid and other data-friendly smartphones.

Verizon Wireless’s love affair with Wi-Fi heated up again today with the carrier’s announcement that its broadband subscribers can now connect to thousands of hotspots in North America at no additional charge. Subscribers with Verizon laptop cards, mobile broadband USB modems or Verizon’s MiFi can connect at chains including Barnes & Noble and Starbucks in the U.S. as well as in Canada and Mexico.

The move follows an agreement inked earlier this year that provides Verizon Wireless Business fixed-line broadband subscribers with service through Wi-Fi hotspot operator Boingo Wireless. And it allows Verizon to better meet the demands of the data card users that account for a disproportionately massive amount of traffic on mobile networks. That offloading will be crucial as Verizon’s data traffic ramps up thanks to the Motorola Droid and other high-end gadgets — a lesson AT&T has learned the hard way with Apple’s iPhone.

Image courtesy Flickr user Adventures in Librarianship.

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  1. Glenn Fleishman Tuesday, December 15, 2009

    “The move follows an agreement inked earlier this year that provides Verizon Wireless subscribers with service through Wi-Fi hotspot operator Boingo Wireless”

    The deal earlier this year was for Verizon (not Verizon Wireless) fixed broadband customers; today’s is for Verizon Wireless’s mobile broadband subscribers.

  2. Verizon Announces Free Wi-Fi for Broadband Customers Tuesday, December 15, 2009

    [...] via GigaOM [...]

  3. You’re right, Glenn. The previous deal was for Verizon fixed broadband users and expanded on an existing agreement for Verizon Business customers. Thanks for pointing it out.

  4. I have both Verizon broadband (FiOS) and Verizon Wireless Mobile Broadband, but can’t use the included Wi-Fi — no support for Mac OS X, which in this day and age is simply inexcusable. It even sounds like the VZ Access Manager software is what’s used for Wi-Fi access in this case, and that software does run on OS X. I simply don’t get it.

  5. Wonderful news, if you don’t have a Mac. No Mac support from Verizon. Even worse, Mac or Windows, why another piece of software running (connection manager)…just set it up as VPN or something with Verizon broadband ID and password needed to use the service?

  6. Verizon 3G Customers Get Free Wi-Fi — But There’s a Catch Tuesday, December 15, 2009

    [...] began to offer free Wi-Fi access on the Boingo network to Verizon home broadband customers. Today, that privilege is granted to its mobile broadband consumers as well. This means that if you have a qualifying Verizon DSL, FiOS or 3G plan, you’ve got a warm [...]

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