19 September 2006

Not My Idea of FON

FON is such an obviously clever and right-on idea that I have struggled to articulate exactly why it is I have been reluctant to write about it. After all, the basic plan is brilliant:

FON is the largest WiFi community in the world. Our members share their wireless Internet access at home and, in return, enjoy free WiFi wherever they find another Fonero’s Access Point.

It all started as a simple idea. Why should you pay for Internet access on the go when you have already paid for it at home? Exactly, you shouldn’t. So we decided to help create a community of people who get more out of their connection through sharing.

We call members of the FON Community Foneros. It’s simple to become a Fonero. You just need to buy La Fonera, which enables you to securely and fairly share your home broadband connection with other Foneros.

Then when you’re away from home and you need Internet access, just log on to a FON Access Point, and you can use the Internet for free. You don’t need to take your router with you – you just need to remember your Fonero login and password.

But it then rises close to genius by making the following distinction:

# Most of us are Linuses. That means that we share our WiFi at home and in return get free WiFi wherever we find a FON Access Point.

# Aliens are people who don’t share their WiFi yet. We charge them just €/$ 3 for a Day Pass to access the FON Community.

# Bills are in business and so want to make some money from their WiFi. Instead of free roaming, they get a 50% share of the money that Aliens pay to access the Community through their FON Access Point.

And now, you can get La Fonera - a WiFi access point that joins you to the FON network - for just a few Euros.

So what's my problem? Maybe it's this:

Interestingly this video was shot with a Nokia N80 (disclosure I am on Nokia's Internet Board) and sent over wifi to a Fonera (disclosure I am the CEO of Fon) which automatically posted the clip in VPOD (disclosure I am an investor in Vpod.tv) which is then linked to my blog which is in Moveable Type (disclosure, two good friends of mine Loic Le Meur and Joichi Ito who are partners in Six Apart well known bloggers and members of the Japan and French Fon boards).

Disclosure: this makes me sick. (Via GigaOM.)

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