Time Warner goes WiFi with Fon

Madrid-based WiFi startup Fon received a big boost from Time Warner. The cable company is teaming with Fon to let home broadband customers turn their connections into public wireless hotspots. Time Warner currently has about 6.6 million broadband subscribers.

The deal is a big plus for Fon, which has had lots of success with European ISPs but so far has experienced limited traction in the states.  Fon, which calls its WiFi hotspot members Foneros, has about 60,000 Foneros in the U.S. Nevertheless, the company has attracted some big-name investors: Skype, Google and others have invested $21 million in the company.

Foneros can decide how much of their bandwidth to share with the public and can log on to any Fon router without charge. "Aliens," as Fon calls nonmembers, can register on a webpage and pay a modest $2 or $3 for 24 hours of access. In the U.S., where it costs $10 for a day pass to use a T-Mobile HotSpot at a Starbucks, Fon's economics seem particularly appealing.

For more on Time Warner's deal with Fon:
- check out this article from WTOP News