Wireless hotspot users can get 50 percent more for their money from BT Openzone, after the operator launched a "90 minutes for the price of 60" promotion that runs until 31 January 2007.
However, the deal is poor value compared to other hotspot deals. It applies only to its £6 one-hour voucher, which now offers 90 non-consecutive minutes if used within 24 hours. There's no corresponding offer for the longer-term vouchers, such as the 24-hour or 30-day products.
Despite the fact that BT offers a range of price plans, there's also still no way for a user with moderate but sporadic usage patterns to avoid either paying for large amounts of time they never use because the vouchers all have tight expiry dates, or having to pay per minute, which is hugely expensive. This scheme costs 20 times more for each minute than a 30-day voucher – which expires after one month.
Compare this to T-Mobile's subscription plan, which offers unlimited minutes for £20 per month, and BT's price plans still look poor value.
That's especially true compared with remote access provider Sirocom, which has been forced to provide Wi-Fi access for nothing as customers are reluctant to pay for it, Techworld reports. The Sirocom bundles include a pool of hours per month, to be used by any user within the customer company. After six months, Wi-Fi will no longer be free, said business development manager Barrie Desmond. "But monthly fees won't go up by more than 20 percent. It's not like getting people hooked on heroin," he said.