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Steve Jobs Interested in Wi-Fi Sharing

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Oct 30, 2007.

  1. macrumors bot



    AppleInsider reports that Steve Jobs recently met with Martin Varsavsky about FON, a company that is trying to provide "WiFi for Everyone". Steve Jobs was reportedly "very interested" in FON's technology and service.

    FON is described as the largest WiFi community in the world and works by offering users a community WiFi router that allows individuals to securely share their internet connection. In exchange for setting up this public WiFi node, you are allowed to use other FON users' WiFi spots around the world.
    FON addresses security concerns by separating the connection into an encrypted private and public network.

    Apple is likely interested in the possibility of a public Wifi network for use with its iPhone and iPod touch devices.

    Article Link
  2. macrumors Penryn


    I'm up for free wi-fi access. What keeps anyone from using iPhone or iPod access though? ;)
  3. arn
    macrumors god


    Staff Member

    Password protected. you need to be a FON user.

  4. macrumors Penryn


    Seems an interesting way of getting widespread wifi access. I keep reading about towns/villages/cities trying to do it and failing miserably.
  5. macrumors 6502a


    free public wifi everywhere.

    opensource internet.

    welcome to the future.
  6. macrumors Penryn


    That is true for FON but you can set open access as well.

    What I meant was for open spots specifically for the iPod Touch and iPhone. ;)
  7. macrumors 65816


    This is a genius idea -- I really hope Apple goes with it.
  8. macrumors regular

    Does anyone know the nitty gritty details of how it works?
  9. macrumors 6502a


    I wish there was some way to tell where Wi-Fi hotspots were located.

    There doesn't seem to be any reliable mapping system or register or anything really. A few websites that aren't complete.

    You kind of have to walk around like Mr. Magoo, hoping to run into a hotspot.
  10. macrumors 6502a

    it doesn't. we have such a free router but are unable to set it up with our Macs in the home...
  11. macrumors 68000


    Does anyone know how ISP will respond to this?
  12. macrumors member

    I'm sure the Cable companies aren't very happy with this news. I wouldn't be surprised if FON users found their service terminated not long after they started sharing their internet connection.

    It sounds like a great concept, provided the ISPs don't try to put up a fight.
  13. macrumors member

    My thoughts exactly. :)
  14. macrumors P6


    I wonder if Google will have a part to play in something like this based on the current rumors...
  15. macrumors member


    with free wi-fi who really needs at&t!? i mean just install Skype on the iphone and call all your friends all the time!!! :D

    /me waits for macbook....
  16. macrumors 68000

    I wonder if cable companies can say something like, "you can't string your cable to your neighbors so they can watch TV, same goes for your Internet"

    It will be interesting to see how this plays out.
  17. macrumors 601

    The main challenge being that almost all consumers have a "use" agreement that prohibits them from sharing their connections in this way. I think the idea is fantastic, but the cell phone companies (who just happen to also be the companies on the other end of your DSL/cable modem connections that you might share if you wanted to do this) want to be sure that a world of free wifi doesn't exist, and thus endanger very, VERY lucrative cell phone revenue streams.

    With broad adoption of a FON concept, plus iphones with software like SKYPE, it is easy to imagine near free wireless communications (cell phone industry nearly killed in a single shot). But, let's see if any FON scenario every allows us to get there.
  18. macrumors 65816


    i'd rather keep my Wifi and bandwidth to myself. better speed for me.

    it's what i pay for.

    there would need to be a good reason to share for me to change my mind.
  19. macrumors regular

    I have been a FON user for about a year and had no problems. There is one problem. I have never seen another FON network that I could use. I feel like I am the lone voice screaming into the wind.
  20. macrumors 6502


    how about being able to connect to others' spots?
  21. macrumors 65816


    How about Mr. Jobs and company give the iPhone and iPod Touch the capability to connect to wireless networks that require 802.1x authentication schemes first, then worry about these other Wi-Fi plans.
  22. macrumors G4

    This is the way the Internet used to be, back when I first used it. There were no commercial ISPs and no one paid for a connection to the Internet. They paid for a connection to someone else that had a conection to the 'net. Likely you paid for several conections to several different people who had a conection. It was a real "network" not a service like you get from a cable company.

    This is a return to a user run network. Just think.If everyone had wifi and everyone shared it with four of their neighbors. then everyone would have access to enormous bandwidth although routing would be more complex.

    Until the Earth is covered with this we's still have to pay the telcoms to move data between islands of conectivity, but those islands could grow to be the size of a city.

    wifi can cover have a surprising distance. If two people use directional antenna and have a true line of sight between them 10 miles is "easy"
  23. macrumors regular


    What if someone uses your connection to hack into the Pentagon, or share child porn, or something like that ?

    I guess you would get all the blame, right ?
  24. macrumors regular

    Wouldn't work in Australia, where you pay for your internet connection by volume (downloads, and recently, even uploads on some ISPs!). Free wifi is a pipe dream :)
  25. macrumors regular

    Most consumer ISP's already have this clause in the user agreement.

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