The joys of random WiFi hotspots (and discovering them)

Claypidgeon

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 30, 2007
44
0
One thing I've noticed living with the iPhone is I'm finding random WiFi hotspots that I never knew about previously. For example, I was in the local Vons grocery store earlier this week and looking up something in Safari when I got a random notification asking if I wanted to join the "Vons" WiFi network. I did, and was redirected to a page explaining that they provid free WiFi for their shoppers. I quickly sent an SMS to my wife stating I wouldn't mind going to the grocery store so much in the future. :)

Just wondering if others are having similar experiences.
 

janey

macrumors 603
Dec 20, 2002
5,319
0
sunny los angeles
whole foods does that in a lot of locations.

i have a hard time finding open networks usually though, and you can't really just walk around and stay connected, so..
 

mcdj

macrumors G3
Jul 10, 2007
8,894
4,074
NYC
I don't keep my wifi on, but I have found some pleasant surprises here and there. But more than ever I'm wishing T-Mobile would make their Starbucks HotSpots more affordable. $30 a month is kinda ridiculous. Here in NYC there are 2 Starbucks for every Starbucks. I find myself in one several times a week, and I'm starting to think T-Mobile has deployed AT&T EDGE scramblers to entice me to spring for the monthly service. I get like 50kbps inside the Bux near me.
 

hotsauce

macrumors 6502a
Sep 7, 2005
662
90
Wirelessly posted (Apple Communication Device: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU like Mac OS X; en) AppleWebKit/420+ (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.0 Mobile/1A543a Safari/419.3)

I was surprised by how many unprotected wifi networks there are in my neighborhood. People are either very generous or I live in a retirement community.
 

Decagon

macrumors newbie
Jul 26, 2007
4
0
Caution

Be careful when randomly using free WiFi. There are publicized security issues that allow exploitation over WiFi. Make sure you trust the WiFi network you use, and visit only trusted sites over public WiFi. Hope this saves someone a future problem.
 

SpankyPenzaanz

macrumors 6502a
Sep 4, 2006
705
0
I don't keep my wifi on, but I have found some pleasant surprises here and there. But more than ever I'm wishing T-Mobile would make their Starbucks HotSpots more affordable. $30 a month is kinda ridiculous. Here in NYC there are 2 Starbucks for every Starbucks. I find myself in one several times a week, and I'm starting to think T-Mobile has deployed AT&T EDGE scramblers to entice me to spring for the monthly service. I get like 50kbps inside the Bux near me.
While starbucks uses tmobile, I have noticed that Barnes&Noble Starbucks Cafes uses ATT (at least here in atlanta)
 

applehero

macrumors 6502
Jun 12, 2007
448
0
29º 25' 26"N, 95º 29' 36"W
My brother(at&t employee) sent this to me, thought I'd share....

AT&T gives higher speed broadband customers free access to nation's largest Wi-Fi network

July 2, 2007
AT&T Inc. today announced that millions of its customers with higher speed broadband plans can now receive free access to AT&T's nationwide Wi-Fi network — nearly 10,000 hot spots at popular locations across the country including leading airports, McDonalds restaurants, Barnes & Noble bookstores, coffee shops and popular sporting venues.

With the proliferation of Wi-Fi-enabled devices including, most recently, the iPhone but also laptops, wireless music systems and PDAs, consumers are increasingly looking for on-the-go Internet connections. As the nation's premier provider of broadband service and with the nation's largest Wi-Fi network, AT&T offers consumers more high speed in more places.*

Effective now, qualifying new and existing residential and small business AT&T broadband customers instantly benefit from the free unlimited Wi-Fi connectivity at company hot spots. Qualifying AT&T broadband packages include: AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet Pro (up to 3.0 Mbps downstream), AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet Elite (up to 6.0 Mbps downstream), FastAccess Xtreme (up to 3.0 Mbps downstream) and FastAccess Xtreme 6.0 (up to 6.0 Mbps downstream).

"Consumers are increasingly demanding anytime, anywhere connectivity, and AT&T is uniquely able to deliver on their need for mobility, whether it's broadband or wireless services," said Rick Welday, chief marketing officer, AT&T Consumer. "Providing customers with more high speed access in more places also gives us a competitive edge because we're able to offer an on-the-go broadband experience that cable can't match."

In related news, AT&T also announced two new offers which allow residential customers to experience Wi-Fi benefits in the comfort of their own home — still free of charge and free of wires when using an AT&T Wireless (Wi-Fi) Gateway.

The AT&T Wireless Gateway enables residential broadband customers to roam — untethered — throughout virtually any room in the home and receive fast access to the Web using multiple Wi-Fi-enabled devices. Hundreds of thousands of AT&T broadband customers already have home Wi-Fi gateways; AT&T ships an average of nearly 7,000 a day.

The new residential gateway offers include:

A free wireless gateway, after mail-in rebate or instant credit, for AT&T wireless customers who order new AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet Pro or Elite, or new FastAccess Xtreme or Xtreme 6.0 broadband service. The offer is now available in select AT&T retail and dealer locations.


Beginning July 6, new orders placed online for AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet Pro or Elite, or new FastAccess Xtreme or Xtreme 6.0 will qualify for a free wireless gateway after mail-in rebate or instant credit.

New broadband customers will immediately benefit from the free Wi-Fi offer upon signing up for the qualified broadband plans at an AT&T retail store, online at http://www.att.com/ or through a company call center. Wi-Fi connectivity will be activated once customers receive their new broadband service and complete both the setup and the registration process as a new customer. Existing AT&T broadband customers who already subscribe to qualifying speed packages can immediately log in to AT&T Wi-Fi hot spots, at no charge, by using the master account user name and password created for their broadband service.

AT&T is the premier provider of broadband service, with 12.9 million broadband lines in service as of the first quarter of 2007, with the nation's largest Wi-Fi network.

* Based on nonmunicipal, company-owned and operated hot spots.


Here's the locator link....
http://www.wireless.att.com/wifilocator
 

Yankees 4 Life

macrumors 6502a
Jun 25, 2007
526
0
College Station, Tx
My brother(at&t employee) sent this to me, thought I'd share....

AT&T gives higher speed broadband customers free access to nation's largest Wi-Fi network

July 2, 2007
AT&T Inc. today announced that millions of its customers with higher speed broadband plans can now receive free access to AT&T's nationwide Wi-Fi network — nearly 10,000 hot spots at popular locations across the country including leading airports, McDonalds restaurants, Barnes & Noble bookstores, coffee shops and popular sporting venues.

With the proliferation of Wi-Fi-enabled devices including, most recently, the iPhone but also laptops, wireless music systems and PDAs, consumers are increasingly looking for on-the-go Internet connections. As the nation's premier provider of broadband service and with the nation's largest Wi-Fi network, AT&T offers consumers more high speed in more places.*

Effective now, qualifying new and existing residential and small business AT&T broadband customers instantly benefit from the free unlimited Wi-Fi connectivity at company hot spots. Qualifying AT&T broadband packages include: AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet Pro (up to 3.0 Mbps downstream), AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet Elite (up to 6.0 Mbps downstream), FastAccess Xtreme (up to 3.0 Mbps downstream) and FastAccess Xtreme 6.0 (up to 6.0 Mbps downstream).

"Consumers are increasingly demanding anytime, anywhere connectivity, and AT&T is uniquely able to deliver on their need for mobility, whether it's broadband or wireless services," said Rick Welday, chief marketing officer, AT&T Consumer. "Providing customers with more high speed access in more places also gives us a competitive edge because we're able to offer an on-the-go broadband experience that cable can't match."

In related news, AT&T also announced two new offers which allow residential customers to experience Wi-Fi benefits in the comfort of their own home — still free of charge and free of wires when using an AT&T Wireless (Wi-Fi) Gateway.

The AT&T Wireless Gateway enables residential broadband customers to roam — untethered — throughout virtually any room in the home and receive fast access to the Web using multiple Wi-Fi-enabled devices. Hundreds of thousands of AT&T broadband customers already have home Wi-Fi gateways; AT&T ships an average of nearly 7,000 a day.

The new residential gateway offers include:

A free wireless gateway, after mail-in rebate or instant credit, for AT&T wireless customers who order new AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet Pro or Elite, or new FastAccess Xtreme or Xtreme 6.0 broadband service. The offer is now available in select AT&T retail and dealer locations.


Beginning July 6, new orders placed online for AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet Pro or Elite, or new FastAccess Xtreme or Xtreme 6.0 will qualify for a free wireless gateway after mail-in rebate or instant credit.

New broadband customers will immediately benefit from the free Wi-Fi offer upon signing up for the qualified broadband plans at an AT&T retail store, online at http://www.att.com/ or through a company call center. Wi-Fi connectivity will be activated once customers receive their new broadband service and complete both the setup and the registration process as a new customer. Existing AT&T broadband customers who already subscribe to qualifying speed packages can immediately log in to AT&T Wi-Fi hot spots, at no charge, by using the master account user name and password created for their broadband service.

AT&T is the premier provider of broadband service, with 12.9 million broadband lines in service as of the first quarter of 2007, with the nation's largest Wi-Fi network.

* Based on nonmunicipal, company-owned and operated hot spots.


Here's the locator link....
http://www.wireless.att.com/wifilocator
I am so jealous i am not an att subscriber of the high dsl, or i would be in love with this service
 

SpankyPenzaanz

macrumors 6502a
Sep 4, 2006
705
0
My father uses ATT business dsl at his office. I wonder if there are any new perks there that maybe I can exploit for my own gain:D
 

lilnyc

macrumors 6502a
Jun 5, 2007
518
0
...I'm wishing T-Mobile would make their Starbucks HotSpots more affordable. $30 a month is kinda ridiculous. Here in NYC there are 2 Starbucks for every Starbucks. I find myself in one several times a week, and I'm starting to think T-Mobile has deployed AT&T EDGE scramblers to entice me to spring for the monthly service. I get like 50kbps inside the Bux near me.
I made the mistake of signing up for T-Mobile's hotspot service for 1 year. Now i can't get out of it, and i don't use it. So I'm paying $30/mo. for nothing.
 

Claypidgeon

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 30, 2007
44
0
I made the mistake of signing up for T-Mobile's hotspot service for 1 year. Now i can't get out of it, and i don't use it. So I'm paying $30/mo. for nothing.
I travel frequently (around 25-50% time) and found my self paying for around 5 or the $9 "day passes" every month. I finally switched to the $30/month plan and didn't use it for almost three months after that point. Now that I have the iPhone, I'm using it all the time :)

I had an old dial-up account I was still paying $15/month for, "just in case", so canceling that meant I was only really bumping up my commitments $15/month.