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BT today announced plans to set up Wi-Fi networks in more than 500 McDonald's UK fast food outlets over the next few months.

The BT Openzone access points will be installed in McDonald's flagship and drive-through "restaurants" by the end of March, taking the total number of BT Openzone live sites to more than 2,000. BT said the roll-out will be a major boost in its campaign to promote Wi-Fi across the UK.

BT is to run a free Wi-Fi Week at the end of the month. Intel has climbed on board to help with the promo and the addition of some McDonalds outlets - if any have gone live by then - will be a nice filip.

Extending BT's Openzone network into McDonald's outlets will give punters the ability to log on to the internet using wireless broadband, via their Wi-Fi enabled laptop or PDA, as they grab a bite to eat.

That's the idea anyway. BT and McDonald's reckon the service will cater to the need of road warriors stopping for a burger at McDonald's drive-through restaurants, while tempting newbies to try Wi-Fi for the first time.

McDonalds is no stranger to Wi-Fi. The company already has Wi-Fi agreements covering around 400 US restaurants in New York, San Francisco, Chicago and Philadelphia. Introducing services like Wi-Fi is part of McDonalds' plans to go upmarket pioneered in the States last year and now, as with most things to do with the company, transferred over to the UK. ®

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