Feeds

ChinaNet bestows free Wi-Fi upon lucky Android few

Shanghai phone booths get souped up

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

ChinaNet, the ISP brand of China Telecom, has launched a public Wi-Fi service in 500 of its Shanghai telephone booths, and while most users will have to pay Android handsets get in for free.

The service launched on 15 March, and covers the Yu Garden, Huaihai Road and the People's Square. ChinaNet helpfully describes the Wi-Fi service in the People's Daily as "18 times faster" than the existing 3G coverage, but it's the decision to provide free connectivity to Android devices using the ChinaNet dialler that has attracted most attention.

"The service should be offered free for all smartphone users regardless of their mobile OS," points out Asian Tech Blog Penn Olson, not unreasonably arguing that all mobile phones should be considered equal.

There has been much talk of tariffs based on the device being connected - laptop users could pay more than those with a tablet, while smartphone users pay less still on the grounds they consume less bandwidth, and so on. But as the categories of device blur together that gets difficult, and it's arguable how effective such a policy would be.

We've asked ChinaNet what's motivated them to give Android users a free ride, and we'll let you know when we hear back. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Mighty Blighty broadbanders beg: Let us lay cable in BT's, er, ducts
Complain to Ofcom that telco has 'effective monopoly'
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Driving business with continuous operational intelligence
Introducing an innovative approach offered by ExtraHop for producing continuous operational intelligence.
Why CIOs should rethink endpoint data protection in the age of mobility
Assessing trends in data protection, specifically with respect to mobile devices, BYOD, and remote employees.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.