updated 09:15 am EDT, Mon October 8, 2007
American cellular carrier Alltel today launched Alltel Wi-Fi, a new service specifically for users who want to bring their short-range wireless devices online in public places. The plan teams up with Boingo Wireless and lets any user of a Wi-Fi-equipped notebook or smartphone connect both to Alltel's own locations as well as "thousands" of North and South American hotspots. The Internet connections peak at speeds up to 2.4Mbps and provide a real alternative to EVDO cellular access, according to Alltel.
Pricing for the Wi-Fi plan depends on existing service. An existing subscriber with an EVDO data plan can add Wi-Fi to the plan for $10 per month with unlimited access; those who only use phone service or a partial plan can still opt for a $22 monthly agreement. Non-subscribers can pay as they go to fill a gap in Internet access on a trip or a vacation, according to the company: users can pay as little as $8 for a single day's access or as much as $30 per month.