Bitbuzz signs transatlantic Wi-Fi roaming deal


10 May 2005

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High-growth Irish Wi-Fi provider Bitbuzz has signed a roaming agreement with California-based Wi-Fi hotspot player Boingo Wireless that will enable executives travelling from the US and Europe to use more than 50 wireless locations around Ireland. In turn, the deal will give Irish business travellers access to some 17,000 Wi-Fi hotspots worldwide.

The deal follows an alliance forged last month between Bitbuzz and Vodafone that will see users of both companies’ Wi-Fi services to roam across more than 140 hotspots in Ireland.

“Partnering with a Wi-Fi pioneer such as Boingo perfectly complements our strategic mission as we continue to develop new services and collaborate with industry leaders to facilitate the growth of Wi-Fi throughout Ireland,” said Stephen McCormack, director of alliances for Bitbuzz.

Boingo’s growing European network now includes 7,000 hotspots under contract in more than 18 European countries as part of the global network of more than 17,000 Wi-Fi hotspots worldwide.

Boingo combines the locations of more than 90 leading Wi-Fi operators into one worldwide network, allowing the user to roam on to any of these locations with a single subscription using the company’s free Wi-Fi client software.

Boingo also partners with service providers to allow their users to access these hotspots through its Boingo Platform Services program. The program provides partners with access to this network, customised client software, and a full suite of back-office billing, roaming, mediation and clearinghouse services to allow them to offer their own Wi-Fi service quickly and cost effectively. To date, the company has announced Platform Services partnerships with Earthlink, Fiberlink, Infonet Services Corp, MCI and Telecom Italia.

“Ireland has emerged as a growing, well-travelled business region and our partnership with Bitbuzz opens up key hospitality locations, increasing our service footprint for our business subscribers in this important location,” said Colby Goff, Boingo vice-president of network strategy.

By John Kennedy