T-Mobile Wi-Fi/Cell Phones Go Nationwide
By Eric Griffith
June 27, 2007
Amid all the iPhone hype this week, T-Mobile USA (part of Deutsche Telekom (Quote)) has something to say as well: mobile phones don’t have to break the bank, when you can make calls over both cell towers and Wi-Fi routers -- and, delivering on a promise made years ago, those calls won’t be dropped as you switch between networks. Homes with poor cell coverage can still make calls if Wi-Fi access is made available.
That’s the gist of the company’s Hotspot @Home service, which is going nationwide today after several months of trials in the Seattle area. With this service and a dual-mode phone supporting both T-Mobile’s GSM/GPRS/EDGE network and Wi-Fi, users can make unlimited calls by adding $10 a month, or $20 a month for up to five lines on a family plan, to an existing T-Mobile phone account. The "unlimited" part only includes the VoIP calls made via Wi-Fi, of course – except if the call started on the Wi-Fi side. If the call then roams to the cell network, it remains unmetered.
Investor research firm ThinkEquity calls this fixed/mobile convergence (F/MC) launch by T-Mobile “the most important architectural shift in cell phone technology since the introduction of digital GSM in 1992.”
Wednesday, June 27, 2007 | Your own little cellular tower: T-Mobile phones ride your wireless router | By Associated Press