Tension mounts in dongle war as o2 takes Starbucks
The latest battleground for mobile phone providers seems to be the kingdom of the dongle, or to use grown-up parlance, mobile broadband.
As we gamely attempt to keep up the military speak, o2 have launched a major offensive by joining forces with BT Openzone and adding the latter company’s wi-fi hotspots to their portfolio, ramping up o2’s total number of hotspots by a further 3,000. That’s in addition to the 5,000 sites they already inhabit as part of their ‘Cloud’ network (and the military analogies slowly fade away and are quickly forgotten as cold, hard facts get in the way.)
It’s great news if you’ve got o2’s pay as you go mobile broadband, as you’ll get free access at those 8,000 sites, which include most branches of Starbucks. A half-price PAYG dongle offer was due to end last night, but may well be back again soon (if it’s not extended straight away) as o2 aggressively try to make their mark on the mobile broadband market. Add Quidco into the mix and you could even get your dongle and a month’s PAYG for about this much – nothing.