Free Wi-Fi for Apple iPhone users at Starbucks

FREE AT&T Wi-Fi access is now available for Apple iPhone users at Starbucks equipped with a hotspot. Users can relax and access music, email and web browsing services with their favorite coffee in hand from the comfort of their nearest location. Find an AT&T Wi-Fi location near you.

This is how iPhone customers get started with Wi-Fi:

• Activate Wi-Fi from the settings icon on your iPhone
• Select "attwifi" from the list of available networks
• Enter your 10-digit mobile number and check the box to agree to the Acceptable Use Policy. Tap 'continue'
• You will receive a text message from AT&T with a secure link to the AT&T Wi-Fi hotspot. You will not be charged for the text message.
• The SMS link will be valid for 24 hours at the location it was requested. Another request must be submitted when using another hotspot location.
• Open the text message and tap on the link for 24-hour access to the AT&T Wi-Fi hotspot

Several of you have suggested this idea:

11/11/2008 10:27 AM

Why in the hell would anyone with an iphone, myself included, go through all that sign-up, sign-in crap when they are ALWAYS connected to a 3-G network???????? Is this another marketing ploy?

11/11/2008 11:07 AM

It's AT&T attempting to limit us to just the iPhone and not allowing laptops and such use the access.  During its brief roll-out of this support three months ago, there was mass "abuse" and AT&T went back to the drawing board.  This was the solution. Clumsy and stupid.  The joke about this is that you can still get around this and use the free time on your laptop if you want.

Truth is, AT&T (as was T-Mobile) are dumping a lot of money into each hotspot.  With a T1 (which can cost up to $800 a month), a Cisco 1841 router, Cisco AP, wall-mount rack, APC power strip, and labor associated to all of this, it's not cheap to put these in.  Most mom-and-pop shops are doing DSL through a Linksys router.  With a few people on the mom-and-pop network, speeds suffer.  AT&T's set up won't.  You get what you "pay" for.

That said,  I still agree, AT&T needs to work with Apple to better stream line this process.  The iPhone should just pass its credentials to the AT&T router and you're on.  Done!

11/11/2008 12:12 PM

Quote: "With a T1 (which can cost up to $800 a month), a Cisco 1841 router, Cisco AP, wall-mount rack, APC power strip, and labor associated to all of this, it's not cheap to put these in."

Why not just stick a Meraki on it? skip all the hardware, ignore the wireless companies and provide a low cost solution with all the control necessary.

11/11/2008 1:39 PM

hey, it's great!!!!

11/11/2008 2:01 PM

This is awesome, totally appreciate the free access, but it's a little clunky to get online. It'd be great if AT&T WiFi Hotspots could pick up that it's an iPhone, connect and grant access automatically. It'd save AT&T money on bandwidth use, frankly, and take strain off the 3G network by pushing data through a much lower cost method.

(And, if it's a terms of service issue, work with AT&T and make it a part of your mobile phone contract.)

But this is still awesome, and I'll use it a lot! Thank you!

11/11/2008 4:36 PM

Gimmicks, Gimmicks.  Just make it free to everyone instead of trying to make a few Starbux cronies feel important because they get free refills and internet.  Maybe you'll get some of Paneras overflowing business.  

11/13/2008 6:55 PM

anyway to make this work for Ipod touch folks as well?

12/17/2008 3:02 PM

You left out a step describing how you have to open Safari to access the page where you enter your phone number....

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