The service is free but only to those who are paid subscribers to AT&T’s LaptopConnect Service. AT&T said the service is available to customers who subscribe to a monthly DataConnect plan of $59.99 or more.
LaptopConnect provides customers with a decent enough 3G web connection. Unfortunately this connection can be a little slow on occasion (if you’re indoors, concrete and steel can sometimes interfere with and slow down your connection) and so, AT&T has announced it will offer users the choice to switch to a wireless connection should they find themselves within range.
According to AT&T, LaptopConnect customers will now receive a pop-up message telling them when they’re in range of an AT&T Wi-Fi hotspot. From there, as long as the users’ have downloaded the latest AT&T Communications Manager software (AT&T Communication Manager v6.8 or higher) they can choose whether or not they want to switch to using the faster Wi-Fi service.
Unfortunately support for free Wi-Fi using AT&T Communication Manager is only for laptops running Windows operating systems so if you’re using Leopard, Linux or anything else but Windows, you won’t be using LaptopConnect to hook you up with free Wi-Fi just yet.
AT&T recently switched on free Wi-Fi for its iPhone customers, which it subsequently switched off. It then announced the service on the website but pulled the announcement a few hours later. Not long after that the company had a mysterious product labelled iPhone Black listed on the website.
AT&T put the on again-off again iPhone WiFi down to "human error". Basically someone let the "free Wi-Fi for iPhone users" cat out of the bag a little early. Ok, so accidents happen. Next? The iPhone Black rumour was pegged as being an error on the webpage, which doesn’t really do much to convince us it wasn’t a reference to the forthcoming 3G iPhone, which is apparently going to be black.
For more information on AT&T’s LaptopConnect click here.