The “Mother” scoop has confirmed my suspects

Hi there all.

Did you remember my post on 15th of september , in which I told my scepticism about the real coverage of FON network. It was made based on empirical data , only selecting different areas of Italy and see that only 10% of registered foneros had turn their router on.

Now Mike Puchol aka “Mother” , yesterday has written an interesting post on the some topic , but with precious informations gathered with a special query to maps.fon.com.

The post fired-up the blogosphere and at least 5 blogs tracked back this news and started to flame about FON’s vaporware.

This time FON acted quickly and after only 2 hours of post appearance , they cancelled the famous query , (or changed the database behaviour , I don’t know ) and even Martin Varsavsky replied in the Mother’s blog.

So what is the meaning of all this stuff. My point of view is this : FON acted correctly , giving away cheap routers to everybody , but they cannot control their users.  The 90% of the people who receive the router at their home , made like this :

  • part of them sold it in ebay (i found some auctions in the past )
  • part of them reflashed it and use it at home
  • part of them , once unpacked and tried to connect with FON , simply gave up and put it in the garbage bin.

The remaining 10% , in which I include myself , or simply found the router working out of the box , or tried to find the way (unattended by FON tech staff) to make things work.

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