Boingo Wireless and Vonage today announced a relationship that teams two industry innovators in an effort to simplify voice over Wi-Fi services and make them more accessible to customers.
In the first phase of their partnership, the companies have agreed to co-market a service bundle that includes Vonage's SoftPhone service and Boingo's Wi-Fi service. The XPRO SoftPhone, from XTEN, the preferred Softphone Client utilized by Vonage is available for personal computers running Windows 98SE/NT/ME/2000/XP/MACOS-X operating systems. Mobile travelers using this product can access the Vonage service from almost any Internet connected personal computer. It provides increased mobility of the Vonage service, while maintaining the same quality of service consumers have come to expect from Vonage.
This offering targets business travelers, enabling them to make and take phone calls at Boingo's network of 11,000 airports, cafes, and hotels around the world. The companies will conduct a trial before the end of the year and expect to rollout the offering to major retail locations where consumers can now purchase the Vonage service.
Wireless VoIP is an outgrowth of the dramatic success of enterprise and consumer VoIP services, which shuttle telephone calls across the Internet rather than using the traditional circuit-switched telephone network. Analysts estimate that growth in wireless VoIP will be spurred on by the growth of public Wi-Fi networks and the availability of Wi-Fi enabled phones due to hit the market by the end of the year.
The Vonage agreement is the first step in Boingo's comprehensive VoIP strategy, integrating a new class of device software into non-PC devices like mobile phones to login and authenticate onto any of the thousands of hot spots in the Boingo Roaming System. The device software provides essential Wi-Fi services including signal sniffing, authentication, network selection, and profile management -- and can be private labeled for major service providers.