AT&T, Starbucks Join in Free Hot Spots
By Anna Marie Kukec
Starting Thursday, AT&T broadband subscribers will have free access to Wi-Fi in about 7,000 Starbucks nationwide, including 100 in the Chicago and suburban area.
AT&T already has Wi-Fi deals with Barnes & Noble, McDonald’s and several airports nationwide.
“The free element of this agreement is tied to our broadband packages, as we announced last year,” said AT&T spokeswoman Meghan Roskopf.
AT&T broadband customers with Express, Pro or Elite high-speed Internet services, or AT&T high-speed Internet U-verse-enabled services, will get free access to a total of 17,000 hot spots – which includes the Starbucks locations and other AT&T hot spots. Those packages begin at $25 per month for Express service.
Customers could use their regular user name and password on the co-branded Web site. When you first set up your broadband service, you’ll create a user name and password and the site will prompt you for that information, she said.
Once you open your laptop at a Starbucks, you’ll select “ATTWiFi” and follow the prompts.
AT&T told shareholders at its annual meeting last week about the free Wi-Fi. It has already launched in San Antonio and will be rolling out nationwide this week.
For others who don’t currently subscribe to AT&T broadband, the service will include a mix of free and paid connection options for both frequent and occasional Wi-Fi users and qualifying Starbucks customers.
To find a Wi-Fi spot, see www.starbucks.com/retail/wireless.asp or www.attwifi.com.
Surfing: Northern Trust has relaunched its Web site, www.northerntrust.com, to include a navigation system targeted to users based on geography and their personal or institutional service channel. It also offers expertise and services, in-depth product content and access to research and key subject matter experts, including a library of podcasts. Other updates include Google search capabilities, RSS (really simple syndication) feeds for regularly updated content and a subscription center where users can opt-in for information updates on company news, economic and investment research and articles on personal or institutional financial topics.
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