Deutsche Telekom (DT) and global Wi-Fi provider Fon have unveiled a new partnership which will enable the Bonn-based operator to launch Germany’s largest Wi-Fi network. With ‘WLAN TO GO’, users who share their home Wi-Fi with other users will gain access to around eight million FON hotspots across the world, free of charge, from the summer of 2013. ‘The partnership with FON fits perfectly with Telekom’s network expansion strategy,’ said DT’s CEO Rene Obermann, adding: ‘The astonishing increase in data traffic calls for network optimisation and expansion, as well as the implementation of new high speed networks. By the year 2016, we want to set up more than 2.5 million additional hotspots in Germany with the WLAN TO GO offering. With our technology mix of mobile communication, fixed lines and Wi-Fi, we can gradually introduce our customers to the benefits of internet access anywhere and anytime.’ With a presence in countries such as the UK, France, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Croatia and Brazil, Fon was founded in 2006 by telecom entrepreneur Martin Varsavsky. Later this year, DT will also launch the Fon service through its national companies in Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, Slovakia and Hungary. The German company plans to invest EUR30 billion (USD39 billion) in networks, IT and products by 2016.
In a separate announcement, DT has said that it has updated its brand design to support its corporate strategy, as well as the growing importance of innovative strength and partnerships in the digital world. The company said that the refreshed identity ‘focuses on a clear, distinctive and consistent perception of the brand across all customer contact points’. Tobias Schmidt, head of brand management noted: ‘With the evolution of our brand identity, we are anticipating changes in the competitive environment. We are not using design as an end in itself, but rather to support the group’s strategic focus.’ DT said that it will continue to use established brand elements, such as the T-Logo and the group colour magenta.