<font size="3">Payphone deal to take Cloud's hotspot tally to 10,000</font>
Pub-based Wi-Fi network The Cloud is to expand its chain of 1800-odd hotspots to as many as 10,000, thanks to deal signed with payphone company NWP Spectrum.
The agreement will see The Cloud add Wi-Fi to many of NWP's 7000 payphone installations throughout the UK. That's in addition to the 3000 hotspots The Cloud plans to have in place by the end of the year.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Work will start fitting access points immediately, but the companies did not say when the roll-out process will be complete. According to a spokesman for The Cloud, implementation is being governed by demand, with the busiest sites being 'upgraded' first.
NWP provides payphone services on the High Street, and through partners - it manages London Underground's payphone installations, for example, along with those in the UK's airports, Welcome Break and Hilton hotels. The company also operates around 3000 payphone sites in Germany.
Both parties are touting the plan as a massive extension to the UK's Wi-Fi coverage, but there's still little evidence to show there are enough people out there willing to make use of all these extra hotspots - even less for the number of folk happy to pay for it.