Without A Net

Pop culture from Southern California and beyond.

Free wi-fi coming to Starbucks

Not that Starbucks doesn't already have a lot of business, but they're reaching out to the growing mobile crowd. Starbucks will be offering free, unlimited wi-fi in almost 7,000 locations starting July 1.

Starbucks is also going to be offering more free content to customers on their network, including access to the paid area of the Wall Street Journal and free downloads.

Starbucks has pursued an aggressive online strategy, using social networking to make their brand even bigger than it is currently. For example, they've been offering users of social location tool Foursquare discounts if they're frequent visitors.

The free wi-fi is going to be provided by AT&T, and it's actually a win-win for them as it will free up bandwidth on their 3G network, used by more and more devices (notably the Apple iPhone and iPad). AT&T has an interest in making wi-fi more widely available, as it will keep users happier since they won't have to deal with network connection over 3G.

(Via Computerworld)

Photo: Tom Pennington/Getty Images

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