Remember when AT&T launched their iPhone-specific AT&T HotSpot WiFi portal, only to remove the free service the next day? Right, well, it looks like the service has been officially rolled out (however briefly) for iPhone customers with legit, AT&T-locked iPhones – those with unlocked iPhones or non-iPhone plans on AT&T won’t be getting the benefit of free access to AT&T WiFi HotSpots.
AT&T added a little tidbit to iPhone rate plan details, confirming that iPhone users can log into AT&T WiFi HotSpots for free:
To use iPhone, you’ll need to sign up for a 2-year service agreement. Plans start at $59.99 and include Visual Voicemail, Unlimited Data (email and web), 200 SMS text messages and access to AT&T’s more than 17,000 Wi-Fi hotspots, including Starbucks* all for use in the U.S.
*Wi-Fi available at U.S. company operated Starbucks locations equipped with a hotspot.
Unfortunately, the reference to AT&T WiFi HotSpot access was removed shortly afterwards, indicating that AT&T is still not ready to roll out the free WiFi HotSpot service to iPhone customers. We presume the delay in launching the service could be AT&T’s ongoing conversion of Starbucks locations to AT&T WiFi HotSpot service.
There are apparently over 17,000 AT&T WiFi HotSpots across the US, and with AT&T rolling out their HotSpot service at all Starbucks and Barnes & Nobles locations, iPhone customers can look forward to speedy WiFi data connections around every corner. The service is a virtual lock for the near future, it’s only a matter of time.