Virgin Media Due To End Free Tube Wi-Fi

Virgin Media have confirmed that tomorrow will be the last day that travellers on the London Underground will be able to use the free wi-fi service put on by the telecommunications company, with the already-extended trial period now ending to be replaced by a subscription package.

Virgin-Wifi-undergroundThe pilot project, which made the mobile internet signal available to all travellers on the underground train route in England’s capital, was originally to be made available for free throughout the 2012 Olympic Games last summer, though high consumer demand and popularity saw the trial rolled out further, but it now appears as though people who want to use the service later this week will need to pay for it after Virgin decided to begin their premium version.

The company tweeted their decision last week, announcing: “All change! Next Tuesday our WiFi on the Underground service is changing. To make things easy – we’ve sent you an email.”

The ‘premium version’ will cost users variable subscription rates (£2 per day, £5 per week, or £15 per month), though subscribers of any other Virgin service (Virgin TV, broadband, or phone) will be able to use it for free, as will ‘mobile contract holders’ with EE, Orange, T-Mobile, or Vodafone, following a deal between them and Virgin made last November relating to the initiative.

Virgin Media broadband executive Jon James added of the developments: “WiFi on London Underground has been an incredible success with over 700,000 people already online and a remarkable million sessions every day.”

The service is accessible in 92 stations (on platforms only, with no signal on train routes), with plans to expand to another 28, although that option for many will not be a free one for much longer…

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2 Comments

  1. Traveler
    Traveler January 28, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    Why not keep it “free’ish” with advertiser support? There are plenty of services (ie. Ji-Wire.com, Hotspotrevenue.com etc) that offer a monetization plan that could support giving free Wi-Fi to the masses and having the Virgin still make a profit in the process.

    Seems like a better business model….imho.

  2. Microsoft Partner With The Cloud For Free WiFi At UK Train Stations

    [...] Following the lead of Virgin Media, Microsoft are attempting to appeal to commuters in the UK with the promise of ‘free WiFi’, even if only temporary, after teaming up with The Cloud to offer ‘unlimited free WiFi’ for selected railway stations in the UK. [...]

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