As I was traveling and attending ZendCon earlier this week, I realized that it would be mighty handy to have a T-Mobile Hotspot account. There was a hotspot at the hotel that I ended up charging to my room (the conference wireless was incredibly spotty and I needed to get on the VPN, so my company paid for it), and there were hotspots in various other places we wandered through, like the San Francisco airport.
In the past, I’d seen a flyer advertising an upgrade to my phone data plan that included unlimited wifi access for an additional $10/month (my unlimited data plan is $20/month). I decided to look it up while at the hotel, and, much to my surprise, I discovered that T-Mobile is now offering combined unlimited GRPS/EDGE data and Wifi access at any of their hotspots for just $20/month (what I was already paying).
My current theory is that this is a (pretty smart) stopgap to compete with the 3G networks while they build out one of their own (having somewhat recently acquired airspace for it). I think it’ll work for now.