BSkyB to buy The Cloud

BSkyB is expected to complete the acquisition of The Cloud network this week, a move which will offer its 2.8 million broadband customers access to Wi-Fi hotspots.

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The deal, expected to be announced when BSkyB releases its quarterly results on Thursday according to reports, will give it access to a network of Wi-Fi hotspots in hotels, airports and shopping centres across the UK.

Sky already provides subscribers with access to its own and third-party channels over the internet.

The move would pit BSkyB against BT, which has its own network of Wi-Fi hotspots, while last November Virgin Media CEO Neil Berkett indicated it too might launch a hotspot network in areas where it could justify the investment.

BT tied up with location-based ad network JiWire at the end of last year to help it monetise landing pages across its 185,000 Wi-Fi hotspots.

The Cloud, established in 2003, is available in Marriott hotels and branches of McDonald’s and Pret a Manger. It’s backed by venture capital groups DFJ Esprit and Accel Partners.

This story first appeared on newmediaage.co.uk

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