Opening up wifi on the move a little more, UK satellite broadcaster BSkyB (Sky) is launching access to free, unlimited and high-speed WiFi for Sky Broadband customers, at thousands of locations across the UK later this month via The Cloud.

Over 4,000 Wifi Hotspots have been added to The Cloud’s network since the start of this year including coffee shops, transport hubs and shopping centres, basically places that people will find useful.

According to Sky, around four million people every day pass through The Cloud network by visiting one of its partners, including major outlets like Pizza Express, Caffè Nero, Eat, Pret A Manger, JD Wetherspoons and Wagamama, as well as First Great Western trains.

WiFi Hotspots from The Cloud will be available at no extra charge to all Sky Broadband Unlimited, Sky Fibre Unlimited and Sky Connect customers.

This move gives more people access to the Internet via mobile while having to worry less about 3G and data charges from their mobile providers. Orange has already linked up with The Cloud and with Sky also joining in, this presents a real challenge to BT’s  Openzone network.

Simplified access

A free “Sky Cloud WiFi” app will be available for iOS and Android devices from mid-April. Once users have downloaded and registered the app they can automatically connect their smartphone or tablet to the Internet without having to log-in ever again. This removes the hassle of signing into WiFi networks as there’s no need to remember passwords or log-in details each time you want to get online.

Lyssa McGowan, Director of Communication Products at Sky, acknowledged the need for consumers to find easier ways to get online via mobile. She says:

“Whether it’s to go on Facebook, watch favourite TV shows with Sky Go, catch up on the news or send an email, our customers can now enjoy high quality, reliable and unlimited broadband whether it’s at home or when out and about. WiFi Hotspots from The Cloud now gives millions of Sky customers quick and easy one-touch access whenever they want to be online. And by ensuring our hotspots are located where our customers need them most, they know they’ll never be far from a high speed connection. With a one-off registration process, they’ll automatically connect to the network, which takes all the usual hassle out of connecting to WiFi.”

All Sky Broadband Unlimited, Sky Fibre Unlimited and Sky Connect customers are eligible to use WiFi Hotspots from The Cloud, and they do not have to be a Sky TV customer to benefit from it.

The launch of the “Sky Cloud WiFi” app makes it the 11th app to be added to Sky’s growing family of popular apps helping people to find, watch and do more on the move. Sky’s suite of apps for mobile devices have been downloaded more than 22 million times and Sky Go now has more than 10 million user sessions per week.

BSkyB appears to be having a good year for innovation and progress regardless of the ‘loss’ of its chairman James Murdoch. Opening up with The Cloud to give free WiFi access will certainly go some way towards encouraging even more customer loyalty.