The Cloud, who claim to be the biggest provider of public WiFi on Britain’s high streets, has announced that Microsoft will be the first partner to sponsor its WiFi service at a number of Network Rail stations throughout the UK, making it available for free and without time restrictions. The month-long campaign will see Microsoft-branded free WiFi available to commuters in selected Network Rail stations, as well as branded advertising on the WiFi landing pages in First Great Western, London Overground and Greater Anglia stations.
The free WiFi campaign is part of Microsoft’s significant promotion for Office 365, the subscription-based suite which offers access to various Microsoft Office services. WiFi from The Cloud is currently available at the selected Network Rail stations free of charge for 15 minutes each day; with the Microsoft campaign, the WiFi service will be unlimited free from March 25th to April 24th 2013.
Throughout the WiFi campaign, users can access information about Microsoft Office 365 via a button in The Cloud’s Content Portal. The Content Portal brings the latest Sky news, Sky sport and travel information to users when they log in to the WiFi service.
Philippa Snare, chief marketing officer at Microsoft UK, said: “This campaign is designed to help commuters tap into new ways of working. The mobile workforce is constantly growing and, as such, so is the need to access mobile internet. Having free WiFi available is key to this because it enables people to get online quickly and easily as they travel. Simply put, our aim in sponsoring unlimited free WiFi is to ensure users are able to work from anywhere – in the office, at home and in between.“
With mobile device ownership at an all-time high and Ofcom stating that two in five UK adults now own a smartphone, the free WiFi service has proved popular with commuters who can use it to email, access the internet and any other online services.
Vince Russell, Managing Director at The Cloud, said: “More and more businesspeople are accessing online services such as email from their smartphones and tablets. Microsoft 365 lets them take this to the next level. They can effectively work anywhere with internet connection and we’re delighted to include our rail WiFi venues within this group. In sponsoring free WiFi at these stations, Microsoft is supporting the modern, mobile worker and ultimately helping boost productivity in UK businesses.”
An estimated 7m people every day pass through The Cloud network by visiting one of its partners, including major outlets like M&S, Wetherspoon, Greggs and Caffè Nero, as well as First Great Western and Network Rail stations.