T-Mobile's Brew-haha Over Wi-Fi At Starbucks


The problem: Starbucks is allowing customers two free hours of Wi-Fi access provided by AT&T to customers who buy a Starbucks Reward Card with at least a $5 credit. A transition agreement reached in February gave T-Mobile the exclusive right to "sell, market and promote its services" in Starbucks stores until they were fully converted to the AT&T system, according to Reuters.

Back in February, when Starbucks said it would hook up with AT&T for Wi-Fi service in its stores, T-Mobile said in a statement that Starbucks' Wi-Fi operations wouldn't impact T-Mobile HotSpot customers' ability to use Wi-Fi services at Starbucks locations "for years to come." The company said that even after the transition, T-Mobile HotSpot and HotSpot@Home customers would continue to experience seamless Wi-Fi access at Starbucks locations for at least the next five years under a roaming agreement between T-Mobile USA and AT&T. There would be no additional charge for T-Mobile HotSpot and Hotspot@Home customers at Starbucks.

T-Mobile is seeking unspecified damages against Starbucks for breach of its contract and unfair competition.

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