Mobile broadband virtual operator FreedomPop, best known for its free monthly 4G service and dedicated sleeves for the iPhone and iPod Touch have announced an expansion into home broadband service with the launch of the HomeBurst Hub and companion service, which is split into two tiers.
The first tier is the default free data tier that is the staple of FreedomPop’s business model. The model works via a pseudo social networking and marketing component where users band together to share data amongst each other, with the overage rate set at $0.01/MB. FreedomPop is intending the free monthly broadband as a teaser for its subsequent tier in monthly home broadband service with multiple tiers, listed below:
Starting with the Basic Plan at $9.99/month it’s clear that the FreedomPop HomeBurst is attempting to undercut established competitors in home broadband service, but the two biggest drawbacks to this being an actual viable alternative to increasingly draconian cable and DSL services are the low monthly caps of 10GB a month and access being dependent on the availability of Clearwire service and coverage.
As Clearwire is only intending to maintain WiMax until at least 2015 while it continues plans to rollout its long-planned LTE network, FreedomPop is also planning to transition to LTE service via Sprint, those reasons make this offering a really short-term backup more than a long-term proposition. The HomeBurst Hub is a wireless router designed to support up to 10 simultaneous wireless connections and is available for $89.99, pending coverage availability.