Attn T-Mobile: Your hotspot plans suck.

What is it with Internet hotspots and ridiculous fees? As I’ve mentioned before – I’m here in berlin this week for Localization World. Our hotel is really nice except they still subscribe to the dark ages mentality that an Internet connection in your room should cost extra. Ugh.

(Guess what requirement just went on our corporate hotel booking policy)

For whatever reason though I get a really strong T-Mobile hotspot connection up here on the 12th floor so I figured what the heck and checked out their rates. There’s a nice little table that outlines durations and a price. For “24 hours” it’s 18 Euros. Not bad I thought – but I was wrong.

Thankfully I took the time to read the small print:

Please note that the period of validity begins at login and automatically ends after expiration of the desired amount of time. Logging out during this time will not extend the period of validity. However, you may log in again at other HotSpot locations at any time during the period of validity.

Huh? How stupid.

18 Euros for 24 hours of access, on my schedule, made sense but 18 Euros for a strict 24 hour period? Not a chance. Sure there’s the odd situation where this might make sense (i.e. trapped in an airport because of a storm and it’s a “suicide via bordeom vs.” decision) but when I’m traveling and just need to spot check email etc. here and there it’s not even an option.

Sure I can go for shorter durations, but their 2 Euros for 15 minutes is hardly reasonable either. It’s good they have that in case of ’emergency’ but roughly $3+ Canadian just for each email check is a little steep for my liking.

Come on T-Mobile (and other hotspot providers) give us plans that are useful. I would have happily bought 24 hours in a Skypeout style. Let me buy the credit and use it up at my own pace – you’d make a lot more off me (18 > 0) and I suspect many others would sign up too.

Oh well, I guess I’ll post this tomorrow. At least the tradeshow has free wifi.