What’s gone wrong at Fon?

A few years ago at LeWeb a man with a heavy accent that I couldn’t place got on stage and talked about starting a business in Europe. He was interesting and funny and talked about Fon. I think that Martin Varsavsky gives the same impression to a lot of people. Therefore, I got a Fon and loved it.

For many years since that date I’ve not used the WiFi in my ADSL box and relied on the Fon routers. I’ve given them to family and friends as presents and even stuck the Fon sticker on my office window (the only sticker that is there!).

Then last year I bought the latest and “greatest” router. The 2.0n. I kept it alive for a couple of months. It never worked; constant issues, poor performance, a real mess.

I was so convinced that Fon was perfect it took a few weeks for me to realize that the issue was with their machine. Today, the Fon router lies unplugged on a shelf. One Time Capsule purchase later and I don’t think that it’ll be ever used again.

What went wrong?

I believe that the clue is in here…

FON, the iPhone and Mobile Operators

Fon no longer relies on their own hardware. They rely on these partnerships where they live on someone else’s hardware. The focus of the company has moved on, I doubt that their latest boxes will ever live up to the standard of the original white ones.

And so ends an era. Onwards!

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