With the availability of Android tablets for less than $50 and their ability to make WiFi phone calls for free, people are now able to buy them at commodity prices. So now what is needed is more universally available free Wi-Fi. The most common sources include public libraries, malls, government buildings, transit centers, buses, hospitals, truck stops, premier campgrounds and a few upscale gyms. Wireless stores like Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T, and Sprint vary in their policies, some are nice enough to to give access only if you ask. A Yelp.com search has a checkbox for Wi-Fi, but not TripAdvisor or Zagat. Here are some other general guidelines. Rule one is to call ahead and verify that the WiFi is actually working! Many of these businesses have dedicated Apps.
Many hotel chains offer WiFi and some airlines (flight attendant will let you know) allow wifi use. Short visit establishments like banks, pharmacies, salons, filling stations, cleaners, etc are the least likely places to find WiFi, select coffee shops commonly do provide for use. There used to be sites like jiwire that would let you look up local business locations by zip code, but not any more.
Many cable companies are beginning to provide clusters of hotspots in busy parts of town. AT&T, TWC, and Comcast come to mind in my area. Be aware that communication companies fall in the Temkin bottom-rated companies, the lowest of the low. Corporate center leasing buildings with a common court area may offer such service.
Large stores like Wal-Mart and food markets may have service if an in-store vendor like McDonalds or Starbucks is on the premises.
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