In late 2011 Skype co-founder Niklas Zennström announced FreedomPop
, a new wireless carrier using the Clearwire network that is attempting to do something different by offering users 1 GB of free 4G data. From there, users gain discounts and additional data if they refer other new users, and the company ultimately promised to let users trade unused data allowances like currency. That bandwidth trading promise went live today.
FreedomPop Chief Operations Officer Steven Sesor and CEO Stephen Stokolsis are making the media rounds to promote the launch of "FreedomShare" and the fact they've secured $4.3 million in new financing.
According to FreedomPop, the new program takes a page from existing family plans, but allows users to use both Facebook or Twitter to share and/or ask for bandwidth. Users also can add bandwidth to their back pocket by referring new users to the company.
FredomPop says they recently bumped the amount of free monthly data a user gets for referring each friend from 10 megabytes to 50. The company also launched a new residential fixed line broadband offering back in January
Part of the company's disruption strategy has been to offer a WiMax compatible WiMax sleeve for the iPhone that allows users to bypass their carrier. Unfortunately, the sleeve remains stuck in approval purgatory at the FCC because its unique design requires a longer testing period. The company recently estimated
that this delay had as of January cost FreedomPop and manufacturers an estimated $500,000.