People are more likely to change spouse (okay, bank) than ISP, so ISPs need their existing customers to cough up for more services - enter BT's Total Broadband Anywhere, with BT ToGo and HTC mobile phone handset.
BT Total Broadband with BT ToGo comprises the BT Home Hub and BT Hub Phone for up to 8MB wireless home internet connectivity, and adds a BT ToGo handset. The latter is a mobile phone - either the HTC s620 or HTC s710 - via which you can access the internet, check email and make calls.
Where there's no Wi-Fi the mobile hooks up to the web via GPRS. But BT ToGo comes into its own when you're in a BT FON or BT Openzone hotspot, where you can enjoy mobile broadband. Testing the service - in and around central London - it was surprisingly easy to find such hotspots. And hooking up to any Wi-Fi network is a cinch, so hotels and airports come into play - even using the handset around the house is an option. It's stylish, and fun to use.
In the post-iPhone world, users seem au fait with the idea of variable mobile internet connectivity, and the HTC s620 with its bright 2.4in screen doesn't disappoint even over GPRS. But before committing for 18 months, ensure you can access sufficient hotspots.
The HTC s620 is a nice handset. Email is easy to set up and works well even under GPRS. It has Bluetooth, a 1.3Mp camera, Windows Mobile apps and a qwerty keyboard. The keys are small, but sacrifices have to be made to make a phone that won't disturb the lining of your suit.
Is BT Total Broadband a good deal? That depends on your needs. It costs £29.99 a month for unlimited web access in BT FON hotspots, 500 minutes in BT Openzone hotspots and 10MB of downloads elsewhere (as well as your 8MB home connection). But you get only 50 minutes of mobile phone talktime, and up to 50 texts. Unless you're a hermit (with a good landline), you'll need to top up (there are £10, £15 and £30 mobile phone plans) or maintain your existing mobile phone contract. And when that's taken into consideration, as slick as it is, BT Total Broadband is far from a cheap option.