Local start-up launches free Internet service

Australian company Free Net, today announced its free Internet service to be available from November 1. Initially the service will be offered to an anticipated 50,000 users in Sydney and Melbourne, with access to other capital cities, including Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra and Perth by March next year.

Speaking at today's launch, Free Net CEO, Abbas Aly said there were no hidden charges, no time or download limits and no prerequisite PC purchasing agreements.

To register for the service, users are required to submit personal information including, name, address, postcode and e-mail details, although the company stresses that credit card details are not required.

In order to add users to the service in "an orderly and controlled fashion" interested users who enter their details will be entered into a random draw. A minimum of 7,000 selected users are expected to be added each week during the ramp up period. To receive further registration information go to http://www.free.net.au Nothing in life is truly free -- so what's the catch? Online advertising, which will send advertisements to a user's desktop, independent of a Web browser or e-mail program, is part of the Free Net experience.

The advertising, which differs from banner advertising found on Web sites, will appear as a floating panel on a user's screen. While the advertising panel can be closed, it is only momentarily, and it will appear again within a short time frame. The panel can be dragged to another part of the screen.

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