BT is set to bring free Wi-Fi to millions of UK shoppers, after signing a deal with Pruprim, which owns eight of the country's biggest shopping centres.
In total, more than 118 million shoppers will have access to free Wi-Fi in locations ranging from north to south and east to west due to the agreement signed with Pruprim, which is the real estate investment management arm of M&G.
The free Wi-Fi is set to be rolled out across Manchester Arndale, The Mall at Cribbs Causeway, Bristol, The Brunswick Centre in Scarborough, and The Grafton Centre in Cambridge.
The Cwmbran Shopping Centre, The Galleries in Washington, Tyne and Wear, Culver Square Shopping Centre in Colchester and Rams Walk Shopping Centre in Petersfield will also benefit from centre-wide free public BT Wi-Fi as it is rolled out in the weeks ahead.
According to the organisations, the deal has been signed in response to customer feedback and an "increasingly omni-channel retail marketplace" and is set to have a positive impact on the time that consumers spend in each of the centres,
Furthermore, Pruprim and BT say it will give retailers a chance to promote offers and highlight special centre events and messages that will help to engage a wider audience.
Andy Baker, Chief Executive of BT Wi-Fi, said more and more shoppers are using Wi-Fi enabled devices to log on to the internet.
"In fact, our research shows that 52% of people now use a tablet or smartphone when shopping. We already operate the largest Wi-Fi network in the UK, with more than 4.5 million hotspots, and our new partnership with Pruprim brings this valued service to an even bigger audience, offering even greater levels of service for shoppers enjoying a day out," he added.
The first shopping centre to benefit will be The Mall at Cribbs Causeway, where Wi-Fi is set to launch on April 17th.