Fon ups the ante on joining its network by raising its daily connection price to $5/€5 for "aliens": The Fon network of what they claim is nearly 200,000 active locations is all about participation. You can be a participant (a Fonero) and charge or not, but anyone with an active Fon hotspot gets free roaming on the entire network. Fon charges for access regardless of whether someone collects part of the fee (a Bill, not available in Japan, Russia, or the UK) or opts not to (a Linus).
The fee affects Aliens, those who aren't running Fon hotspots, and thus aren't contributing to the network's size. But $5 or €5 is a lot in most countries, and buys you a fair amount of time in an Internet cafe, making VoIP calls, or an hourly or daypass on a Wi-Fi hotspot network. At 5 monetary units, doesn't that push Aliens to finding a free or cheaper alternative?
The only explanation I can find of the price change is on the German Fon blog. That entry explains that they're trying to focus on building a community, and that raising the price should encourage more people to participate in sharing their Internet access. That doesn't square precisely with their goal of making money, though, because there's no monetization outside of Aliens paying fees to use the network. Like airport parking lots, you can only raise prices so far until people find cheaper, even if less convenient, alternatives.
[Thanks to Klaus Ernst for the price increase alert!]