Scratch Wireless today joined a spate of other MVNOs that lean on Wi-Fi as a way of offering "free" wireless service.
Launched today with $5 million in funding, Scratch will offer customers service over existing Wi-Fi networks and partnerships with cellular network operators.
Scratch describes its model as simple: "make text, voice and data services free when a user is on Wi-Fi, and make texting free – always."
When users are away from Wi-Fi, Scratch will offer pay-as-you-go access to cellular data and voice but with no contract or obligation.
Backed by funding by investors including CommonAngels, Scratch says the company's "Wi-Fi" first strategy takes advantage of a quickly growing number of Wi-Fi network access points and hotspots, a number which is expected to reach 5.8 million by 2015 (up from 1.3 million in 2011).
The company will offer the Motorola Photon Q Android smartphone and users that want to make calls outside of Wi-Fi can purchase passes on a cellular network starting at $1.99 for a day.
The Scratch Wireless leadership team includes Co-Founder, President and CEO Alan Berrey, and entrepreneur and WiTricity CEO Eric Giler.