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Krystal joins Wi-Fi ranks

The Krystal fast-food chain is offering patrons free Wi-Fi access, joining McDonald's, Panera, Starbucks and Schlotzsky's in the wireless arena.

Krystal hot spots are available in 50 restaurants in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee and Texas, the company said.

The chain's offer of free service undercuts McDonald's, which charges its customers for web surfing. Panera currently provides free access.

"While other restaurant chains find ways to charge people for access, Krystal is committed to expanding the availability of free wireless Internet access in our communities," said CEO Fred Exum. "It's giving Krystal customers what they truly want, and they are returning the favor with their continued patronage and loyalty."

All participating Krystal stores will feature decals and in-store signage promoting the wireless service. The stores utilize a broadband Internet connection that allows up to 32 users at one time to access the web.

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