Even Business Travelers Aren't Yet Interested In Hotspots

from the eh,-not-so-interesting dept

For years, the justification for high prices on WiFi hotspots has been that “business travelers” with expense accounts and a desperate need to be online will have no problem paying for the access. While free hotspots have been clearly eating into that business model, there may be one other problem as well that explains why so many hotspot providers have folded up shop over the years: it turns out that very few business travelers are actually that interested in connecting over WiFi. They either see it as too expensive or too confusing, so they just don’t bother. I’m sure the idea of trying to get work done with music blaring and coffee spilling all around you doesn’t help either.

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Comments on “Even Business Travelers Aren't Yet Interested In Hotspots”

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Vlatro says:

No Subject Given

Only an idiot in a desperate situation would ever pay for wireless access. Most hotels have faster landline connections in the rooms, and many have private computer rooms where you can logon with your room number to an internet ready computer. Why leave the comfort and privacy of your hotel room for internet access. Try to understand, this is good for mass WiFi adoption. It means that more places simply offer the service for nothing, and to those who find it usefull, it gives those locations a little more traffic. I live in a moderate sized city, with a sparse population, Yet I can walk through downtown for miles with a list of no less than 5 entries of open networks. Some are simply private unsecured networks, others are commercial access points. My city has no WiFi initative like New York or San Fransisco. As for business people using it… that’s the most ignorant thing I’ve heard in a long time. Most commercial truck drivers connect via cellular modems, Businessmen are much more apt to use Cellphones, and basically no one with an important job would even be allowed to access corporate information over public wireless connections. The Security of those connections is sacraficed to keep people from asking the hapless waiter why they can’t get a connection. Connecting securely isn’t as simple as just sitting down and turning your laptop on.

The real market for wireless connections is in logistics and enhancement of traditional customer services.

You walk into a grocery store, and your cell phone can direct you to the isle with toothpicks, or inform you if the item your looking for is in stock, and if not when they’ll be in next. “Press here to reserve one, pay now and have it shipped to your house on Tuesday.”

Your PDA can remember your measurements, and give them automatically to the sales rep at the suit store when you walk in.

Go to a print shop, and your digital camera automatically apperas as a drive on the company’s computers, and shoots out a contact sheet so you can select what prints you want.

Your kid can walk into a game store with his portable game system and quickly download a preview of a game he wants to buy.

Mabey your cell phone could broadcast any food allergies you have to the cook at the restraunt, reminding them to leave an ingrediant out of your meal.

The problem with commercial wi-fi access points is their focus on web browseing an e-mail. I’ll go to a coffee shop when I want coffee, not internet access. What the technology lacks is standardization in how the user interfaces with it. The best way to get people to use it, make their usage of it completely transparent to them.

Joshua Cartu (user link) says:

Re: VPN?

I guess nobody’s told you about VPN technology huh 🙂 If someone wants your data THAT bad, they’re going to get it and nothing any security expert tells me is going to convince me otherwise. What you CAN do however, is tunnel that is pretty damn secure. If you’re worried about WEP sucking that bad, then don’t access things that can cause problems for you and your company. People need to learn how reduce the effects of their ADD. Why do you need to sit in an airport and do work on your notebook? How many of your bosses REALLY expect you to be hacking away at your job while waiting to get on a plane. My suggestion? Do your work client side, queue it up, and send it next time you can get a secure connection. If not, read a book man.


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