You Found The WiFi, But Where's The Power?

from the we-need-more-power... dept

Now that it's becoming more common for retail establishments to offer either free or paid WiFi, a new problem is showing up: not enough power outlets. Plenty of people know the feeling. You see them sitting in weird spots on the floor next to an outlet, just because that's where the power is. It's not just laptops, either. People need to charge up their mobile phones and digital music players, too. A friend of mine once had a few hours to kill in a city he was visiting and needed to charge his phone. He found a hotel, went up to a random floor, and plugged in his phone at an outlet next to a vending machine. Of course, some people wonder whether or not this is "stealing electricity." Thankfully, most business owners don't have a problem with it, noting that it barely costs anything, and they're happier to have the residual business or even just to make their establishments "look busy." The big problem, still, is that there simply aren't enough outlets. I know that most of the time I end up using a hotspot, there are no outlets available, and I end up watching whoever is sitting near one, so that I can grab their seat when they leave. Some establishments say they're going to install more outlets, but so far it appears that not many have followed through. One trick might be to carry around an extension cord that can handle multiple plugs. Of course, when it's time for you to leave, anyone else plugged into your extension cord may get upset.

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  • identicon
    Chris, 5 Jan 2005 @ 6:49pm

    No Subject Given

    The other thing is looking for a place to park where signal strength is greatest. Autos are a good source of power and privacy. ;)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    DV Henkel-Wallace, 6 Jan 2005 @ 9:27am

    hardware change

    Why not change hardware? I carry my powerbook everywhere and rarely bother to bring the charger with me.

    Also I have noticed that when I leave and take my extension cord with me the others who have been using it aren't annoyed -- they're greatful that they had the chance to use it. Anyway, usually their flight is being called too.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Precision Blogger, 6 Jan 2005 @ 1:47pm

    Think Twice before plugging into a traoin station!

    This might be a good moment to remind everyone here that Train Companies have been known to arrest people who plug into outlets in waiting rooms for theft of services. I think I'd rather drive...

    - The Precision Blogger

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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