Smartphones overtake laptops as the most popular way to connect to Wi-Fi Hotspots
54.4% of respondents plan to deploy NGH compliant networks in 2013
- The industry is moving toward new standards to make it easier to access Wi-Fi networks at home and abroad, paving the way for a new wave of increased Wi-Fi uptake and usage.
Operators want to deploy Next Generation Hotspot (NGH) technology to make it easier for end users to access Wi-Fi Hotspots and replicate the cellular mobile broadband experience in terms of ease of access and security. In our Industry Survey, of those respondents that plan to launch an NGH-compliant network, the majority (54%) plan to do so in 2013. The survey also found that the industry needs to show how operators can make a return on NGH-related investment to ensure the technology reaches its full potential.
- This paper highlights the ongoing commitment operators are making to integrate Wi-Fi into their overall mobile broadband proposition in the context of the more bullish investment by the telecoms industry into public Wi-Fi over the last 12 months.
An indication of the headroom Wi-Fi has to grow is that some operators are seeing as much as 75% of traffic in the home being carried over the Wi-Fi network compared with just 5% outdoors. As public Wi-Fi network sign-on becomes easier, the percentage of Wi-Fi-based Internet access outdoors can only be expected to grow.
- This paper also highlights the challenges the industry needs to meet to realize the potential of Wi-Fi roaming, in particular around standards.
Standards are essential to enable operators to realize the opportunity that Wi-Fi roaming presents. The industry must continue working closely together to ensure that common standards offer a seamless, cellular-like Wi-Fi experience to end users and also to lay a solid foundation on which operators can compete. The WBA is working to meet this challenge by defining Wi-Fi roaming interoperability standards. To improve the Wi-Fi roaming experience, operators need to increase the number of their Wi-Fi roaming agreements. They also need to consider whether to offer Wi-Fi roaming as part of their overall data roaming service package or try and generate incremental revenues from Wi-Fi roaming.
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Global Trends in Public Wi-Fi – WBA Wi-Fi Industry Report, 2012 Full report November 2012 WBA's new survey reveals that hotspot connections are now led by smartphones (40%), followed closely by laptops (39%) and then tablets (17%) which have seen rapid growth since their recent emergence. The survey also highlights rapid deployment of NGH, which is based on Passpoint certified equipment, with 19% of operator respondents planning to deploy by the end of 2013. NGH dramatically simplifies public Wi-Fi access, especially from smartphones, by allowing secure connections without the need for usernames and passwords, and is seen as a vital tool for offloading busy mobile broadband networks. For more information, contact our press office. Download Key findings infographic, 2012 Infographic November 2012 Download our at-a-glance overview of the WBA's new Industry Report on Global Developments in Public Wi-Fi. Please feel free to distribute to the widest possible audience! Download
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Global Developments in Public Wi-Fi – WBA Industry Report, 2011 Full report November 2011 The paper points to unprecedented growth in Wi-Fi hotspot deployments which are predicted to rise 350% by 2015. It found that 58% of operators – including 47% of mobile operators – believe Wi-Fi hotspots are either very important or crucial to enhance their customers' experience; offload busy mobile broadband networks; and provide a value-added services platform. It found that a key factor in this deployment activity is the rise in mobile data. Global mobile data traffic is expected to reach 16.84 million terabytes by 2014 which operators plan to manage through pricing strategies followed closely by use of Wi-Fi-based offload. It also revealed that smartphone connections to hotspots will soon overtake laptops globally. Laptops now represent less than half (48%) of the connections to hotspots, with smartphones now encompassing 36% and tablets already on 10%. The paper also highlights how several barriers to further adoption and usage of public Wi-Fi are currently being addressed. These include authentication procedures, network access costs and user discovery of available networks and security. For more information, contact our press office Download Key findings infographic Infographic November 2011 Download our at-a-glance overview of the WBA's important new report on Global Developments in Public Wi-Fi. Please feel free to distribute to the widest possible audience! Download