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The global economic value of WiFi reaches $1.96 trillion in 2018

The global economic value of WiFi in 2018

A report commissioned by the Wi-Fi Alliance estimates that the annual global economic value of WiFi is $1.96 trillion in 2018, and predicts that it will grow in the next five years by almost 80%, surpassing $3.47 trillion by 2023.

This report, completed by the Telecom Advisory Services, also points out WiFi’s role in creating job opportunities in different countries by evaluating its impact on different employment categories. It is forecasted that WiFi will create over one million jobs by 2023, a 50% increase in employment rate from 2018.

According to the report, WiFi is having a positive impact on the economy in four main categories:

  • Expanding consumer choice by developing alternative technologies (i.e. mesh networking systems);
  • Serving as a platform for the creation of innovative business models that develop and deliver unique services (i.e. remote cloud management services);
  • Expanding access to communication services for mobile and fixed networks;
  • Enhancing the effectiveness of wireline and cellular technologies by complementing them (i.e. with WiFi hotspots).

 

WiFi’s value to consumers and producers and its contribution to GDP

Due to diverse unlicensed spectrum environments, the true economic value of WiFi has always been difficult to determine. This report defines its economic value by taking into account the tangible, economic gains that WiFi provides to consumers and producers, as well as its net contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Nowadays, WiFi’s value to consumers both inside and outside of the home is indisputable. WiFi is now so pervasive that its availability is taken for granted in many countries and its importance in everyday life often goes unrecognized. Most devices and home appliances use WiFi and are doing so at a growing rate. WiFi was installed in approximately 800 million households around the world and more than 340 million hotspots provided access to consumers, as of 2016.

WiFi also creates value on the production’s end: indeed, equipment manufacturers (access points, routers, gateways, controllers, but also appliances with built-in WiFi capability) and mobile carriers that rely on WiFi to offload traffic from their networks, all profit from its use.

Moreover, WiFi contributes to GDP growth by delivering undeniable social benefits: indeed, it provides a useful application to reduce the digital divide in rural or isolated territories, as well as an essential platform for free Internet access.

The value of WiFi and its growth estimate on six individual markets

In addition to defining WiFi’s economic impact on a global scale, the research also analyzes the individual economies of six different countries, underlining the value of WiFi and stressing the need for adequate unlicensed spectrum to ensure WiFi keeps delivering to economies, businesses and consumers.

The United States is at the top of the list: in this country, WiFi contributes $499 billion in economic value today and is expected to contribute $993 billion by 2023. Japan, Germany, and South Korea follow with respectively $171 billion, $94 billion, and $68 billion in Wi-Fi economic value as of 2018.

Value of WiFi on six individual markets

A dominant engine in the digital ecosystem

“Wi-Fi has a powerful and often underestimated economic impact all over the world,“ WiFi Alliance president and CEO of Edgar Figueroa stated. “This study brings attention to the tremendous economic benefit from Wi-Fi, and underscores the importance of favorable spectrum policy to ensure Wi-Fi continues delivering even greater economic and societal benefits for many years to come.”

“Wi-Fi technology should be recognized as one of the dominant economic engines of the digital ecosystem,” said Raul Katz, research author and President of Telecom Advisory Services. “Governments should develop the right incentives to stimulate the social and economic benefits of Wi-Fi, including assigning enough spectrum to avoid congestion across the globe, promoting the development of start-ups that rely on Wi-Fi to create applications, and leveraging Wi‑Fi technology to address the digital divide barrier.”

This research is an important step in validating WiFi’s role as a key indicator of economic health and market opportunity, as a new wireless generation approaches.

Indeed, WiFi creates value in different vertical markets, such as hospitality, education, public transportation, healthcare and retail to name a few, and many companies are successful in those sectors using Tanaza WiFi.

If you want to develop a WiFi project, our business consultants can help get you started and make the most out of it by understanding your business needs and guiding you through all the different features of the Tanaza platform, showing how they can help you to deploy a successful WiFi project.

Starbucks to start blocking pornography from its WiFi networks

Starbucks plans to introduce a new tool aimed at preventing customers from viewing pornography or other explicit content in its stores. This solution will begin to be introduced to the company’s US locations in 2019.

Watching pornographic content has long been banned at Starbucks locations: indeed, viewing pornography in a Starbucks store using its free public Wi-Fi network is already a violation of the company’s internet policy. Nevertheless, until now the chain has not had content blockers on its Wi-Fi service.

“We have identified a solution to prevent this content from being viewed within our stores and we will begin introducing it to our U.S. locations in 2019”, a company representative stated.

This shift has come thanks to pressure from Enough is Enough, a nonprofit, internet-safety advocacy group which created a petition calling for Starbucks to filter pornography. The petition has been signed by more than 30,000 people.

“Apparently, Starbucks cares more about providing paper straws to protect the environment than protecting kids and patrons on its public WiFi!” says the petition. “Starbucks broke its promise to filter pornography and child sex abuse images, despite its public announcement it would voluntarily provide safe WiFi in its restaurants nationwide…an announcement made more than 2 and-a-half years ago!”

Indeed, the company promised to start filtering pornographic content in 2016, when McDonalds, which was one of the chains being pressured by Enough is Enough since 2014 to put up content filters on their public WiFi networks, started blocking pornography. This put pressure on Starbucks to do the same, but the company never followed through on that promise.

Donna Rice Hughes, CEO of Enough is Enough. claimed in a statement that Starbucks, by breaking its commitments, was “keeping the doors wide open for convicted sex offenders and others to fly under the radar from law enforcement and use free, public Wi-Fi services to access illegal child porn and hard-core pornography.”


So far, Starbucks has not disclosed technical details about the solution but said the company tested multiple tools, aiming at avoiding accidentally blocking inoffensive websites.

Web content filtering improves public hotspot WiFi security by allowing network administrators to block distasteful and illegal content, to scan and secure hotspots from hacking attacks and viruses and from liabilities due to illegal activities.

Tanaza features a built-in content filtering tool that gives WiFi hotspot providers the opportunity to create a customized list of sites to block or unblock, choosing among a large number of categories. With this tool, WiFi hotspot providers can easily manage the kind of content their users can see when browsing their network. Moreover, the Tanaza content filtering tool works with any WiFi hotspot, as Tanaza is multi-vendor and therefore supports a wide array of access points.

Do you want to discover the Tanaza Content Filtering? Start the 15-day free trial to see how you can effectively protect your Wi-Fi network with our cloud-based content filtering system.

The next steps of the WiFi4EU programme

After the cancellation of the first call, put out by the European Commission on May 15th, the tender for WiFi4EU – the initiative promoted by the European Union for the diffusion of free WiFi connection in public spaces –  officially reopened on November 7th at 13:00 CET, and closed on November 9th at 17:00 CET. Although, three more calls will be published over the next two years, about one every six months.

>> Find out more about WiFi4EU in our previous article

 

The reasons behind the first WiFi4EU call cancellation

The first call was extensively popular, but due to technical issues (a flaw that allowed some municipalities to apply before the call was opened while preventing others to do the same once the call had opened), the WiFi4EU portal was closed a few hours after.

Once the call reopened, all registrations already completed were still valid and registered municipalities were able to apply again with a click of a button. Over 13,000 municipalities registered to the call in order to become eligible for the grants.

If as a municipality, you applied during the canceled call and you want to check whether your application has been kept valid, just enter the WiFi4EU portal with your own credentials.

>>Watch our free webinar about WiFi4EU

 

Winners’ announcement and next steps

The winners will be announced approximately six weeks after the closing of the competition; subsequently, the selected municipalities will receive an email with the request to sign a grant agreement.

Update: the list of the 2,800 municipalities that won the first call has been published on the WiFi4EU portal on December 7th. A total of 42 millions in funds have been allocated for the first call.

>>Read the official announcement and see the list of winners of the first WiFi4EU call by country.

The projects are declared to be selected on a first-come-first-served basis, as each member state will have a limited amount of vouchers (around 2,500) available to give out to deploy free wireless internet access points.

Each voucher is meant to cover the equipment and installation costs (CAPEX) of the Wi-Fi hotspots, up to a maximum of 15,000 euros: if the costs exceed this amount, the difference will be paid by the beneficiary. Other costs, such as subscriptions, maintenance, and the cost for internet connection, are on the municipality itself and cannot be covered with the European Funds.

The beneficiaries of a voucher will have a year and a half to install and operate the hotspots, selecting the public spaces that will be equipped with WiFi and contracting the equipment installation to one or more suppliers. After the hotspot deployment, the municipalities must guarantee free WiFi for at least three years. The voucher assigned to a municipality must be collected by a single supplier, and cannot be split among multiple suppliers.

Municipalities will choose their suppliers of WiFi hardware and installation services from a selected list of suppliers, which is already published on the WiFi4EU portal.

Tanaza is in this list and provides its WiFi services across all the EU member countries, through its extensive network of authorized partners.

 

How to apply to the next WiFi4EU calls

Even if the first call is now closed, it will be possible for municipalities to register for the upcoming ones.
Municipalities and local institutions intending to take part in this project must register on the WiFi4EU portal to be promptly informed about the timing of the request.

The application will need to be accompanied by the «proof of approval» from the legal representative of the institution, from the copy of the act with which he was nominated and his ID card.

 

The future of WiFi4EU

After the announced calls, the second phase of the WiFi4EU scheme (due to start in 2019) will be about making remote monitoring and seamless login available across all the deployed networks. The plan is to introduce a single authentication and authorization platform that allows users to register their credentials and seamlessly roam between WiFi4EU hotspots, without having to constantly log in or to sign up to new hotspots.

Moreover, there will be a remote monitoring system that will ensure that all networks are up and running during the 3-year period; through this platform, the Commission will be also able to remotely monitor the connectivity quality of all the WiFi4EU hotspots.

Tanaza wins WiFi Now’s Best WiFi Startup and Best Enterprise WiFi Solution awards

We are excited to announce Tanaza’s win of two Wi-Fi NOW Awards. This year, Tanaza took home the awards in two categories: Best Wi-Fi Startup and Best Enterprise Wi-Fi Solution.

According to the award criteria posted on the Wi-Fi Now website for each category, the Best WiFi Startup award was given to the company who represented the best value proposition on the market today, and the Best Enterprise Wi-Fi Solution award was given to the vendor that had created the most value in this segment.

In a previous post, Tanaza announced its participation in the Wi-Fi NOW Europe expo and conference hosted in Berlin, Germany where our CEO Sebastiano Bertani would speak on the conference’s main stage in a session titled “Unbundling Wi-Fi hardware and software “.  

On November 6th, Sebastiano Bertani’s session took place. The session was attended and praised by many, including Wi-Fi NOW’s renowned CEO & Chairman, Claus Hetting, who defined his speech “interesting and provocative”.

If you would like to listen to Sebastiano Bertani’s session, we can send you a recording of it at a later date. If you are interested, please write us to marketing@tanaza.com.

 

On October 15th,  it was announced that Tanaza was shortlisted as a nominee in 3 different categories (Best WiFi Startup, Best Enterprise Wi-Fi Solution and Best Service Provider Wi-Fi Solution) of the 2018 version of the Wi-Fi NOW Awards. Tanaza won in 2 of the 3 categories in which it was a nominee.

>> See 2018 Wi-Fi NOW Award Nominee Shortlist

 

 

About Wi-Fi NOW

 

Wi-Fi NOW is the only expo and conference in the world dedicated to Wi-Fi.

Every year, expert speakers in the field of WiFi showcase their skills and share their expertise with event attendees. At the end of each day of the conference, the winners of the WiFi NOW awards are announced.

The winners consist of a select number of companies considered the world’s best in WiFi.

This year there were 8 different WiFi NOW award categories.

>> Find out more about the eight Wi-Fi NOW awards winner announced in Berlin

Photo: Awards Ceremony w/ Claus Hetting (Wi-Fi NOW), Taj Manku (Cognitive Systems), Sebastiano Bertani (Tanaza) & Lidia Caba (Eurona)

To ensure fair judging takes place, the Wi-Fi NOW awards process involves a panel of appointed judges, completely independent from the Wi-Fi NOW team or any of the shortlisted nominees.

>> See 2018 Wi-Fi NOW Award judges

 

 


 

Wi-Fi NOW 2018 Award Nominee Shortlist

Best Wi-Fi Startup:

Best Wi-Fi Innovation:

Best In-home Wi-Fi Product:

Best Wi-Fi Service Provider:

Best Wi-Fi IoT Product:

Best Enterprise Wi-Fi Solution:

Best Service Provider Wi-Fi Solution:

Wi-Fi NOW Award for Affordable Connectivity:

WiFi 4 and WiFi 5 are the new simplified naming protocols for wireless standards

The WiFi alliance recently announced a change in the names for the IEEE 802.11 wireless standards, the specifications composed of a set of protocols determine the technology requirements of wireless networks. Since the IEEE 802.11 generations of WiFi technology are so popular and similarly named, to avoid confusion the Wi-Fi alliance has decided to appoint simpler names.

 

Simplifying the technical names of wireless standards 

 

For anyone who has no previous WiFi knowledge and has ever tried to purchase a WiFi device, understanding the different generations of WiFi technology within the device can be a real struggle. These technical names composed of a long set of numbers followed by random letters seem nonsensical to anyone not proficient in WiFi terminology, making it difficult to decipher what the different letters are actually referring to.

 

Why is this change happening?

 

The re-brand of these alphanumeric codes will serve to help consumers make more informed decisions about the networks they are connecting to. Namely with popular wireless standards like 802.11n and 802.11ac which are some of the most commonly used, especially used when implementing home and office networks. By renaming these technologies, the WiFi Alliance is replacing these alphanumeric codes for single digit numbers that represent the ranking of each WiFi technology – i.e. WiFi 4 or WiFi 5.

 

From now on, the standard 802.11ac, will be called Wi-Fi 5 as it is the fifth version of IEEE 802.11 Wi-Fi generation. Consequently, 802.11n (also sometimes known as Wireless N), will be known as Wi-Fi 4 as it is a lower version of the 802.11ac standard and the fourth version to be developed.
By shortening and simplifying these technical names, users will have a much easier time understanding the hierarchy between the different version. Indeed, the higher the version number, the higher the generation of WiFi technology – vis a vis, most upgraded, in terms of speed, signal, bandwidth.

 

Although not yet officially announced, the latest generation of Wi-Fi technology – 802.11ax will soon be denoted WiFi 6.

The 4 most requested features for WiFi professionals

The 4 more requested features for WiFi professionals

The WiFi technology is evolving fast (WiFi 5, also known as 802.11ac, and soon WiFi 6, also known as 802.11ax) and so are the needs of our partners. We at Tanaza are focused on our customers’ development and are thus choosing new features to develop according to their needs and the market.

In this article, we list the 4 most requested feature ideas under consideration to develop in the near future.
We strongly encourage you to upvote these features on our community website, success.tanaza.com.

 

Making our WiFi software compatible with 3G/4G devices

 

Supporting 3G and 4G devices with Tanaza software is one of the most requested features by our customers.

Many of our customers already use the workaround that suggests connecting the Tanaza powered access point to their 3G/4G device using an ethernet cable. Consider that this is only possible if both devices have an Ethernet port. Also, either for lack of fiber/DSL internet connection or for mobility requirements, an ethernet connection is sometimes not available.

By supporting 3G/4G devices, Tanaza customers could directly set up a captive portal on a SIM card, and manage networks remotely in many locations. This feature is particularly useful when working in the public transportation sector such as buses and trains.
For example, a travel company could equip their buses with 3G/4G devices and provide WiFi to their customers en route. The company could decide to offer the service for free or to create a paid WiFi hotspot.

To help its customers develop their project in the public transportation sector, Tanaza is considering to support medium-priced 3G/4G devices like the DLINK DWR 953 and DWR 921 that both use a sim card.

Possible scenario: a bus company equips their buses with 3G/4G devices and sets up a captive portal with coupon authentication. The first coupon offered is configured with a limited number of devices and a limited time session, but the service is offered free-of-charge.
WiFi users can decide to buy a second coupon to enjoy unlimited bandwidth and an unlimited time session on the WiFi network.

Integration of a self-service payment system (like PayPal) into the Tanaza splash page

 

Integrate a self-service payment system into the Tanaza splash page would simplify and expedite the process for WiFi solution providers of setting up a paid WiFi network.

Indeed, Tanaza already features a couponing system that allows online payment for WiFi users.

The current experience for the WiFi user is the following:

  1. The user clicks on the external link on the Tanaza splash page
  2. The user redirected to a payment webpage created by the WiFi network administrator
  3. The user purchases the coupon on this webpage and receives a code
  4. Once authenticated, the user must click on a link to get back to the Tanaza splash page.
  5. Finally, the user enters the coupon code on the Tanaza splash page to access to the internet.

On the other hand, by integrating a self-service payment system, like Paypal, directly into the Tanaza splash page, the WiFi network administrator would just have to add it to the splash page editor, configure the process coupon purchase process and deliver the password to the WiFi user. In this scenario, the experience of WiFi users would be simpler.

This feature is particularly useful for satellite providers, internet solution providers and wireless internet solution providers to monetize their WiFi infrastructures. For example, an integrated self-service payment system could allow satellite providers to easily sell internet access to WiFi solution providers and distribute WiFi in many places worldwide.

Integrate Tanaza WiFi with property management systems (PMS)

 

Tanaza has many customers working in the  hospitality sector where a couponing system is particularly needed. Tanaza features a couponing system that facilitates network deployment for hotel managers, especially when setting up different SSIDs and configuring bandwidth control per SSID, number of connected devices per person, number of concurrent users per SSID, customised password, time session and so on.

Nevertheless, hotel managers could further utilize their guest management system if they had the possibility to integrate Tanaza together with a property management system.

A property management system (or PMS) is a software application used to coordinate front office operational functions like sales and planning, guest bookings, guest information, online booking, room numbers, added services and so on.


By integrating a PMS together with Tanaza, hotel managers could check on a single platform details about individual guests together with the SSID they are connected to, the number of devices connected, the amount of bandwidth consumed etc. From a monitoring and management point of view, PMS and Tanaza could bring a real added-value to managers working in the hospitality sector.

Tanaza Hotspot system available without flashing on top of Ruckus and Aerohive devices

 

Tanaza recently developed the Tanaza hotspot system for Meraki Cisco users and is now thinking about developing the Tanaza hotspot system without flashing for Ruckus and Aerohive. The aim is to offer WiFi solution providers the possibility to work with enterprise-level hardware vendors, like Ruckus or Aerohive, and enjoy a full set of hotspot management features.

Moreover, compared to other WiFi hotspot software on the market, Tanaza does not set a limit per concurrent users of splash page views on a WiFi network, allowing WiFi professionals to fully leverage their public networks.

By integrating the Tanaza hotspot system without flashing, WiFi professionals could keep using their devices with the original network management system while configuring the hotspot part on the Tanaza cloud-based platform. Tanaza’s hotspot features include the splash page editor, the couponing system, the captive portal with different authentication methods, and the advertising tool, to name a few.

Related articles:

Users can now see their WiFi voucher usage data

Collect more WiFi user data through social login and custom forms

https://www.tanaza.com/blog/collect-verified-phone-numbers-from-wifi-users/