European Wi-Fi usage spirals

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European Wi-Fi usage spirals

Antony Savvas

European Wi-Fi usage among enterprise users is spiralling, according to mobile connectivity solutions specialist iPass, and the UK is leading the way.

The firm’s new Wi-Fi Hotspot Index shows a 74% increase in the number of European Wi-Fi access sessions initiated by its global enterprise users last year.

Globally, Wi-Fi usage has increased 44%, said iPass, showing that Wi-Fi technology continues to appeal to business travellers as a reliable and useful connectivity method. 

The iPass Wi-Fi Hotspot Index is a report that summarises session data collected by iPass across its base of approximately 1m quarterly users, and is designed as a tool for those interested in Wi-Fi connectivity trends.

The iPass Wi-Fi Hotspot Index shows that airports continued to be the most popular type of location for Wi-Fi connections, accounting for 49% of total sessions.

Chicago O’Hare airport retained its position as the most popular global Wi-Fi hotspot location, with an average of 266 iPass sessions per day.

Those looking for a place to sleep where they could stay connected chose the large international hotel chains Hilton, Marriott and Hyatt. Hotels belonging to these chains were visited by over 75,000 active iPass users from July to December.

London was the world capital of Wi-Fi for the period, as the most popular city for usage of Wi-Fi hotspots at non-business travel locations, such as cafés, bookstores, and other retail locations, with over 11,000 sessions.

In fact, London had nearly double the usage of the second most popular city, Singapore.

Worldwide, cafes such as Starbuck’s and Caffè Nero were the most popular type of retail venue for iPass users, who spent over 180,000 hours drinking coffee and checking emails in the second half of 2006. Restaurants were the next most popular venue and saw over 4,000 sessions per month.

In the UK, Heathrow airport was the most popular Wi-Fi venue, closely followed by Gatwick, Manchester, Edinburgh and Glasgow airports. Top hotel venues included the Radisson Hotel at Manchester Airport, the Hilton London Heathrow and the Hilton Paddington. 

The US saw the most iPass Wi-Fi sessions in the second half of 2006.  It was followed by the UK, Germany,
Switzerland and the Netherlands.   

The inaugural index can be viewed at:
www.ipass.com/wifihotspotindex.

Paris to offer citizens and visitors free WiFi broadband

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