Time Warner Cable today announced it will roll out systemwide a customer wifi hotspot service as a “no-additional-cost” feature for their current and new business customers. You may recall our recent news from Comcast Business, Time Warner Cable’s future sibling (if the merger is approved by regulators) that claimed customers of small businesses prefer wifi over chocolate candy. The TWC WiFi Hotspot plan sounds even better than chocolate candy if you’re already a Time Warner Cable “Business Class” (TWCBC) customer. It will have no additional costs and includes a free wifi access point installed and managed by TWCBC, which eliminates the need for the business owner to purchase and maintain additional equipment.
In addition, the wifi access point comes with its own internet connection that will keep it separate from the business’s private internet traffic; enabling the business to keep its private traffic secure and completely separate, with no interference from their public wifi internet traffic.
But wait! There’s more…
Also provided will be a self-service management portal in which the business owner can configure the service to require a password for free access or set daily time allotments for free access, ranging from 15-60 minutes. Through the portal the business owner can also add their business name, logo and marketing message to the wifi welcome webpage. Users connecting to the wifi Hotspot are first presented with this welcome page, which also displays options for connecting.
“We understand (most) small business owners aren’t IT professionals. That’s why our solution is installed and managed by our experts, so the owner can focus on running his or her business and not be burdened by costly equipment and technological knowledge.” said Jitesh Bhayani, TWCBC data and carrier product management.
Patrons can either select the free daily access or if they are qualified Time Warner Cable Standard residential and business Internet customers, they receive unlimited, free wifi access at all times, as do qualified customers of Internet service providers participating in the Cable wifi network.
Okay, what’s the catch? There’s no such thing as a free lunch, right?
Time Warner Cable (Comcast, et al) recognizes that a big portion of its quest for galactic dominance will require its consumer-class internet customers to have free wifi access wherever their iPhones and iPads accompany them. In much the same way cell-phone companies are willing to pay to have their transmitters and receivers (transceivers) mounted on church steeples and just about anything over the height of an NBA center, TWC WiFi, et al, needs access to as many places as possible to keep its consumer customers from switching over to AT&T. And another reason: As we’ve reported earlier, Google’s maybe doing it.
Is TWCBC wifi coming to a town near you?
The launch of TWCBC wifi further expands Time Warner Cable’s existing wifi network that includes over 35,000 hotspots in Los Angeles, New York City, Austin, Charlotte, Myrtle Beach, Kansas City and Hawaii. Additionally, the business hotspots join the CableWiFi network which offers more than 250,000 hotspots operated by TWC and other Internet service providers in major cities across the country including Chicago, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Orlando, Tampa, and more.