It seems mobile networks are currently evaluating different ways that they can spread their influence in the WiFi sector, in a bid to assert their dominance over their rivals.
Reports have been circulating that there is a “landgrab” going on, with mobile networks attempting to buy the rights to install their own WiFi in as many places as possible.
Writing on this subject for techhive.com, columnist Mark Sullivan pointed out that currently people connect to a mixture of mobile WiFi networks and alternatives provided by local shops, bars and other organisations. The problem is that users will often have to add different passwords and usernames to access separate networks – if they are moving around, for example.
Removing the need to reconnect
So far two major options have been put forward by technology consortia. The Wireless Broadband Alliance has suggested creating Next Generation Hotspots that recognise and log on users automatically, while the WiFi Alliance wants to add a Passpoint feature to mobile devices that automatically connects to networks wherever possible.
[alert color=”blue”] “Mobile carriers are getting behind the Next Generation Hotspot and Passpoint initiatives because they want to keep you on their network, whether that’s a cell network or a WiFi one,” noted Sullivan. [/alert]
WiFi hotspots were not the only big talking point at the Mobile World Congress with a variety of innovations unveiled, including waterproof phones, voice-controlled car radios, glove-friendly mobile screens, 3D printed phone cases and alternative operating systems.