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Wednesday, March 04, 2009

iWayAfrica launches Wi-Fi

Leading Internet Service Provider (ISP) on the continent, MWEB Nigeria, now iWay Africa Nigeria Ltd, has launched a commercial Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) solution that allow laptop users to connect wirelessly to the internet at locations nationwide.

The General Manager, iWayAfrica Nigeria Ltd, Mr. John Ugbe, said that the service was officially launched last month to give owners of hotels, lodges, eateries, restaurants and cafĂ©’s the ability to provide internet services to their patrons.

“Users of this service can purchase various pre-configured voucher denominations from the hotspot owners with varying time durations and megabyte caps,” he said, stressing that iWayAfrica Nigeria Ltd offers an out of the box turnkey solution that includes billing capability, access control and internet connectivity offering a hotspot owner the opportunity to expand their business revenues with bundling it to iWay solution.

He explained that the iWay’s Wi-Fi solution offers a captive portal, which automatically loads when a Wi-Fi user connects to the hotspot and could be customized according to the hotspot owner’s requirements.

This, Ugbe said, represents a great opportunity for a hotspot owner to promote his brand.

“A hotspot owner may even rent out space on the captive portal at a premium to third parties increasing the potential to earn further revenue from the hotspot,” he said.

As said by him, iWay’s Wi-Fi service boasts of a fully customized and brandable Wi-Fi solution that enables the hotspot owner to offer customers a unique experience of showcasing their brand on customized login pages, as well as the use of marketing material for the venue owner.

“It will also allow a walled garden facility that permits the hotspot owner to set free internet sites which customers can access, as well as configure “free” browsing time feature, where guests, at the discretion of the hotspot owner, can access the internet free of charge for a stipulated time,” he said.

Ugbe further said hotspot solution is ideal for lodges, larger hotels and conference venues and businesses that may not have access to fixed line services.

“Wi-Fi offers users unprecedented convenience as they are able to connect to the internet seamlessly and quickly anywhere there is Wi-FI access available. No cables, no Local Area Network (LAN) points, means this is a truly portable technology that is available in most new laptops and portable devices,” he noted.

Ugbe explained that for nomadic Personal Computer (PC) users who are always on the go, this means they could be connected to the office whilst not actually at the office physical location.

For the hotspot owner, Ugbe pointed out that the commercial hotspot is a means of differentiating their venue and attracting customers to the establishment as well as an additional source of income.

“The internet has become part of our daily lives for both work and play. Popular social networking services like linked-in and my space and others for business networking purposes are testimony to an online digital life that is expanding in the 21st century. We are seeing increased demand for the internet and we are pioneering new technologies to deliver new broadband solutions in Nigeria,” Mr. Ugbe said.

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