Good e-Reader travels to many conferences and tradeshows every year and if one thing is for sure, Hotel Wi-Fi internet access is getting slower and slower. Hotels have a good answer; multiple iPads and other tablets streaming video and other content in the guests’ rooms. Hotels are straining under the pressure and most people suffer from very slow speeds.
“The iPad is the fastest-selling device in consumer electronics history, and because of it the demand placed on any public place Wi-Fi system has gone up exponentially in the last year and a half,” said David W. Garrison, the chief executive of iBAHN, a provider of systems for the hotel and meetings industries.
Travelers are going to continue to bring their iPad with them on Holiday and access the web and other websites. How are the hotels to cope with the strain on their networks? Hotels are soon going to be implemented with a tiered Wi-Fi access. The lowest version will allow customers to check their email for free and various paid levels depending on how much bandwidth you want to soak up. Some hotels we spoke with are seeing their internet traffic spike up by half during the last two quarters.
Studies conducted for iBAHN indicate that while free internet service remains a big factor in choosing a hotel, nearly two-thirds of business travelers say they have encountered slow Internet downloading in the last 12 months. Over two-thirds said they would “not return to a hotel where they had a poor technology experience,” iBAHN said. Many business travelers end up bringing their tablet, laptop, and smartphone, often accessing the internet with all devices. I know from experience during the normal daytime when we are uploading conference video and writing articles, Wi-Fi slows to a crawl.
Many industry experts are saying the Apple iPad is killing free internet, and it is ruining the public experience for everyone. Soon we may see paid Wi-Fi access or tiered access practically everywhere.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.