Wi-Fi hotspots to grow 350% by 2015

Dylan Bushell-Embling
09 Nov 2011
00:00

More Wi-Fi hotspots are springing up worldwide to cater to the explosive growth of smartphone and tablet adoption, with the number of access points forecast to climb 350% by 2015.

There will be an estimated 5.8 million hotspots in 2015, up from 1.3 million this year, according to a report commissioned by industry association Wireless Broadband Alliance.

The number of community hotspots – where consumers share their access points with others – will add another 4.5 million to this total, according to the survey conducted by Informa.

China Mobile alone has plans to deploy a million hotspots, while KDDI plans to grow its 10,000 hotspots tenfold within six months.

The survey results underline the impact smartphone usage is having on data consumption. In Asia-Pacific, smartphone connections to hotspots already outnumber laptop connections.

Even worldwide, laptops now represent less than half of all connections, with smartphones accounting for 36%. Tablets have meanwhile grown to account for 10% of all connections.

New hotspot deployments will be concentrated in areas including parks, tourist attractions and transport hubs including airports, the report states.

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