By Claus Hetting, Wi-Fi NOW CEO & Chairman
Plenty of things to write home about during the last week in Wi-Fi. Here’s what we picked up on – enjoy.
RaGaPa teams up with NETGEAR for SMB Wi-Fi monetization
Cloud-based Wi-Fi monetisation and engagement experts RaGaPa have teamed up with Wi-Fi networking gear vendor NETGEAR to deliver a new, out-of-the-box captive portal and customer engagement service. The solution is aimed at empowering especially smaller business (SMBs) to benefit from guest Wi-Fi through customer engagement, analytics, marketing, and more.
RaGaPa has entered into a licensing agreement with NETGEAR, which means RaGaPa’s ‘CaptiveXS‘ platform will become an integrated part of NETGEAR’s ‘NETGEAR Insight‘ captive portal service. NETGEAR charges $179 USD to support 1-3 APs for the Cloud-based service.
RaGaPa CEO Gagandeep Singh tells Wi-Fi NOW that all of the CaptiveXS features are now included NETGEAR Insight and that the service supports NETGEAR’s flagship mesh Orbi Pro system plus WAC505, 510, and 540 AP models.
According to RaGaPa’s press release here the platform is “an advanced Captive Portal with multiple social login options, deep user analytics, vouchers support and a host of WiFi monetization features that include videos, display banners, payment system, and user surveys.”
Readers familiar with the Wi-Fi NOW event series for the USA may recognise the Wi-Fi service management experts from RaGaPa as they are frequent sponsors and speakers at Wi-Fi NOW US events including at our most recent US event in Washington DC this past May.
India: Reliance Jio turns to offload to ease congestion
Local news sources are reporting than Reliance Jio – an Indian 4G mobile operator who reportedly is still adding 25 million new subscribers per quarter – will shortly be offloading voice (technically VoLTE) and data calls to Wi-Fi at ‘Jio WiFi Zones’. The service is intended to ease network congestion. According the same news source Reliance Jio is planning to roll out a total of 1.5 million Wi-Fi hotspots. The Wi-Fi offload solution is provided to Reliance Jio by India-based Sterlite Technologies.
According to our most recent (but informal) industry survey, Wi-Fi offload schemes similar to Jio’s above are today used by 20-30 mobile network operators across the globe. In most cases, the mobile traffic is offloaded to Wi-Fi networks owned and operated by the MNO itself.
In rare cases – such as in the case of Boingo providing offload services to major US carriers at airports – traffic is offloaded onto third party Wi-Fi networks.
Aptilo launches plug-and-play service for WiFi4EU networks
Thus far the many thousands of WiFi4EU free Wi-Fi grant recipients – meaning municipalities – across Europe have mostly been in dire need of a consistent and professional captive portal solution to manage their Wi-Fi networks and not least to serve Wi-Fi users. Now the service management experts from Aptilo Networks have created exactly what’s needed to address this need.
The new Aptilo solution (read more here) was released last week and incorporates all WiFi4EU technical requirements for a logon service. So far 6,800 municipalities across Europe have received €15,000 grants towards building free Wi-Fi networks. Last week the European Commission opened up for the third call for applications. A fourth call is expected in first quarter of 2020.
For more about the Aptilo solution also see the video embedded below.