iWay Africa Nigeria formerly Mwen Nigeria, an Internet Service Provider (ISP) in Africa has launched an innovative commercial WiFi solution that will allow Laptop users to connect wirelessly to the internet in locations throughout Nigeria.
The service was officially launched on 23 February 2009 and will give Hotels, Lodges, Eateries, Restaurants and Café’s the ability to provide internet services to their patrons. Users of this service can purchase various preconfigured voucher denominations from the hotspot owner with varying time durations and megabyte caps.
John Ugbe, general manager, iWayAfrica Nigeria, said iWayAfrica Nigeria offers an out 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.
“iWayAfrica Nigeria’s WiFi solution offers a captive portal, which automatically loads when a WiFi user connects to the hotspot and can be customized according to the hotspot owner’s requirements. This 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.
He added that, iWayAfrica WiFi service boasts a fully customized and brandable WiFi solution that enables the hotspot owner offer customers a unique experience 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.
Mr. Harry Aucamp, chief executive officer, iWayAfrica, said they are excited to offer the service in Nigeria and are planning an extensive rollout of the service throughout Africa,
“Our introduction of the WiFi hotspot is to allow our customers to be competitive and make their business more attractive to their respective markets, it is also another way we are aiming to bring a customer centric and value based service to subscribers,” he indicated.
Mr. Ugbe explained that the hotspot solution is ideal for lodges, larger hotels and conference venues and businesses that may not have access to fixed line services. WiFi offers users unprecedented convenience as they are able to connect to the internet seamlessly and quickly anywhere there is WiFi access available. No cables, no LAN points, means this is a truly portable technology that is available in most new laptops and portable devices.
“For nomadic PC users who are always on the go, this means they can be connected to the office whilst not actually being at the office.
For the hotspot owner, 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.
The solution can be used across many sectors including education, travel and tourism, food and beverage, financial services and manufacturing. Globally large conference venues and shopping malls have readily adopted this technology as well. International trends have also revealed an increase in the health and beauty, property and business sectors where hospitals, new housing estates and companies are employing WiFi for mobile PC users.
iWayAfrica Nigeria has developed a range of Hotspot packages to suite the size of the businesses requiring the hotspot. Entry level systems support 10 users are available to high end configurations that can support hundreds of users are also available.
Muyiwa Esomojumi, marketing executive, iWayAfrica Nigeria added that, for smaller installations iWayAfrica Nigeria recommends the Mini product that is based on a revenue share model where the hotspot operator gets 90% of the revenue from the hotspot. “For larger installations we recommend the Maxi product that gives the hotspot owner 100% of the revenue derived from the hotspot and only pays a fixed monthly subscription for the service.
Existing business customers with Very Small Aperture Terminal (Vsat) products will be able to connect their VSAT products in conjunction with iWayAfrica Nigeria’s WIFI offering, enabling businesses to begin running their own hotspot service”, she concluded.