Humm, not sure

Seems Second Cup has just signed with NetWireless to offer WiFi hotspots in their cafes. Woohoo!! is of course my first reaction but… They dont say anything about the access being free. Actually, if you go to the NetWireless site you can see that their other hotspots are paying locations. Not good, first off free would be way better (duh!) but most importantly, I already have free access at two of the three closest Second Cups, I dont want to have them switch services! So, access everywhere: very good. Paying access: very bad.

(via a frog in the valley)

3 Comments

amaruk July 30, 2003

Where are those two SCs that you have WiFi? ;)

aj July 30, 2003

I read something recently about the economics of WiFi in cafés – adding your basic router and monthly internet access charge is minimal, and pays for itself in less than a month. Adding the cost of a billing system (employee training, maintenance, hardware for receipt printer, software that configures the router and assigns a static IP address for X amount of time etc…) takes much longer to recoup, especially as your competitor who offers free access next door is likely to get all of your customers. I mean, it would be like charging to read the newspapers that cafés keep out for customers!!

Patrick July 30, 2003

Aj: I also remember reading something along those lines and it’s absolutely right. Routers can be had for under 200$ (under 100$ actually but I’m doubling just in case there are some functionnalities that make more expensive ones better for a cafe) and cable access is 50$ a month. If the service brings 2 expensive coffees sales a day, it’s payed!

Amaruk: The one at 4287 St-Denis offers WiFi access through ekko wireless who will be charging it seems but are currently free. The other is at 900 Mount-Royal, they offer WiFi through tadaa wireless and in this case it is completely free (there are even 2 private nodes that you can access from time to time from the same location).

Note that when looking up locations at both providers I mentionned you wont find the 2nd Cups I’m talking about, it seems the providers dont keep their listings up to date!

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