Making hotel WiFi more hospitable

Sept. 5, 2018
Summer traveling season is winding down, perhaps giving hotels time to assess how they did in one key area - WiFi. Travelers in general don't turn up with only one device, but families traveling with three, four, or ...

Summer traveling season is winding down, perhaps giving hotels time to assess how they did in one key area - WiFi. Travelers in general don't turn up with only one device, but families traveling with three, four, or even more people could have eight to 10 devices.

"It is no secret hotel operators have had to come to grips with that," said Jonathan Rigby, Teleste Intercept.

What has been happening inside hotels is somewhat akin to node size being reduced in a cable operator's network. Until recently, a WiFi access point (AP) in a corridor might have served six hotel rooms. Now it serves four, which soon will be reduced to two rooms.

"What is happening is (you) almost want an access point in each and every bedroom," Rigby said.

With DOCSIS technology, cable operators can make this happen in existing hotels without the cost and time it would take to re-cable. Teleste Intercept offers a mini-CMTS that the company says offers a 60% cost savings compared to a new IP infrastructure. It will allow hotels to offer gigabit speeds to each room, and also a managed WiFi service throughout the property. Guests can log on once and then move from their room to common areas without issue.

"Even though they have accessed about 20 different WiFi access points, they don't know," Rigby said.

As the move to IPTV continues, the same system will be able to connect smart TVs.

"There are thousands of TVs (being) sold into hospitality that aren't actually connected to the Internet," Rigby said.

He noted also that the increase in bandwidth is a big benefit as well, given that many hotels currently do not have big broadband pipes.

"You'd be amazed how many hotels have 200 rooms and less than a 100 meg pipe," Rigby said.

But hotels aren't the only industry that could benefit from managed, consistent WiFi. Student accommodations, for example, often are historic buildings where re-cabling would be costly. With the Teleste mini-CMTS, cable operators can offer connection without the risk of introducing noise into the cable network, Rigby said.

"If there are 100 students in a block and they are all online, every subscriber will introduce noise into the network. But we stop that at our device so the noise isn't going back to the main cable system. (The devices) are not talking back to the central CMTS but to the mini-CMTS at the building," Rigby said.

About the Author

BTR Staff

EDITORIAL
STEPHEN HARDY
Editorial Director and Associate Publisher
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MATT VINCENT
Senior Editor
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SALES
KRISTINE COLLINS
Business Solutions Manager
(312) 350-0452
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JEAN LAUTER
Business Solutions Manager
(516) 695-3899
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