WiFi is not just connectivity

Kelly Bell, marketing manager, Westbase Technology

WiFi, or Wireless LAN, connectivity has been a growing trend in the information technology sector for many years and it remains one of the fastest growing segments, second only to security (Gartner), reported 27 Caldicot, UK-based Westbase Technology.

Markets and Markets reported that the global WiFi market is expected to grow to be a US$33.6 billion industry by 2020 at an estimated CAGR of 17.8%. This is up from the $14.8 billion market it achieved in 2015.

“WiFi though is no longer just about getting places, people and things connected,” said Kelly Bell, marketing manager at Westbase Technology, “It’s grown into a valuable business intelligence tool and resource with organisations using it to better understand their customers and deliver more targeted promotions.”

In healthcare, WiFi is being leveraged for advanced applications including tracking patient movements through the facility. It is also being used for tracking important and expensive assets such as wheelchairs, beds and equipment.

LANCOM LN-830acn dual Wireless
LANCOM LN-830acn dual Wireless

Retail and hospitality companies are now using their guest WiFi to analyse how customers move through their locations; where they exit and enter, what paths they take, where they spend the most time and so on. This data enables the organisations to optimise their layout for improved customer engagement, as well as generating more personalised promotions for individual customers.

Important choices when selecting a WiFi solution

There are several key considerations, according to Westbase, that organisations need to evaluate when making the move to install or upgrade their wireless LAN service:

  • Futureproof the network

Although some organisations may not yet be looking to expand their WiFi capabilities to the latest applications, the time when they will start to is not that far away so it’s important that businesses don’t just meet today’s needs. It’s also important to look for a supplier who takes the future into account, in that their networking solutions have longevity built in.

  • Security is paramount

The primary factor holding back growth of WiFi networks today is security, says Westbase. But there are many solutions which answer this all-important requirement. Wireless networks are at the edge of the enterprise network by their very nature, and so are most at risk of hacking attacks and other security risks. With the right solution the network edge can be as well protected as the core.

  • Don’t compromise on hardware

Many businesses are tempted to opt for consumer-grade hardware to save on cost, but often regret this later and, most commonly, have to upgrade their system again. Enterprise-grade WiFi access points and controllers are essential to ensuring that the wireless LAN delivers a solid, reliable performance as they’re built to withstand 24/7 use and the multiple workloads generated from high numbers of active WiFi devices.

  • Think about total cost of ownership

Even when using enterprise-grade equipment it is still important to opt for high quality in place of cheap options – not just from a performance perspective but also from a cost-optimisation perspective. Although cheaper hardware will save money in the short term, it will ultimately cost the organisation more in the longer term. Cheap networking solutions typically cannot be managed and supported efficiently, generating high network maintenance costs.

  • Solution design

Selecting the right hardware is just one piece of a wireless LAN network; it’s important for organisations to work with trusted partners who can help them to design the right overall networking solution. For example, attention to details such as density of access points or the right management approach can be the making or breaking of a successful WiFi network.

Westbase Technology has issued a guide, WiFi; It’s Not Just Connectivity. For a copy go to: 

Comment on this article below or via Twitter: @IoTNow_ OR @jcIoTnow


9 IoT applications that will change everything

Posted on: September 1, 2021

Whether you are a future-minded CEO, tech-driven CEO or IT leader, you’ve come across the term IoT before. It’s often used alongside superlatives regarding how it will revolutionize the way you work, play, and live. But is it just another buzzword, or is it the as-promised technological holy grail? The truth is that Internet of

Read more

Which IoT Platform 2021? IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide

Posted on: August 30, 2021

There are several different parts in a complete IoT solution, all of which must work together to get the result needed, write IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide – Which IoT Platform 2021? authors Robin Duke-Woolley, the CEO and Bill Ingle, a senior analyst, at Beecham Research. Figure 1 shows these parts and, although not all

Read more

CAT-M1 vs NB-IoT – examining the real differences

Posted on: June 21, 2021

As industry players look to provide the next generation of IoT connectivity, two different standards have emerged under release 13 of 3GPP – CAT-M1 and NB-IoT.

Read more

IoT and home automation: What does the future hold?

Posted on: June 10, 2020

Once a dream, iot home automation is slowly but steadily becoming a part of daily lives around the world. In fact, it is believed that the global market for smart home automation will reach $40 billion by 2020.

Read more

Fibocom: 5G AIoT Commercialized Products Handbook

Posted on: October 20, 2021

On September 6, 2021, Fibocom, together with China Mobile, China Telecom, China Unicom, Qualcomm, UNISOC, MediaTek and many IoT industry partners, officially launched the “5G AIoT Commercialized Products Handbook”, breaking the industry boundary with collective power and exploring new business value with technology integration. Now the English is available for the global readers.

Read more

The ultimate guide to IoT in Logistics

Posted on: October 20, 2021

Welcome to The World of Logistics! By 2030, IoT in Logistics is predicted to be worth more than $100 million. To help our logistics customers get an understanding of what they need to know to succeed with IoT, we’ve created a unique Nomadic Device guide that outlines how to achieve quick time to value. We’ll

Read more