Wi-Fi Offload for MVNOs, MNOs, and other Service Providers
Over the past few months, we’ve dedicated two blog posts to the value of Wi-Fi offload.
In our first post, we discussed findings from the Canadian mobile analytics company Tutela, outlining how US cable MVNOs are quietly extracting remarkable benefits by using Wi-Fi to facilitate smartphone traffic. According to the study:
- Telecommunications companies are increasingly leveraging public and private Wi-Fi infrastructure to reduce their dependence on cellular data.
- Tests over various Wi-Fi networks recorded Excellent and Core Consistent Quality percentages in excess of the average for Verizon’s network — the best in the United States.
- Wi-Fi networks tend to be faster on average than cellular networks.
In our more recent post on Wi-Fi offload, we went over the basics — what it is, why it’s useful, and three ways businesses are using it. Relevant to MVNOs and other service providers, we noted the following:
“Carriers and MVNOs alike are facing serious bandwidth issues. Consequently, the telecommunications industry is heading inevitably towards a more Wi-Fi-centric approach. By offloading subscribers to Wi-Fi, service providers can continue to offer data plans at low costs while maintaining high-quality customer experiences.”
So, with that, we’ll keep things simple today. We’ll discuss:
- How service providers will benefit from Wi-Fi offload
- How Pareteum will deliver these benefits
How will MVNOs benefit from Wi-Fi offload?
Now, before we get much further, let’s make sure we’re all on the page.
Wi-Fi offload is the use of Wi-Fi hotspots, as opposed cellular networks, to keep devices and subscribers connected. Traditionally, this is done on the user side — if a subscriber is trying to reduce how much data they consume, or how much they spend on their data plans, they’ll take advantage of Wi-Fi wherever possible.
Of course, prudent service providers have taken note of this; they’ve implemented services, like our iPass SmartConnect offering, which use intelligent connection management to automatically switch between Wi-Fi and cellular networks based on comparative quality of service. Thus, they can simultaneously reduce their subscribers’ reliance on cellular data and increase the capacity of their own networks and services. This translates into operational savings and more competitive service offerings.
Offloading to Wi-Fi also provides better connection experiences. Cellular networks are awesome, but they don’t work well everywhere; and, as Tutela found, MVNOs that leverage Wi-Fi routinely receive better quality of service scores than their MNO rivals, who tend to have vastly more resources.
Then there’s the popularity of Wi-Fi. The 2017 iPass Mobile Professional Report, for instance, revealed that streaming, making video calls, and accessing cloud apps are all twice as popular over Wi-Fi than over cellular. And, as we noted in August, despite the relative paucity of Wi-Fi sessions, far more data was consumed during them than during cellular sessions.
In summary, then, Wi-Fi offload benefits MVNOs in three ways. It enables them to:
- Spend less on data and, consequently, offer more competitive data plans
- Keep users connected in venues that cellular networks struggle to reach
- Offer a more popular, convenient way to consume digital content
How will Pareteum deliver the benefits of Wi-Fi offload?
At Pareteum, we maintain the world’s largest aggregated Wi-Fi network, with footprint at high demand locations and venues in more than 200 countries and territories. This includes:
- Hundreds of thousands of restaurants, hotels, cafés, and other commercial venues
- Over 5,000 aircraft and hundreds of the most popular global airports
- Tens of millions of business and leisure venues
Our Wi-Fi solution is a subset of the Pareteum Experience Cloud platform, which was designed with service providers in mind. A single-source MVNO/MVNE solution, it provides every component necessary for launching market-leading mobile experiences.
For more on how the Pareteum Experience Cloud can help service providers, check out these blog posts: