Cloud-based WiFi Hotspots Thrive - Analyst Blog

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The cloud-managed WiFi market has become a major growth driver for telecom operators as increasing number of large and mid-sized business enterprises are adopting this technology.

According to a recent report by IDC, worldwide cloud-managed infrastructure and managed services revenues are estimated to reach $653 million in 2014 and might scale up to $2.5 billion by 2018.

Large business enterprises generally have point of presence throughout the world. A strong and robust wireless network is mandatory for these companies to always remain connected with its remote sites.

Cloud-managed WiFi network has become the most efficient technology for these large business houses. This technology offers several advantages including central manageability, smaller physical footprint and linear scalability.

Recently, large cable MSOs (multi service operators) together with several major IT firms and telecom organizations have formed an alliance to free up spectrums in order to expand the WiFi support network.

The major participants in this alliance called "WifiForward" include Cable TV operators Comcast Corp. ( CMCSA ), Time Warner Cable Inc. ( TWC ) and Charter Communications Inc. ( CHTR ), IT firms Google Inc. and Microsoft Corp., and telecom organization Consumer Electronics Association, among others.

 "WifiForward" aims to protect and strengthen existing unlicensed spectrums, free up new spectrums to use at several different frequency bands and establish rules to encourage growth and deployment of WiFi networks.

Research firm WeFi Inc. reported that the number of commercial WiFi hotspots is expected to reach 10.55 million in 2018 in the U.S. Earlier, WeFi had reported that the amount of mobile data offloaded in WiFi networks had jumped a tremendous 875% in the U.S. in 2013.

Sharing of WiFi networks by cable TV operators is not a new trend in the U.S. In 2012, five cable large TV operators,namely, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cablevision Systems Corp. ( CVC ), Cox Communications Inc. and Bright House Networks LLC. created a web access network called "CableWiFi."



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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.



This article appears in: Investing , Business , Stocks

Referenced Stocks: CHTR , CMCSA , CVC , TWC

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