Online Staff Report
Comcast Cable’s Xfinity WiFi network will reach 8 million hotspots by the end of 2014, covering 19 of the country’s 30 largest cities with fast and reliable wireless Internet access, the company announced Thursday, May 8.
Comcast estimates that nearly 200 million out-of-home sessions have been initiated on the Xfinity WiFi network so far this year, a 700-percent increase from the same period last year.
According to Cisco, 88 percent of all U.S. data traffic on mobile and portable devices will travel over Wi-Fi by 2018.
“Wireless access is increasingly important to our customers, and we are building a network that not only meets today’s needs but also stays ahead of tomorrow’s demands,” said Marcien Jenckes, executive vice president of consumer services for Comcast Cable. “Xfinity WiFi is a reliable, fast resource for millions of customers who want access to the Internet, anytime, anywhere. We’ll add millions more hotspots this year in the places where our customers live and work.”
Earlier this month, Comcast announced it had surpassed one million hotspots nationwide. Throughout 2014, the company plans to add new hotspot locations coast-to-coast in cities like Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Hartford, Conn.; Houston, Indianapolis, Miami, Minneapolis, Nashville, Tenn.; Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Portland, Ore.; Sacramento, Calif.; Salt Lake City, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C.
The Xfinity WiFi network presently includes:
Outdoor Hotspots: Comcast has placed Xfinity WiFi hotspots in public locations across the country, ranging from shopping centers and commuter stations to parks, sporting venues, beaches and boardwalks.
Business Hotspots: Most Comcast Business Internet customers are eligible to receive an Xfinity WiFi hotspot for no additional charge when they order service. This is a value-added feature that directly improves their patrons’ experience. Examples include restaurants, cafés and bakeries, retail establishments and office waiting rooms.
Neighborhood Hotspots: Recently, Comcast began providing residential customers with Xfinity Wireless Gateways the ability to have a second “xfinitywifi” signal (or SSID) in their home that is separate and distinct from their private and secure home Wi-Fi signal. This second signal provides visiting Xfinity Internet customers Wi-Fi access without the need to use the homeowner’s private network password. Presently, 54 percent of Xfinity’s Neighborhood Wi-Fi usage travels over the second SSID.
Most Xfinity Internet customers can access Xfinity WiFi hotspots by selecting “xfinitywifi” from the list of available networks on their laptops or mobile devices and entering their Comcast email and password. The Xfinity WiFi App, available for download on both iOS and Android devices, makes it easy to locate business and outdoor hotspots, or customers can visit the hotspot finder map online at xfinity.com/wifi.
As a leader in high-speed Internet, Comcast has increased speeds 13 times in 12 years. The company is investing billions of dollars in new, next-generation technologies, to create a stronger, more reliable and more secure broadband network for millions of new customers.