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Wi-Fi for the Company and Public

Today, it seems like anywhere you go there is always a free Wi-Fi network to access. This is great because it allows you to save your precious data plans for when you are out of your house or somewhere remote. But where does all the free Wi-Fi come from?

For all of these free Wi-Fi networks to be made possible, companies have been giving a small portion of their bandwidth to the customer to use while in the vicinity of their business to aide in the customer experience. While this is great for the end user, it can be trying for IT administrators as it does change how the network is setup. We have to keep in mind that not only are we providing access to the internet for the public, we also need to keep our company network separate and – most importantly – secure from those that just need to access the internet.

In the past few years this has been a major issue, as we’ve always wanted to provide more for the customer, but it wasn’t always easily obtainable for the backend infrastructure. There were many hurdles that included money for costly access points, multiple wireless networks and enough bandwidth to support customer needs as well as for your company. Luckily for us the market has produced some great options for new wireless controllers that can make all of this happen.

Today, there are wireless controllers that not only separate your wireless networks in up to 6 or more networks, but they also allow you to separate your network for security reasons with one device. You can even schedule when you want certain networks to be available. This allows you to provide for your customers during work hours, but not for drive-by traffic after hours.

So next time you stop by your favorite coffee shop (or local Nebraskan office products store) and connect to the Wi-Fi, think of all of the hard work and money that went into making that possible for you. Some IT administrators went through a lot of planning and hard work to save you money on your cell phone data plan.