Hotspots: Some Internet Users Like It Hot

Hotspots - you could be in one and not even know. In fact, you might even not know what one is. This relatively recent technological advancement has changed the lives of millions all over the world. They have negated the need for long cables and introduced consumers to a new Internet experience.

A hotspot is what consumers crave when they want to get work done online at their library or local coffee shop. Mobile hotspots are what allow folks to unplug their laptops and choose whichever room of their house seems most cozy for streaming a movie online. They have allowed people to ditch cords and sockets and go wireless.

What is a hotspot?

A hotspot is an area with wireless Internet access. Ideally, if you're in a hotspot, you can use your computer or smartphone to go online. These zones tend to use mobile Wi-Fi, a technology that transmits data wirelessly using radio waves. Plenty of devices can use mobile Wi-Fi, including personal computers, tablets, digital audio players and video game consoles. Devices utilize hotspots by connecting to the internet via a wireless network access point.

Wireless access points, or WAPs, are pieces of equipment that connect to a router or can even be part of a router. WAPs involve few cables and generally connect directly to a wired Ethernet connection. The WAP takes the Ethernet connection and transmits to wireless devices using radio frequency links. Most modern WAPs support both sending and receiving data.

Where are hotspots?

Hotspots can range in size — they can merely contain a single room or span several square miles. Small ones are easy to set up, while greater ones allow for increased mobility during Internet usage. Generally larger ones that cover multiple acres are created with the overlapping of multiple access points. Popular public spaces for them are locales that attract people who wish to work wirelessly. Common work and study spaces are libraries and coffee shops, but some stores and restaurants also offer wireless Internet access. Hotspots are extremely common in heavily populated urban areas and understandably less common is remote rural locations. You can find them in train stations, airports, hotels, hospitals, bookstores, fuel states, RV parks, campgrounds, public pay phones and schools. Many American consumers have turned their private homes into hotspots as well.

How did public access hotspots come into being?

Public access hotspots were originally proposed by an inventor in San Francisco in August 1993. He didn't specifically coin the term, but he brought up the concept of publicly accessible wireless networks. After that turning point in 1993, many companies went on to create paid and free mobile hotspots around the country, some even as big as entire cities.

How can I convert my home into a hotspot?

Want wireless Internet at blazing speeds? Who doesn't? It's easy to turn your apartment or house into its own hotspot.

  1. Find the right Internet provider. Many companies offer wireless Internet for private home use. Several different services and products are also available. Read reviews and testimonials online to find a reputable company. Be sure to also pay attention to service rates.
  2. After choosing a provider, ask about available products and rates. Based on your Internet needs, you might be told that you'd be better off with a deluxe plan that allows for greater or unlimited data. Folks who live alone and don't use the Internet much might want to opt for more basic plans.
  3. An agent will walk you through the installation process or help you setup an appointment with a technician. Soon, you'll have a wireless Internet hotspot in your own living room.