Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Lots of work but little blogging...

It has been months since I posted anything here but that doesn't mean that I have sitting back taking it easy.
During the last few months one of my companies has been ramping up rapidly.
The idea for this venture sprouted from two thoughts that have been in the back of my mind for some time.
1) The only valid way forward for WiFi hotspots & hotzone providers is by providing
added value services.
2) The current spate of web based applications and services based on user generated
content are ideal to be bundled and offered through a network of wireless hotspots
and hotzones.

802.EU is building a captive portal that will allow service providers (hotspot operators, WISP's, 3G network operators etc.) to offer an selection of services to their customers without having to invest in costly infra-structure. All they will need to do is purchase a portal application license and cherrypick the services & applications that suit their customer demographic best. I won't say much more than to "reveal" that we are putting together a prime offering of services and applications.
One of the great things is that it will all be platform and device neutral so that user can access the services that they subscribe to on any device and across any platfom/OS. On top of this the portal application will also have a module for location based advertising creating yet another revenue possibility.

We have also decided that the best way to prove than an idea is valid is by putting it out "in the wild". Therefore we have taken step of rolling out our own network of wireless hotspots. Not being one for small measures we have secured a partnership agreement with a large Irish telco. This agreement will mean that we will install and operate wifi hotspots (running our portal application) in a large number of locations where this telco already has other equipment in place. The exact numbers aren't fixed yet but it could be as high as 3000 locations across the country. As anybody with even a small knowledge of the industry will know that will put us squarely in the European top-10 of hotspot operators (by network size). Not bad seeing that this network was originally only planned as a "proof of concept".
The rollout will hopefully start in Q3 this year.

More to follow soon!

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