Consider iPass, one of the premiere resellers of hot-spot service. iPass counts both T-Mobile and Wayport as partners and resells their services, along with many others, through its aggregated network of about 350 networks that serve nearly 10,000 hot spots. It adds the value of having signed many roaming agreements with providers, allowing iPass to act as an AAA clearinghouse for its partners. Click here to read about a hot-spot pact between T-Mobile USA and iPass.Clients access any of its partner networks via software that resides on their device. The software adds extra measures of security on the client device, including personal firewalls and anti-virus protection. Click here to visit the Ziff Davis Channel Zone for more news and insights about partnering. Anurag Lal, vice president of strategic services and business development at iPass, described the companys value proposition in simple terms: "We handle all the ugly plumbing that most users probably dont want to worry about." iPass business model is pegged to the enterprise, but it downsells services through its own reseller network. Those resellers, in turn, typically aggregate the iPass service within a larger managed service offering that they provide to their clients. So, the question from this side of the Atlantic is not whether hot-spot business opportunities for resellers will disappear. Its whether they will live up to the hype. Of course, its the nature of hype that the realities never live up to the promise. But hot spots do help resellers who follow the model of making them part of a managed-services offering, by providing a fuller complement of services with which to attract new business. Check out eWEEK.coms Mobile & Wireless Center at http://wireless.eweek.com for the latest news, reviews and analysis.
The company authenticates users, consolidates billing charges and provides secure access, including VPN encryption, back to the corporate network.