By Claus Hetting, Wi-Fi NOW CEO & Chairman
Home broadband services no longer terminate at the gateway but at a myriad of devices within the home – and as a result, managed home Wi-Fi is business critical for ISPs. A new White Paper from home Wi-Fi optimisation experts ASSIA expounds the case for managed Wi-Fi, the costs of doing nothing, and not least looks at solutions as well as new revenue opportunities inherent in remote Wi-Fi management.
What is the actual cost of poor Wi-Fi in the home? According to a new paper by ASSIA the ISP’s cost per ‘trouble ticket’ resulting from a customer contacting the service provider because of poor Wi-Fi could cost from $22 to $471 US dollars depending on severity (North American cost levels).
ASSIA says 30-50% of all customer service calls to an ISP are Wi-Fi related and that 10-30% of such calls result in the ISP ordering the dispatch of a truck to fix the problem (truck roll). In some cases the problem is not correctly identified and unnecessary swaps of gateway hardware takes place, which introduces further costs, and sometimes even a second dispatch. The end result of a disastrous support process could even be churn, ASSIA says.
The remedy against untold millions of dollars in Wi-Fi support costs is – at least in part – remotely managed Wi-Fi. For example: Remote optimisation and diagnostics will allow automatic or operator-assisted resolution of wide range of trouble ticket issues and reduce length of service calls as well as the number of calls. When dispatches are required they are often more efficient because technicians will already be briefed on the case, ASSIA explains.
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Meanwhile remote Wi-Fi optimisation and management presents a number of new revenue opportunities for ISPs, ASSIA says in the paper. Close to 20% of home Wi-Fi suffers from severe coverage issues that could be resolved either by guided placement of the router or by extending coverage with additional hardware, while upselling is possible when lines are clearly congested, the paper explains.
The factors affecting Wi-Fi are many and varied. Poor access point placement is common, as are dead zones within the home, neighbour interference, as well as a litany of more detailed technical shortcomings such as airtime hogs, dominance of legacy clients, complicated onboarding, and more. A remote management solution typically includes a Cloud agent and various modules for optimisation of radio resources, security, client steering, analytics and more.