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Topic # 232245 6-Apr-2018 13:39
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Wifi is becoming increasingly important to home users [citation needed]. As a result, there are a lot of wifi-related threads on Geekzone [citation needed]. I've seen quite a few threads that seem to involve some kind of variation on:

 

(a) my ISP-supplied router is rubbish, since I cannot get a signal in my shed/garage/outhouse/lead-lined basement/faraday-cage kitchen or throughout my large, thoroughly insulated, 4 split level, house;

 

(b) I bought a lot of wifi repeaters because of (a), but my wifi is still rubbish;

 

(c) I bought a super duper 57-antenna toting, MOAR POWER, epic gamerz optimised, router because of (a). How do I set it up for my ISP?

 

[Tongue in cheek. No offence intended. I've been one of these people too.]

 

I'm wondering if anyone (ISP or otherwise) has given thought to some kind of wifi-as-a-service/managed wifi type product. Or perhaps (for ISPs) rather than differentiating themselves on offering the cheapest possible router to deliver their services, offering a decent router that still offers remote management capabilities/full ISP support. Tongue in cheek again, but given some ISPs still like to offer the fastest/bestest/gamerist interwebs, I would have thought that offering the fastest/bestest/gamerist wifi would have been appealing. This could be a full blown AP installation and cabling service, or perhaps just working with a mesh networking provider.

 

In addition to raw coverage, there are a number of other geek features that I would have thought a savvy-provider could bring to mass market via an app or remote management facility. Things that seem like witchcraft to my less-technology inclined friends but are hard/less desirable with $99 routers include:

 

- roaming around the house without manually forcing network changes (cough, roaming around the house at all)

 

- a separate, clean browsing enforced, wifi network for the kids, while maintaining a non-clean browsing network for the adults (solely for performance reasons, of course)

 

- a separate, timer enabled/privilege revoking, wifi network for the kids

 

- a separate guest network

 

- allocating bandwith available between networks or services so the adults can "work" even amidst children/guest bandwith hogging

 

I know there are some providers offering installation-only services, but I've seen some ridiculous prices and specifications (one friend was specced 6 ports on a patch panel, paired with a $700 (seven hundred dollars!) 24 port managed switch). From what I can tell, after-installation support is mostly visiting at headlines rates. I was kind of thinking a more compelling offer would be $X per month, with a lock in based on the number of units installed maybe (e.g. three WAPs = 3 year term at $X per month). I realise that would be much more appealing paired with an ISP broadband plan. Management would be by user friendly app/gui, with remote access to the managed support provider when required.

 

I've seen some similar service offerings in the commercial area overseas and here, but not retail.

 

This is just me thinking aloud. I have zero plans and no interest in doing anything along these lines myself. However, I'd be stoked if someone did bring it to market since it would mean I can wriggle off the hook for friends/family IT support queries in the future. 


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  Reply # 1989480 6-Apr-2018 13:47
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No

 

As there are only so many hours in the day and people will always do stupid stuff. I can't see any ISPs wanting to get into this game as their helpdesk will be nailed supporting every man and their dog.

 

If you wanted to become a millionaire make sure you start as a billionaire and then invest in this venture.






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  Reply # 1989487 6-Apr-2018 13:53
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This appeals as a consumer with a lot of (a) issues per the original post...

 

 

 

How could/would it operate and not be a complete nightmare for the provider? Not my problem. I'm a consumer. Make it happen.

 

 

 

 

 

Oh...make it free or cheap.





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  Reply # 1989488 6-Apr-2018 13:53
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NOW offered it for quite some time. They also offer a subscription service for tech support for a monthly fee.

 

The problem is your average customer is willing to pay $0 per month for this service.

 

 


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  Reply # 1989490 6-Apr-2018 14:02
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BarTender:

 

If you wanted to become a millionaire make sure you start as a billionaire and then invest in this venture.

 

 

Haha I love this! brilliant.

 

 






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  Reply # 1989493 6-Apr-2018 14:05
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Wi-Fi operates on public specturm good luck trying to manage that

 

Linux 





Ex JohnR VodafoneNZ 17 years 4 days

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  Reply # 1989555 6-Apr-2018 15:15
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We do this for business customers with simple Unifi gear.

One UAP-AC-LR installed (on existing cabling) for $15/month over 24 months.

Nothing that special at all. Then we just do a one-off set up free of $195 for the site. We Will set up whatever the client requires.

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  Reply # 1989567 6-Apr-2018 15:37
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Sounds a bit like the Telecom / Spark initiative from a few years ago where there tried to crowd source the design of a router here on Geekzone. Sadly it wasn’t cost effective and died a slow death.

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  Reply # 1989573 6-Apr-2018 15:41
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chevrolux: We do this for business customers with simple Unifi gear.

One UAP-AC-LR installed (on existing cabling) for $15/month over 24 months.

Nothing that special at all. Then we just do a one-off set up free of $195 for the site. We Will set up whatever the client requires.

 

Why do buinesses ask you to do this? It seems an awfully simple thing to setup. 

 

 

 

They just don't have time? Or the knowledge?


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  Reply # 1989582 6-Apr-2018 15:49
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Some of the points you have are actually covered by Sparks Tech wizard service - eg setting up third party RGWs, a little bit of channel configuration assistance. etc.

 

 

 

There are afew other projects out there, If they become a spark offered anywhere would be a different question.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Demand is definitely there, I'm more of a fan of the upfront do it right first time model.





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Any comments made are personal opinion and do not reflect directly on the position my current or past employers may have.


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  Reply # 1989686 6-Apr-2018 19:09
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surfisup1000:

 

chevrolux: We do this for business customers with simple Unifi gear.

One UAP-AC-LR installed (on existing cabling) for $15/month over 24 months.

Nothing that special at all. Then we just do a one-off set up free of $195 for the site. We Will set up whatever the client requires.

 

Why do buinesses ask you to do this? It seems an awfully simple thing to setup. 

 

They just don't have time? Or the knowledge?

 

 

Yep lack of knowledge! If they ask if they can purchase an AP, we are happy to do that too of course. But most are quite happy to just tag it on to their monthly broadband/phone bill.


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  Reply # 1989811 6-Apr-2018 22:54
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I can't see this flying for a couple of reasons:

 

     

  1. Residential Internet/Wi-Fi is a lost leader for a number of companies.  This is why they always bundle it with other services (mobile phone, power, etc.)
  2. For a business to be successful people have to be willing to purchase the product.  This product is targeted at people who don't want to pay for anything.  You only have to look through the posts in this forum to see that people who everything for nothing.  Therefore, how are you going to get people to pay for this service?

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  Reply # 1989820 7-Apr-2018 00:24
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There are so many variables to Wifi, that it would be impossible for someone to say "Spend $500 and you will get guaranteed perfect Wifi on your entire house." To do it properly, someone needs to do a site visit, and write up a custom quote for the job. Which is not going to work for rental properties.

 

I have probably spent over $1000 on my Wifi and related networking equipment. 2x Xclaim Xi3 APs, Edge Router lite, TP link 24 Port gigabit unmanaged switch. Deep cycle batteries and other equipment like cables etc. Was it worth it - Yes. Excellent Wifi everywhere, No dropouts, Roaming actually works quite well - As soon as I get too far away from the AP that my phone is currently connected to, so there is a momentary signal drop. Im now closer to the other AP, So my phone reconnects to the closer AP instead. Both APs are on the same subnet, The Edge router and TP link are able to handle the layer 2 routing changes. So my phone keeps the same IP address, and the same NAT table rules keep on working. So everything keeps on working. I just get a message appear on my phone "Connected to (My SSID)" whenever the phone jumps between the 2 Xclaims. And everything keeps on working during power cuts as well.

 

So better Wifi is definitely possible. Just not as something that ISPs can offer as a simple add-on.






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  Reply # 1989927 7-Apr-2018 10:46
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- a separate, clean browsing enforced, wifi network for the kids, while maintaining a non-clean browsing network for the adults (solely for performance reasons, of course)

 

 

 

 

LOL yeah nah. You want that then you MUST do SSL Decrypt or you average tech savvy young person will cut through it in seconds. SSL decrypt has it's own challenges - like performance issues and getting everyone to trust the resigning cert. Something you would definitely not do at an ISP level.

 

Last year my son was starting at college, at his interview with his new dean the dean told him about their wonderful new internet and filtering system. The filtering system is based on a proxy system, no SSL decrypt capabilities. When she named the system he turned to me and said "is that the one that's easy to bypass with xxxxxxxxxxxxx?". Things got a little awkward after that.

 

He can successfully bypass their system, I asked him if his friends knew about it. He said no he wants to keep it a secret. I told him well share it around, then if they twig to it they cannot ban the whole school :)


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