low income housing

Managed WiFi Solutions for MDU / MTU, Hotel, Assisted Living, & Restaurants

Queensbridge Connected Wi-Fi Network Receives Digital Inclusion Leadership Award At Broadband Summit

The Queensbridge Connected Community-Wide Wi-Fi network, designed and implemented by Spot On Networks, receives the Digital Inclusion Leadership Award From Next Century Cities in partnership with Google Fiber at Broadband Communities Summit 2017.

For Immediate Release

New Haven, CT May 3, 2017

From Left: Dick Sherwin, President & CEO Spot On Networks, Alfonso Jenkins, Deputy Commissioner for Telecommunications Planning,  Joshua Breitbart, Senior Advisor for Broadband at Office of the Mayor New York City

From Left: Dick Sherwin, President & CEO Spot On Networks, Alfonso Jenkins, Deputy Commissioner for Telecommunications Planning at New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications, Joshua Breitbart, Senior Advisor for Broadband at Office of the Mayor New York City at 2017 Broadband Communities Summit

The Queensbridge Connected, Community-Wide Wi-Fi network model received the Digital Inclusion Award this Tuesday at the Broadband Communities Summit.  In attendance at the Broadband Summit were Joshua Breitbart, Senior Advisor for Broadband at Office of the Mayor New York City, Alfonso Jenkins, Deputy Commissioner for Telecommunications Planning at New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications and Dick Sherwin, President and CEO of Spot On Networks.  Breitbart and Jenkins accepted the award which was awarded by Next Century Cities in partnership with Google Fiber.

The Queensbridge Connected model is the first collaboration between the City of New York’s Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications (DOITT) and the City’s public housing authority (NYCHA).  Queensbridge Connected is a part of the OneNYC Broadband Initiative’s promise to invest “in networks providing high-speed residential access either free or at low-cost for low-income communities”.

Spot On Networks was awarded the contract by the City of New York to design, build, implement and support the Queensbridge Connected community-wide Wi-Fi network in 2016.  The Network provides free high speed Wi-Fi internet and Wi-Fi calling access with speeds up to 25 Mbps and seamless connectivity throughout the community.  Furthering the mission to “Bridge the Digital Divide”, Spot On has hired and trained residents within Queensbridge Houses to assist in building, supporting and promoting the Queensbridge Connected network.  The model of employing residents to make Queensbridge Connected a reality has proven essential to the success of the project.

“We are proud to have been chosen as the Wi-Fi service provider for Queensbridge Houses”, stated Dick Sherwin, President & CEO of Spot On Networks, “and we stand firmly with New York City on the importance of ‘Broadband for All’ and ‘Bridging the Digital Divide’.  The City of New York is clearly the leader on community-wide Digital Inclusion.  We at Spot On Networks believe that the Queensbridge Connected Wi-Fi network is the ideal model for future community-wide broadband networks in the affordable housing sector.”

About the Digital Inclusion Leadership Award

The Digital Inclusion Leadership Awards program is given by Next Century Cities in partnership with Google Fiber.  According to a press release on the Next Century Cities website, “These awards celebrate city and county governments that are leading programs or empowering community-based organizations to tackle barriers to Internet adoption.  The awards are an opportunity to celebrate the cities that are leading community changing programs and encourage public leaders to get involved in digital inclusion by sharing best practices”.

About Spot On Networks

Spot On Networks (“SON”) is a wireless internet service provider and wireless consulting company representing tens of thousands of residential and commercial tenants, nationwide.  SON designs, deploys and manages carrier grade Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Calling and CellBoost® networks to multifamily, senior living, hospitality, retail and commercial buildings.  Spot On’s wireless networks are backed by patented network architecture and UserSafe® technology.

SON is the leading provider of managed Wi-Fi networks and in-building voice solutions to the U.S. multitenant housing market and is a trusted leader in wireless since 2004.  SON develops wireless solutions to solve the most pressing problems facing today’s building owners.

 

New Multifamily WiFi Model Provides WiFi Calling and Subscription Services To Residents

Spot On Networks new WiFi offering allows building owners to offer residents property-wide WiFi calling and subscription data services while continuing to honor marketing exclusivity agreements with cable and telco companies

 

For Immediate Release

New Haven, CT February 27, 2017

Spot On Networks (“SON”) announced today the development of a new service offering that provides property-wide WiFi calling service and subscription-based tiered data services to residents in multifamily buildings. This new service offering uses SON’s UserSafe® WiFi technology to provide property-wide seamless, high-quality voice coverage with Quality of Service (“QOS”) and voice packet prioritization. This same wireless service also allows residents to subscribe to low-cost high speed WiFi internet services as an alternative to the high-cost plans offered by cable and telco ISPs. The new solution allows building owners to offer WiFi for voice-only services at no-cost while preventing residents from receiving data services unless they subscribe, thus allowing building owners to honor their existing marketing agreements which often do not allow a property to offer bulk data services. The property-wide wireless backbone also provides amenity area data services to residents at no cost and support for the Internet of Things (IoT). The pricing for this new model is significantly less than other voice solutions like a Distributed Antenna System (“DAS”).

The multifamily industry has long been plagued with poor in-building cellular coverage due to energy saving construction materials such as concrete and low-emission glass. Poor cellular coverage has hurt the multifamily industry resulting in dissatisfied residents and lease issues. Solutions to the in-building cellular coverage problem prior to the cellular carrier’s adoption of WiFi calling had been predominately cellular booster systems or DAS which is often a non-starter due to high cost and long deployment time. A property-wide wireless backbone with WiFi calling and subscription data services will typically cost a building owner $0.40 per square foot which is about one-fifth of a DAS solution.

While WiFi calling has been available in various forms for years, it has only become a viable in-building voice solution in the past eighteen months due to native dialing support from the four major cellular carriers: AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint as well as a host of MVNOs with various WiFi calling solutions and device offerings such as Republic Wireless and Google Project Fi. Spot On Networks has been developing and testing managed wireless services that support seamless, high-quality WiFi calling with QOS and voice packet prioritization for years.

“We have long been involved in developing in-building voice solutions for our building owner clients,” stated Spot On Networks CEO, Dick Sherwin. He continued, “Our CellBoost® product gave building owners a quick-to-deploy and cost-effective alternative to the DAS solution – but we have always seen the future as Voice Over WiFi. Because many building owners have existing marketing exclusivity agreements with cable and teleco companies, they were prevented from providing property-wide WiFi to residents. Our new wireless model allows building owners to use the less-expensive and more sophisticated UserSafe® WiFi solution for voice while honoring their marketing agreements AND providing residents with faster, lower-cost data services.”

Spot On Networks new hybrid voice and data solution is currently being deployed in many properties across the U.S. and is being highly sought after by affordable housing authorities, real estate investment trusts and multifamily building owners.

About Spot On Networks

Spot On Networks (“SON”) is a wireless internet service provider and wireless consulting company representing tens of thousands of residential and commercial tenants, nationwide. SON designs, deploys and manages carrier grade WiFi, WiFi Calling and CellBoost® networks to multifamily, senior living, hospitality, retail and commercial buildings. Spot On’s wireless networks are backed by patent-pending network architecture and UserSafe® technology.

SON is the leading provider of managed WiFi networks and in-building voice solutions to the U.S. multitenant housing market and is a trusted leader in wireless since 2004. SON develops WiFi-backed solutions to solve the most pressing problems facing today’s building owners.

 

 

FCC Votes Approves Internet Subsidies For Low-Income Residents

As a property manager I was speaking with this week stated, offering WiFi in low-income housing “is just the right thing to do for residents”.  Property owners are eating the cost of Internet for their low-income properties in order to give residents WiFi access as an amenity when they cannot increase the rent to cover the cost as they would for a market rate building.

Interestingly enough, the FCC voted last Thursday to expand the Lifeline Subsidy program to include Internet services.  This program offers $9.25/ month to families to help out with communications services costs.

While Lifeline program recipients can now include the cost of their Internet in what communications services are eligible for subsidy, it is important to note that the actual amount that families receive has not increased, only what services are eligible.

The statics regarding Internet services for low-income households are staggering with only 48% of low-income (less than $25K/ year) households having internet access, compared with 95% of households with incomes above $150,000.

It is unclear exactly how these subsidies will affect the building owners providing Internet, if at all, but what is clear is that the FCC recognizes Internet access as a utility and not an amenity.

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