More reports on: Telecom

Google to add Wi-Fi in its pitch to small business

23 May 2014

Google, which has been wooing small-businesses, is likely to add Wi-Fi as a part of its offerring.

The blog The said the search giant was in the  process of offering deeply discounted commercial-grade Wi-Fi hardware and software to small and medium-sized businesses as soon as this summer.

According to The Information, it learned of the programme via a leaked Google document and ''a person briefed on the project.''

Under the new Wi-Fi programme, the internet search company would target all kinds of small businesses, such as dentist offices to gyms, worldwide.

This would not be for the first time the company would put real money behind its push into the small-business sector.

In 2011, Google came out with a programme at Google I/O 2011 offering Chromebooks and desktop base stations to small businesses at very low cost.

Google's motive was to sell some more Google enterprise services like Apps, Docs, and cloud storage to small businesses, which worked much better with a solid Wi-Fi connection around the office, and in Google's point of view, preferably on Chromebooks and Android devices.

The blog reported the development on Wednesday, citing a confidential document it accessed and a person who was briefed on the project.

According to the blog, Google would provide commercial-grade Wi-Fi access equipment at a steep discount as also web-based software for businesses to manage the Wi-Fi network from anywhere. It did not however, provide specific pricing details.

Google might require Wi-Fi users to "sign in" to their Google account, in a bid to gather more information about them and target advertising to them.

The internet company also planned to share some data with business owners to help them learn about their customer habits, although it was not clear it might be willing to share, according to the blog.

The blog said the offering which was aimed at millions of businesses such as restaurants, doctors' offices and gyms, could be launched as soon as this summer.

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