Event attendees demand fast, free wi-fi

Event venues will face the wrath of irate delegates if their wi-fi provision isn’t up to scratch, according to a new report.

New research from event technology firm Etherlive found that event attendees aren’t just demanding free wi-fi but also that it be secure and fast, even despite the large volumes of people who may be logging on.

The claims come after Etherlive noted a 12 per cent increase in wi-fi technology installation at corporate events, with internet downloads rising by 35 per cent year-on-year, conference-news.co.uk notes. This is especially true in hotels, where the demands of a business event will sometimes overwhelm the standard wi-fi offering.

Another common consideration is stallholders taking chip and pin devices to business events to close deals out there and then. Such devices would also need an internet connection, so it’s not just delegates logging on with their smartphones or tablets to check emails or social networks.

Commenting, Etherlive director Tom McInerney told meetpie.com: “There are two clear sectors that have exceeded expectations in the past three years.

“We see the primary growth by the corporate market whose customers demand more than the substandard free wi-fi networks that hotels are delivering for their conference clients. The secondary area is exhibition and public event organisers who, more than ever, are aware that their standholders, exhibitors and even caterers need wi-fi to fulfil sales transactions.”