Travels With Wi-Fi: Boosting the signal for well-wired recreation

Americans love recreational activities, when we used to go outside. We also rely on our Wi-Fi, and the creature comforts that come with the internet while enjoying rest and relaxation.

RVs and the desire for Wi-Fi

For electrical contractors, it’s important to recognize the market for recreational vehicles (RVs) is on the rise thanks to those who use them to hit the road and see America one mile at a time. This is especially true in the age of the novel coronavirus, when many travelers may fear getting on an airplane.

According to the market research firm Technavio, headquartered in London with offices around the world, the United States led the North American recreational vehicle market in 2018 and is expected to maintain its position as the largest market through 2023. The company expects a steady annual growth of about 8% of recreational vehicle purchases through 2023.

The growth can be attributed to the consumers’ desire to experience outdoor activities and enjoy quality personal time simultaneously.

“Moreover, the integration of modern technologies, such as onboard Wi-Fi internet access, has enhanced the level of luxury offered by an RV, thus making it an attractive mode of transport in the U.S.,” Technavio said.

The smart contractor should be aware of this opportunity. Satisfy the growing swell of RV operators in this country, and you’ll have a good niche to exploit as they all seek ways to get better Wi-Fi service.

Boost the signal, protect the data

As it stands, Wi-Fi is widely sought after in the RV market; companies sell RVs with Wi-Fi boosters that help elevate the signals at RV parks where so many complain of weak signals. Many individuals buy their own Wi-Fi booster.

Airstream trailers, for example, offer a Wi-Fi hotspot accessory that can be wired into its trailers with a monthly data plan so the “silver bullet” RVs don’t have to rely on an RV park, state park or national park’s potentially unreliable Wi-Fi service.

Public Wi-Fi is vulnerable to security breaches and cyberattacks. Guard Dog Solutions, Salt Lake City, has targeted this market for its A.I.-driven solution to combat Wi-Fi security threats.

“The cybersecurity industry is currently reactive and reliant on human defense. We are now replacing this model with an A.I.-driven, proactive autonomous response system that eliminates threats before there is an attack in real time and 24/7. We’re taking this protection forward at velocity speed,” said Bill Flury, CEO of Guard Dog Solutions.

Satellite service?

For some remote recreational sites, satellite service is the only choice, but such service has traditionally been quite expensive. Backpackers and daring souls who brave remote locations use it, but it can cost thousands for the equipment plus more for the data plans.

While satellite services offer Wi-Fi just about anywhere, they don’t have the features or bandwidth necessary to power the data-intensive applications that end-users are increasingly demanding. Therefore, new companies are emerging that are commercial satellite operators with designated independent third-party Service Organization Control 3 cybersecurity accreditation for security purposes.

FlexMove, a new end-terminal managed service, enables people to connect to the internet, private data networks and cloud services from anywhere in the world, including while mobile or at a temporary site.

Well-wired recreation

Mark Saferstein, editor-in-chief and publisher at American Park Network, wrote an article, “Bridging the Digital Divide—Free Wi-Fi in Parks,” for the National Park and Recreation Association.

“Ultimately, the key for parks isn’t to have Wi-Fi everywhere, but rather to offer visitors the option to connect in well-defined, high-traffic locations,” Saferstein states.

“That option can make all the difference in getting people to show up and share their experiences. In many respects, it’s similar to offering showers at campgrounds. There was a time when a hot shower at a campground was a luxury. Today, visitors consider it a necessity but would likely trade a hot shower for a reliable internet connection any time.”

About the Author

Jim Romeo

Freelance Writer

Jim Romeo is a freelance writer based in Chesapeake, Va. He focuses on business and technology topics. Find him at www.JimRomeo.net.

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