Wi-Fi is increasingly being demanded by customers in a number of sectors, particularly hospitality businesses such as hotels, restaurants and convention centres.

To meet that need Shaw Communications said Thursday will upgrade its managed Wi-Fi solution — but organizations will have to wait until January for details and the ability to buy it.

Shaw Business said the improved service will enable hotels, resorts, casinos and conference centres to keep up with the demand for Internet connectivity.

Organizations will be able to buy a turnkey Wi-Fi solution that includes a complimentary site design and analysis to determine the optimal WiFi solution for each property, the carrier said, so customers and visitors experience a fast and reliable Internet experience.

“Consumers rank Internet connectivity and Wi-Fi availability as a critical factor in making hospitality choices, John Piercy, Shaw’s senior vice-president for business,  said in a statement, “and poor Internet experiences dramatically lower the chances a guest will visit a hotel or conference centre ever again. Our Managed WiFi product meets these hospitality needs by providing clients with an industry-leading scalable WiFi solution tailored specifically to their business.”

Shaw notes that a recent Cisco Systems study suggests global IP traffic will increase threefold over the next five years, placing added importance on the ability for hospitality businesses to manage their WiFi service actively.

Shaw’s current Managed Guest WiFi product includes splash pages, analytics and improved management tools along with Internet access and a scalable Wi-Fi solution in one package.

Calgary-based Shaw[TSX: SJR.B], which has cable networks in B.C., Alberta, Manitoba and Ontario, is also a large Wi-Fi provider since deciding in 2011 it couldn’t afford to build a cellular network. Its consumer Internet subscribers have free access to some 45,000 hot spots in certain  Western Canadian municipalities.

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