Devicescape plans to eliminate the complexities of end-user WiFi logins. WiFi devices, such as those built into VoIP phones, can connect automatically. The service is free to the public, but earns the company commissions from operators and royalties from device makers.
According to WindowsForDevices, the “secret sauce” behind the Devicescape Service is a patented technique that will enable high-security, centralized Devicescape servers to supply usernames, passwords, and other login information transparently, on behalf of users.
Service subscribers simply type their hotspot usernames and passwords into Devicescape’s website once, after which their Devicescape-enabled devices supply the needed credentials automatically.
Devicescape expects browserless, WiFi-enabled devices to “mushroom”. “WiFi is literally a couple bucks to embed”, says Marketing Glenn Flinchbaugh. “Three hundred cities in the U.S. have either launched or are in the process of building municipal networks, and there’s going to be more. A billion mobile phones ship each year, and more and more of them will be dual-mode phones with WiFi,” he adds.
The Devicescape “Connect Agent,” runs inside the user’s device. The agent began beta testing last December, and reached general availability a couple of days ago. It runs on XP, Windows Mobile 5, the Nokia Internet Tablet and FON, the “free” WiFi network.
The Whisher software works with a wide variety of Wi-Fi hardware and helps users find the best access points available to them, explained Ferran Moreno, co-founder and CEO to Network World.
To share a network, you create an entry, enter a password (if any), and choose your friends that can access it. “You can create your own Wi-Fi community, by deciding with whom you share and when,” Moreno said.
Just as Skype challenged the established telephone companies by providing free Internet calling, Whisher also hopes to shake up the establishment by offering an easy way to share and access Wi-Fi for free, using available broadband connections, explains C/Net. This concept is not universally embraced by ISPs, of course. Nevertheless, DeviceSpace says it can work on national WiFi networks like T-Mobile, Wayport, FON and Google WiFi.
The application includes file transfer software and instant messaging, although currently limited to the local Wi-Fi network for registered users. Someone who installs the Whisher application and doesn’t register for an account can still access free hotspots, but if they want additional local features, they’ll need to create an account. A hotspot operator can also use a CD or memory stick so customers can install the Whisher software faster and more easily.