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Study: Most Consumers Prefer ISPs to Supply In-Home WiFi Products

Some 79% of U.S. and U.K. consumers prefer that their ISP provide in-home WiFi equipment rather than buying that equipment themselves, according to a survey commissioned by whole-home WiFi equipment and software specialist AirTies.

The survey of 1,050 respondents with multiple WiFi users per home conducted by Qualtrics, also found that 43% reported having areas of their home or apartment with Internet dead spots, and that 54% have called their ISP to complain about their home Internet or WiFi.

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Additionally, 74% said they would consider upgrading to a faster tier of Internet service if they were ensured of better speed and coverage to all parts of their home or apartment and that 77% would be willing to pay extra. Of that latter group, 68% said they’d be willing to pay between $5 to $10 per month extra for better in-home WiFi.

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Those findings, of course, fit snuggly with a sizable portion of AirTies’s business, which includes whole-home WiFi equipment and software combos that are sold in partnership with cable operators and other ISPs that include Frontier Communications, Midco, Sky, Vodafone, Singtel, and Swisscom.  Of that group, Midco, for example, offers a whole-home WiFi platform starting at $7.95 per month for up to three integrated devices, plus $50 for the installation.

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“When most consumers think about their own home Internet experience, they don’t view Wi-Fi as something separate. This is why they are quick to call or blame their ISPs for performance issues,” Philippe Alcaras, CEO of AirTies, said in a statement. “Improving this experience shouldn’t be the responsibility of consumers or third-party retailers, but rather their ISPs. In fact, the vast majority of consumers would prefer that, and would consider paying extra for a premium Wi-Fi experience that works in every corner of their home.”

Among other findings, the survey found that 67% of respondents would consider buying small, extra WiFi access points  that complement their router to expand and improve coverage, but 78% said they’d rather get all of  that gear from their ISPs.

Some 70% said they have at least five WiFi devices in the home, while 58%  have between five and 10, and 11% have between 10 and 15. The vast majority, 92%, said they stream video via WiFi in the home.