Google planned to offer subsidized Wi-Fi network to retail businesses
Google Inc plans to offer Wi-Fi network hardware and software at a discount to small and medium-sized businesses.
Google would provide commercial-grade Wi-Fi access equipment at a steep discount and Web-based software for businesses to manage the Wi-Fi network from anywhere.
The goal here is to simply provide the specialized Wifi hardware to businesses, while the business itself would provide the internet connection to that hardware. This could provide the system with serious scale — the report claims that Google plans to push this initiative around the world, not just in the U.S.
Google may require Wi-Fi users to “sign in” to their Google account, allowing the company to gather more information about them and target advertising to them.
Google recently teamed up with Starbucks to power the Wi-Fi offered at the Seattle chain’s coffee houses, provididing quality Wi-Fi to other businesses as well. Not only would the businesses benefit from the improved Wi-Fi access for its customers, but Google would likely gain additional info on users and and the searches conducted on those Wi-Fi networks.