In today’s world, successful events are planned well and meet audiences’ expectations. The modern audience expects business events and other events to function not only as a networking forum, but also as a platform for engaging with people on a digital level. In response, event planners are turning to event WiFi solutions to deliver seamless experiences for attendees and stakeholders. However, getting everything just right can be daunting as the checklist to make an event successful is never ending. So, how to get it right? As part of this guide, we will help you make informed decisions by exploring different options and choosing the best one for your specific requirements. We would also help you understand what needs to be assessed before selecting vendors and choosing the ideal solution provider that matches your needs.
What are the needs?
Well, before jumping to any solutions, businesses must understand that not every event requires WiFi to succeed, some thrive without it. So, how do you determine whether your event needs wireless internet? Identifying the need for services requires businesses to evaluate themselves according to certain parameters. In addition to the nature of the event, whether live streaming is mandatory or not, the number of attendees attending the event, and the number of devices that will benefit from connectivity can all play a role. We can simplify this by grouping them into three categories: venue assessment, bandwidth assessment, and security considerations.
1. Venue Assessment
The same way you make a checklist for your venue, you should assess it for WiFi requirements as well. To accomplish this, event planners must identify the areas in the venue where WiFi is required. Likewise, they should know what type of devices will connect to the network and what amount of coverage is necessary. A list of attendees can help event planners estimate this, as not everyone needs the internet access. Additionally, they need to assess the venue’s WiFi infrastructure in case the venue may require additional cabling or hardware to ensure that there is sufficient bandwidth to support the network. Similar to ensuring your car has enough fuel before driving long distances. Your car must be equipped to handle any bumps along the way, as well as have enough fuel to get you to your destination. In this way, you can accommodate your needs and choose the right WiFi provider.
2. Determining Bandwidth Requirements
Internet solutions providers must provide robust and reliable connectivity for their clients. You don’t want your VIP guests to struggle with poor internet connectivity during an event. Understanding bandwidth requirements will simplify this process. You need to determine the type of event you are hosting. For instance, does your event have a media presence? Would it require live coverage? If your event meets these requirements, an event WiFi solution is viable. Once you factor in these elements, it is easier to compare different solutions. Also, remember the network intensity when choosing a WiFi solution. A higher density WiFi would enable your guests to connect simultaneously to the WiFi network at the same time. This would ensure a better user experience and reduce network congestion. However, if the cost of a higher density WiFi solution is prohibitive, you could opt for a lower density solution. This would still provide your guests with an adequate WiFi connection, and it would likely be more cost-effective.
3. Security Considerations
Did you know that unsecure WiFi is one of the many ways attendee data can end up in the wrong hands? So, what are the security checks you should not miss before selecting your event WiFi solution? Businesses should look out for a solution that offers advanced security features like WPA2 encryption, firewalls, and network access control to protect guests’ privacy. They should likewise ensure that the solution provides authentication and authorisation features to ensure that only authorised users can access the network. The solution provider should also offer regular security updates and technical support to protect against advanced malware. However, it is important to note that not all businesses need the same level of security. A small business may not need the same level of security as a large business, so they should choose a solution that fits their budget and needs. Furthermore, businesses should consider the cost of implementing and maintaining a secure solution.
Types of WiFi solutions
Well, by now you have figured out whether you need a WiFi network or not at your event. So, let’s boil down to the two major types of WiFi solutions you can select:
1. Temporary WiFi for Events
2. High-Speed WiFi for Events
When choosing the first option, the nature, size, and duration of the event should be considered. Additionally, you should consider your attendees’ expectations, needs, and limitations. For temporary internet connections, cellular hotspots can be used. They use cellular networks to provide internet access for users. Again, you can rent a WiFi router to set up the internet for your event. The last resort is configuring temporary satellite internet in remote locations.
High-speed internet connectivity is recommended if the event has a large attendee base and internet requirements. There are two ways to acquire dedicated WiFi speed for your event without drops in the internet connection. The first is fibre optic which is a costly and time-consuming solution. The second would be microwave antennas through which you can seamlessly connect people through access points at events. With a reliable and secure connection you can ensure that the event runs smoothly without any technical issues.
How to select your event WiFi solution provider?
Before selecting your solution provider and negotiating the deal, here are some things to remember:
- A service provider’s availability at the event site needs to be checked. There are some solution providers who do not cater to certain locations
- After that, you should carefully review the SLA (Service Level Agreement) provided by the solution provider, which commits to uptime and support for your internet service
- In addition, you should not ignore the scalability factor that the solution provider offers. If your solution provider cannot scale up the service in response to ad hoc requests, you might face a challenge
- Analyse the reviews and experiences of previous clients of the event WiFi service provider to determine their reliability and uptime
- In case of downtime, businesses should also ensure that the solution provider offers 24/7 support
- Security being of the utmost importance. Verify that the solution provider takes all necessary security measures.
- Finally, they should choose solution providers that offer easy WiFi setup and management. Non-technical staff can easily operate WiFi solutions that are easy to install.
WiFi is becoming an essential part of modern event technology, as it provides an interactive experience for attendees, accesses event apps, and streams live content. It is imperative to select a provider that offers fast speeds, reliable connections, and a secure network, as these are the key ingredients for a successful event. As technology advances, so too will the number of options available, providing even more opportunities for improved event WiFi. In the end, investing in a robust WiFi infrastructure is crucial because it ensures attendees have a seamless and uninterrupted experience at your event. This not only enhances their overall satisfaction but also contributes to your event’s success and reputation.