In America, There Are 10x More Cable Operator Provided Wi-Fi Hotspots Than There Are Starbucks


A few days ago, using my iPhone, I tried to FaceTime my sister while I was out for a walk.

For those unfamiliar with this most modern of communications methods, this is where an Apple device user uses the camera to video chat with someone else while they use their Apple device. You can see them right on the screen and they can see you, too. It’s very Jetsons. However, if you don’t have a speedy wireless connection, it can be hit-or-miss.

Well, I wasn’t getting a great connection in the park and eventually I just gave up and called her using the plain old telephone feature. I know – how annoying.

But then it occurred to me – as a cable subscriber, I get access to a ton of free Wi-Fi hotspots. This means, I don’t have to rely solely on my home Internet connection for high-speed access. Especially in a major city center, I can’t go more than a few blocks without finding one. But if I, someone who’s basically surrounded by cable policy, tech and news, can easily forget I have this benefit, who else doesn’t know? How many cable subscribers have no idea that there is speedy, widely accessible, no-cost Wi-Fi pouring out of 120,000 hotspots across the country just waiting to be tapped into? That’s more hotspots than there are Starbucks!

So I logged into a cable Wi-Fi hotspot that seemed to be coming from someplace right around the park I was in (I was getting a great connection) and called my sister back, this time with FaceTime. It worked perfectly! Let this serve as a reminder: Many of the major cable operators including Time Warner, Comcast, Optimum, Cox and Bright House, participate in offering no-cost Wi-Fi to its customers. The next time you are searching for stronger, more reliable Internet connections, tap into these cable-provided hotspots. From outdoor spaces, to indoor cafés to lounges and lobbies, chances are you will find a hotspot close by.

Want to find a hotspot near you? Go to, search by provider, and don’t let what happened to me happen to you!


*Total Starbucks Stores in America according to Starbucks Annual Report 2012 – 11,100. Total Wi-Fi HotSpots in America according to NCTA Research – 120,000+