If you’re a remote worker looking for a place to set up your mobile office or just someone with a limited data plan, free Wi-Fi can be more precious than food or water. Now Facebook is pushing out a new feature inside its mobile apps to help you locate the nearest hotspots.
It’s called Find Wi-Fi and it’s been in limited testing since last year, though Facebook has now pushed the button to roll it out globally, so everyone should be getting the feature in the near future. As the name suggests, it shows you businesses near to your location offering free Wi-Fi that you can tap into.
Businesses need to opt in to Facebook’s database before they appear, so it’s not quite the last word in where you can or can’t find internet access, but it should help. You’ll also get details of opening hours, so you can avoid places that have shut up for the day.
Show me the Wi-Fi
In more modern cities it’s (thankfully) getting to the stage where it’s more uncommon not to find Wi-Fi in a restaurant or a bar, but that’s not the case everywhere – and in remote places where cellular data is scarce, Wi-Fi becomes even more valuable.
Facebook isn’t your only option, as a number of apps and services can already help you hunt down Wi-Fi – the problem is getting the data on who offers it and who doesn’t, so we’ll see if Facebook’s vast reach helps. Of course you can always just go inside a place and ask as well.
Updates for iOS and Android are being pushed out now, and once you’ve got the feature, you can find it by clicking on the More tab inside the app and then choosing Find Wi-Fi from the list. Happy internet hunting – just remember public Wi-Fi is inherently less secure than your home network.