If you think that your local Starbucks(‘) is clogged up with laptops, iPads, and other mid-sized, internet-accessing devices now, just wait a few months; you’ll look back on these times as the golden years.
Yup, Starbucks is making itself an even friendlier entity to the public-WiFi-mongering community. Multiple sources are reporting that the company is ditching their old AT&T service in favor of Google WiFi hotspots, a move that will make free coffeehouse WiFi hotspots speeds ten times faster.
Actually, according to The Motley Fool, speeds can be “up to 100x faster if users are in a Google Fiber city.” Starbucks customers can expect to start seeing these changes over the next month in newly opening Starbucks stores. CNET reports that the company “will then roll it out to its 7,000 other U.S. stores, starting with the busiest locations where Wi-Fi usage is highest.”
So, aside from the bigger crowds at your local Starbucks that this news portends, fast, dependable Google WiFi hotspot at an omnipresent coffee chain strikes us as a positive development. But as we reported when discussing NYC subways, public WiFi hotspot security can make you vulnerable to nefarious online elements. Hackers’ and identity thieves’ jobs become a whole lot easier when you use your smartphone or portable device on an free open network WiFi hotspot.
That’s why we’re constantly beating the VPN drum. While a free WiFi hostpot are convenient and easy to use, individual security on free WiFi hotspots like Starbucks is non-existent. VPN service providers are a great and effective way to utilize this open and friendly resource, enjoy your coffee, juice or muffins while ensuring that your computer, tablet, smartphone full of personal information is encrypted and untraceable.
For more information on some of the best VPN providers for security from free public WiFi hotspots, visit our list of supported VPN services. Our head to our device store to make the process of utilizing a VPN on multiple devices at the same time that much easier.