[This is a sponsored article with Simplify.]
Monthly internet expenses can be pricey, especially for small businesses where its bandwidth may not be fully utilised or in most cases, taken advantage of by those who need to work.
Some large coffee chains make the most of their WiFi users by requesting for their email and contact information, but Simplify has another solution.
They offer an internet bandwidth sharing service that turns any business that provides WiFi into an Internet Service Provider for their customers.
Let me explain. Simplify Smarter WiFi is a peer-to-peer internet sharing platform that essentially lets you sell your WiFi bandwidth to other Simplify app users.
Your patrons simply need to pay for what they use, and you get cashback to shave off part of your internet bill.
But public places provide WiFi for free… right?
Yes, it’s free in some places so why should people start charging for WiFi?
To answer this, we asked the CEO of Simplify, Yen Pei Tay. He said, “Using free and open WiFi comes with absolute cybersecurity risks, especially when WiFi providers have to give away their WiFi security keys to the public.
“Simplify applies its own proprietary double-encryption mechanism to further protect WiFi credentials, making it difficult to crack.”
He also added that Simplify does not store or forward passwords for WiFi, similar to the Payment Card Industry (PCI) standards for managing our credit card data online.
Well, as they say, nothing in life is free.
How Simplify Smarter WiFi works
- Sign up for an account using either your Google or Facebook account
- Link your bank account to receive your payouts (Stripe is now supported too)
- Set up your WiFi hosting session by keying in your router’s MAC address, then a Simplify Smarter WiFi name and password will be generated for you
- Get your customers to download Simplify app and connect to your Simplify WiFi network
- Start earning daily cashback
Now, step five is the most fun because for every 1GB of internet that your patrons use, they pay just RM1. Simplify does take a 20% cut, so you basically earn RM0.80 for every GB of internet sold.
How Smarter WiFi can help businesses
Say you run small establishments like a quaint café, a homestay, or a salon, you can offset a portion of your WiFi bill by allowing customers to pay for the internet they use.
In turn, you can lower the prices of your offerings since the cost of the internet isn’t baked into the price of products.
Customers that don’t need to use WiFi get to enjoy a more affordable experience, while patrons that require internet access only need to pay for what they use.
To put into perspective how much you can knock off your bill if you sell your internet, take this hypothetical scenario as an example:
Your unlimited fibre plan costs you RM99 per month, and a patron stops by your café for lunch and to binge-watch half a season of Squid Game in one sitting. Since each episode is about one hour long, he uses 3GB of your internet per episode if he watches in HD.
And if he watches the last five episodes of the show (Episode 8 is only 30 minutes long), this customer will have to pay RM13.50.
RM10.80 from that amount goes to you (80%), which accounts to nearly 11% of your monthly internet bill.
Yen Pei told us that the highest amount of cashback earned in a month by a Simplify reseller was RM778, so you could technically make your money back if your business has enough foot traffic.
Set it up in a dorm full of bored students and your little ISP business can potentially rake in a decent amount of moolah.
An easy way to start selling your internet
If you don’t have your own router or internet subscription, you can opt to also get Simplify’s Starter Pack that includes a Huawei 4G Router 3 Pro that comes pre-installed with the Smarter WiFi all already set up, saving you from having to go through the setup processes mentioned above.
This portable router is as thin as two 2B pencils, and it’s capable of outputting in 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz dual-band frequencies. The device is also able to clock up to 400Mbps download speeds on 4G+ connections, which is way faster than the free wifi that some retail chains offer.
To use the router, simply plug it into a power source, insert a nano-SIM card that carries data, and have your customers scan the QR code that’s linked to your router.
According to the Simplify product team, the router can support up to 64 devices connecting to it at the same time.
We asked Shir Ley Chan, who is the Customer Success Manager at Simplify, to give us examples of actual businesses using the Simplify Starter Pack and she mentioned Soymi, a travelling food truck business that relies on the portability of the router to provide internet to its customers.
Then there’s also Nasi Vanggey Ipoh who appreciates that they no longer need to write down WiFi passwords on pieces of paper for their customers who can instead connect to the network using the Simplify App instead.
If you’re worried about the security of the router, the product team also emphasized that the device is SIRIM-certified and its cybersecurity features have been passed by a security penetration test conducted by Klynveld Peat Marwick Goerdeler (KPMG).
Dictionary time: KPMG is a global audit, tax and advisory firm that also provides cyber security consultation under its risk consulting portfolio.
The Starter Pack is currently available at a promo price of RM499, and you can get it on Shopee or Simplify’s website (3-month instalment plans are available with 0% interest via Atome, hoolah, or myIOU).
Alternatively, you can also rent a Starter Pack from just RM98 per month, which comes bundled with Celcom, DiGi or Maxis’ unlimited data plans.