In 2012, global carrier Wi-Fi deployments reached 4.9 million.
Global rise in mobility demand is expected to drive the number of Wi-Fi Hotspots to more than 6.3 million by late 2013, according to a new report from ABI research.
In 2012, the global carrier Wi-Fi deployments reached 4.9 million, the report said.
ABI Research research analyst, Khin Sandi Lynn, said: "Despite the successful adoption of 3G and 4G mobile data services, the number of Wi-Fi Hotspots has continued to proliferate and are anticipated to surpass 6.3 million by the end of 2013."
The number also includes Wi-Fi hotspots used by fixed-line and mobile carriers, along with third-party operators including Boingo, iPass.
The research firm reveals that the third-party operators deploy their own Wi-Fi hotspots and retail access to Wi-Fi hotspots controlled by telecom operators.
Asia-Pacific region has about 88% of Wi-Fi of the total global Wi-Fi hotspots, followed by 8% in Europe, 3% in North America, and 1%in the other regions, the report said.
According to the ABI Research, Wi-Fi, which has been a complement to 3G and 4G services, is now a foundation of connectivity for the majority of smartphone, tablet, and laptop users as it is offered for free in several public Wi-Fi locations.
With the rise in user importance for mobility, fixed broadband operators have also started building Wi-Fi hotspots to offer fast and reliable Internet connections when the customers are not at home.