Time Warner Cable Business Class will start offering business data customers its TWC WiFi Hotspot solution for no additional charge.

 The service, which will be available across Time Warner Cable’s footprint, includes a free Wi-Fi access point installed and managed by Time Warner Cable Business Class (TWCBC.) The Wi-Fi access point comes equipped with its own Internet connection to keep businesses’ private traffic separate and secure from the public Wi-Fi Internet traffic that is generated by customers.

Along the similar lines, yesterday Comcast Business announced a dual-band gateway, which is made by Cisco, that allows businesses to assign a private wireless signal for their own backoffice needs while also providing a separate signal for customers. 

The Wi-Fi access points allow businesses to offer their customers Wi-Fi access on virtually any Wi-Fi enabled device, including smartphones, tables and laptops. Last month TWCBC announced the results of a survey found that 80 percent of the respondents believed their customers expected free Wi-Fi, and Wi-Fi also topped the list as the best way to attract new customers, but only 43 percent of the businesses offered Wi-Fi. 

“Our WiFi Hotspot solution is an excellent service for growing businesses because it has the potential to attract new customers and reward loyal patrons,” said Maureen Link, group vice president, marketing, small business, Time Warner Cable Business Services. “Consumers have come to expect connectivity everywhere, and a WiFi Hotspot gives them a simple, free way to use their tablet or smart phone while waiting for a doctor’s appointment or having lunch, without having to use up their cellular data plan – a big bonus for users on expensive, capped data plans.”

The business Wi-Fi service is also available to qualified Time Warner Cable Standard residential and business Internet customers, as well as qualified subscribers from the four other cable operators (Comcast, Cox Communications, Cablevision and Bright House Networks, participating in the Cable WiFi network alliance.

TWCBC’s Wi-Fi offering includes a “self-service management portal” that allows business owners to configure the service to require a password for free access or set daily time allotments for free access, ranging from 15-60 minutes. The portal also provides a branding opportunity for businesses’ to add their names and logos, and marketing messages on the Wi-Fi welcome pages.

Time Warner Cable has more than 35,000 hotspots across the nation, including in cities such as New York City, Los Angeles, Austin and Charlotte, Myrtle Beach, Hawaii, and Kansas City.

Yesterday Boingo Wireless and Time Warner Cable announced a bilateral Wi-Fi roaming deal that allows their subscribers to tap into each other’s hotspots across the nation, which gave Time Warner Cable subscribers access to Boingo’s 100 hotspots located in airports and other high traffic areas.