Global public Wi-Fi hotspots 2016-2022

Forecasts suggest that by 2019 there will be a total of 362 million public Wi-Fi hotspots available worldwide. This 2019 figure would represent a near quadrupling of public Wi-Fi hotspots since 2016, showing the rapid rise in these networks around the world. This trend towards growth is expected to continue into at least the early 2020s.

Public Wi-Fi

Wi-fi wireless internet networks allow users to connect to the web using a range of mobile devices without the need to physically connect to ethernet ports. Public Wi-Fi offerings such as municipal wireless networks and those found in coffee shops or cafes allow users to connect without the need for a specific password. Although public Wi-Fi hotspots are a welcome service for many people, there are many concerns over the safety of information accessed over these networks. As of 2017, around 59 percent of people stated that they had logged in to a personal email account over public Wi-Fi, while 56 percent stated that they had logged in to their social media accounts. IT professionals tend to advise against using these public networks for tasks that require sensitive personal information as it may be accessible by other users of the network. Public opinion is relatively split about the safety of these public Wi-Fi networks: 61 percent of people state that they feel safe on public Wi-Fi, while 39 percent state that they feel unsafe.

Number of public Wi-Fi hotspots worldwide from 2016 to 2022

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Release date

November 2018



Survey time period

2016 to 2017

Supplementary notes


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