Wi-Fi providers iPass, Inc. and Devicescape announced a strategic partnership Monday that will integrate the latter’s Curated Virtual Network into iPass’s global Wi-Fi network.
“This is a significant partnership for us because it’s just taken our world’s largest Wi-Fi network of 20 million and doubled it to 40 million,” iPass CEO Gary Griffiths said, noting that other yet-to-be-announced partnerships will increase the network by an additional 10 million hotspots.
“Our alliance with Devicescape is significant not only in moving iPass customers closer to ubiquitous connectivity, but also in setting the stage for global Wi-Fi accessibility for the Internet of Things,” Griffiths said.
For the duration of the agreement, iPass will have limited exclusivity to Devicescape’s assets, but further details of the agreement have not been disclosed. Integration of the two networks is expected to be completed by the end of this quarter.
The move will make iPass the largest Wi-Fi network in the world and allow its customers to access Devicescape’s network from an additional 20 million hotspots worldwide.
“Today’s end users just want connectivity, and a network of 50 million hotspots offers connectivity on a truly extraordinary scale,” said Devicescape CEO Dave Fraser. “We are thrilled to be contributing our Curated Virtual Network to an undertaking of such ambition.”
According to Griffiths, the move comes amid a restructuring of iPass and a move by the company to switch from a usage-based subscription model to an unlimited SaaS subscription plan.
But on a broader scale, Griffith said the partnership with Devicescape would help lay the foundation for the future of connectivity and put iPass at the forefront of the movement toward universal Wi-Fi.
“This is absolutely a very key part of the restructuring,” Griffiths explained. “We’re rebuilding the company around three themes: Unlimited, so our users can pay one monthly fee and use as much Wi-Fi as they want; Everywhere, so iPass will be everywhere you are when you travel; and Invisible, so the iPass technology is always there working seamlessly in the background finding the right hotspot for you and connecting you to it as you’re moving around.”
“We’re going to continue to grow and expand in this direction because we believe the Internet of Things is going to have a larger impact on the way people work and play than the internet did originally,” he continued. “That doesn’t work unless there is a ubiquitous and seamless connectivity network that can connect not only people but also devices around the world.”
In the first quarter of 2015, iPass posted $16.6 million in revenue, $15.3 million of which was from open mobile revenue. The figure was down from $17.2 million in fourth quarter 2014 revenue and $17.6 million in revenue for the same quarter last year. A GAAP total net loss of $3.4 million for the quarter was also reported.
During the May earnings report, Griffiths announced that the company’s restructuring plan would cut 19 management positions and slash iPass’s workforce by 14 percent. In combination with other cost reduction measures, the company said it was aiming to decrease operating expenses by about $2 million each quarter.
A second quarter earnings call is scheduled for 5 p.m. EDT Monday.
As of the close of market Friday, iPass was down 6.86 percent, with shares trading at 95 cents.