Helped by the ability of game players connecting at McDonald's restaurants, Wi-Fi hotspot provider Wayport said Wednesday its customers made almost 10 million paid connections at its 12,000 locations in 2005.
The company claimed that the number of connections was the most it's ever served and was an 83 percent increase compared to the previous year. It said that it also had a record in October when more than one million paid connections were made.
In addition to hotspots, the company also provides wired connections in a number of locations such as hotels.
WayPort said that since it launched the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, which enables Nintendo DS game players to connect via Wi-Fi at McDonald's restaurants, it has had "tens of thousands" of connections. That service was launched in mid-November. The service is available at about 6300 McDonald's restaurants.
The company did not provide figures for connections in its other venues. Still, the growth reflects the larger acceptance of Wi-Fi hotspots, a company executive said in a statement.
"These activities have served to increase the availability and relevancy of Wi-Fi to a broader customer base worldwide," WayPort CEO Dave Vucina said.