Open Garden, an internet solutions company, launched its mesh networking platform 5 years ago.
A San Francisco, California based company called Open Garden, was founded in the year of 2011, it works to develop a free, closed source mobile application called Firechat and participated as an internet solutions company at a Tech Crunch Conference five years ago.
Ever since that time, the startup has been growing its Firechat application, which serves as an offline messaging service. Bolstered by the growth in this Firechat application, they are now pursuing an even more ambitious goal. The goal of simplifying the lives of their consumers by making it simple and easy for their potential users to give the gift of their internet connection to those who are in their local area. The project is primarily based on the android market and would allow for many to share their Wi-Fi.
It is certainly a rather ambitious project, yet the leaders of the project, from the CEO and others involved are certain that they will find success.
The Chief Executive Officer, Paul Hainsworth, noted:
“The concept of a decentralized ISP is entirely new. The traditional, centralized ISP is a one-to-many relationship between provider and customer. A decentralized ISP is the combination of millions of individual people, companies, and products creating a new kind of network. These millions of people sharing their internet are ISPs, tiny or large, and in aggregate they form a decentralized ISP.”
What?! Stay away from my internet connection!
Well, it seems like the startup knew you would say that. Which is why, in order to encourage people to share their internet, the company is planning to go forward with the deployment of its own ETH-based token – called OG – in the first quarter of 2018.
The company explains that since most people do not use the bandwidth cap of their broadband service completely, what’s the harm in sharing access with others, especially when it provides you with the ability to earn some cryptocurrency for your generosity?
Furthermore, the startup maintains that this is a brand new idea, there are other companies such as ( Fon ) who have provided for the aspect of Wi-Fi sharing without the implementation of cryptocurrencies like ETH and mess network innovations. However, it can be argued that most have only been able to do so with a minimum level of success, most probably because not many people want to share their internet access in the first place.
It’s quite an ambitious plan
Judging by the way how Open Garden wants the concept to work, it would require quite a few people to participate in the concept to actually be tangible and useful.
They plan to utilize its FireChat app to spread the word about this initiative.
As per the company, it currently has over 5 million registered users, which will primarily form the basis for seeding this network. In the future, Open Garden plans to develop apps for iOS, Mac, Windows and set-top streaming boxes.
Furthermore, the company also explains that they will have their opensource project, Project Open Garden, to help developers enable and build their token into their own software and hardware solutions.
“OG can be used by existing WiFi infrastructure owners – such as municipal WiFi, shopping malls, stadiums, airports, restaurants, and small businesses – to monetize their existing capital investment,” an Open Garden representative explained.
Why the use of cryptocurrency?
To this, Hainsworth explained that this step of implementation of the cryptocurrency is being taken because the company wants their regular consumers to be able to buy internet access even if they do not understand the concept of blockchain or cryptocurrencies.
“By issuing our own token, instead of just using Bitcoin or Ethereum, we can give away a very large percentage of the total tokens (or coins) in our economy to participants.”
Since this is a network and it needs more users to become a long-term viable product, they also believe that cryptocurrencies will play a large role in being able boos adoption and long-term user retention.
“Incentives work at an individual level. Early adopters can earn additional bonus OG for being first to market, for example,” he concluded.
Would this work?
Recently, there were reports of a meeting of tech individuals in New York, in which the adaptation of a mesh network was discussed at a larger level in order to find a solution to the repeal of Net Neutrality through the usage of a decentralized network that is not controlled by any ISP.
However, that concept was slightly different than what is being proposed by Open Garden. It remains to be seen which of these recent suggestions could go on to become widely adopted by users and if the incentivizing proposition is enough for people to share their internet with others in public spaces.