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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Liberty Puerto Rico accelerates the efficiency of the ‘internet of things’

Ernesto Vega, Liberty’s home products manager

By Alejandra M. Jover Tovar

Special to The Star

Liberty WowFi has joined forces with the California company Plume to bring to Puerto Rico the SuperPod technology, the most advanced on the market, to connect the home to the “internet of things.”

Ernesto Vega, Liberty’s home products manager, noted at a press conference late last week that the SuperPod works in multiple broadbands. It has integrated Bluetooth and Ethernet ports, among other advantages.

The SuperPod is not a WiFi repeater; each unit, in the shape of a diamond, does connect to the home or business WiFi network but optimizes the signal and distributes it according to the customer’s needs. For example, if at a certain time of the day, a device consumes more internet, the SuperPod will direct the signal preferentially toward it in an automated way. The more SuperPods, the more connectivity, and the better the signal distribution.

“Our customers want consistent, fast, and secure internet connectivity throughout their home, and they value it as an indicator of the quality of life,” Waldo Hooker, Liberty’s vice president of product and customer experience, said in a written statement. “Liberty WowFi is based on customers’ own experience of quality, using a combination of metrics. From this information, WowFi performs self-optimizations of the WiFi network to improve connectivity usage and Internet service efficiency.”

Liberty’s WowFi service is based on four pillars: “Adapt,” which is signal optimization and measures how much data each device consumes (it is included in the package); “Control,” which enables network administration, user management, and monitoring of each device’s consumption time, among others; “Guard,” which filters and blocks pop-ups, malware and blocks malicious pages; and, finally, “Sense,” which is a motion sensor that connects to the user’s smartphone and detects where the user is in the structure, as well as alerting if it detects movement inside the structure when the customer is away.

The last three options are offered to the customer for $1.49 per month. The first, “Adapt,” comes included with the purchase of a SuperPod for $99.99 plus tax and is managed through the HomePass program on the customer’s smartphone at “Liberty Wow Fi” on Google Play or the App Store. SuperPods can be purchased in one payment on the next bill or in 10 or 20 installments of $9.99 or $4.99, respectively.

“Puerto Rico is Plume’s first market in Latin America for this type of service,” Vega noted. “Liberty Puerto Rico is the first Plume provider on the island.”

Due to the construction style in Puerto Rico (concrete houses), one SuperPod is recommended for every 25 feet. In open spaces, its capacity could be as high as 50 feet, according to observations made at customer sites already enjoying the service on the island.

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