Telecommuters Rejoice: This iOS App Finds and Reviews Wi-Fi Cafes Near You
Telecommuters know the frustration all too well. You roll up at a cafe ready to work, fork over a small fortune for a latte and crack open your laptop. You search for Wi-Fi but no dice. It was go-time and now it’s time wasted. Time to go.
It’s a fact. Reliable Wi-Fi is the lifeblood of a reliable telecommuter. Without it, we’re screwed. The Richmond, Calif.-based remotely working ramblers behind Work Hard Anywhere get that. Last week, they launched a slick app by the same name that makes it quick and easy for telecommuters to find nearby cafes and workspaces with decent Wi-Fi. Search no more, drifters.
The free app, available only on iOS devices for now, plugs users in to cafes and other alternative workspaces throughout the United States and eventually, the developers hope, “in any city or any country.” Similar to review tools like Yelp, the more people use the crowdsourced data-based app, the bigger and more detailed the Work Hard Anywhere database grows, the more work-optimized spaces entrepreneurs, freelancers and indie creatives can choose from.
By the power of GPS, Work Hard Anywhere first locates you, then the Wi-Fi-enabled cafes and workspaces around you. The remote work haunts that pop up on its robust maps are categorized via users in five helpful ways: by Wi-Fi access and power outlet, parking and seating availability and price. Notes about the food and beverages served at locations can also be shared.
Poof, guesswork gone. Well, mostly. We wish additional categories like how chilly a cafe is (Starbucks is typically bone-chilling) and how crowded and noisy or not were included.
While the app currently doesn’t push any ads (we downloaded it to see), it does feature a Storenvy-linked shopping section. It’s stocked with branded pocket notebooks and stickers, ranging from $4 to $50, depending on quantities ordered. However, there’s no obligation to buy.
Bottom line: With Work Hard Anywhere’s always-multiplying list of great Wi-Fi workspots in the palm of their hand, telecommuters can roam free and focus on what’s really important -- working hard and getting stuff done.
Kim Lachance Shandrow is the former West Coast editor at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she was a commerce columnist at Los Angeles CityBeat, a news producer at MSNBC and KNBC in Los Angeles and a frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times. She has also written for Government Technology magazine, LA Yoga magazine, the Lowell Sun newspaper, HealthCentral.com, PsychCentral.com and the former U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. C. Everett Coop. Follow her on Twitter at @Lashandrow. You can also follow her on Facebook here.