Customer FAQs | Aerwave

CUSTOMER FAQS

Do you have additional questions about Aerwave? You’ve come to the right place. Here are more details about your Aerwave network.

THE BASIC STUFF

WHAT IS AERWAVE?

Aerwave is a platform for delivering you with your private network. Rather than joining a shared network (think: “Joes_Coffeeshop_WiFi”), where you and everyone around you are sharing the network together, including the network password, Aerwave separates each user or team into private networks, providing you with drastically increased security and privacy. What’s best is that your network is available to you seamlessly anywhere that Aerwave is located, meaning no more asking, “what’s the Wi-Fi password?” Just show up and you’re automatically connected to your private network.

HOW DOES AERWAVE WORK?

We won’t bog you down with too many details here but essentially, we’re taking the existing Wi-Fi and Ethernet technology and adding in some automation, cloud computing, virtualization, and integration. Nice buzz words, right? What we’re doing is taking the manual aspects of networks and automating them. Then we’re bringing all of it to the cloud.

HOW DOES THIS COMPARE TO THE REGULAR Wi-Fi THAT I HAVE ALWAYS USED?

The short answer is that it’s still Wi-Fi, it’s just vastly more secure. Aerwave isn’t a new technology, it’s simply a new application of an existing technology. While it would be great to invent a Wi-Fi replacement, there are something like seven billion Wi-Fi devices in the world today and that number isn’t getting any smaller. So, replacing all of those devices with some new technology isn’t an easy task (and it’s definitely not something that any one company can do). What we can do is improve the Wi-Fi ecosystem in order to solve its inherent flaws. Enter Aerwave.

WHY SHOULD I USE A PRIVATE NETWORK?

The million-dollar question. The root of the problem goes back to how Wi-Fi was created. Twenty-plus years ago, Wi-Fi was born so that we could keep our network connection while removing those annoying wires. (The key word here is “network”, not to be confused with “Internet”.) Way back when, computers were designed to be networked together, which facilitated file and resource sharing and added security by closing off access to non-networked devices. Along comes the Internet, and more recently the “cloud”, and now most devices want to communicate with some website, rather than to each other. Since Wi-Fi is a network technology, there weren’t a lot of security issues when it first came out because most people weren’t sharing their network access. But because Wi-Fi unburdened devices from their wires, they could now roam. And since those devices needed Internet access, wireless passwords and connections needed to become shared to accommodate all of this mobility. Today, you see “free Wi-Fi” everywhere. Internet access is great, and almost a necessity these days, but without any major advances in Wi-Fi, you’re still working on a shared network. This can leave you and your devices open to a ton of potential threats.

WHAT ARE THE RISKS OF A SHARED NETWORK?

That’s a pretty loaded question and we could honestly write a few pages about it, but we’ll try to give you some of the highlights: At the highest level, unless you are at your home or place of business, you probably don’t know everyone on your shared network. Now most of these unknown people are probably good folks and won’t do you any harm, however, you never know. A shared network also typically comes with a shared password. Wi-Fi passwords that are used today are truly one of the best ways to ensure wireless security: it can take a supercomputer days to “brute force” crack your password and even that is difficult for some complex passwords. But once you share that password with the people around you (coffee shop, anyone?) that password protection goes right out the door. While these previous scenarios require a malicious user to be in the area of your Wi-Fi network, the likelihood of that is pretty small. So, we’ll leave you with this: when devices are networked together, they are inherently designed to share data and files, right? (See previous question) What happens when one of those devices gets a virus? That virus could spread to all networked devices instantaneously because you (or your device) thought that it was a “safe” file or a “shared” file. So, instead of running these risks, you can use Aerwave and get a private network that separates out all users and teams. Now you can browse and surf with the peace of mind that you’re using Aerwave.

GOT IT. BUT WHY SHOULD I BE USING AERWAVE AND NOT JUST SOME CUSTOM CONFIGURATION?

We’re just guessing here, but chances are that the location you’re sitting in currently isn’t in the business of delivering Wi-Fi. It’s probably an amenity or part of your everyday work life, but Wi-Fi is a means to an end. If you like all of the benefits of a private network, could you go ask someone to provide it to you? Sure, but they probably won’t be happy with your request. Getting all of the benefits of Aerwave at any single location or company is a pretty major task. And even if you can get a private network, it’s still stuck there, where you are. When you leave that location, you leave your private network behind. There aren’t any other companies out there that have made it their goal to coordinate a system so that you can find your network as you move. Just Aerwave.

HOW DOES THIS COMPARE TO MY VIRTUAL PRIVATE NETWORK ("VPN")?

VPNs are a great “fix” to the shared network problem. What Aerwave attempts to do is solve the problem before you ever need a VPN to fix it. VPNs add privacy and security to your Internet connection, but this often comes at a cost: speed and latency. VPNs are inherently inefficient. Either your data goes into the VPN tunnel and is encrypted but slow, or it’s outside of the tunnel and fast, but doesn’t get the encryption benefits.

WHERE CAN I FIND A LOCATION WITH AERWAVE?

Aerwave is currently in four cities in the U.S. (Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, and Chicago) and one internationally (Florianpolois, Brazil). We have plans to roll out Aerwave to NYC, Boston, Washington, D.C., Miami, San Francisco, and dozens more within the next year.  Follow us on Facebook, Intstagram, and Twitter to stay tuned for these updates.

WHERE CAN I FIND AERWAVE NEAR ME?

Aerwave is currently located in four U.S. cities (Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, and Chicago) and one international city (Florianopolis, Brazil). If you already have an Aerwave account and have registered your device on our system (and in your device’s Network Settings), then you’ll automatically connect to your private network. So you’ll know that Aerwave is nearby because you’re already connected! If you don’t have an Aerwave account, then you can see all of our locations on our website or if you see the Aerwave network being broadcast inside your Network Settings, then you’ll know Aerwave is nearby!

AERWAVE SOUNDS PRETTY GREAT, BUT IT'S NOT CURRENTLY OFFERED WHERE I AM. HOW DO I GET IT THERE?

Let us know where we should bring it! Feel free to reach out to us via email, on our website, or even give us a ring and we’d be happy to hear more about the places that need Aerwave the most. If you are the location owner (or have the location owner’s contact information), that always helps expedite the process.

HOW MUCH DOES AERWAVE COST?

An Aerwave private network is $30 per month. This gets you three devices included and a “Base” priority. If you want to add more devices, or improve your performance, you can do so when you sign up or after you sign up in your account portal, for an additional monthly cost.

AM I A GOOD CANDIDATE FOR USING AERWAVE?

Without knowing anything about you…YES! Anyone that uses Wi-Fi is a great candidate for Aerwave (and since you’re probably looking at this webpage over your Wi-Fi connection, that includes you!).

I OWN/RUN A LOCATION THAT MIGHT BE A GOOD PARTNER FOR AERWAVE, WHAT SHOULD I DO?

First of all, thank you for wanting to partner with Aerwave! The best way to learn more about a partnership with Aerwave is to go to the Partners page on our website and submit your email.  We will typically get in touch with you within 24-48 hours after you submit your email and we will provide some more details on what it means to partner with us. We can typically get a new partner up and running with Aerwave in as little as a few days after their first submission on our website.

WHO IS THE TYPICAL AERWAVE USER?

You! Aerwave is designed to improve the Wi-Fi experience for anyone using Wi-Fi (which is estimated to be nearly half of all Internet traffic). While business users have been heavy adopters of data security, we believe everyone should take data security very seriously.  Aerwave’s seamless connection makes everyone’s experience better, and who doesn’t like improved performance?

THE (KIND OF) TECHNICAL STUFF

CAN I DOWNLOAD AERWAVE FOR MY Wi-Fi ROUTER RIGHT NOW?

Today, no. In the next few months, probably. Aerwave is compatible with hundreds of routers and Access Points (“APs”), however, in order to ensure hardware security, we are currently supplying all of our locations with new Aerwave hardware. In the near future, we will roll out a downloadable version of our system with all of the necessary security checks, to make Aerwave available at the click of a button. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to stay tuned for these updates.

DO I NEED TO DOWNLOAD ANYTHING TO USE AERWAVE?

No! The best part about Aerwave is that it does all of the coordination on the back-end (the cloud + the Access Point). To your device, it looks just like any typical Wi-Fi connection. Scratch that, it looks like your typical Wi-Fi connection.

WHAT DOES UPGRADING MY NETWORK DO? WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY "PRIORITY"?

The Aerwave platforms allows for users to prioritize data based on our Quality of Service (“QoS”)/queuing mechanisms.  By upgrading your network, you are increasing the frequency of your data making it through the queue, effectively improving your performance.  To provide an example: user A has a Base Aerwave account and user B has a Base Aerwave account.  Their data goes through the queue as such: A-B-A-B-A-B.  If user B leaves and user C enters with an Expedited (2x priority) Aerwave account, the data goes through the queue as such: A-C-C-A-C-C.

WHAT IS A CERTIFICATE? WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO ACCEPT THE CERTIFICATE THAT APPEARED ON MY DEVICE?

Wi-Fi Certificates are used to show support for Security Sockets Layer (“SSL”) encryption. They function in one of two ways: 1) They provide support for using SSL encryption between the Access Point and the device (something we really like) and 2) they provide assurance to the user/device that the Access Point that they are connecting to genuinely belongs to the network to which they are trying to connect.  At a high level, they are designed to say, “yes, you can trust this network.” If you see a certificate from Aerwave, we encourage you to “Accept” or “Trust” it, as it will make your connection more seamless.  However, if you see any certificate that doesn’t look like it’s from Aerwave or that you feel does not look legitimate, please do not “Accept” or “Trust” it. Please refer to our legal disclaimers at www.aerwave.io/legal.html before taking any actions.

THE HOW-TO STUFF

HOW DO I SIGN UP FOR AERWAVE?

There are two ways to sign up for Aerwave. 1) You can sign up any time on our website. 2) You can sign up whenever you see “Aerwave” being broadcast in a nearby location. By connecting to the Aerwave network, you’ll be able to sign up for an account or log-in to an existing account from a new device (we highly recommend #2).

ONCE I SIGN UP, WHAT STEPS ARE REQUIRED FOR ME TO GET MY NETWORK TO BROADCAST?

To give you a little insight into how the platform works, we use your Media Access Control Address (“MAC Address”) to help create a seamless experience.  As such, we need to have your device’s MAC Address registered in the system in order for you to see your network being broadcast at our locations. There are two ways for us to get your MAC Address: 1) you can manually type it in whenever you sign in to your account portal or 2) we automatically grab your MAC Address if you sign up via an Aerwave network (this is why we recommend option #2 in the previous question ? ).

HOW DO I SIGN INTO MY NETWORK FOR THE FIRST TIME?

Once you’ve registered your device in our system, you’ll simply need to log in to your network via your device’s Network Settings. This is no different than you typically would log in to any new network, except this time, your settings will require the email address and password that you used to create your account online. Once you’ve signed in from your device, it will always store your credentials and you’ll be able to seamlessly connect to your network..

DO I NEED TO SIGN IN EVERY TIME I WANT MY NETWORK?

A very adamant no!  In fact, it’s the opposite. What’s great about Aerwave is that you only have to sign in one time (typically done when you sign up for Aerwave). After that, you’ll always be connected automatically. The only time you’ll need to sign back in is if you make changes to your login credentials (e.g. change your password).

I'VE CREATED/SIGNED INTO MY NETWORK FROM ONE DEVICE, WILL IT AUTOMATICALLY WORK ON MY OTHER DEVICES?

Fortunately, or unfortunately, the answer here is almost always “no”. Most devices do not share Network Settings between themselves (this is a security feature). Because those devices aren’t sharing that information, there is nothing we here at Aerwave can do to automate the connection without your sign in (even if both devices are registered in our system). Luckily, it’s just one quick step that you need to complete on each device in order to store than information in its Network Settings: open your Network Settings on each new device and sign into your private network with your Aerwave account credentials. That’s it! You’ll won’t need to sign in on that device again (unless you change something on your account).

HOW DO I ADD/REMOVE/UPDATE MY DEVICE(S)?

All changes, including adding/removing/updating your devices can be done in your account portal online. Just sign in on the website with your credentials and you’ll see all of your account settings here.

MY DEVICE SAYS, "UNABLE TO CONNECT". WHAT DO I DO?

Chances are that you may be using incorrect credentials to try to log in.  If you are unable to remember your password, you can reset it by going to www.aerwave.io/forgot-password.html.  If you are still unable to connect, go to your Network Settings on your phone and click “Forget this Network”.  Then go ahead a select the network again and use your credentials to log-in.  From there, if you are still unable to connect, please contact us at [email protected].

WHAT IF IT'S REALLY CROWDED WHERE I AM, CAN I STILL RECEIVE MY NETWORK?

That all depends how crowded it is. We work with our partner locations to ensure that there is enough hardware to support all of the Aerwave networks in that location. If for some reason, there isn’t enough space on the hardware in that location, we require the locations to provide one password-protected shared network for any overflow. That network information is typically found by connected to the Aerwave network under the “shared network” link.    

I FORGOT MY PASSWORD, WHAT DO I DO?

Simply go to www.aerwave.io/forgot-password.html and follow the prompts to reset your password.

ARE THERE ANY LIMITATIONS ON WHAT MY NETWORK NAME CAN BE?

While there aren’t any rules today, we ask that you keep it PG-13 on the network names. We constantly monitor the network information (e.g. network statistics; not your data, don’t worry), and if we detect any explicit language related to a network name, we’ll contact you and kindly ask that you change it.

THE NETWORK NAME THAT I WANT IS CURRENTLY TAKEN, CAN I STILL GET THAT NETWORK NAME SOMEHOW?

Unfortunately, no, you’ll need to come up with a new network name.  For security purposes, we require that network names don’t overlap (even if they’re on separate continents).  We trust that you’re pretty creative, so we believe in you to create an even better network name. ?

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