Wireless hotspot users aren't getting value for money, according to a new survey from Trustive , a wireless hotspot provider. Such findings may not be wholly surprising, but they do highlight the amount of wasted minutes and money that subscribers are throwing away.

"The survey shows that many end users are paying excessively on a per minute basis. Around 60 per cent are opting for ad hoc methods of purchasing wireless services such as scratch cards or vouchers, which are often sold in hour-long blocks," says Trustive's Jan Streefland.

Trustive's second annual survey also found that hotel selection is increasingly being influenced by the availability of Wi-Fi. Some 45 per cent of end users say they select their hotel based on whether Wi-Fi is available.

VOIP is Wi-Fi killer app

The survey also predicts that Voice over IP (VoIP) will be the "killer application" for Wi-Fi hotspots within the next year.

Currently, 45 per cent of operator revenues come from voucher and credit card payments compared to 32 per cent from subscriptions. This figure has risen from 28 per cent in 2006.

"We anticipate that subscription levels will continue to grow over the next 12-18 months," says Streetfland.

"For end users the three most important things when purchasing subscription schemes are coverage, price and easy connectivity. Certainly the first and third are improving dramatically as the number of hotspots, aggregators and roaming agreements grow."