Here at WiFire, we’re striving to enable seamless Internet connectivity for users wherever they go. We believe that, with the growing popularity of mobile phones and public WiFi hotspots, connecting to the Internet while on-the-go should be quick, easy and affordable.
We aim to make reliable public WiFi as accessible as possible, but we realize that our users still often access the Internet via 3G/4G in their day-to-day lives. Many people burn through their data packs without knowing it, allowing mobile apps that aren’t even in use to make requests to use the Internet.
The culprits are common—news aggregators, social networking apps, among others—and the solution is simple, but the issue is largely going unaddressed for most users.
Today we are excited to announce our new widget and in-app feature called DataWall, which both allow users to have more control over their mobile data usage and make their data pack last longer. The widget is available for all Android devices, and DataWall is available on Android version 5.0 and above.
Let’s dive into how these two features work within the new-and-improved WiFire design:
Upon opening the app, you will first notice that the app is now organized into three main tabs to allow for easier navigation between features.
The first tab displays an overview of relevant WiFi information: current Wifi connection (if any), all WiFi networks in range and the ability to navigate to the closest shared WiFire networks.
The next tab houses the new DataWall feature, which is available on Android version 5.0 and above. When using 3G/4G, many apps make requests to use your mobile data, even if you aren’t actively using them. DataWall allows you to selectively block the apps that can access your mobile data and, in doing so, save yourself a lot of money.
First, you will see a meter showing your data usage since you last booted your phone, broken down by mobile data and WiFi. After all, the first step to saving data is knowing how much you’re currently using.
Below that, you will see a DataWall window. Toggle on the DataWall switch and tap on Configure to begin.
The first time you do this, you will be asked to first allow WiFire to set up a VPN on your system. This is necessary to allow the app to do its job in controlling your mobile Internet traffic, based on your app preferences on the next screen.
Next, you will be taken to a list of applications currently using mobile data. Here you can individually select/deselect which apps to block from using data or you can select/deselect all at once.
Note: DataWall is inactive while you’re on WiFi, meaning all apps will have access to the Internet.
The third tab includes your WiFire profile, including your basic contact information, number of Wi-Points and the badges you’ve earned. Other features such as the WiFi Map and the ability to invite friends or report a problem are now found in a drop down menu in the upper right portion of the app.
Last but not least, you can use our new widget for a handy snapshot of your connection speed and data usage—right there on your home screen. This widget allows you to see the upload/download speeds of your current Internet connection as well as your total data usage through WiFi & 3G/4G since you last booted your phone.
We’re really excited about these new features and we’d love to hear your feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.