Mon, May 15, 2017 - Page 8 News List

Coffee shops skip Wi-Fi to encourage customers to actually talk

By Christopher Mele  /  New York Times News Service, Toronto

Jordan Michelman, a founder of Sprudge Media Network, which writes about coffee news and culture, said in an e-mail that some customers simply rely on unlimited data plans for their electronic devices.

Cutting off Wi-Fi has not been a trend among chain-operated coffee outlets, such as Starbucks, he wrote, adding that HotBlack was “certainly in the minority.”

“I think a lot of shops think of offering Wi-Fi as being somewhere between offering nice soap in the restroom or offering a kid’s play place,” he wrote. “It’s not quite an essential amenity or legally required to open, but it’s nice, it makes customers happy, and makes your space feel more like their space.”

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