Review Hotspotlist - Free WiFi
A good start for a useful hotspot app
Author: Brandon Girod
Date: 01 Apr 2017, tested on HTC One M8
Features a full map of hotspots, tons of features, easy to use
Sluggish performance, missing sortable lists
Would you like to know what the biggest oxymoron in the mobile world of cellphones is? Service providers are constantly shoving bigger phones with higher resolution screens and loads of media content that is aimed at being consumed on our mobile phones. But at the same time, they’re making data plans more expensive, and putting unnecessary hard caps on them. This is exactly why apps like Hotspotlist for Android exist. It’s an app that scans your area for wi-fi hotspots so you can go track them down when you need (or want) to.
Now, a quick forewarning, this app is still in beta (at least according to the name), so any criticism stated here could definitely be fixed in the future. That out of the way, I really love the idea of this app, but the execution definitely needs a bit of work. The app’s default launch screen is a local map based on your location. Like restaurants, local wi-fi hotspots are indicated with pins. My problem here is that the map can sometimes take minutes to load just what you see immediately on the screen. Scrolling around further means you’ll have to wait for more of the map to render. The whole thing is just very time consuming, and I’d rather have an option to look at a list of hotspots based on proximity.
Fortunately, you can cache the map so you can use it in offline mode, which should technically cut down on the loading process a bit. You can also scan your immediate area for a full list of hotspots within a very small span of space. In my area, I was only able to find about 13 hotspots, however. You can also schedule to have the app scan your area whenever you want, and you can search for addresses specifically, though I can’t personally think of a reason I’d need to use an app to find a hotspot if I already know where it is.
Hotspotlist seems to be off to a good start, but the performance could use a bit of work. There also doesn’t seem to be that many users in my area at the moment, so you could definitely have a better experience if your city/town is more active than mine. I wouldn’t write this one off just yet, it still has a way to go, but it does have a ton of features and seems to be off to a good start.