Ever been in one of those locations where your data service has disappeared, but you notice someone on another network chugging away? It would be nice if they could create a mobile hotspot that you could jump on to use instead of resorting to roaming or just doing without service. Later on you could return the favor to someone else. The Viral Spaces research group at MIT is hoping to address these types of situations with the creation of a new community-based P2P Wi-Fi tethering market running on an app they have dubbed Airmobs.
The concept is fairly simple. When you have network access, you fire up the app and let people use your mobile hotspot for their own connection needs. As you do so, the app starts to credit your account. You can then use those credits to “borrow” someone else’s connection when the roles are reversed. The app has controls built in to check for battery life, signal strength, motion, and any data limits you may have set to minimize the impact on your device and your data plan.
One question remains though and that is carrier reaction to the app. The apps creator, Eyal Toledano, recognizes carriers would probably not be interested in users running their own mobile hotspot markets, which is why he is hesitant to release Airmobs to the Google Play Store.
Check out the video below to see some examples of how the system works and then hit the source link if you want more information.
source: Eyal Toledano
via: The Verge