Some coffee shops have limited or disabled completely wifi usage of customers in coffee shops around Denver, the Denver Post reports. The decision to limit customers is an attempt to get customers unplugged and keep tables turning over.
Crema Coffee House recently covered its only power outlet is the customer seating area. Noah Price, co-owner, said it was because customers were bringing in extension cords and stretching them across the floor to keep their electronics charged. The shop does not want to be responsible for customers’ equipment. The decision was based on safety and aesthetics, not because people sit at a table all day.
This “laptop hobo” phenomenon, people buying one coffee and then sitting and browsing the web all day, is a growing problem in coffee shops. The Wooden Spoon decided last year to disable wifi because they wanted their customers to have more social interaction. In the small shop, people listening to videos online with the volume turned up loudly was disturbing other customers.
Panera imposes a 30-minute limit on wifi usage from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in some stores. It remains to be seen if other major coffee chains will follow this trend.