Looks like Google inadvertently (not exactly sure if it was inadvertant) played a role in wrecking the Wi-Fi network at the Apple's WWDC during the Keynote. Greg Kumparak, live-blogger of Techcrunch, says that Google apparently planted a Trojan horse at WWDC, though the company most probably might be unaware of it.
So what is the deal? Google had held their annual I/O conference back in May 2011 at the Moscone center in San Francisco. This year Google has been extremely generous in handing out gifts for the attendees, which included, 10.1″ Galaxy Tablets, brand new Chromebook laptops and Verizon 4G Hotspots, complete with an LTE SIM good for 3 months of service, for each one who showed up. One small thing to be noted is that the Verizon 4G Hotspots were distributed on the last day of the conference.
Back to WWDC: Since there have been connectivity issues during the Apple Keynote last year, which resulted in demo failures on the stage, this year Apple has been extra cautious with their Wi-Fi. Things have been well and good in the beginning but as the Keynote progressed audience noticed a sudden drop of the Wi-Fi signal which went lower than 56K speeds. With millions waiting for every single word they posted and every single photograph they uploaded, the audience cannot be blamed if they have begun to get restless in a matter of seconds.
In no time, people realized that this is the right moment to make use of their Hotspots. The basic thing about Wi-Fi networks is that, you cannot really make use of any Wi-Fi spot if there is a clutter of them around you. As the Hotspots saw the light of the day, primary Wi-Fi speed in the conference hall fell even lower due to the signal noise, rendering the primary network almost useless. All because of the individual Hotspots. If you're guessing something about the culprit Hotspots, you're right. The Hotspots that resulted in the complete crash of Apple's primary Wi-Fi were the ones given out by Google a month back to their audience, a lot of those Google attendees now present at the WWDC.
Greg Kumparak says that his iPhone showed about 30 Hotspot connections (Verizon SCH-LC11 connections which indicates Verizon 4G Hotspots) which means there would have been a lot more that were out of his device's reach.
The drama ended when the audience realized that they were making a mistake with the Hotspots as even the individual connections struggled to find their way in the clutter and most of them switched back to the primary network which was up and running by then.
The seemingly irrelevant fact, that Google chose to give away the Hotspots only when the conference ended, shows their foresight. But the question remains: Did Google have that foresight to imagine a Wi-Fi breakdown at WWDC which had been scheduled after theirs?