Ruckus Joins Wi-Fi Alliance in Advancing the Mobile Internet with New Technology That Revolutionizes How Users Connect to Hotspots
SUNNYVALE, CA – June 26, 2012 – Ruckus Wireless™ today announced that its Smart Wi-Fi products have been selected as part of the Wi-Fi Alliance’s Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Passpoint™ test bed and have completed Phase 1 interoperability trials within the Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) Next Generation Hotspot (NGH) program. Ruckus is among some of the first Wi-Fi suppliers to receive Passpoint certification from the Wi-Fi Alliance for its products.
As one of the initial Wi-Fi equipment suppliers to be involved in developing the Wi-Fi Alliance Hotspot 2.0 Specification, which is the underlying technology for the Passpoint certification, Ruckus is demonstrating its commitment to advancing next-generation Wi-Fi technology, and revolutionizing the way subscribers connect to Wi-Fi hotspots.
Historically, to connect to a hotspot, users have had to perform the arduous task of manually selecting from a number of Wi-Fi networks that may or may not be able to provide them service and perform the tedious process of logging in with their user credentials.
Using Passpoint-certified devices, this process is completely automated. Passpoint-certified mobile devices automatically select a Wi-Fi hotspot based on information advertised by certified Wi-Fi access points. With Passpoint mobile devices and Wi-Fi access points, information is provided that tells which network is available for service and which hotspots support roaming with the user’s home service providers. Once this is established, the user’s mobile device will automatically connect to the appropriate hotspot while securing the link with advanced Wi-Fi security.
“The Wi-Fi Alliance’s development of the Hotspot 2.0 specification and the use and support of Passpoint will radically transform and simplify the way people connect to Wi-Fi networks – making it as easy as using today’s cellular phones,” said Steve Martin, senior vice president of engineering for Ruckus Wireless. “This technology will have a profound impact on our industry, further driving the popularity, acceptance and growth of Wi-Fi as a critical component of carrier networks. Ruckus will continue to take the lead in helping to advance this important technology.”
Mobile Device Use Driving Major Changes in Networks Around the World
With so many hotspots, simplifying the user experience while ensuring easy roaming between Wi-Fi networks has become an imperative for service providers looking to reduce subscriber churn, provide faster access to services in more places and add wireless capacity and coverage as quickly as possible.
To achieve certification and become part of the Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Passpoint testbed, Ruckus participated in several “plugfests” with various mobile client and infrastructure vendors over the course of several months. In these tests, Ruckus Smart Wi-Fi products demonstrated interoperability with other Passpoint-certified equipment and devices.
The products that succeeded in meeting interoperability requirements, including the Ruckus ZoneFlex suite, were selected as test devices in the Passpoint testbed. The Passpoint testbed will be used to test additional products for Passpoint certification in the months to come.
While working with the Wi-Fi Alliance on the Passpoint testbed and certification, Ruckus worked closely with the Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) to have its ZoneFlex products tested for interoperability with the WBA’s Next-Generation Hotspot – a parallel effort conducted by mobile and broadband operators, and cable providers, to conduct trials of Passpoint-certified products.
The aim of the WBA trials was to test the NGH requirements for network discovery and selection, security, automatic authentication in a production environment on, and between, different operators’ actual networks using equipment and devices from various vendors. It also aimed to identify and recommend how best to implement automatic authentication and the measures needed to upgrade home networks to NGH. The trials also made the NGH service requirements, developed by the operator-led WBA, available to vendors who implement the Hotspot 2.0 Specification from the Wi-Fi Alliance.
“We congratulate Ruckus on the selection of their products to the Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Passpoint test bed, and commend their commitment to multi-vendor interoperability,” said Wi-Fi Alliance CEO Edgar Figueroa. “Passpoint-certified product providers like Ruckus will be instrumental in shaping the mobile connectivity experience in the years to come.”
One of the first to integrate the Hotspot 2.0 Specification in its Smart Wi-Fi portfolio, Ruckus has successfully completed interoperability testing with several operators and handset manufacturers.
Ruckus’ Passpoint-certified products will be available as a no-cost software upgrade on Ruckus ZoneFlex™ access points and controllers by Q4 of this year.