Wireless Broadband Alliance and Wi-Fi Alliance associate on hotspot innovations

The Wi-Fi Alliance and Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) have announced plans to collaborate in order to harmonize their programs related to Wi-Fi hotspot ease of use and roaming.

WBA’s inter-operator Wi-Fi roaming efforts and Wi-Fi
Alliance’s planned certification program for Wi-Fi equipment will be developed
with close coordination between the two groups to help ensure the best user
experience.

The Wi-Fi CERTIFIED hotspot
certification program is designed to create the technology and testing programs
necessary to allow Wi-Fi devices to easily connect at hotspots in a
security-protected, interoperable fashion by streamlining network selection and
access.

 

Wi-Fi Alliance members are
working to define technologies and certification requirements for both Wi-Fi
infrastructure devices as well as endpoints like handsets, tablets and
notebooks. The planned launch of the Wi-Fi CERTIFIED hotspot certification
program is targeted for the middle of 2012, with preliminary testing activities
expected to begin later this year.

 

The WBA’s  Next Generation Hotspot (NGH) program defines interoperability requirements for
hotspot and 3G/4G operators. The program includes development of comprehensive
operator guidelines and an ecosystem trial to facilitate migration to Next
Generation Hotspots.

The NGH program builds on the Wi-Fi-based inter-operator
roaming and related business best practices developed by WBA. It enables
business relationships among various network operators to deliver seamless
Wi-Fi access and facilitate offload from licensed networks. A trial launched
under the program this week between leading operators and vendors will address
seamless, secure auto-authentication on multiple operator networks.

 

The two organizations will coordinate on testing
methodologies and models, and will share information about their respective
specifications and technologies to ensure that the programs are aligned.
Members from the groups will also collaborate on the brand identity for
hotspots implementing the solutions, enabling end users to easily identify
products and hotspots based on the advanced specifications.

 

“Working together to harmonize these two programs
helps ensure that there will be a complete solution to evolve the user
experience in Wi-Fi hotspots around the world,” said Edgar Figueroa, CEO
of the Wi-Fi Alliance.

“The Wi-Fi Alliance’s work to bring streamlined
access and WPA2 security to hotspot environments is well complemented by the
work in WBA to enable seamless Wi-Fi roaming,” Figueroa added.

“With the number of hotspots growing worldwide, and
the increasing importance of Wi-Fi to service providers’ strategies, this is a
crucial time for our organizations to work together,” said Shrikant
Shenwai, CEO of the Wireless Broadband Alliance.

 

“WBA’s Next Generation Hotspot program aims to
deliver a seamless Wi-Fi user experience across operators globally, and the
cooperation with Wi-Fi Alliance will maximize the benefits of innovation for
end users, manufacturers and service providers,” Shenwai added.

 

By TelecomLead.com Team
[email protected]