The Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) has launched a trial among its members to try to alleviate congestion on data networks by easing the migration of mobile users to Wi-Fi networks.
The organisation explained that the industry had to take steps to ease network congestion following the dramatic rise in smartphones and notebook devices.
"The rise in data, particularly video, is great for consumers but a real challenge for network operators. With this trial we are hoping to create a way for firms to reduce this issue by migrating users of data networks," said Chris Bruce, WBA chairman and chief executive of BT Openzone.
Shrikant Shenwai, chief executive of the WBA, added that a key element of the Wireless Internet Service Provider roaming (WISPr) trial is to create a way of seamlessly authenticating users on Wi-Fi networks by making equipment and software compatible with the WISPr 2.0 specification.
"Most legacy hotspots are unable to validate users on SIM technology or other ways, but with the companies we have in the WBA we are hoping to be able to do this in a way that removes the need for IDs and passwords," he said.
"We hope that at the end of the trial the firms working together will have developed a product that can be launched commercially to help provide this authentication."
The WBA also announced that AT&T, Cisco, Comcast, Devicescape, KT Corporation and Verizon had all joined the group, further boosting its ability to influence the industry.
"The types of companies that have now joined the WBA in terms of size, geography and technology underlines the importance of this issue, and we are very pleased to announce their membership of the group," said Bruce.
The initial trial will last for six months, but Shenwai said that it could be extended if more time was needed for the creation of any products.
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