Ruckus Debuts Smart WiFi Access Management Service

The platform is aimed at venues looking to offer users a better wireless access experience without the need for multiple services from multiple vendors.

Wireless systems specialist Ruckus Wireless unveiled a cloud-based Smart WiFi Access Management Service (SAMS) designed to offer the scale and efficiencies of cloud-based services with Smart WiFi products and technology, managed from a user-friendly cloud-based portal.

Once logged into the service portal, customers create a new site, configure access settings, customize the registration page and user journey, and upload any ads or message to be displayed.

At the heart of SAMS is the company's SmartCell Gateway (SCG), controller technology hosted within the cloud in partnership with Global Reach. The SCG is a wireless management platform that provides scalability and multitenancy support.

The first of a new breed of Smart Wireless Services (SWS), SAMS lets businesses create and customize wireless hot spots for single or multiple sites without building data centers or deploying the infrastructure typically required for offering managed WiFi access services.

In addition, SWS offers a flexible framework for layering value-added software services such as cloud-based wireless access like SAMS or the company's SPoT location services, as well as virtualized management software over carrier-class Smart WiFi infrastructure products and platforms.

Available worldwide beginning in May, SAMS is priced on a yearly subscription basis per access point (for either a one-, three- or five-year subscription period), with 24/7 customer support included.

As a public access cloud service, where WLAN management is required for either existing or newly deployed ZoneFlex Smart WiFi access points, SAMS is priced at $265.50 per AP per year (hosted subscription).

For environments where local WLAN management is already provided or desired through onsite ZoneDirector controllers, SAMS cloud-based public access services are priced at $180 per access point per year (onsite subscription).

"The benefits the cloud brings to the wireless access market is undeniable," Selina Lo, president and CEO of Ruckus Wireless, said in a statement. "Beyond delivering world-class WiFi infrastructure solutions, with SAMS, Ruckus continues to give its partners and customers the ability to realize greater value from WiFi through innovative new services such as cloud-based access, location services, rich analytics and the ability to begin monetizing their networks."

IT analytics firm IDC recently estimated that the worldwide enterprise market for cloud-managed WLAN infrastructure and managed services is expected to reach $2.5 billion by 2018.

"Cloud computing has shifted the paradigm of enterprise IT from being hardware driven to service driven," the IDC report said. "As more enterprises seek new ways to optimize existing resources and build capacity at the network edge, expect to see the rise in Cloud-managed Wi-Fi adoption continue for years to come."