Ruckus Debuts Smart WiFi Technology for IP Calling

By focusing and adapting WiFi signals over the best-performing signal path, clients can connect at higher data rates.

ruckus and wifi calling

Wireless systems specialist Ruckus introduced new technology to enable higher-quality IP-based voice calling over WiFi.

The new technology for carrier-class WiFi calling include a number of technologies designed to optimize roaming and quality of service (QoS) for delay-sensitive voice traffic, including automatic QoS heuristics.

Heuristics is the ability to prioritize WiFi calling traffic by looking at the Type of Service (ToS) bits set by the smartphone in the IP header, or by using automatic packet flow heuristics that continually examine the size and frequency of packets in any flow, encrypted or not.

"The ability to use WiFi- to -carrier corporate voice traffic has the potential to fundamentally change the tradition model by which organizations provide voice, video and data connectivity to employees," David Callisch, vice president of corporate marketing at Ruckus, told eWEEK. "As WiFi calling services come to market from carriers, business are able to effectively remove traditional wired phones, and all the costly and cumbersome cabling that goes along with them. While this won’t happen overnight, it will happen."

Callisch noted that if too many new devices attempt to connect to a given WiFi access point (AP), already- connected clients may experience service degradation.

To prevent this, the company’s ZoneFlex APs can now implement a capacity-based client access control algorithm to decline connection requests from new clients. This allows organizations to protect the user experience during periods of heavy load.

Leveraging the 802.11v standard, directed roaming helps to ensure the overall quality of user experience for the entire wireless local area network (WLAN) by directing clients toward another WiFi access point that can provide a better user experience.

If a signal falls below user-definable signal strength (RSSI) or throughput thresholds, Ruckus ZoneFlex APs can automatically provide a list of alternative access points and request the client to move to a closer AP.

In addition, WiFi Multimedia (WMM) admission control improves the performance of Smart WiFi networks for real- time voice and video services by preventing over-subscription of bandwidth.

By requiring clients to request a specific amount of bandwidth before connecting to a given Ruckus ZoneFlex AP, bandwidth management on each AP now takes into account network load and channel connections before allowing clients to connect.

"By focusing and adapting WiFi signals over the best performing signal path, clients can connect at higher data rates, spending less time contending for access to the WiFi medium," Callisch explained.

This reduces contention for the RF channel and the likelihood of collisions (increased jitter), frame loss, or packet retransmissions (increased latency) by dynamically adjusting the antenna pattern for each and every packet transmitted.

"Ultimately WiFi calling services will also be a huge benefit to the general public who want to be able to maximize the high capacity that WiFi offers with the potential of reducing their cellular phone bills," Callisch said.

Available throughout 2015, the Smart WiFi software for carrier-class WiFi calling are being embedded within the company’s Smart WiFi firmware, supported by Ruckus ZoneDirector Smart WLAN controllers, the Ruckus SmartCell Gateway (SCG) and virtual SmartCell Gateway (vSCG), and ZoneFlex Smart WiFi access points. There is no additional charge to customers.