Improving Indoor Connectivity with Wi-Fi 6

Wi-Fi will remain the dominant indoor access technology among enterprises in the near future.
The network can authenticate devices automatically by using established identity providers, such as a service provider, device manufacturer, cloud ID, and loyalty memberships.

WBA OpenRoaming supports a certificate-based Passpoint onboarding. The Passpoint Profile can be installed via a mobile app, Wi-Fi software defined kit (SDK) or downloading a file from a web page that can be reached through multiple channels, such as email, SMS, QR code, or captive portal.

WBA OpenRoaming simplifies the onboarding process without compromising security. It uses 802.1X for subscriber authentication. 802.1X is a network authentication protocol that opens ports for network access when an organization authenticates a user’s identity and authorizes them to access the network. A user’s identity is based on their credentials or certificate and is confirmed by the radius server. WBA OpenRoaming uses one Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP)-TLS, which supports certificate-based authentication—the gold standard of authentication.

For the customer-facing business, a significant benefit of WBA OpenRoaming is the increased Wi-Fi adoption rate. Thanks to the seamless and automatic Wi-Fi onboarding process, more customers access the Wi-Fi services and are willing to share their information, such as an email address or phone number. In 2023, the WBA anticipates WBA OpenRoaming will reach 5 to 6 million hotspots—from one million in Q1 2022—spanning a wide variety of public venues and already involving 2,000 companies. Deployments of Passpoint and WBA OpenRoaming continue to rise as more brands and identity providers recognize the value of the federation to enable seamless connectivity access across different networks.

Passpoint enables operational efficiency

The practice of bringing your own device (BYOD) has been around for years in office spaces and the shift to hybrid work around the world has accelerated the trend. However, staff and visitors face several problems when connecting to traditional enterprise Wi-Fi, such as needing or losing a password, losing connectivity when logging back into a computer, or onboarding unsecured devices into the network—thus putting the enterprise network at risk. It can reflect poorly on a company’s image if it’s difficult for visitors or employees from other branches to connect to the office network. Unfortunately, Wi-Fi issues put an additional burden on chief information officers (CIOs) and their teams who are already struggling to deal with emergency issues and troubleshooting for an exponential number of endpoints resulting from bring your own device policies.

A 2021 study found that 42 percent of IT professionals spent too much time troubleshooting the network and that 43 percent struggled to find time to work on strategic business initiatives. Another report found that “59 percent of IT pros were frustrated by the time spent on routine infrastructure activities and 84 percent agreed that they could bring more value to their organization if they spent less time on routine tasks.”

The result can negatively affect IT staff morale and an enterprise’s ability to implement a long-term digital transformation strategy.

Fortunately, Passpoint technology solves these onboarding issues. By automating Wi-Fi onboarding in a secure way, Passpoint can have a positive impact on IT employees’ morale by reducing service calls and complaints, and providing overall troubleshooting associated with Wi-Fi connectivity. By enabling seamless and secure onboarding for visitors and colleagues, Passpoint can free up tremendous time and energy for network managers and IT staff so they can focus on strategic tasks that add value to the organization in the medium and long term.

Enabling indoor connectivity

Despite all the headlines about 5G, Wi-Fi will remain the dominant indoor access technology among enterprises in the near future. Passpoint and WBA OpenRoaming remove the last barriers to a seamless and secure Wi-Fi experience while helping enterprises with their digital transformation, empowering employees, and increasing overall operational efficiency.


Latest Updates

Subscribe to our YouTube Channel