RealTime IT News

WildPackets Inspects Spectrum

Walnut Creek, California-based WildPackets announced today that it is making OmniSpectrum, a combo of Windows software and a PC Card for a laptop, available to its customers looking for full radio frequency (RF) spectrum analysis for interference from everything from phones to other networks, a feature not available from the company's OmniAnalysis suite of products.

"We cover the breadth of the network so far, with the exception of the spectrum itself," says WildPackets Senior Product Manager Jay Botelho. "In the case of Wi-Fi, the spectrum is the medium, and seeing the medium makes a big difference."

He says that reports have come in to them that as many as 30 percent of product problems encountered by their customers can be explained by radio interference, which the new product can now pinpoint.

The product is a re-branded version of the Cognio Spectrum Expert for Wi-Fi. Both products retail for the same price, $3,995.

Why did WildPackets go with a licensed product instead of building a spectrum analyzer? The company is no stranger to licensing something that already exists, and is introducing VoIP analysis using technology from Telchemy, incorporating the Telchemy VQmon/SA directly into the OmniAnalysis platform.

However, OmniSpectrum, as yet, is not integrated with OmniAnalysis — integration is limited to the user's eyeballs and their ability to resize the software windows to show both on the same screen. Botelho says both products have been tested to make sure they'll run concurrently on the same laptop. The product roadmap calls for better integration in the future.

In fact, this isn't even the first time that WildPackets has sold this exact product. A previous WildPackets/Cognio team-up from late 2005 featured a bundle with WildPackets Airopeek NX and Cognio ISMS Mobile (the original name of the Spectrum Expert). A new bundle will include OmniSpectrum and OmniPeek Workgroup Pro for $5,195 (which saves $1,295 over separate purchases).

WildPackets is far from the only company using the Cognio spectrum analysis technology. Airmagnet's Spectrum Analyzer is also based on Cognio's Spectrum Expert. The current version of Airmagnet Spectrum Analyzer also sells for $3,995.