Chicago was buzzing with WiMAX news last week, from live demonstrations to partnership announcements. One of the most talked-about initiatives at WiMAX World USA: Sprint’s 4G wireless broadband network service, Xohm.
For example, Montreal-based Trellia Networks announced that it had been selected to deliver connectivity and enterprise mobility management solutions for Xohm. According to Sprint Nextel spokesperson John Polivka, Trellia’s Nomad Mobility platform will let Xohm subscribers “know where our WiMAX is available and where the available Wi-Fi networks are, and give you the option of making your own access choice.”
Sprint goes 4G
Last August, Sprint announced plans to develop and deploy a 4G wireless broadband network using the IEEE 802.16e-2005 (mobile WiMAX) standard. The company will test WiMAX in Chicago, Baltimore and Washington DC this fall. If all goes well, commercial Xohm service will be launched in April 2008, and become available to 100 million people by year-end. Sprint hopes to expand Xohm coverage to 125 million people, including 48 million homes and 5 million small offices, by the end of 2010.
Sprint is reportedly working with Intel, Samsung, and Motorola to develop, market and support multi-mode WiMAX devices that also support Sprint’s current iDEN, CDMA and EV-DO network technologies. Those wireless broadband services are expected to complement other network technologies now used by consumers and enterprises, including Wi-Fi and Ethernet LANs.
According to a statement issued by Sprint and Trellia, “the intelligent, seamless management of all these networks, and the ability to provide the necessary control for enterprise IT departments, will be key for the successful deployment of Sprint’s Xohm services.” To accomplish these goals, Xohm devices will be paired with the Trellia Nomad Client to enable zero-click seamless network roaming by individual and enterprise users.
Mix and match wireless
“Sprint has chosen our flagship Nomad Mobility Platform to provide the optimal end-user experience and an enterprise-grade mobility management system that will increase the adoption rate of Xohm services,” said Giovanni Forte, founding President and CEO of Trellia.
Trellia’s Nomad Mobility Client is an intelligent connection manager that enables secure and seamless connectivity for mobile devices. Nomad’s connectivity engine provides access to WiMAX, Wi-Fi, local area and other networks, driven by configurable policies that automatically determine, activate, and switch to the best available connection. But the Nomad Mobility Client is more than a simple connection manager. For starters, it can manage those connectivity changes transparently, roaming without user intervention or application disruption.
In addition, enterprises can remotely-administer the Client using Trellia’s Nomad Mobility Server. With the Server, IT can push a new roaming rule out to all mobile devices to reflect security, throughput, location, cost, corporate preference, or other network selection criteria. For example, by maximizing use of low-cost networks and roaming to high-cost networks only when necessary, Nomad can be used to reduce mobile data transfer costs. Nomad policies also let enterprise IT managers control mobile device security, from enforcing VPN tunneling over public networks to requiring secure Wi-Fi connections.
“We are pleased to have chosen Trellia and their innovative products for our connectivity management and enterprise mobility management solutions,” said Bin Shen, Vice President of Broadband Product and Partnership Management. “We believe the Sprint-Trellia partnership will bring differentiated and leading-edge offerings to our customers, which will provide them simple and instant access to Sprint’s Xohm network and services.”