Cable Tech

Ruckus Gets a Piece of Cable's Wi-Fi Action

Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC) has opted for Ruckus Wireless Inc. as an additional source of Wi-Fi gear as the MSO ramps up wireless hot spot deployments to boost the value of its cable modem service and sets the stage for lucrative backhaul deals. (See TWC Uses Ruckus for Wi-Fi Hotzones.)

TW Cable is deploying Ruckus 802.11n Smart Wi-Fi systems outfitted with Docsis 3.0 modems for backhaul capacity and to provide broadband connectivity for high-capacity indoor public venues, such as arenas. To help serve high-traffic areas, Ruckus has integrated an adaptive antenna array, which extends signals using software-controlled, directional antennas, and ChannelFly, a feature that automates which channel an access point uses based on available capacity.

The MSO is deploying Ruckus in Los Angeles, site of its largest Wi-Fi deployment so far, a TW Cable spokesman said. TW Cable is also using gear from BelAir Networks Inc., now part of Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC), in L.A. and in an earlier Wi-Fi deployment in New York City. (See TW Cable Places Bigger Wi-Fi Bet, Ruckus Ready to Rumble With Docsis 3.0 , and TW Cable Earmarks Wi-Fi Cash.)

Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS), a Ruckus reseller, also has a role in the TW Cable deployment, helping Ruckus with fulfillment and systems integration. (See Arris to Resell Ruckus Wi-Fi Gear.)

Why this matters
Ruckus, which is about to announce a reseller deal with Nokia Networks , is competing against Ericsson and Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) to nab pole positions in MSOs' Wi-Fi deployments and to slot themselves into future Wi-Fi roaming deals. (See NSN Raises a Wi-Fi Ruckus .)

Ruckus is demonstrating Wi-Fi roaming at this week's CTIA in the form of 802.11u, a standard-in-the-works that will let cable customers roam to different Wi-Fi hot spots without having to log in again. The demo will use Samsung Corp. Galaxy smartphone models, says Ruckus VP of Corporate Marketing David Callisch.

TW Cable is a big win for Ruckus, but the vendor also has deals with operators such as Bright House Networks , Sky , KDDI Corp. , PCCW Ltd. (NYSE: PCW; Hong Kong: 0008) and China Telecom Corp. Ltd. (NYSE: CHA). Ruckus has a couple of big domestic MSO deals already in place, and the cable operators "have a very aggressive deployment schedule," Callisch says.

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— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

Jeff Baumgartner 12/5/2012 | 5:33:49 PM
re: Ruckus Gets a Piece of Cable's Wi-Fi Action

True, plus there's interop issues that will need to be solved.  Guess from a deployment standpoint, there's plenty of work to be done. JB

AESerm 12/5/2012 | 5:33:49 PM
re: Ruckus Gets a Piece of Cable's Wi-Fi Action

Not sure that standard is still 'in the works' as the IEEE published it in Feb 2011. But there is the ongoing activity around Hot Spot 2.0, Next Gen Hotspot and Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA), probably other efforts that gives this sector a sense of incompleteness.

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