Ruckus Networks (now part of CommScope via acquisition) has announced two new products to complement its growing multigigabit access network portfolio. The Ruckus R750 Wi-Fi 6 access point (AP) and ICX 7150-C10ZP switch address the bandwidth capacity crunch in schools caused by the transition to digital learning. Ruckus concurrently announced a new Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem partnership with Soter Technologies to address the student health risk of vaping on school grounds.
The Ruckus converged multigigabit network for schools and other capacity-challenged environments includes:
- Ruckus R750 Access Point (new)— A dual-band, 4x4:4 (5GHz) + 4x4:4 (2.4GHz) with embedded IoT radios (BLE, Zigbee) and 2.5GbE support. The R750 is optimized for high client-density classroom environments and supports the latest WPA3 Wi-Fi security standard.
- Ruckus ICX 7150-C10ZP Access Switch (new)—A 10-port compact, fanless switch with 1, 2.5, 5 and 10GbE access ports, four of which are PoE-enabled with up to an industry-best 90W. Like all Ruckus ICX switches, the ICX 7150-C10ZP can be stacked with other ICX 7150-family switches within a single wiring closet or across closets or classrooms.
- Ruckus SmartZone™ Network Controller—Physical or virtual converged management appliances used to manage Ruckus APs and switches through a single interface. SmartZone Network Controller is available today as a unified management platform for the ICX7150 and R750.
- Ruckus IoT Controller—A virtual controller, deployed in tandem with a Ruckus SmartZone network controller, that performs connectivity, device and security management functions for non-WiFi devices.
Per a Ruckus Networks statement, "By 2022, most primary and secondary schools will deliver 50 percent of their curriculum digitally. As schools undertake the transition to digital learning, Wi-Fi networks are quickly overtaxed due to initiatives such as 1:1 computing, bring your own device (BYOD), as well as the simultaneous growth of IoT sensor networks for building automation and security. Furthermore, the pervasive use of video for digital learning, online collaboration and campus safety exerts more capacity demand on Wi-Fi networks. To solve this capacity challenge and others like it, Ruckus is introducing the 4x4:4 R750 Wi-Fi 6 AP and the accompanying ICX 7150-C10ZP multigigabit access switch. Together, with CommScope’s power-over-ethernet (PoE) cabling, these new products meet the capacity and requirements of a modern digitally-enabled school."Alongside the new Wi-Fi 6 gear offering, to support schools’ needs to effectively address what the U.S Surgeon General refers to as a youth E-cigarette (vaping) epidemic, Ruckus also announced that it is partnering with Soter Technologies, a leading vendor of sensor systems that detect vaping, smoke, and noise disturbances. With these sensors, schools are better able to monitor for E-cigarette use, including in areas, such as restrooms, where cameras cannot be placed.
Ruckus has integrated Soter’s FlySense family of real-time sensors into the Ruckus IoT Suite, enabling alerts to be sent to this centralized IoT dashboard when vaping is detected. School staff may choose to enable such an alert to trigger actions by other devices, such as a nearby hallway camera, managed by the IoT Controller, by making use of the embedded rules engine.
“Fly Sense is a tool that allows high schools and middle school administrators to respond to the growing vaping epidemic happening across the nation and internationally,” said Derek Peterson, founder and CEO of Soter Technologies. “Together we will bring this important technology to more schools.”
“Digital learning, the vaping epidemic and overall student safety are top of mind for school administrators and principals,” said Bart Giordano, senior vice president of worldwide sales, Ruckus Networks. “Schools are turning to Ruckus to provide converged network and IoT solutions that support both their digital learning and student safety initiatives. We are committed to the primary and secondary education markets and will continue to innovate to help schools meet their digital learning, student safety and wellness objectives.”
Ruckus Networks will be demonstrating its new technologies at ISTE 2019, June 23-26, at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, Booth #1438.