Cisco, MobileAccess collaborate for integrated Wi-Fi, cellular platform

July 6, 2010
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has already deployed the joint platform, which sends cellular RF signals over CAT-5/6 Ethernet LAN infrastructure for 2G, 3G and 4G services.

VIENNA, VA -- MobileAccess, a provider of enterprise wireless platforms, is working with Cisco to deliver a solution that enables in-building cellular coverage over an organization's existing LAN infrastructure. MobileAccess and Cisco are currently deploying the joint platform in a variety of customer environments including The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), which is using the integrated offering in several campus buildings.

The MobileAccessVE solution, which has been tested and validated with the Cisco Unified Wireless Network, sends cellular RF signals over CAT-5/6 Ethernet LAN infrastructure for 2G, 3G and 4G services, without affecting wired or wireless LAN traffic. This approach lets enterprises maximize the ROI on existing network investments by using their LAN to deliver cellular connectivity.

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As a result, according to the companies, enterprises can easily add cellular coverage and expand their Cisco WLAN at a lower total installed cost and in less than half the deployment time of other in-building cellular solutions. In delivering this integrated solution to enterprise customers, MobileAccess and Cisco will work closely with a number of wireless service providers to provision the cellular component of the solution.

Reliable cellular coverage combined with pervasive 802.11n Wi-Fi access has become increasingly important at MIT, as students and faculty rely on their wireless devices to not only communicate, but also to view mobile videos and use educational applications. MIT's Information Services & Technology team needed to boost cellular coverage, but were concerned about the cost and disruption that could be incurred by conventional solutions. The advantages of the in-building solution from MobileAccess and Cisco, are aligned with MIT's vision of integrating and unifying communications throughout the campus to improve the productivity and safety of students, staff and guests.

As a member of Cisco's SolutionsPlus Partner Program, MobileAccess joins group of third-party vendors whose products have been tested for interoperability with Cisco solutions. As part of the SolutionsPlus agreement, the MobileAccessVE solution will now be available through Cisco and its channel partners.

"Increased user demands for mobility are driving the need for pervasive 802.11n Wi-Fi and cellular connectivity everywhere. Cisco and MobileAccess are responding to this need with an innovative approach that integrates wireless technologies for simple cost-effective deployments," said Ray Smets, vice president and general manager of Cisco's Wireless Networking Business Unit. "Cisco's leadership and expertise in delivering high performance WLANs combined with MobileAccess' in-building cellular expertise and innovative technologies, deliver a powerful combination for organizations everywhere."

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"We brought MobileAccessVE to market for enterprises hungry for in-building wireless, yet reluctant to incur the costs and inconvenience associated with new cabling and downtime," said Ron Kaiser, CEO of MobileAccess. "Market analysts estimate the indoor cellular market will grow at a CAGR of nearly 25 percent over the next four years. Thanks to this unique solution, enterprises of all sizes can enable indoor cellular alongside their Cisco Unified Wireless Network, seamlessly and cost-effectively."

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