Last week, the official launch of the Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Passpoint™ Release 2 interoperability program from Wi-Fi Alliance (WFA) revealed the next chapter in enabling mobile client devices to easily connect to a secure (i.e., strong encryption and authentication) Wi-Fi network. And once again, Cisco is at the forefront of furthering the proliferation of new and improved Wi-Fi capabilities by having participated in and contributed to the successful launch of Passpoint Release 2.
As with Passpoint Release 1, Cisco is honored to announce that its equipment has been selected by WFA to be part of the reference test bed for Passpoint Release 2. As part of the test bed, the Cisco Access Point (CAP2602) and WLAN Controller (2500 Series) are among the first products to be certified for Passpoint Release 2. The significance of being in the test bed is that every mobile client device seeking Passpoint Release 2 certification must be tested with the Cisco Access Point (AP) and Wireless LAN Controller (WLC).
Side note: For those of you unfamiliar with Passpoint, this is the certification name for Wi-Fi products that are built to the Hotspot 2.0 specification and are subsequently proven to pass a series of tests that verify the products meet the criteria established in the interoperability test plan (which is derived directly from the specification).
In addition to being in the test bed, Cisco is also in the first wave of products to achieve certification before public program launch with the CAP1532, CAP702, and CAP702W (all certified with the 2500 series WLC).
Of course this is only the beginning. As with Passpoint Release 1, Cisco intends to certify as many AP+WLC pairs as possible for Passpoint Release 2. Cisco certified 66 AP+WLC combinations for Passpoint release 1, far more than any other infrastructure vendor, and intends to repeat that effort with its product portfolio for Passpoint Release 2. More than 7 million Cisco APs will be expected to support Passpoint Release 2 in the future.
In conclusion, although certification for interoperability is critically important and participating in the creation of a technology ecosystem is essential, these should be viewed as fundamental and foundational components to real world deployments but are not in themselves the “end of the story.”
On that note, Cisco invites you to please stay tuned for further announcements and to watch for its products being used in real world deployments of Passpoint.
Meanwhile, please comment below if you have any questions.