Kineto Wireless is all about delivering mobile services over broadband and "extending" the spectrum-constrained wireless network. Its latest brainchild, the Smart Wi-Fi Offload solution, combines UMA-enabled generic access network (GAN) controllers and a smartphone application to offload traffic to Wi-Fi to lighten the load on 3G and 4G networks. It's a logical solution now that smartphone use is commonplace rather than the exception.
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What is it? Kineto's solution uses software to address the congestion facing wireless operators from data-slinging smartphones. And yes, Wi-Fi offload solutions are already on the market, but Kineto uses its downloadable Smart Wi-Fi Application and a GAN controller (Kineto Multi-Service Access Gateway) to seamlessly move all mobile traffic off the cellular network -- not just Web-based traffic -- when the subscriber is in Wi-Fi network range (home and office Wi-Fi networks are the sweet spot).
What's the big deal? Kineto's solution is a whole lot cheaper and faster than building cell towers, for starters, and most smartphones are already Wi-Fi enabled. As an added bonus, wireless operators can use the solution to improve service to houses and offices with bad cell coverage (so no one has to stand in a certain spot on the front lawn for coverage).
With smartphones driving more and more traffic over 3G, and 4G networks soon to drive more still, Kineto's Smart Wi-Fi Offload solution seamlessly transfers smartphone traffic to Wi-Fi when available, saving the operator's macro network for revenue-producing voice, data and video services coverage when subscribers are on the move.
But wait, there's more. Kineto's triple-threat solution supports three technologies with interfaces including 3GPP GAN for Wi-Fi offload, 3GPP Home NodeB for femtocell offload, and VoLGA (a voice over LTE solution), which future-proofs it for 4G, according to Infonetics Research mobile infrastructure analyst Stephane Teral. "This is the only product in the marketplace that can handle UMA for Wi-Fi, femtocell and LTE voice technology, and it's being launched at just the right time," Teral said.
When and where? Kineto says its Smart Wi-Fi Offload solution will be available to wireless operators in Q2. For now, operators need to preload smartphones with the application. In the future, individual subscribers could download it to add to their service capabilities.
Who's on board? T-Mobile in the U.S. and Orange in Europe. We hear that Kineto is in talks with other major wireless operators, some of whose overloaded networks have been in the news of late, but we're not mentioning names.
Downside? Operators need to figure out how to position the solution to customers, who may think they should pay less for mobile service if their service runs on Wi-Fi some of the time.
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