The Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) hopes to offer a steadier universal Wi-Fi roaming framework. Today, the WBA announced the launch of its Interoperability Compliancy Program (ICP), an initiative that will streamline the way WBA members work together.
The WBA already has support from many of the key global players within the Wi-Fi ecosystem including, AT&T, Boingo Wireless, BT, China Mobile, KT, NTT, DOCOMO, PCCW, Shaw Communications, Smart Communications and True have all confirmed their participation in the ICP.
With more and more of our technical devices offering Wi-Fi compatibility, operators have come to see public Wi-Fi as an essential component of mobile connectivity. However, despite this understanding many fragmentations remain in the way our devices connect and roam on wireless networks.
The ICP will look to overcome these challenges by coming together and issuing guidelines on security, data offload, device authentication, network implementation, network selection, charging models and billing mechanisms. With a common set of requirements the WBA hopes to make it easier for operators to enter into roaming agreements, and that those carriers will better understand how to integrate their networks and support roaming. Additionally the ICP also aims to help Wi-Fi providers plan for future network enhancements, products, and services.
The ICP program is being managed by the WBA membership, which is comprised of nearly 100 organizations including a mix of leading Wi-Fi mobile and broadband network operators and media players across the world.