GSMA, WBA to collaborate on Wi-Fi roaming

Dylan Bushell-Embling
21 Mar 2012

GSMA and the Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) have teamed up to develop methods for mobile devices to connect to and roam between Wi-Fi hotspots, using a SIM as authentication.

The groups have announced a joint initiative to develop technical and commercial frameworks for Wi-Fi roaming.

GSMA and WBA will co-ordinate on consistent methods for device configuration, the use of access keys, authentication and payment processing.

WBA CEO Shrikant Shenwai said a key goal of the collaboration is to help “Wi-Fi replicate the success of mobile technology [by allowing] users to roam seamlessly between different networks.”

Wi-Fi roaming will be based on the WBA's next generation hotspot program and the Wi-Fi Alliance's Passpoint certification technology.

The, GSMA and WBA will also develop common guidelines for security, billing, data offload, device implementation and network selection.

These guidelines will be based on the GSMA's GPRS roaming exchange and the WBA's wireless roaming intermediary exchange (WRIX) models.

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