Multiple Services, One Access Code

By Wi-Fi Planet Staff

March 18, 2004

Infonet's new remote access service allows mobile professionals to use the same code to access all of their services, including Wi-Fi.

Managed service provider Infonet on Thursday launched a new remote access service for mobile professionals.

The new MobileXpress Professional service includes access to more than 2,300 Wi-Fi hotspots in 17 countries. Infonet expects to have more than 10,000 hotspots by next year (the company has partnered with Boingo Wireless and GRIC Communications on its hotspot network).

The service combines a number of services that were previously "a la carte" purchases for customers, said Marc Patterson, vice president and managing director for mobility services at the El Segundo, Calif.-based company. He says the key to the package is the new MobileXpress software client, which is tied into Infonet's global authentication, authorization and accounting (AAA) system, allowing end users to use the same access code for all of their services worldwide.

The client also includes VPN capabilities and policy enforcement. "We've put the VPN capabilities behind the scene," said Patterson. "Once you establish a valid connection, your VPN will be auto-launched in the background so you're able to establish a secure connection quickly."

Another significant feature is "MobiScan," which automatically detects all available networks and informs users of their options. It even indicates signal strength for Wi-Fi hotspots.

Network and policy awareness on the client is managed by the MobileXpress Toolkit, which lets IT administrators monitor usage, apply policy, customize the software and manage end user security from one interface. "It allows them to manage the end user environment, and at the same time the end user is able to manage things much better," said Patterson.

In addition to Wi-Fi, the MobileXpress service includes access to GSM and CDMA networks. Patterson the company is currently working on GPRS capabilities, and is running field trials for CDMA2000 1x EV-DO in Japan with shareholder KDDI.

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