I???m teaching a seminar on advances in wireless networking in a couple of weeks in Bellevue, Washington, so as I finalize my course content, I???m thinking about what are the most important developments in each wireless segment. In the Wi-Fi area, I think its centralized controller architectures, sometimes referred to as switching architectures. These provide centralized radio planning, security functions, mobility management and other functions. Underscoring this importance, Cisco acquired Airespace in January, and just last week Nortel did an OEM deal with Trapeze Networks and Aruba Wireless Networks did a similar deal with Aruba Wireless Networks. Unfortunately, there are no industry standards currently used for access point to controller communications, so the tricky thing for large deployments is that you have to make a major commitment to one vendor for a lot of Wi-Fi infrastructure. Fortunately, the end result is an efficient and secure managed network.
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