Pronto’s Flexible OSS Provides Secure Authentication, Authorization and Accounting for Sweet Spot’s Easy-to-Use Internet KeyTM USB Authentication Device
Baltimore, MD – Wi-Fi Planet Spring 2004 – June 8, 2004 – Pronto Networks, a leading provider of carrier-class OSS solutions for large Wi-Fi hotspot networks, and Sweet Spot Solutions, a provider of industrial grade broadband wireless solutions, today introduced a new, easy-to-use device for gaining Wi-Fi access that can be leveraged in both private and public locations, such as corporate offices, hotels and hot zones. The Internet KeyTM device enables users to gain instant and secure access to the Internet by simply plugging the device into the USB port of any Wi-Fi enabled device. Pronto’s Operations Support System (OSS) for broadband wireless networks provides the back-end authentication and billing support for the device.
“The Internet Key solution captures two significant opportunities with Wi-Fi,” said Justin Beck, CEO of Sweet Spot Solutions. “The first opportunity is to simplify the overall customer experience, as users do not need to enter credit card information or a username and password each time they logon. The key also makes it easier for enterprises and location owners to manage the process of allocating passes to users. The second opportunity is to create a tangible branding strategy in an otherwise invisible Wi-Fi service environment.”
The Internet Key is a portable and brandable USB authentication device the size of an average house key. The device carries an electronic certificate used for authorizing network access. Each time a user plugs the device into a USB port, secure authentication and authorization automatically occurs between the Internet Key certificate on the USB device and Pronto’s OSS.
“We are very impressed with the ease-of-use of the Internet Key,” said Sudesh Kumar, CEO of IT Global Solutions, whose hotel clients include major franchise names such as Embassy Suites, Hampton Inn, Fairfield Marriott, Four Points Sheraton, Holiday Inn, Country Inn and Suites, Ramada Inn, Comfort Inn, Quality Inn and Super 8 Motel. “Currently, our clients are giving out usernames and passwords, which become difficult to manage. The Internet Keys are much like room keys, which hotel staffs are accustomed to handling.” Kumar adds, “We’re also excited about the prospects of branding the portable key for our client’s hotel chains.”
The Internet Key solution is being sold as part of an end-to-end WLAN solution by Sweet Spot for both private and public networks. Locations have the option of offering the keys for free to end- users or charging a fee. The location is charged a monthly fee based on the number of keys purchased. Usage and billing is tracked by Pronto’s OSS.
“We’re very excited to be working with Sweet Spot in delivering this innovative solution for private and public WLAN networks,” said Jasbir Singh, president and CEO of Pronto Networks. “Our open, flexible architecture enables us to easily extend our platform to accommodate such new technologies. We believe that the security and ease-of-use attributes of this turnkey solution will be popular in many locations offering Wi-Fi today.”
A demonstration of the Sweet Spot/Pronto solution will be on display through June 10 at the Wi-Fi Planet Spring 2004 Conference and Expo in Pronto Networks’ Booth #524.
About Pronto Networks
Pronto Networks, based in Pleasanton, Calif., provides carrier-class Operations Support Systems (OSS) that enable network operators to deploy and manage large public hot spot networks. The company’s software handles provisioning, configuration, authentication, access control, security, pre-paid and post-paid billing, and roaming settlement for large public WLAN networks, in addition to remotely managing and updating multi-vendor hardware and Wi-Fi switches. Pronto Networks is funded by BV Capital, Draper Fisher Jurvetson and the Intel Communications Fund. In 2003, Pronto Networks received several awards including Wired Magazine’s Top 25 Wi-Fi Companies to Watch, the AlwaysOn list of Top 100 Private Companies, and Computerworld’s Innovative Technology Awards. For more information about Pronto Networks, please visit www.prontonetworks.com.
About Sweet Spot Solutions
Sweet Spot Solutions provides industrial grade broadband wireless infrastructure solutions, including products and services that enable a cost-effective build-out and management of private and public access wireless networks. Sweet Spot’s Internet Key provides solutions to private and public network operators in major venues including corporate offices, hotels/resorts, airports, convention centers, marinas, train stations, shopping malls, restaurants/cafes, and apartments/condos. For more information, visit www.sweetspotsolutions.com.