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Ruckus SmartZone to get IoT module

Ruckus plans to release a suite of technology for companies that want to support IoT devices on the WLAN. The suite includes an IoT module for the Ruckus SmartZone controller.

Ruckus Networks has introduced technology that supports internet-of-things deployments on its wireless LAN.et

Ruckus, owned by ARRIS, launched its IoT Suite this week. The product includes a communication module that supports IoT standards and a controller that provides connectivity and IoT device and security management.

Ruckus is focusing on selling its IoT technology to organizations in three verticals: hospitality, education and local governments using IoT to provide services to residents.

Companies would build a Ruckus-powered IoT network by plugging the internet-of-things module into the USB port on each of the company's access points (APs). The module provides support for three IoT communication standards: Zigbee, Bluetooth Low Energy and LoRaWAN.

Besides the APs and modules, a customer would also need the Ruckus SmartZone WLAN controller, which companies can cluster together to onboard, manage and secure tens of thousands of indoor or outdoor APs. Ruckus sells SmartZone as an appliance or virtualized software.

The IoT controller is software that is deployed on the Ruckus SmartZone operating system to provide basic management and security features for IoT devices. All management features for the IoT and Wi-Fi networks are available through the SmartZone software console.

Use cases for Ruckus IoT

The IoT controller also has APIs Ruckus partners use to provide services related to internet-of-things devices. For example, ASSA ABLOY Hospitality is a Ruckus partner planning to use the controller to provide services to hotels with ABLOY's electronic locks.

With the Ruckus controller as the conduit, ABLOY online or on-premises software could reset locks to support the keycards of arriving hotel guests, monitor for attempted forced entry and perform other tasks related to room access control. ABLOY's software would also provide the advanced security features for the IoT network.

For cities interested in IoT, Ruckus has partnered with platform provider Actility . The latter company offers the analytics and advanced security and management features municipalities would need to deliver services related to parking, street lighting or waste management. A city, for example, could deploy Ruckus APs in a parking garage to collect data from sensors used to monitor the number of available spaces.

A Ruckus partner's software would perform most of the heavy lifting in managing an IoT network. Ruckus' IoT controller would mostly monitor the state of the IoT sensor, such as whether it's on or connected to the system.

Ruckus and other WLAN vendors are lining up to capture a slice of an IoT market IDC predicts will reach $1.1 trillion globally by 2021. Spending on IoT hardware, software and services is expected to reach $772.5 billion this year, an almost 15% increase over 2017.

Ruckus plans to make the IoT Suite available by the end of May.

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