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The Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) and Wi-Fi Alliance will co-host a demonstration of Wi-Fi roaming at Mobile World Congress next week in association with the WBA Carrier Wi-Fi Summit hosted onsite.

The demonstration features seamless network authentication and roaming across different networks using Certified Passpoint devices made available for attendees. Supported by 18 operators, the demonstration offers a look at a live Next Generation Hotspot network from seven vendors. The association says it reflects the momentum toward industry-standard easy-to-use Wi-Fi hotspots and roaming.

According to research conducted by Maravedis-Rethink on behalf of WBA, more than half of operators surveyed have become “more confident” about investing in public Wi-Fi than in the previous year. More than 27 global operators have participated in three phases of WBA NGH trials, and to date, more than 400 devices have obtained Passpoint certification, including a wide range of smartphones and tablets.

By 2018, ,small cells will be contributing 28% of additional capacity and 75% of them will integrate Wi-Fi, according to Maravedis-Rethink.

The WBA brought together nearly 20 of the world’s largest operators and vendors to participate in defining the Carrier Wi-Fi vision. They include: Accuris Networks, AT&T, BSG Wireless, BSkyB, BT, CableLabs, China Mobile, Cisco, Comcast, Ericsson, Huawei, Intel Corporation, NTT DOCOMO, Orange, Qualcomm, Ruckus Wireless, SK Telecom, Time Warner Cable and Towerstream.

The “CableWiFi” network identifier (SSID) allows devices to auto-connect to a “CableWiFi” hotspot when in range. The wireless gateways that Comcast is installing in Xfinity Homes, contain two SSIDs, enabling consumer cable WiFi boxes to “share” their WiFi.

See related Dailywireless articles; Comcast Buying Time Warner Cable, Ad-Sponsored WiFi Initiatives from Gowex & Facebook and Comcast Creates Hotspot 2.0 National Network

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