Internet of Things, Wi-Fi Worldwide, Global Wi-Fi Roaming

The world keeps getting better and better connected and the Wireless Broadband Alliance‘s Interoperability Compliance Program (ICP) looks to encourage further connection by pushing carriers to adopt a common set of requirements and procedures to enable international Wi-Fi roaming.

AT&T, China Mobile, NTT DoCoMo, and Orange are among the first wireless service providers to complete initial efforts for the program. Others include U.S.-based Boingo Wireless, the United Kingdom’s BT, BT, Korea Telecom (KT), Portugal Telecom, Hong Kong’s PCCW, Canada’s Shaw Communications and Thailand’s True

“The operator community is working together to simplify roaming, and we plan to expand our own Wi-Fi roaming partnerships with numerous operators by participating in this initiative. We are excited to see how this program will benefit the ecosystem over the coming year,” said Atsuhisa Shirai, DoCoMo’s director/head of international roaming, global business department.

The ICP was first announced in December, at which time operators began testing various segments of their networks and business models. Since then, the WBA has created a set of compliance guidelines, offering different support levels to operators, which range from “simple integration requirements for roaming partners” to “delivering support for the latest in session security” and “more complex charging models and billing mechanisms required for the implementation of Next Generation Hotspot (NGH)” according to the WBA.

Using Wi-Fi Certified Passpoint equipment, users will be able to access NGHs without the need for usernames and passwords. The NGH program is expected to encourage roaming relationships among operators domestically and around the world. VoIP and messaging application users will be happy to know that the WBA expects the first public NGH deployments to occur this year.

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By Josh Robert Nay

Josh Robert Nay is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of TruTower. He has worked in the telecommunications industry since 2003 and specializes in GSM based technology. He also uses (too many) VoIP apps and is a long-time user of BlackBerry, Android, and Windows Phone. He adores anything having to do with space exploration and writing. In addition to the links below, he can be found on LinkedIn and can also be found on his website at