Nortel updates WLAN capabilities

Nortel has unveiled new solutions it says enable businesses to use their existing WLAN network to deploy advanced enterprise applications such as location tracking, advanced security solutions, and voice over the WLAN network.

With new voice quality features based on IEEE 802.11e standards, businesses now have greater flexibility when planning for voice over WLAN as part of a unified communications solution, the company said.

Additionally, Nortel launched two simple and cost-effective upgrades to help increase the security of wireless LAN networks, and help improve overall productivity by allowing businesses to use the network to quickly locate people, company assets and equipment that are dispersed across their campus.

The new voice capabilities on the Nortel Wireless LAN 2300 Series will ensure that voice quality is maintained in the presence of other wireless traffic and will allow customers to optimize the performance of a wide variety of mobile devices that will also be adopting the standard.

This includes the new Nortel WLAN Handset 6100 Series, planned for availability in the second quarter. These premise-based WLAN handsets are planned to fully integrate with Nortel’s enterprise VoIP and WLAN platforms and provide the flexibility of 802.11 a/b/g support.

Nortel’s new Asset Tracking and Management solution enables businesses to use their WLAN network to provide real-time location and tracking of up to 10,000 individual assets or people with a location accuracy of one to three meters.

The solution combines the Nortel WLAN 2300 Series with Ekahau real-time location system, enabling the use of RF tags that determine their location by interacting with Nortel WLAN 2300 Series access points. This eliminates the need to create a discrete network of RFID readers used solely for asset tracking purposes, resulting in a faster, simpler, and more cost-effective deployment.

Nortel’s new Wireless Intrusion Detection and Prevention (WIPS) solution gives customers an optional advanced WIPS security upgrade. By allowing the enterprise to leverage their existing Nortel WLAN infrastructure, Nortel eliminates the cost and complexity of installing and managing a separate network of security sensors.

The solution uses WIPS technology from AirDefense to allow Nortel WLAN customers to turn WLAN 2300 Series access points into security sensors that can identify and protect the enterprise network against over 230 different types of threats that can target the wireless network. The solution also provides security policy management and enforcement, and scales from a single office to hundreds of locations.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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