Carrier Wi-Fi


The advancements in Wi-Fi technology and wireless economics have led to the exponential growth of Wi-Fi devices attached to the internet in a broad variety of applications. This growth presents a major opportunity for service providers to offer an enhanced Wi-Fi user experience, increase stickiness, and enable new business models. This opportunity requires operators to offer carrier grade Wi-Fi that addresses large scale coverage, mobility, security, and tiered service delivery for consumer, retail, venue, and business.  Benu Networks’ Virtual Service Edge (VSE) provides a next generation mobile gateway platform to enable carrier grade service delivery.

Operators can deployed a wide range of carrier grade Wi-Fi service offerings including:

  • Large scale community Wi-Fi for residential, business and outdoor coverage
  • Wholesale Wi-Fi roaming and cellular mobile data offload
  • Cellular mobile data interworking
  • Vanity SSID and managed Wi-Fi services

Benu Networks’ xMEG and vMEG platforms are a high performance Wi-Fi Access Gateway (WAG) designed for intelligent service delivery of carrier grade Wi-Fi to residential, business, venue, and outdoor services. The WAG is deployed in the operator edge or core network to aggregate L2 originated sessions via tunneling (softGRE, VLAN) or L3 tunneling (e.g. IPsec), and provides intelligent IP subscriber management and L3 anchor for all Wi-Fi sessions. The WAG provides a set of carrier grade integrated IP services for routing, filtering, and enforcing operator service policies at scale.

Leveraging the latest advancements in high performance silicon technology, the xMEG platform provides software acceleration for the WAG application. The vMEG, a software instance for virtualized IP services and networking applications, supports VMware and OpenStack virtual environments on standard COTS hardware.

Both the xMEG and the vMEG deliver scale and performance for advanced IPv4/IPv6 subscriber management, Wi-Fi mobility including cellular interworking, large scale DHCPv4/v6 server, Carrier Grade NAT (CGNAT), service edge routing (OSPF, BGP, IS-IS), access control and filtering policies, and many other features necessary to deliver carrier grade Wi-Fi experience and services.

Community Wi-Fi

Community Wi-Fi is a service that offers service providers the value of providing internet access for subscribers across home, business, and outdoor venues over Wi-Fi.  Benu Networks provides a core network solution for carrier Wi-Fi deployments referred to as a Wi-Fi Access Gateway (WAG). The Benu Networks’ WAG offers best-in-class WAG performance and scale, including the following example capabilities:

  • Large scale Carrier Grade NAT
  • Wi-Fi offload and Cellular Interworking (S2a, Gn)
  • Flexible Tunneling Options: SoftGRE, 802.1Q, IPSec*
  • Robust AAA Authentication & Accounting via RADIUS and DIAMETER*
  • High capacity IP address management DHCPv4/v6 Server or Proxy
  • Device IPv4/IPv6, single, and dual stack support
  • Network and Routing (e.g. LACP, OSPF, BGP, IS-IS)
  • Layer 4 Redirect and HTTP Header Enrichment
  • Subscriber, VLAN and Tunnel QoS Policies for Policing and Shaping
  • Layer 2 Fast Mobility
  • 1+1 Node Redundancy
  • Lawful Intercept integration

HotSpot 2.0

Operators can offer an enhanced Wi-Fi experience and enable new business models such as Mobile Data Offload and Wi-Fi roaming with Benu Networks’ Virtual Service Edge (VSE) platform. With the addition of 802.1x authentication, Wi-Fi providers can deliver secure and easy SSID access.  The VSE includes support for large scale RADIUS proxy, RADIUS load balancing, realm-based AAA group selection, and several other key features required for high scale secure SSID services.

For WLAN Access Controllers (WLC) that do not support EoGRE, Benu Networks supports 802.1Q VLAN based Layer 2 aggregation for service provider Wi-Fi.  The Benu Networks’ WAG can support a mix of EoGRE and 802.1Q VLAN, which provides more flexibility in network deployment.

Wi-Fi Offload and Interworking

Benu Networks supports Wi-Fi to 3G/4G packet core interworking. Wi-Fi offload traffic is provided over a separate secure SSID and tunneled the same way that that Community Wi-Fi traffic is tunneled toward the WAG. Authentication procedures are based on the EAP and 3GPP AAA server or AAA proxy STa reference interface.  Cellular data offload devices can utilize the same secure access with EAP-SIM/AKA on Wi-Fi and Benu WAG can be leveraged as EAP/RADIUS proxy.

The Challenges


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