Wireless Applications

Ekahau Upgrades Site Survey Tools for Wi-Fi Networking

November 12, 2007

ESS 4.0 offers powerful troubleshooting and 3-D network planning and optimization, as well as RTLS functionality.


Saratoga, CA -- Ekahau Inc., a leading provider of Wi-Fi based Real Time Location Systems (RTLS) and site survey tools, introduced the Ekahau Site Survey (ESS) 4.0, which provides IT professionals a robust, yet simple to use, tool for Wi-Fi network planning and administration. The latest version of Ekahau's Wi-Fi site survey tool enables users to quickly and easily create, improve or troubleshoot enterprise grade Wi-Fi networks.

ESS 4.0 incorporates several new powerful features for network integrators and IT managers. These features include optimization for lightweight access points—such as Cisco LWAP, Aruba Mobile Edge, Nortel Networks' WLAN Portfolio, and Siemens' HiPath—and automatic location determination of all nearby access points. ESS 4.0 also addresses the problem of Wi-Fi signal leakage between floors with advanced 3D prediction algorithms.

Wi-Fi network installations must take into account a number of factors, including minimum signal strength, data rate, and signal overlap. This is true especially for voice over Wi-Fi networks, which have an added level of complexity. Historically, network integrators or IT managers would have to look at each of these factors independently. Now with ESS 4.0, they can view a network map that gives a visual summary of whether a network is sufficient for their specific needs, such as voice over Internet protocol, video, data, and location tracking. This feature—called Network Health—offers a new level of simplicity for planning and verifying any Wi-Fi network.

ESS 4.0 also features On-Spot Check, which takes Wi-Fi troubleshooting to the next level. Users can take an ESS 4.0–equipped laptop to a location where connectivity issues have been detected and quickly receive real-time information about the problem, as well as possible solutions.

ESS 4.0 now fully integrates with Ekahau RTLS, the "industry's leading Wi-Fi-based location tracking system for assets and people." This integration eliminates the need for a separate location-survey procedure, instantly allowing accurate tracking of people and assets over any Wi-Fi network after a standard Wi-Fi site survey has been performed.

The new features enhance the already broad functionalities of Ekahau Site Survey, which includes easy-to-read coverage maps based on floor plans and in-depth network analysis through visualization of data rates, signal-to-noise ratio, overlap, roaming, and other factors.

"Our goal with ESS 4.0 was to simplify the challenges IT professionals face when deploying and managing Wi-Fi networks. We feel we have achieved that with improved site-survey and network-planning functionality that takes away the guesswork and complexity," said Arttu Huhtiniemi, Product Management Director at Ekahau. "Ekahau has been the undisputed innovator in Wi-Fi, both in terms of location tracking as well as planning/site survey tools. With the addition of 3-D multi-floor network planning and troubleshooting features, Ekahau is extending its leadership in the Wi-Fi site survey/planning market. And by having ESS integrated with Ekahau RTLS, we can ensure location-tracking performance and accuracy, with minimal system set-up efforts."

Siemens, a global reseller for ESS and Ekahau RTLS, has standardized their field operations on ESS. "We have been very happy with the tool, especially the ease and speed of use, and 4.0 is a major improvement over the previous version," said Marcus Birkl, Vice President of Sales at Siemens. "ESS has helped us a lot in both deploying Siemens HiPath network more quickly and meeting the high Siemens standards in terms of network performance, especially for VoWLAN installations. Working with great partners such as Ekahau further validates Siemens commitment to open communications and fixed-mobile convenience."

ESS 4.0 will be commercially available in January 2008.

About Ekahau
Ekahau Inc. is the industry leader in providing Wi-Fi-based RTLS solutions. Ekahau's customers, including several Fortune 500 companies worldwide, are realizing the benefits of Wi-Fi-based location services and innovative Wi-Fi network planning and optimization tools. Ekahau partners include wireless software developers, leading system integrators, and international OEM partners, who develop and market wireless enterprise applications. Ekahau is a U.S.-based corporation, with offices in Saratoga, CA; Reston, VA; Helsinki, Finland; and Hong Kong, China.


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