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June 18, 2012

Cisco News - Single Digits Targets Public Wi-Fi Pre-authentication

By Paula Bernier, Executive Editor, TMC

Single Digits provides software that gives businesses access control of high-speed Internet services. Its solutions today are primarily used by casinos, hotels, retailers and other outfits that provide guest Internet access. But Single Digits president, Stephen Singlar tells TMCnet that the company is taking its technology to a whole new level.

The company, which last month closed on $10 million of additional funding, is building cloud-based tools that can authenticate users’ wireless devices as soon as they move into, say, a shopping mall. That way, those users are connected to Wi-Fi as soon as possible, and retailers at the shopping mall can make those customers offers via their PCs, smartphones and tablets, Singlar explains. The Single Digits technology also can be used to track the whereabouts of users, look at how much bandwidth they use, how long they spend on various applications, and can share any or all of that information with other entities to facilitate a variety of billing models.

Singlar describes his company’s technology as a software-based authentication engine that works with Cisco (News - Alert) hardware at customer premises to provide billing, tracking, monitoring, and network status through a dashboard. He adds that Single Digits technology, which integrates with a router at the edge, has been crippled by legacy routers, so it is keen to move to a higher class of routers. Cisco’s ISG product is an example of such a high class router, he says, adding that the Cisco product enables the Single Digits platform to use bandwidth more efficiently.

Single Digits’ next effort on the Cisco integration front relates to Cisco’s wireless MSC (News - Alert), or mobile switching center, product. Singlar says he expects that integration to be complete in the third quarter, with mobile services based on that going live starting in the fourth quarter.

Edited by Brooke Neuman

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