Japan’s Kansai International Airport provides free Wi-Fi to travellers with Ruckus Smart technology

13 May 2015 (Last Updated May 13th, 2015 18:30)

Japan’s Kansai International Airport (KIA) has deployed Ruckus Wireless’ technology to provide free Wi-Fi services to international travellers.


Japan's Kansai International Airport (KIA) has deployed Ruckus Wireless' technology to provide free Wi-Fi services to international travellers.

Around 100 Ruckus ZoneFlex dual-band indoor access points have been installed at the airport, and will be centrally managed with two Ruckus ZoneDirector 3000 Series Smart Wireless LAN (WLAN) controllers.

Covering the airport's high-density areas including arrival and departure halls, shopping areas, and boarding gates, the network serves more than 50,000 people every day, connecting up to 700 to 800 users simultaneously at any given time.

KIA information and communications network system service department system support 2nd group sub-leader Hideyuki Moriike said: "When comparing it with other vendors' offerings, Ruckus provided the same coverage and was able to connect more clients using up to 30% fewer access points.

"Ruckus client balancing capabilities can intelligently steer client devices to connect with other access points nearby, when access points reach a pre-defined capacity usage.

"This helps us to inject more capacity by adding more APs and spread the connecting clients across access points within range."

The airport had started the Ruckus Smart Wi-Fi network project in 2012.

Until now, the airport used autonomously managed Wi-Fi access points to offer free Wi-Fi service to travellers. However, the boom in mobile and tablet users rendered these points insufficient.

According to the 2014 ICT Research and Consulting data, tablet ownership in Japan is expected to grow from 7.13 million in 2013 to 11.7 million in 2016, a growth of 164%.

As per the 2014 MM Research Institute data, smartphone subscribership is expected to exceed 100 million in 2019.

The airport was also struggling to monitor the legacy access points and usage and hence moved forward with the installation of a new WLAN network infrastructure.

Meanwhile, KIA is discussing plans to use the network to connect the tablets currently used at airport information centers and counters to existing operational systems to enable more seamless internal operations.

Image: The Ruckus Smart Wi-Fi network will serve more than 50,000 people every day at the Kansai International Airport. Photo: courtesy of Ruckus Wireless.