Information and communication technology is changing the way we experience the world. With the advancement of IT and telecommunication industry, India has entered a new phase of evolution, marked by digitisation, development and economic prosperity. We have come a long way and Internet now has become an integral part of our everyday lives. One cannot even imagine a day without Internet connectivity in today’s era. A quick look around makes one realise the power of a connected world – smart phones, laptops, tablets, smart wearables, the list goes on and you name it and chances are that you or someone around you is using them to stay connected.
Mary Meeker’s 2019 Internet Trends Report actually puts India in the second spot with a 12% Internet user base of the 3.8 billion people using Internet globally. Infact, India is positioned ahead of the 8% of user base that United States contributes. This trend is more interesting because it highlights and puts into perspective another great technological advancement and one that perhaps changed the way we connect locally and with the world. The advent of wireless.
With wireless technology came freedom. Freedom from wires, freedom from immobility and of course freedom of thought. Wireless technology also provided the key to be able to reach some of the remotest regions in the country.
In 2015, when the Indian Government gave a further push to digitisation in the country, by introducing its flagship program, ‘Digital India’. Digital India aimed at connecting every citizen of the country even in the remotest of the villages with high-speed Internet network and improving digital literacy to realise a fully Digital economy. While Digital India had been a great step and had a tremendous impact on the society at large, there is still a significant divide that exits between rural and urban areas of the Nation, when it comes to telecommunication services.
Currently, the tele-density is 88.73% for wireless and 1.71% for wireline subscribers. This implies that wireless communication is fast gaining more ground in India’s telecommunication sector. But, while in urban areas, the teledensity is 154.77%, in rural areas, it only reached 58.09%. These numbers bring out two crucial points; (i) In both sectors, wireless communication outweighs wired telephony, and (ii) the need for bridging the digital divide.
Therefore, the need of the hour is to have a data efficient solution that is not only technologically advanced but is also affordable to provide a seamless connectivity for all – a solution that can help bridge the gap and enable empowerment, thereby opening the doors for Infinite Possibilities. There is a need for a solution that not only enables us to stay connected but is also able to bring a paradigm shift when it comes to redefining connectivity across segments and sectors.
IO, a product by HFCL Limited (formerly Himachal Futuristic Communications Limited) is the answer to this need, and aims to enable people experience evolved Wi-Fi technology and network efficiency. Moreover, IO products have their roots dug deep in India – from conception, to R&D, to manufacturing and finally to global product testing, the brand IO is a technology marvel based on future global Wi-Fi standards that is creating new performance benchmarks in the industry. Being from the house of HFCL Limited, IO is positioned well to serve the high growth opportunities that India offers. HFCL Limited has over three decades of experience in delivering innovative, customized and competitive products and latest solutions in the telecom sector, thereby enabling its customers to stay ahead in technology and network efficiency.
The origin of IO
IO is the acronym for Input-Output. The brand logo has been inspired from “Mathematics – The language of the universe”, and the brand positioning statement “Infinite Possibilities” clearly reflects IO’s vision of being a platform to bring in efficiency and intelligence to mobility and assists citizens to use next generation Wi-Fi technology products and solutions. Connectivity betters lives by providing limitless opportunities and with IO, the possibilities to be efficient and effective are Infinite.
The IO Advantage
IO products are best-in-class, feature-rich and well-positioned to drive productivity. The products are compliant to latest and upcoming Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6 technology standards. These products have undergone extensive field trials, client tests and R&D tests cycle to ensure that customers are assured of continuous operation in the harshest of environments without any degradation of service quality and performance delivery. All IO Access Points and controllers are Wi-Fi Alliance Hotspot 2.0 certified. Also, since these products belong to HFCL Limited, customers can be assured of the most competitive solutions, that are feature rich and completely flexible in terms of customization and additions. Furthermore, HFCL Limited is the only OEM with a field deployment experience of multiple core components and thousands of hotspots, which means that the organisation can offer its customers end-to-end turnkey solutions, including surveys, solution designs, supply, installation & commissioning, integration and maintenance services. This enables IO to be a one-stop shop for its customers.
PRODUCTS ENABLING INFINITE POSSIBILITIES
The IO Networks has launched a range of products under various categories, including:
IO carrier-grade Access Points (APs) are uniquely designed for high performance, next generation networks, including Wi-Fi 6 and WPA3 ready offerings providing secure and high capacity for mission critical and data-intensive applications. The Access Points support MU-MIMO, providing simultaneous data transmission to multiple devices, maximizing data throughput and improving network efficiency. IO Access Points provide advanced location and indoor wayfinding, and proximity-based push notification capabilities, enabling businesses to leverage mobility context to develop applications that deliver an enhanced user experience and increased value.
IO Unlicensed Band Radios (UBR) are feature rich, low cost devices designed to support highest capacity carrier class operation in unlicensed 5 GHz spectrum for mid to long-range backhaul application. IO UBRs serves both Point-to-Point and Point-to-Multipoint link use cases, support modulation up to 256 QAM and both IPv4 and IPv6 network protocols. With IP67 rated rugged design, the devices can be deployed in harshest of conditions, with flexibility of both 1+0 and 1+1 deployment scenarios.
IO Wireless LAN Controller (iCon8000) is designed to configure, control and monitor all the Access Points in any network. The iCon8000 is a highly scalable, service-rich, resilient and flexible platform, enabling mission-critical, next-generation wireless networks. With Virtual Machine (VM) based modular architecture, iCon8000 can manage up to 100,000 APs and up to 2.5 million clients from a single chassis. The iCon8000 can be integrated with external DHCP, AAA, Captive Portal, Security, Firewall and Big Data analytics applications.
IO Element Management System (iEon) is a smart, secure and scalable application suite which offers comprehensive set of network management tools that are easily accessible from a client workstation with a web browser. iEon has full FCAPS (Fault, Configuration, Accounting, Performance and Security) implementation for management of all network elements. It has the flexibility to run on any off the shelf carrier grade x86 server and has backup and restore functionality.
IO Cloud Network Management System (iCon) platform combines the functionality of Wireless LAN Controller and Element Management System, and removes the need for a physical hardware for customers who are looking at Cloud for their service offerings. iCon enables plug-and-play deployments and offers massive scalability with practically no limit on number of Access Points and clients supported. Its Kubernetes orchestrated Docker container architecture makes it suitable for any cloud deployment, be it existing cloud infrastructure or a hybrid cloud mode.
To summarize, the launch of IO by HFCL Limited, aims to enable people experience next generation Wi-Fi technology and network efficiency, and bridge the current gaps that exist in the ICT space.