Feature Article

January 17, 2013

iPass Open Mobile Client for iOS Takes Major Leap Forward

iPass, a key global Wi-Fi roaming provider that delivers its services to both enterprises and telecom service providers, is a company we cover often. For those who often travel abroad or outside of their national coverage areas iPass offers Wi-Fi based wireless Internet access that is highly cost effective. The company's Open Mobile service delivers a consistent user experience across smartphones, tablets and laptops but avoids costly roaming charges and the need to use expensive Wi-Fi day passes. Other coverage of the company provides more service details, especially as it applies to the use of the latest in the iPass mobile arsenal, a new iOS client app, which is our focus here.

The latest, just-released version of the iPass Open Mobile Wi-Fi client for iOS devices (version 3.0) delivers a significant improvement over its predecessors. The new version of the app now offers a finely-tuned Wi-Fi connectivity experience for Open Mobile iOS users, with the key goal being to offer a streamlined process for the company's subscribers and other business travelers to easily connect to the iPass commercial Wi-Fi hotspot network. The iPass network is now accessible in over one million venues worldwide, which essentially means the odds are very much in your favor that you will acquire the necessary connection when and where needed.

The iPass Open Mobile client for iOS offers up a number of significant improvements. They center around authentication, network labeling, and pop up notification of iPass network availability and each contributes to a greatly improved user experience. Details include the following:

·         Automatic Background Authentication: This new feature kills the need for a user to manually interact with the native iOS Wi-Fi connection manager from the iOS Settings menu, which was formerly necessary to select and interact with the Open Mobile client to complete an authentication. This iPass network authentication is now performed automatically in the background as soon as a Wi-Fi connection has been established. Essentially this means that Open Mobile iOS subscribers can now effortlessly connect to any iPass hotspot using only the native iOS Wi-Fi connection manager operating behind the scenes.

·         Enhanced Network Labeling: Qualified iPass networks will now be annotated in a small footnote below their respective SSIDs to inform subscribers as to which SSIDs are part of the iPass network. This takes the guesswork out of knowing the difference between an iPass SSID and an open broadcast SSID. On the surface it doesn't sound like a big deal, but it significantly improves the "crispness" of the connection experience for the user and simply saves time.

·         Pop-up Notification of iPass Network Availability: The iPass Open Mobile client is now fully integrated with the iOS Notification Center (that banner at the top of the iOS screen). This means that the Open Mobile iOS client will now automatically send pop-up "iPass network available" notifications to subscribers that an iPass network is available at the user's location. Proactive notification also adds substantially to the overall crispness and usability of the iPass client interface.

Barbara Nelson, CTO, iPass points out that, "The iPass Open Mobile client v3.0 for iOS represents, we believe, a major leap forward for Open Mobile users. It ensures a superior user connectivity experience that's more simplified and automated than previous versions of the Open Mobile iOS app. Our customers will enjoy a radically simplified Wi-Fi connectivity experience when using the iPass network."

The iPass Open Mobile client v3.0 for iOS is immediately available for free download from the Apple iTunes Store.

Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli

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