SMC Networks has released an updated 802.11g gateway targeted at the small and midsize enterprise market for quick, simple, secure Wi-Fi hotspot deployments at hotels, cafes, exhibition areas, bus station and similar venues.
The gateway can be used to create password-protected Internet access for customers, as either a value-added or fee-based service.
What's new in the EliteConnect 2.4GHz 802.11g Wireless Hotspot Gateway is support for RADIUS/802.1X authentication, authorization and accounting and an Ethernet interface for the gateway's bundled point-of-sale printer/keypad (previously tethered directly to the hotspot via a printer cable) for tickets and receipts. If customers lack a RADIUS server, the gateway offers an internal authentication database for up to 512 entries.
As with the previous models, the new version supports 54Mbps 802.11g (and 802.11b) clients, has a built-in four-port 10/100Mbps Ethernet LAN switch, a 10/100Mbps WAN port, and Power-over-Ethernet. SMC says the gateway can support up to 100 simultaneous users, presuming they're not all making VoIP calls or streaming "American Idol" TV episodes.
The twin omni-directional antennas are detachable, and can be replaced with any of several SMC high-gain antennas and directional antennas.
A Web-based management interface is designed to make configuration and set-up simple. There are interfaces to an array of payment gateways such as Authorize.net, iValidate.net, Secure Pay and others. It supports SSL user login and administration, and VPN pass through, and Wi-Fi Protected Access.
The gateway is priced at about US$900, printer included.