What is the Wi-Fi Alliance Wi-Fi CERTIFIED EasyMesh™️ Program about? – Ian Wheelock [OpenWRT Summit 2018]

Wi-Fi can reach higher speeds in theory, but in practice Wi-Fi quality in the house is not so good. A lot of solutions exist, but they are not interoperable. Wi-Fi CERTIFIED EasyMesh™️ sets out to fix that.

Carriers deal with the issues reported by users, because the users perceive the carriers as the ones providing the internet. However, the operator doesn’t have visibility of what is happening in the home network. This gives a huge cost in operational expenses for the operators. With the Multi-AP specification, the Wi-Fi extenders will not block visibility of the devices in the network to the carrier.

The MAP Agent configures the Wi-Fi on an access point, but the decisions are taken by a MAP controller. So the intelligence is moved to the controller. Even if everybody standardizes on MAP, there is still differentiation possible in the controller.

Key thing of MAP is metrics and control, which allows dynamic optimisation of the network by steering clients, selecting channels and reconfiguring backhaul links.

MAP ties in with Data Elements, which is a data model of the state of the network. This gives the operator visibility of what is happening inside the network. JSON encoding is defined mostly for testing; in practice it will be mapped onto TR-181 extensions.

MAP was done pretty quickly, so there is a lot of ongoing work. R2 is targeted for December 2019. Main new features are traffic control (QoS; this is mostly specifying how to map WMM to VLAN and vice versa), secured onboarding and messaging, spectrum optimisation (better use of DFS channels, faster change to non-DFS).

Certification program is a large test suite that is pretty much fully automated.