Aruba Wireless Review

It works as a solution but needs to be more competitive with emerging products

What is our primary use case?

Aruba was our primary wireless solution until very recently.  

What is most valuable?

In the end, when you bring on a wireless solution, you only need a wireless solution. That is the intrinsic value. We had both Aruba ClearPass and Aruba AirWaves. We had all the management features also available from Aruba. These worked well together as a class of products.   

What needs improvement?

When I compare Aruba with Juniper Mist, Juniper is the more an AI-driven management solution. It is more of a modern solution, I think. Aruba needs to be more competitive with Juniper.  

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using Aruba Wireless for four or five years now.  

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I think Aruba is stable because it was working okay. There was no problem with downtime. The issue for us with functionality was because we have much more reflection in our building due to the height of our ceilings.  

How are customer service and technical support?

We bought the product through a reseller. For support, we needed to go through that reseller instead of Aruba self. It is hard to judge the capabilities of Aruba support directly.  

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We had Aruba and we just replaced it with Juniper Mist a few weeks ago (September 2020). The AI-driven management solutions from Juniper Mist suits our business more than the Aruba solution we used before. I think Aruba did the work we needed before, but better management is the reason why we moved over to Juniper Mist.  

Before Aruba, we worked with HP Colubris. We stopped using the HP Colubris solution because HP no longer provided it. That is what happened.  

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Aruba is comparable to competing solutions when it comes to price. I am going to say that the support pricing for Juniper Mist is higher than Aruba. I think that is because Juniper is more of a cloud model than Aruba.  

You do also have a cloud solution from Aruba called Aruba Central, but I have not compared prices for that.  

What other advice do I have?

The advice that I would give to someone considering Aruba as a wireless solution would be to look into the Aruba Central cloud solution that they are offering right now. I think we are at a time of brand control that needs to be managed and needs to be supported. I think that working with a cloud-based solution is a better option than on-premises solutions.  

I think what is more important than a particular tool is that you also have the depth of wireless knowledge to really be able to competently manage such environments.  

On a scale from one to ten (where one is the worst and ten is the best), I would rate this product as a seven-out-of-ten. To improve on that score they would have to make Aruba more available to cloud management. They just recently started with Aruba Central and they are not as far along as Juniper Mist is with having a mature cloud solution.  

The problem for Aruba is that Juniper Mist is a new product without a longer legacy. They can start from ground zero. Aruba needs to support the older controller-based models and that may slow them down when it comes to development.  

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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