Cisco Wireless Review

Stable and secure with good throughput and performance, managed from a single pane of glass


What is our primary use case?

We are implementing Cisco Wireless in various environments including hospitality (controller-based deployment along with room AP in 90+ room property), and corporate (both standalone and controller-based).

The wireless system has been integrated into the hotspot for guest access and enterprise authentication has been used for the employees. For authentication, both the inbuilt database and integration to FreeRADIUS has been used. We have also used AD in the corporate environment for authentication. The controller has been deployed in HA.

How has it helped my organization?

It has helped to provide mobility with committed throughput and performance.

Additionally, Cisco wireless solutions are very stable. This, with its rugged nature, has helped for overall efficiencies in information processing and daily operations.

It has enhanced the security of the enterprise and has given single-pane visibility for network monitoring.

It has provided excellent mobility and load balancing of the wireless endpoints to various APs, based on the built-in algorithms, both in 2.4 GHz and 5.8 GHz.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable features are the controller, single pane for the configuration, as well as the operation and monitoring of the wireless system.

Other important features are the detection of the rough AP, programmable API, network analytics, and the RF planning tool.

The product is very stable. The infrastructure is scalable and very durable.

With excellent support from the Cisco support team, this solution can be deployed in no time.

It is easy to troubleshoot and zone-based profiling is another excellent feature. Auto power calibration between AP sensing the environment is also a valuable feature. 

What needs improvement?

The regulatory domain seems to be hardcoded into the system and we need a simple way to change it in wireless APs.

Power level improvements and increased antenna dBi are needed when compared to other competitor vendors like Ruckus and HP Aruba.

The product pricing should be competitive compared to other vendors, as many products are coming up with good features like Cambium, Edge, and Core.

The controller pricing is high compared to other vendors like Ruckus. Pricing should be lowered to target the SMB market, where many other vendors have dominance. 

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using Cisco Wireless for 10 years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability is excellent.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Cisco Wireless is very much Scalable, based on the forecast you have and the controller you choose. It's just about adding the license.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is excellent.

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

We have been using other products like Cambium, Ruckus, and HP. Before we implement Cisco, we had read a lot of reviews of its stability and durability, and indeed, it was true.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is straightforward.

What about the implementation team?

The installation team was highly skilled and certified.

What was our ROI?

The ROI is excellent.

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

The pricing depends on the requirement, so proper planning and an RF analysis help to properly size the solution and get the best pricing.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We previously evaluated Cambium and Rukus.

What other advice do I have?

My advice is that this product should be the first choice to adopt when deploying a wireless solution. If cost is a factor then proper sizing will help to reduce it.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Other
**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: we are system integrator and cisco partner.
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Learn what your peers think about Cisco Wireless. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: January 2021.
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