What is our primary use case?
Our primary use case is to provide enterprise wireless solutions for employees. We're a system integration provider, and we have a number of customers. Our customers deploy our wireless solutions in an active-standby mode for better network stability. We mostly have customers who have standalone wireless controllers.
What is most valuable?
I like that Cisco Wireless is easy to implement. If you get stuck with any issues, they have ample documentation on the internet. It's easy to implement, and Cisco documentation is easily accessible.
What needs improvement?
In the next release, I would like to see some AI capability deployed. Other competitors like Mist and Juniper already have it. So, AI features need to be introduced next year. Cisco is the defacto brand in wireless technology, and they're a little bit behind. They need to introduce some AI features so we can introduce the customer to these new features.
Some training will help because Cisco's new offering, 9800, requires a lot of hands-on experience. This is because the Cisco 9800 controller is new compared to the previous models, like 2504 and 3504. It requires more hands-on experience to get familiar with the terminologies used in 9800. This is because there are some AP profiles and site profiles, and all these things we aren't familiar with. It's a good tool.
For how long have I used the solution?
I've been implementing Cisco Wireless for the last five years.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
Cisco Wireless is obviously very stable, and there's no doubt about that. When you go for Airwave, it's very stable. The new IOx is going to be stable, and we're deploying it for a couple of customers.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
You can deploy it for whatever your user wants and their AP count. It's very good when it comes to scalability.
How are customer service and technical support?
Cisco technical support is great. Cisco is based in Texas and provides technical support in any manner. Cisco provides support to customers who require it for updates or break-fix IT.
Support is wonderful. We haven't had a problem.
How was the initial setup?
It's easy to set up and implement this solution. For a basic implementation, you can deploy it within two or three hours. This is for a basic deployment for publishing SSID and testing. At a granular level, you may need a week to deploy this solution. This is because, in wireless scenarios, you need to do tests and try different testing scenarios. It's a very good basic solution for deploying to the cloud.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
From a pricing point of view, it's a little bit expensive compared to competitors like Aruba and others. But the product is also very promising and very stable. The hardware is wonderful. As a system integrator, it's okay, but you'll probably see it as expensive as a customer.
What other advice do I have?
I would advise potential users to implement Cisco wireless if they're implementing Airwaves. The old models like 2504 and 5508 work well with Airwaves. But it requires some specific knowledge to take that to the controllers and unplug the device. Some connectivity is derived from the core to the controller. You need to know what type of connectivity is required, what kind of access, and all those things. Cisco 9800 is a pure IOx, and it has a very straightforward configuration. It's very easy when compared to Airwaves.
On a scale from one to ten, I would give Cisco Wireless a ten for stability and performance. I don't have any issues with that.
Which deployment model are you using for this solution?