What is our primary use case?
Our primary use case of this solution is for streaming access to the personal devices of students and staff for guest wifi and connection. So we provide corporate access to devices. They use it for media streaming, for social networking, for learning solutions. Most people don't connect through land cable anymore - they all go for wireless options.
What is most valuable?
I like that it has integrated the cost of our network access. We see identity controls solutions so we make sure it's all part of the same management console. We have the same console and the same authentication, and we use a multi-high profile defendable wireless system, access ports, and wireless access IDs. So each access ID has different kinds of people, different kinds of networks, the VLAN. Cisco controllers are now the best in this field. We end segregation on the Wi-Fi side based on the access ID.
What needs improvement?
The solution is very expensive, and I think the price should be more competitive, like with Aruba, Meraki, and other products. The price model is very high but the manageability is simple.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
We have some glitches from time to time, but the support is fast and they support us very well. This doesn't happen very often, though.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
The technical scalability is easy, but the license scalability is quite tricky. It's licensing costs incurred, but technically the solution is very scalable. A total of 5,000 users are using the 3000 access points, and 2,600 users are using 800 access points. I am the architect and the rest of the users are basically university students, faculties, administration staff, and support staff who mainly use for media, social net access, corporate file access, academic system access, and learning solution access. And it used for radio-audio frequency wireless tools.
How are customer service and technical support?
The support is good and I will rate them a seven out of ten.
How was the initial setup?
As a typical Cisco solution there is a slight complexity to the setup, but because most of the engineers at Cisco are certified, it is easy for them. The integrators used a professional space on the vendor site for the deployment.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
This is a very expensive solution but there are no additional costs.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
We compared it to Aruba Wireless. Aruba has its own strength in the latest technology, their architects are very different, and they are more advanced. So I think Cisco is one step behind Aruba.
What other advice do I have?
My advice to others is to understand the use case properly before deploying any solution. If you don't have a complex use case and if you can't afford it, don't get Cisco. But if you have a complex use case with a high frequency, high bandwidth of data usage in a wireless network, Cisco is the right product for you. The licensing strategy and the pricing could be improved, but it is a good solution. I rate it a seven out of ten.
Which deployment model are you using for this solution?