Known for offering one of the biggest wireless mesh networks for regular hot spot users and being the first that brought Wireless-N to the outdoors, Meraki on Monday showed that it can also mean serious business with its new enterprise class wireless local area network (WLAN) solutions.
WLAN is nothing new. Buy a wireless router to set up at home and you have one. However, it's a lot more complicated and expensive when it comes to the enterprise-class WLAN, where both large coverage and high performance are needed.
What Meraki introduced offers just that, plus lower price points. For less than $3,000, you can get a Meraki Enterprise Wireless LAN system that covers an office of approximately 20,000 square feet. The price, of course, increases with the area of coverage. For example, for an area of 500,000 square feet, the price would be up to $75,000. This makes the new solutions work for any business between 50 to 5,000 people.
Meraki's Enterprise Wireless LAN consists of two new Wireless-N access points, including the single radio MR11 and the dual-radio MR14. Both are high-end, high-speed wireless access points with the MR11 having the cap speed of 300 Mbps and the MR14 boasting 600 Mbps. These speeds are significant as most businesses still use the regular 100Mbps wired network.
Other than that, the new WLAN solution is also easy to use, thanks to Meraki's Enterprise Cloud Controller. According to Meraki, setting up an enterprise wireless network can be as simple as plugging in the access points and watching them self-configure over the Internet. Meraki's new solution also offers IT personnel the capability to manage multiple geographically distributed networks from a central location.
Meraki's new enterprise-class products will be available for purchase by June but the company will start taking the preorders as early as May 12.