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Higher Education Races Towards 802.11ac

[Webinar] 802.11ac in Higher Education | Wednesday July 24 at 3pm PST < REGISTER

It’s no secret that mobile devices are playing a larger part in today’s businesses. With the fast pace of mobility adoption by consumers, network usage has started to outrun the infrastructure of most enterprises’ mobile networks. Enterprise IT managers are struggling to keep up with mobility’s effects on workplace productivity and requirements.

Among the growing trends that weigh heavily on the minds of most network IT professionals is bring your own device (BYOD). The growth of bandwidth-intensive applications, like video streaming, and the user expectations of always-on network and application performance also place heavy demand on organizational infrastructure.

802.11ac is the next generation of Wi-Fi, designed to give enterprises the tools to meet the demands of BYOD, high-bandwidth applications, and the always-on connected user. This Wednesday we will be hosting a workshop to discuss the benefits of 802.11ac, and how to optimize it for high density and high bandwidth to benefit higher education. Students, typically early adopters of wireless technology, usually bring 802.11ac in the form of the latest laptop, smartphone, and tablet that support this new technology. Read More »

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802.11ac in the Healthcare Industry

Live Webinar on 802.11ac in Healthcare July 16, 10am | Register Now

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With any new wireless technology, much of what is initially written in the first year is usually focused around the bits and bytes and the speeds and feeds of the technology. This is true for 802.11ac where any Google search will yield a plethora of articles on the potential of Gigabit wireless or that it runs on the 5GHz band and could have up to 8 spatial streams. However, the conversations must start moving towards discussing how the technology can be used in practical situations. In the case of our 802.11ac Module for the 3600, we feel very strongly that it is necessary to not only talk about the speeds and feeds of  802.11ac, but also show how a customer plans to use 802.11ac.

That’s why at our popular presentation at Cisco Live! Orlando, we first discussed the 802.11ac Standard, Cisco’s 802.11ac solution and how it can be used in various networks, and then invited representatives from Methodist Hospital in Houston, TX to discuss their experience to date with 802.11ac. Read More »

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Cisco First Publicly Announced Commercial Enterprise-class AP to Attain Wi-Fi Alliance 802.11ac Certification

Yesterday the Wi-Fi Alliance (WFA) launched their new certification program for 802.11ac Wi-Fi  to ensure that the devices have been tested to interoperate with other 802.11ac products and older Wi-Fi products. As a part of the launch, the WFA also announced a list of the first published 11ac certified products, which included the Cisco Aironet 3600 Series Access Point and the Cisco Aironet Access Point Module for 802.11ac.

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wificertThis makes us not only the first shipping Enterprise-class 802.11ac solution, but also the  first commercial 11ac access point with a published certification!

Why is this important? For those of you unfamiliar with the WFA, certification is important for ensuring interoperability with future 802.11ac enabled products. With the expected rapid adoption of 802.11ac clients in the form of laptops, tablets and smartphones, interoperability of all these devices can be ensured through WFA certification. Read More »

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WWDC Wireless Takeaway: 802.11ac on Apple Devices Coming Your Way Soon

At WWDC this week, Apple announced that their new Macbook and Macbook Air are 802.11ac enabled. As we predicted in our red-hot Client Adoption blog earlier this year, the list of 802.11ac clients, like the new Macbooks and Samsung Galaxy S4, will continue to grow and expand throughout 2013. These devices come with the promise of Gigabit wireless, at faster speeds and better performance. How will your enterprise networks meet those expectations? The Cisco Aironet 3600 with 802.11ac module is your ticket for enterprise-class 802.11ac wireless.

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Cisco Aironet 3600 AP with 802.11ac module

The 802.11ac module will make these new clients fly at new higher speeds–3 to 4 times faster than 802.11n. So if you are connecting your new Apple device to an Enterprise Network supporting Cisco’s 3600 AP with the 802.11ac module, you will be able to get some of the highest bandwidth rates ever seen out of your Wi-Fi network which will open the opportunity for better quality video streams, better online collaboration and the support of more high-bandwidth demanding applications.  Check out the Aironet 3600 here:  http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/ps13128/index.html

Can’t get enough of 802.11ac? Neither can we. Read More »

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802.11ac: Is Your Network Infrastructure Ready for Next-Gen Wi-Fi Traffic?

The next generation of Wi-Fi, 802.11ac couples the freedom of wireless with the speed of gigabit Ethernet. This also translates in additional load on the backbone of the network, which has to deliver at least 3 times the capacity of the current gold standard, the 802.11n based network.

Cisco launched the Unified Access architecture  to scale linearly with the increased load on the network with 60 Gbps Wi-Fi throughput on the Cisco 5760 Wireless LAN Controller and 40 Gbps Wi-Fi throughput on the Catalyst 3850 Series Switch with a built-in wireless controller.  Both these platforms are based on the Cisco Unified Access Data Plane (UADP) programmable ASIC, which provides high performance and scale, common open APIs, and enables consistent QoS policies for both wired and wireless networks.

Aruba recently launched the 7240 series controllers with a throughput of up to 40Gbps claimed, with the same goal of delivering 802.11ac capable performance across the network. This controller is based on a generic network processor and not a purpose built ASIC like the Cisco controller.

Miercom performed a third-party evaluation to benchmark these products  using  IMIX (Internet Mix) packet traffic and test QoS traffic for high priority application.  IMIX is traffic pattern consisting of a preset mixture of small, medium and large frame sizes used to emulate real-world traffic scenarios in a testing environment. We wanted to give you a sneak peek at some of the results.

Performance

Cisco 5760 is six times faster and Catalyst 3850 is 4 times faster as compared to Aruba 7240

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The Cisco 5760, 3850 and the Aruba 7240 were tested for throughput using RFC 2544 and IMIX Traffic.  The Cisco 5760 and 3850 performed extremely well by achieving 50 Gbps and 37 Gbps, whereas Aruba 7240 fell short by just achieving 8 Gbps, which is 20% of its advertised throughput.

Read More »

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