What should you know about Ubiquiti vs. Meraki? Ubiquiti and Cisco Meraki sell wireless data communication and wired products for enterprises and provide complete networking solutions. Ubiquiti tends to be more cost-effective, while Cisco Meraki offers a more robust solution.
What Is Ubiquiti?
Ubiquiti is a network technology company founded in 2003 in San Jose, California, with headquarters in New York City. Their specialty is providing wireless solutions to support enterprise network design and implementation.
Their primary product offering is Ubiquiti UniFi, a scalable wireless network system that allows enterprise users to quickly and easily install network hardware for robust and wide-ranging networks with indoor and outdoor coverage.
The UniFi system includes several pieces of hardware, including the following:
- Access Points: These are strategically placeable WiFi access points that can fit into several different implementation contexts. For example, they offer a FlexHD model for discreet outdoor mounting against architectural features like poles, posts, or fencing. They also offer different flexible hardware solutions, including those that can leverage Power over Ethernet and dual-band radio frequency (RF) signals with high bandwidth and throughput.
- Routers and Switches: The UniFi router and gateway products support up to 10 Gbps SFP+ wide area network (WAN). The Security Gateway router includes network security features like an advanced firewall, deep packet inspection, and an intrusion prevention system.
- UniFi OS: All UniFi systems integrate with the UniFi OS platform and cloud operating systems, covering critical remote management capabilities like network performance analytics, security analytics, and other management features. The OS is available through control machines offered by the company.
Ubiquiti hardware is built for easy deployment and management through deep integrations between hardware devices and software management.
UniFi does offer additional services, like IoT, and smart devices, like cameras, for out-of-the-box support. Still, some of the Ubiquiti solutions can be costly as your network expands to larger enterprise configurations.
What Is Cisco Meraki?
Meraki was founded in 2006 as a managed cloud services provider focusing on wireless routers, switches, and enterprise mobility management. After being acquired by Cisco in 2012, the hardware and software solutions were integrated into the Cisco family of network hardware.
Like Ubiquiti, Meraki is defined by products focused on wired and wireless networks. Their WiFi access points range from dual-stream RF devices and gigabit switches to support 5 Gbps Ethernet connections in devices that are easy to place anywhere.
Additionally, Meraki advertises itself as a cloud-first WiFi, driven by data analytics and automated security. This includes automatic policy enforcement, identity-based access controls, and multi-site and firmware management from a cloud interface.
Meraki also emphasizes a partner ecosystem of utilities and apps that support security, intelligence, and real-time updates.
While these devices are part of the Cisco brand and work well with one another, it isn’t the case that all Meraki devices will work with other Cisco hardware and devices. Fitting Meraki devices into existing network infrastructure can be difficult or show nonstandard behavior.
How Do Ubiquiti and Meraki Compare to Meter?
Ubiquiti and Meraki are comprehensive network hardware solutions. As such, both offer a similar set of features:
- Routers, Switches, and Access Points: Each provider offers its own set of proprietary hardware. With advances in hardware being what they are, these pieces of hardware can provide high-performance RF signals for high-speed wireless internet access across large enterprise locations.
- Cloud Management: Both providers offer a cloud platform with a dashboard that allows users to access, control, and change configurations on devices and the network as a whole.
- Partner Applications: Meraki in particular has built an ecosystem of partnerships with cloud application providers to expand network manageability with additional security features, management options, and services for guest WiFi access.
- Support for WiFi 6: The newest standard of WiFi, WiFi 6, provides a boost in performance to allow for nearly 10 Gbps of data bandwidth over wireless connections.
- Support for Modern Networking Features: Both companies’ hardware can support necessary network configurations like VLANs, bridged networks, and guest network access.
Meter offers the same approaches to WiFi hardware, with a twist: we also offer additional enterprise features critical to the success of a WiFi network:
- Comprehensive Network Design: Enterprise networks do not work out of the box, no matter how often a company advertises them as “touch-free” or “intelligent.” Access points and routers must be planned for maximum performance, which means surveying physical locations, mapping hardware against network needs, and so on. Meter provides comprehensive WiFi local area network (LAN) design to help your organization build out an infrastructure that meets your needs.
- Scalability: Meter supports its line of network hardware. This hardware is comparable with the highest quality devices on the market.
Plus, Meter understands that businesses often invest significant money into their original devices. That’s why the company offers a buy-back program for your existing hardware.
Most importantly, Meter doesn’t charge for hardware upfront. When working with Meter, you simply pay monthly to ensure your network is working well, and hardware is included in the package. Upgrades, repairs, and replacements are considered part of that agreement.
Comprehensive Network Design with Meter
Network hardware does not make the network in and of itself. Organizations must have a design in place to account for the physical makeup of the business, locations of doing business, guest access, and more. Instead of forcing a business to either internalize a network team in their organization or juggle yet another third-party vendor, Meter combines network hardware, network design, ongoing support, maintenance, and upkeep into a single, easy-to-manage service.
If you’re an enterprise business that wants to streamline network management, including hardware support and software system management, contact Meter to request a network design. Additionally, if you are on the market for business internet service, use the Meter Connect business ISP directory for deals in your area.
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