The New Generation of Cisco Aironet Access Points
Second-Generation 802.11n Access Points
Video promises life-like remote communications. Cloud computing promises agility and reduced costs. Tablets and smartphones promise new employee and customer engagement. Overall, technology tantalizes consumers and businesses alike with the promise of transformation. But the reality of an IT manager is more complicated. There is a high rate of change in the mobility and networking industry, making it difficult for yesterday’s networks to adapt. And as mobility becomes a user imperative, new use cases with conflicting security and technical requirements emerge.
To address these needs, Cisco has evolved the previous line of access points (the Cisco Aironet 1040, 1140, 1260, and 3500 Series) by offering a new line of second generation 802.11n access points—the Cisco Aironet 3600, 2600, and 1600 Series—that can extend spectrum intelligence, antenna density, and client acceleration to new price points in the mainstream.
The second-generation Cisco Aironet access point portfolio is designed for a broad range of requirements for best-in-class, mission-critical, and enterprise-class service to provide industry-leading performance for secure and reliable wireless connections.
Whether you require entry-level wireless connectivity for a small enterprise, missioncritical coverage at thousands of locations, or best-in-class performance with future proof expansion for emerging technologies such as 802.11ac, you can rely on Cisco’s broad portfolio of access points to meet the needs of specific industries, business types, and topologies.
The Cisco Aironet Access Points come in standalone or controller-based models to support the unique requirements for scale and mobility services. Controllers reduce overall operational expenses by simplifying network deployment, operations, and management. They allow network administrators to remotely configure and monitor several access points to thousands of access points in a simple and efficient way. A controller is required to support voice, location services, guest access, and advanced security. Controller-based access points also support Cisco OfficeExtend for secure remote teleworking and enterprise wireless mesh, which allows access points to dynamically establish wireless connections in hard-to-connect locations.
A wireless network with standalone access points offers a low-cost, entry-level solution that does not require a controller. It is ideal for small-scale networks with less than 10 access points, and offers base-level wireless functionality with the flexibility to scale and add services over time by adding a controller.
Cisco Aironet 3600 Series: Best in Class
Figure1. Cisco Aironet 3600 Series Access Points
The Cisco Aironet 3600 Series Access Point (Figure 1) delivers the highest level of 802.11n performance, with expansion capability for emerging technologies such as 802.11ac. The 3600 Series offers better coverage and security in dense-client, high bandwidth networks that utilize applications such as HD video and virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI).
•Highest 802.11n performance with Cisco CleanAir technology for a self-healing, self-optimizing wireless network
•The industry’s first 4 x 4 multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) access point with three spatial streams
•Future-proof modularity, providing flexible upgrades and add-on options for 802.11ac or Wireless Security and Spectrum Intelligence (WSSI) Module and other future technologies
•Cisco ClientLink 2.0, optimizing performance for tablets, smartphones, and laptops and all 802.11n one-, two-, and three-spatial stream devices, as well as legacy 802.11a/g clients
•Standard 802.3af Power over Ethernet (PoE)
•The 3600i model has integrated antennas for typical office deployments
The 3600e model is for RF-challenging indoor environments and requires external dual-band antennas. (For more information about antennas, visit: Antenna Product Portfolio for Cisco Aironet 802.11n Access Points.)
Cisco Aironet 2600 Series: Mission-Critical
Figure2. Cisco Aironet 2600 Series Access Points
The Cisco Aironet 2600 Series Access Point (Figure 2) is bring-your-own-device (BYOD)-optimized for connectivity to any client device. Second only to the Cisco Aironet 3600 Series in performance and features, the Cisco Aironet 2600 Series sets the new standard for enterprise wireless technology. This mission-critical access point delivers Cisco’s RF excellence features such as Cisco CleanAir and ClientLink 2.0 technology for any small, medium-sized, and large enterprise network.
•Delivers the most advanced features in its class, with great performance, functionality, and reliability at a great price
•Includes 802.11n-based 3 x 4 MIMO, with three spatial streams
•Includes Cisco CleanAir, ClientLink 2.0, and VideoStream technologies, to help ensure an interference-free, high-speed wireless application experience
•Standard 802.3af PoE
•The 2600i model has integrated antennas for typical office deployments
•The 2600e model is for RF challenging indoor environments and requires external dual-band antennas. (For more information about antennas, visit: Antenna Product Portfolio for Cisco Aironet 802.11n Access Points.)
Cisco Aironet 1600 Series: Enterprise Class
Figure3. Cisco Aironet 1600 Series Access Points
The Cisco Aironet 1600 Series is an entry-level, enterprise-class 802.11n-based access point designed to address the wireless connectivity needs of small and midsize enterprise networks.
•With at least six times the throughput of existing 802.11a/g networks, the 1600 Series offers the performance advantage of 802.11n enterprise-class performance with 3 x 3 MIMO technology with two spatial streams
•Provides efficient wireless coverage through Clean Air Express* client acceleration for entry level networks that have a mixed legacy and non-legacy client base
(*planned for future support)
•Standard 802.3af PoE
•The 1600i model has integrated antennas for typical office deployments
•The 1600e model is for RF-challenging indoor environments and requires external dual-band antennas. (For more information about antennas, visit: Antenna Product Portfolio for Cisco Aironet 802.11n Access Points.)
The Cisco Advantage
Cisco has true enterprise-class RF technology designed to maximize 802.11n performance. Cisco technologies such as CleanAir, ClientLink 2.0, and VideoStream, plus optimized access point radios and antennas, improve performance regardless of where client devices are located. All Cisco Aironet 802.11n access points support:
•A limited lifetime hardware warranty
•5- or 10-unit Eco-Pack bundles with a single, easy-to-open carton that streamlines the staging and installation process and reduces packaging waste by 50 percent
•Mounting brackets that can be easily retrofitted to existing Cisco legacy access points to minimize migration cost and time
The benefits of deploying Cisco Aironet access points with a Cisco Unified Wireless Network extend from investment protection and future-proofing to better scalability and reliability of the enterprise network. For more details, visit: www.cisco.com/go/wireless.
Cisco Aironet 600 Series OfficeExtend Access Point
Figure4. Cisco Aironet 600 Series OfficeExtend Access Point
Purposely designed for the teleworking environment, Cisco Aironet 600 Series Office Extend Access Points (Figure 4) deliver always-on, secure access to networked business services from the remote home office. The access point connects to the home’s broadband Internet access and establishes a secure tunnel to the corporate network so that remote employees can access data, voice, video, and cloud services for a mobility experience consistent with that at the corporate office.
•802.11n access points for reliable, secure teleworking
•Zero-touch deployment at the home office speeds setup time
•Dual-band support uses all available spectrum to help avoid congestion caused by home devices
•Supports corporate and personal network activity with traffic segmentation
Table 1 compares the features of new Cisco Aironet 802.11n access points.
Table1. Cisco Aironet 802.11n Access Point Comparison Chart
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