Home Business IT Networking Aruba’s new wireless LAN platform

Aruba Network has announced a new wireless LAN platform that it says addresses the explosion of mobile applications and devices challenging enterprise networks, while dramatically reducing enterprise IT costs.

According to ABI Research, over 9 billion Wi-Fi enabled devices have been shipped since 2009.. Gartner predicts mobile application downloads will hit 310 billion by 2016. “Faced with this massive increase in devices and applications, including the demand from users to connect their own personal devices, IT managers must ensure that their network infrastructure delivers top-notch performance and quality for business applications,” says Sylvia Hooks, director of product marketing at Aruba Networks.

She says the new Aruba 7200 Series is the only wireless LAN platform with the integrated application intelligence and controls to optimise application delivery. “This insight, and the ability to take real-time action, results in 11x better performance compared to existing solutions.”

Hooks says that to accomplish this Aruba AppRF software, which runs on the 7200 mobility controller, uses Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) for Layer 7 insight to identify application traffic. “Then, using Airtime Fairness, QoS and integrated control of RF characteristics on the access points, the controller optimises over-the-air performance for each application type and user profile.”

Aruba says that its AppRF technologyis designed to give enterprises integrated visibility into and control over both traditional server-based applications as well as cloud-based and web-based mobile applications such as supply chain management, Box, GoToMeeting, Salesforce.com and more. “Using a simple dashboard in the controller interface and in Aruba Airwave management software, Aruba AppRF gives IT unprecedented insight into individual user traffic streams for troubleshooting, long term planning and real time prioritisation,” says Hooks.

She says that in competitive testing, the Aruba 7200 Series powered by AppRF completed a download from the cloud-based storage service, Box.com, in 12 seconds. This was11x faster than the 129 seconds required to complete the download using a comparable Cisco Wi-Fi solution. Furthermore, when compared to a similar Cisco wireless LAN deployment, the Aruba 7200 Series delivers up to 50% cost savings in total hardware and support costs for WLAN controllers.

"With the amazing advances we've seen in recent years in wireless LAN architecture, radio technology, price performance and management, it's no wonder that WLANs have achieved the role of primary access almost everywhere," said Craig Mathias, a Principal with the wireless and mobile advisory firm Farpoint Group.

"Aruba's announcement of the 7200 Series is an indication that a shift in focus from wireless technologies and architectures alone to enhanced application performance is now well underway. This gives network managers and users everywhere the assurance they seek that the wireless LAN will continue to meet their needs for capacity, reliability and productivity, and with continually-improving price performance."

Aruba says the 7200 Series helps enterprises drive down the costs of their networking infrastructure, ‘rightsizing’ their networks and migrating to an all-wireless environment. “With the 7200 Series’ improved scalability and high availability, enterprises can reduce the number of wired ports and their associated maintenance costs, resulting in a network that is less expensive to manage and maintain and saves on energy costs.”

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Graeme Philipson

Graeme Philipson is senior associate editor at iTWire and editor of sister publication CommsWire. He is also founder and Research Director of Connection Research, a market research and analysis firm specialising in the convergence of sustainable, digital and environmental technologies. He has been in the high tech industry for more than 30 years, most of that time as a market researcher, analyst and journalist. He was founding editor of MIS magazine, and is a former editor of Computerworld Australia. He was a research director for Gartner Asia Pacific and research manager for the Yankee Group Australia. He was a long time IT columnist in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, and is a recipient of the Kester Award for lifetime achievement in IT journalism.

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