Small blog post we put together for some of our education customers. Thought I'd share here as its a question we're asked over and over again - Meraki or Ubiquiti:
Working within the education sector we always hear the same question…."Ubiquiti is cheaper why should I consider Cisco Meraki"? This is understandable given the tight budgetary constraints within the sector but cheaper isn't always better.
Below are some of the key differences we feel are important between both platforms:
Vendor support – this simply doesn’t exist for the Ubiquiti product range. Admins/users are reliant on a support forum or webchat for technical issues. The Cisco Meraki solution includes 24/7/365 support with direct access to Meraki technical engineers. You’re guaranteed hardware replacements for equipment failures across the lifecycle of your licence. So with education pricing your solution could be supported for 10 years. This is important for a sector that will sweat its assets for as long as possible. This also provides time to budget for future refreshes.
Technical documentation – as above, this is hit and miss for Ubiquiti and what is in supply is of poor quality. We can point you in the direction of numerous solution design guides and configuration guides for Meraki from design, implementation etc but these don't exist for the Ubiquiti product range.
Feature Enhancements – All new features are available for Meraki customers as they’re released into the dashboard. Features are deployed continuously at no additional cost to the end user so your solution is future proof for the life cycle of the hardware
Cloud management – Meraki is a true cloud solution with no on-prem controller or “cloud-plugin” required to configure devices on site. You can monitor your network from any device and from any location from a single dashboard. Ubiquiti cite similar features but an additional man-in-the-middle server is required which in our opinion isn't a cloud solution.
Great post about a subject that come and goes once every month from different customers and colleagues. Don't forget all the troubleshooting and monitoring tools that comes with the dashboard. As I've seen Ubiquiti is not even close to all the alarm settings and packet capture-tools that Meraki Dashboard brings to the table.
Thank you for the feedback @Claes_Karlsson..
You can't beat the power of the troubleshooting tools from the Meraki Dashboard. Its often difficult relaying that to the customer when they're sat with a quote for a solution that's currently 50% cheaper than yours!
@DarrenOC : Wonderful Write up and comparison !
Wow, that is excellent!
Thank you for the great comparison!
Meraki makes some great access points with excellent features. For my clients that need a system that always works and can handle dense user environments (conference rooms and others), I usually use Meraki.
Update: I want to add that I recently used Meraki on several projects, and it was worth the money spent. Mainly we worked on an essay maker website project with my team at https://edubirdie.com/essay-maker where we had to collaborate with a group of people: writers, consultants, education experts offline altogether. I have to say that a cloud solution that serves no on-prem controller saved our time significantly.
Nice work, I am in the process of reviewing our wifi, the three main contenders are Meraki, Ruckus and HP Aruba.
One thing I mention to clients who are considering Ubiquity is compare what the companies say about internal security:
Add to that their disclosure stance when they suffered a breach due to an insider:
So the question is: Do you want to purchase network gear from a company that cares about security, or one that doesn't appear to.
Ubiquity: https://www.ui.com/trust: Page Not Found 😂
Wow, that's so great, thanks!
If anyone is running a comparison between WatchGuard and Meraki, the issue can again come down to trust.
According to a Wired article, WatchGuard did not disclose a vulnerability in their web management interface.
How can you trust a security company that lied to it's users about a serious vulnerability?
Wow, look fine!