Netanya Carmi - PeerSpot reviewer
Content Manager at PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
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Which is better - Cisco Wireless or Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN?


PeerSpot user
2 Answers
Top 5
Nov 10, 2021

Cisco Wireless is very robust, very rugged, and can handle indoor and outdoor coverage extremely well. We found it to be very reliable and to consistently run very efficiently. Cisco Wireless helped us get more network access to more people wirelessly across some very large spaces.

It is expensive, though. The Cisco Wireless portal, like many Cisco products, can be very complex. The flexibility of the controllers needs fixing and Cisco Wireless requires a bit of tweaking to get the stability right. We would also like to see the reporting improved - this would help make troubleshooting easier.

Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN is very user-friendly. You don’t have to be a wireless engineer to set it up. Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN is cloud-based, which is very convenient as you don’t have to have a physical controller, saving valuable space, power, and redundancy. This solution offers advanced configurations that are a great fit for small to medium-sized businesses that can’t employ an advanced tech team. Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN is high-performance, stable, scalable, and very easy to deploy, and offers a dashboard that makes managing the solution very easy.

Some of the built-in capabilities and filtering with Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN needs to be made easier to use. Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN needs to better identify devices, and the TAC reading and interpretation capabilities are not always accurate. There are also some processing limitations when you have multiple SSIDs.


As these are both Cisco products, they offer brand recognition you can trust, great quality, and good durability.

We found that Cisco Wireless offered slightly better access points and improved coverage, allowing the creation of better networks. Cisco Wireless takes a one-time payment for the hardware, and then annual payments. If you employ Cisco’s knowledgeable team members, this will be a good fit for you.

The huge selling point for Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN is its ease of use. You don’t need to have a lot of knowledge to deploy or manage processes, which makes this a great product for smaller businesses with a less tech-savvy team.

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Aws Al-Dabbagh - PeerSpot reviewer
IT Manager at a tech vendor with 51-200 employees
Real User
Top 5
Sep 7, 2021

The standard answer to such a question is: it depends.

The pricing for both solutions is very similar: per-AP, Meraki is more expensive than Cisco Wireless. Cisco APs are cheaper, but the controller raises the solution price to be almost equal to Meraki.

Meraki is subscription-based and requires constant internet access to manage the system. If the annual license expires, the APs will work, but you can't manage them or read reports of the Meraki portal.

Cisco Wireless is a one-time payment for the hardware with annual support payments. if you have a small office with only a few APs needed, you can use the Cisco Mobility Express Controller (which uses one of the APs or a Catalyst Switch as the controller) but that has a limit of 100 APs.

Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN vs. Cisco Wireless and other solutions. Updated: November 2022.
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Related Questions
Chuck Serauskas - PeerSpot reviewer
Network and Telecommunications Manager at Kwik Trip
Jun 2, 2022
Hi, I work as a Network and Telecommunications Manager at a retail company. I'm looking for a product replacement and I'm currently exploring Mist AI and Cloud or Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN. Which one would you recommend choosing and why? Thanks in advance.
See 1 answer
Richard Artes - PeerSpot reviewer
Senior Network Admin at a educational organization with 501-1,000 employees
Jun 2, 2022
Had so many problems with Meraki in the past 5 years. I wouldn't recommend them to anybody. The last problem was intermittent problems connecting to an SSID, the helpdesk answer was: "make the password less complex". It was passw0rd. Roaming always seems to break whenever they do an update. One time it took more than a year to fix the issues, couldn't upgrade the firmware for more than a year. Every time I reported a problem, they wanted to upgrade our firmware, but they hadn't fixed the roaming problem. Wifi works so much better now when we moved away from Meraki. Plus, we don't have to pay the license fee anymore.
Netanya Carmi - PeerSpot reviewer
Content Manager at PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
Nov 2, 2021
How does Cisco Wireless compare with Aruba Wireless? Which is better and why?
See 2 answers
User at ISP
Oct 28, 2021
Aruba is our choice for our WIFI solution as Aruba has a lot of features that can do the same with Meraki.  Aruba is saving costs vs Meraki in a long time operation.
Dovid Gelber - PeerSpot reviewer
Tech blogger
Nov 2, 2021
On the most basic level, Cisco Wireless can offer a rather straightforward initial setup. In the span of about three hours, the basic framework can be set up. Step-by-step instructions are available to ease the deployment of the Cisco wireless network. A small business will now be able to make use of this wireless product without being worried about having to make a massive investment of either time or resources. This peace of mind extends to the actual maintenance of the product as well. Cisco wireless’s network does not require very much in the way of maintenance. It does require occasional upgrades to keep it running smoothly, but other than that, a team tasked with maintaining it has very little to worry about. Organizations of all sizes will be able to benefit from both of these aspects of Cisco wireless’s design. Cisco wireless provides a very robust service that will continue to run over long periods of time and under heavy usage. Furthermore, the teams that are responsible for assisting users and resolving any potential issues that may arise are highly professional. These are two additional features that make Cisco wireless a valuable product. The wireless service is capable of running for years without any real need for replacements to be made to the hardware. Although no system is perfect, Cisco’s Wireless network shows that products can still be made to last. Long spans of time can pass without issues arising. When they do, Cisco’s technical support team is well-equipped to help handle it. They respond quickly to inquiries and they are extremely knowledgeable. They bring the kind of professionalism that one would hope to have in a product’s support team. Aruba Wireless can support many devices and provide the features that one would expect for this type of product. It is relatively cheap when compared to other products like Cisco Wireless. For that relatively cheap price, Aruba offers hardware whose performance can match anything offered by its competitors. It advertises what it can do and follows through with its promises. It is also very easy to configure. However, they do not guide users in different industries through the best practices that they should be employing when using Aruba Wireless. Conclusion Cisco Wireless offers an effective service. In terms of cost it is more expensive than Aruba Wireless. They both have a lot to offer. The price tag might just be the deciding factor.
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