Which is better - Cisco Wireless or Cisco Meraki Wireless LAN?


Content Manager at PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
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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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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: May 2023.
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Related Questions
User at Invecto
Apr 3, 2023
Hello community,  I work at a small tech services company and am currently researching firewalls. What are the differences between Cisco Meraki MX67 and FortiGate 60? Which solution do you prefer? Thank you for your help.
See 2 answers
MURALI NIDAMANURI - PeerSpot reviewer
Apr 3, 2023
Meraki MX series are all cloud-based management with on-premises physical firewall connectivity, so if the Internet goes down you will lose the management options to the firewall. Whereas FortiGate Firewall doesn't need Internet for the first time setup. Also, it is easy to manage the management interface being it is available to local users when the case of internet connection fails. All other security features, policy creation, and VPN related remains the same as you see in any brand firewall.
Aymen FHOULA - PeerSpot reviewer
Senior Network Administrator at Banque de l'Habitat Tunisie
Apr 3, 2023
The Cisco Meraki MX67 and FortiGate 60 are both firewall devices, but there are some differences between them: Deployment: The Cisco Meraki MX67 is a cloud-managed firewall, meaning that it can be managed and configured through the cloud, whereas the FortiGate 60 is typically deployed as an on-premises appliance. Security features: Both devices offer a range of security features, such as firewalling, VPN, and intrusion prevention, but they may differ in the specific features and capabilities they offer. For example, FortiGate 60 offers advanced threat protection, while the Cisco Meraki MX67 offers content filtering. Throughput: The FortiGate 60 offers higher throughput than the Cisco Meraki MX67. The FortiGate 60 can handle up to 1 Gbps of traffic, while the Cisco Meraki MX67 can handle up to 450 Mbps.  The cost of the devices may also differ. The Cisco Meraki MX67 tends to be more expensive than the FortiGate 60. Scalability: The Cisco Meraki MX67 is designed for small to medium-sized businesses, while the FortiGate 60 can scale to meet the needs of larger organizations.
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.
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