Linksys unveils enterprise grade cloud networking management for SMB networks
Linksys, celebrating thirty years of networking and WiFi innovation for the home and business, today announced Middle East regional launch of Linksys Cloud Manager, a cloud-hosted WiFi Management Platform purpose-built for small business environments that reduces costs and increases operational efficiencies, in the United Arab Emirates. The solution offers centralized visibility, management and control of a wireless network without the cost and complexity of traditional hardware controllers, overlay software, or annual hosting costs.
Being a Middle East first solution, Linksys Cloud Manager enables IT administrators and other authorized users to remotely monitor, manage and troubleshoot single or distributed wireless networks in real time via a single dashboard and sign-on. This plug-n-play platform helps provide secure remote access to Linksys Business Wireless-AC Access Points, which are built with enterprise-grade, high-performance hardware, and is competitively priced with no licensing or maintenance fees for five years*. The included cloud license fits any budget and provides a complete solution for IT solutions providers and their SMB customers.
“There is a gap in the Middle East market for affordable, business-grade cloud managed WiFi management platforms designed specifically for SMBs,” said Amanulla Khan, Managing Director Linksys Middle East, Turkey and Africa. “Current offerings are either built with consumer-grade hardware or with expensive, enterprise features with prohibitive annual hosting fees. A common complaint is enterprise offerings are complex and over-engineered with features and functionality beyond the usual requirements of a small business network.”
The Linksys cloud architecture provides a feature set designed to streamline administration and improve productivity, giving users more control over network uptime and the ability to ensure QoS in real time.
It offers a comprehensive centralized management via a Global Map to help manage multiple, unlimited client WiFi networks around the corner or around the world from one centralized dashboard with a single login. It provides visibility of all accounts, sites, access points, and devices.
It provides alerts and real-time statistics so network administrators can anticipate potential network issues without the need for on-site monitoring and troubleshooting. It enables view through a web browser, historical and real-time traffic on the network, at-a-glance analytics about top clients and devices, including uptime, signal strength, connection duration, etc. There are built-in troubleshooting tools to identify problems using features such as a Ping Test, Blink LED, RF Environment Scan, and Rogue Access Point Detection.
It scales seamlessly from single sites to unlimited networks worldwide; suitability for distributed networks (e.g., retail/branch offices).
It enables rapid deployment with zero-touch provisioning. You can configure APs even before unboxing them enabling a quick and simple installation process. After deployment, Linksys APs automatically connect to the cloud over SSL and can be configured remotely, whether they are offline or online. Users can provision the network in minutes with a few clicks.
The firmware is automatically updated. There are message alerts and warnings on network and device connectivity and network health re: power loss, downtime, or configuration changes. An intuitive, browser-based dashboard and responsive user interface enables IT administrators to provision networks on the go from a laptop, tablet, or mobile phone, with no additional app to download. With no vendor lock in, customers can use a local interface to manage Linksys APs if cloud is no longer required.
“The Linksys Cloud Manager is very easy and intuitive to navigate. I have used Meraki, Cradlepoint, and Aerohive in the past and this is by far the easiest interface to navigate,” said Michael Johnson, a solution engineer for RCN Technologies, an IT services company.
Limited resources, constrained spending budgets, and the proliferation of devices and IoT are further complicating wireless networks, and as a result, driving SMBs to move toward network managed services where an IT partner is responsible for the network on an ongoing basis. The migration to cloud-based applications and everything-as-a-service presents a big growth opportunity in the SMB space for IT channel providers.
“Linksys places high importance on being partner-centric and meeting their needs with competitive solutions and programs. Linksys Cloud Manager was designed by truly listening to our regional channel partners’ business goals and challenges, and it addresses a gap where current cloud WiFi platforms fall short,” continued Khan. “Linksys Cloud Manager makes it easier for IT solutions providers to remotely manage clients’ WiFi networks, and to increase revenue and profit in the Middle East SMB market.”
Linksys Cloud Manager is an ideal solution for resellers and IT solutions providers looking to develop a managed service model and generate recurring revenue. For those who already are, it’s a compelling alternative to pricier cloud solutions and will help round out their product portfolio to address customers with smaller IT budgets.
“While investigating the needs of SMBs, we quickly realized they had the needs of larger companies, but the market lacked an affordable and easy-to-use cloud management system,” said Anthony Pham, senior product manager, Linksys. “Linksys Cloud Manager meets an underserved gap for true, business-grade cloud SMB networking at a price point that no other vendor can match.”
Linksys Cloud Manager is pre-installed on select Linksys Business Wireless-AC Access Points, which plan to be available in October 2018.