I have been in the networking industry for many years and have witnessed many paradigm shifts in technology. I was lucky enough to discover Wi-Fi technology over 21 years ago and experience a revolution in wireless networking communications. Wi-Fi has become an essential part of our daily worldwide communications culture. Wi-Fi technology is ingrained into our everyday lives. And now I am a witness to a new communication paradigm shift towards cloud-driven networking. So amid these technological evolutions, I find it difficult these days to get excited about an individual networking hardware gadget. That being said, there a new Wi-Fi hardware gizmo from Extreme networks that strikes my fancy.
I know that I sound like a total Wi-Fi geek when I say this, however, “I have a new favorite access point, the AP305C.” As shown in Figure 1, the AP305C and AP305CX are enterprise-grade, indoor APs based on a new Wi-Fi 6 system-on-a-chip (SoC) design. You have your choice of models with either integrated or external antennas.
So why do I like these little guys so much? First, I love the form factor, as shown in Figure 2, both the AP305C and the AP305CX showcase an aesthetic design and can fit in the palm of your hand and is smaller than a one-dollar bill. An essential aspect of AP mounting is the “pretty factor.” Most businesses prefer that all wireless hardware blend into the background and not be noticeable. Aesthetics is extremely important in retail stores, hospitals, and in hospitality industries (restaurants and hotels). As you can see, the symmetric design of the AP305C meets the aesthetic requirements.
The AP305C/CX are Extreme’s first 2×2:2 access points using Wi-Fi 6 technology, and they can be quickly provisioned and managed using ExtremeCloud™ IQ. These are also the industry’s first 2×2:2 APs with Dual 5 GHz capabilities. These 2×2:2 APs continue the Extreme tradition of software-selectable radios (SSRs) capable of dual 5 GHz connectivity for indoor and industrial environments. The radio that has SSR functionality can operate as either a 2.4 GHz or a 5 GHz radio. As a result, a dual-radio AP can either offer 2.4 GHz/5 GHz coverage or provide coverage on two different 5 GHz channels, as shown in Figure 3.
These APs will also friendly on your Power over Ethernet (PoE) budget and operate with full functionality using 802.3af power that only requires a maximum power of 15.4 Watts per port. Speaking of power-savings, both models include an integrated light sensor and integrated power meter to help conserve power consumption. Stay tuned for future news about these eco-friendly capabilities.
And of course, these APs are also priced for the mass-market, these enterprise-grade access points are ideal for budget-conscious enterprises who do not want to sacrifice performance. Are you ready for the AP305C/CX APs to be your new favorite access points? Contact your Extreme Networks representative right away so that we can get an AP305C in the palm of your hand. In the meantime, be on the lookout soon for more Wi-Fi 6 APs from Extreme Networks, including more dual 5 GHz APs, tri-radio APs, eco-friendly APs, and more!