Cisco’s Blog is Holiday PSA for Wireless N Technology
It’s the holiday season, and that means lots of new gadgets and gizmos for your loved ones (or yourself). But Cisco Systems is offering up some useful advice for those with a wireless router: If you don’t have wireless N technology, all those nifty new gadgets are as good as coal in your stocking. And yeah, there are channel implications …
On the Cisco Blog, Cisco is pushing its Linksys consumer brand of wireless N routers to everyone. Maybe you don’t want Cisco’s stuff, but it’s not a bad idea to think about the last time you upgraded your wireless router. Most families likely are unaware what kind of wireless router they have, especially if their ISP provided them with one (like Verizon FiOS does, for example). In my case, my router offers only wireless B and G technology, which, according to Cisco, isn’t so great for a home filled with Internet-connected devices.
According to Cisco:
The difference is going from 11 Mpbs (Wireless-B) or 54 Mpbs (wireless-G) up to 900 Mbps (wireless-N for Dual Band). This means that any new gift connected to a Wireless-B or Wireless-G router will only get the B or G speeds. To get the high speeds of wireless N — you have to upgrade your wireless router to wireless-N.
There’s some truth to that, though not all wireless gadgets you buy are wireless N-enabled. You should check the box. Cisco goes off the deep end a bit with the harsh warning that a failure to upgrade will result in “drop[ped] connections, constant buffering stops while watching a streaming video, cut outs while listening to music, and even slow frag times while you’re gaming.” Ah … not exactly.
But aside from the dramatics, Cisco’s holiday PSA has real channel implications. While everyone is so hyped up on MDM, it’s important to remember that MDM is meaningless without a solid infrastructure. Networking VARs can definitely differentiate themselves by specializing and educating customers on what kinds of wireless technology they need based on the wireless devices they’ll be using in the workplace. That may seem like common sense, but discussions about wireless networks often stop at security and encryption. Making sure wireless signal strength is strong and fast shouldn’t be ignored, either.
As MDM heats up in 2012, be on the lookout for all networking vendors clamoring to provide the highest-quality wireless hardware. I’m predicting this to be a rising trend.