Cisco Meraki MR vs. Ubiquiti Networks UniFi

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Meraki MR
Score 9.0 out of 10
N/A
Cisco's Meraki MR Series is a wireless LAN solution.N/A
Ubiquiti Networks UniFi
Score 8.9 out of 10
N/A
Ubiquiti Networks in San Jose provides their UniFi wi-fi hotspot technology.N/A
Pricing
Cisco Meraki MRUbiquiti Networks UniFi
Editions & Modules
No answers on this topic
No answers on this topic
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
Meraki MRUbiquiti Networks UniFi
Free Trial
NoNo
Free/Freemium Version
NoNo
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoNo
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional Details
More Pricing Information
Community Pulse
Cisco Meraki MRUbiquiti Networks UniFi
Considered Both Products
Meraki MR
Chose Cisco Meraki MR
Cisco WLC controllers are good but not a scalable option. We have 10 deployed and it is a pain to keep them all updated on the same code without DNAC. I just love to deploy with a controller that needs the APs to check into. Cisco Meraki MR is one big controller for multiple …
Chose Cisco Meraki MR
Meraki - ease of management. Negative - cost device and annual licensing, especially we comparing Meraki APs to Ubiquiti. This becomes a harder selling point because of the comparative cost.
Chose Cisco Meraki MR
[Cisco] Meraki [MR] costs more but generally seems to work better for us. Our older Ubiquiti kit seemed to struggle with people roaming across the building, especially with Macbooks. We have had no such issues with [Cisco[ Meraki [MR].
Chose Cisco Meraki MR
Because of its robustness and ease of integration with the Cisco portfolio and also because [it has the] possibility to integrate the whole Meraki solutions portfolio. The security gear is easy-to-use and easy-to-implement. It gives you the possibility to have an enterprise …
Chose Cisco Meraki MR
Meraki MR had a lot more features and [we] liked the dashboard feel and how they organized it more than the other vendors. I also know that Cisco is a good brand and have heard of them a lot more. The deployment was very easy from what I read online compared to Ubiquiti which …
Chose Cisco Meraki MR
I believe UniFi has a great product line and has very similar management capabilities to Cisco Meraki MR. What UniFi does not provide, however, is technical support. That business is essentially outsourced to other businesses willing to do that. Depending on the deployment, …
Ubiquiti Networks UniFi
Chose Ubiquiti Networks UniFi
Cisco Meraki; Aruba; Juniper: I've looked at all of these. I have a ton of experience deploying and using Cisco Meraki. I love their solution. You get such a high level of technology with all the protections afforded by Cisco on the backend. However, the primary reason I choose …
Chose Ubiquiti Networks UniFi
Ubiquiti is the worst of all network products I've ever used - with the worst support. Even Netgear - as much of a joke as they are - have better products and support.
Chose Ubiquiti Networks UniFi
We have compared other lines of wireless APs and have not been able to find a reason to switch. Ubiquiti's pricing model wins compared to Cisco and other's subscription-based models. We cannot find enough functionality in the more expensive lines to justify switching.
Top Pros
Top Cons
Best Alternatives
Cisco Meraki MRUbiquiti Networks UniFi
Small Businesses
Ubiquiti WLAN
Ubiquiti WLAN
Score 9.3 out of 10

No answers on this topic

Medium-sized Companies
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10

No answers on this topic

Enterprises
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10

No answers on this topic

All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
Cisco Meraki MRUbiquiti Networks UniFi
Likelihood to Recommend
9.0
(63 ratings)
8.7
(38 ratings)
Likelihood to Renew
8.7
(3 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Usability
8.7
(4 ratings)
9.5
(3 ratings)
Support Rating
8.7
(16 ratings)
6.9
(6 ratings)
Product Scalability
9.6
(30 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
User Testimonials
Cisco Meraki MRUbiquiti Networks UniFi
Likelihood to Recommend
Cisco
I came from several years of the managed services space before transitioning to an internal IT role. We have found that the ease of use and deployment combined with the bulletproof reliability of the Cisco Meraki MR platform makes it an easy sell for many types of organizations. I still recommend Cisco Meraki MR to anyone looking for an enterprise networking solution.
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Ubiquiti Networks
In the past few months we purchased thousands of dollars in brand new networking equipment from Ubiquiti. IT DOES NOT WORK CORRECTLY We bought 2 sets of hardware. 1 for home office and 1 for work. They both have the same issue (internet stops working). We have emailed literally dozens of times with customer service and they have not been able to resolve the issue. We have requested escalation to more trained technicians and have asked them to log into our system to assess. None of this has happened and our internet continues to intermittently work.
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Pros
Cisco
  • Provides real-time and historic data right in the dashboard, allowing my team to troubleshoot user issues and identify larger problems much easier.
  • Meraki APs are known as "loud talkers", and have really improved coverage on the edges of our spaces. Our users live and die by Zoom, and stability has been greatly enhanced. We did have an issue with significant packet drops, and their support team was able to quickly help us figure out the cause.
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Ubiquiti Networks
  • AP's are very affordable.
  • Most of the AP's are highly reliable and can be used indoors or in covered outdoor spaces.
  • Outdoor Mesh AP's with an external directional antenna can effectively cover outdoor spaces with dual band wifi better than much more expensive APs.
  • Unifi Protect via the Cloud Key Gen2+ is probably the slickest, most affordable IP camera system on the market right now.
  • Unifi controller is powerful yet simple to administrate.
  • Remote management of entire networks through a single pane of glass is easy to accomplish with the Unifi controller.
  • Cloud Key Gen2 solves problems with the first Cloud Key wiht a built-in battery backup.
  • When you are "full stack" Unifi with wifi, network switches and gateways, the control you can wield over a network in just a few clicks and the amount of data you can glean from a quick glance in the controller is incredibly impressive. It makes an IT guy wish every product/service could be so tightly and well-integrated.
  • Community support is excellent, Unifi staff monitors their official forums and responds to almost every thread.
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Cons
Cisco
  • You have to have license to use them, otherwise they effectively they become trash! It would be good to see a one off standalone license where they don't have any support or access to Meraki dash, but could be reused as a simple standalone AP with limited features.
  • (Much like I see people reflashing with OpenWRT)
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Ubiquiti Networks
  • VLANs: They can make these work more smoothly. Setup can be more intuitive.
  • Cloud Key: These need to be stabilized; they lose their programming a little too easily.
  • Stop selling the Gen-1 cloud key: No battery means you need an external power source or you must be onsite to power it off before updating.
  • Portal can be modernized.
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Likelihood to Renew
Cisco
Cause its intuitive, very clear and easy of use (no brainer) interface. It's whole portfolio in one portal aproach. Also cause the new features cycle release and the cisco Meraki comprehension of WiFi market. Also cause the fastest deployment available on the market that also comes with a easy to scale platform adding features and services in the same interface thats unique and awesome.
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Ubiquiti Networks
No answers on this topic
Usability
Cisco
To get basic functionality doesn't take long. Set up a new Meraki Dashboard activate the licenses and get internet connection for the APs and you are more or less done. The Dashboard will find your items and you're good to go.
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Ubiquiti Networks
UniFi's system is intuitive in how options are placed and explained throughout the interface. What is not directly explainable within the interface, Ubiquiti does provide several knowledgebase documents explaining best practices and methods of troubleshooting when things don't go exactly right. We've been using them for over three years, and the benefits vastly outweigh any negatives we could come up with on the equipment and system.
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Support Rating
Cisco
Meraki support is usually top notch. The are quick to respond and stick with an issue until it is resolved. One of the difficulties I've had with Meraki MRs is the limited ability the customer has in troubleshooting. Much of the more technical aspects of resolution can only be accessed by the Meraki support team, meaning dedicated IT teams are reliant on them when more complicated issues arise.
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Ubiquiti Networks
Support tickets can be proactively created within the dashboard with full detailed documentation. The Ubiquiti website provides detailed documentation on support. Forum and user groups also provide the interested community with information that covers all aspects of issues or questions users can encounter with the latest and most updated information.
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Alternatives Considered
Cisco
When considering a solution you need you really need to take into account the environments that you are deploying into. If you request something that is fully configurable, then you are more likely to deploy the Cisco Catalyst controller. With the Meraki solution, one of the major selling points is the dashboard and how easy it is to manage. In most cases, the features available in a Meraki solution are sufficient for 80% of customers.
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Ubiquiti Networks
Ubiquiti is overall easier to work with. There is no special training needed to accomplish many of the things required with a Cisco product. Since my time is stretched thin, I need something that I can manage without being weighed down by command-line communications. Also, I am able to use my wireless devices to maintain every Ubiquiti device on my network.
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Scalability
Cisco
Cisco Meraki MR is made to be scalable and flexible. We can scale up or down as needed and deploy devices without configuring them. We can add the devices to the portal and then not have to touch them before they reach a location. We love that it can scale as we need it.
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Ubiquiti Networks
No answers on this topic
Return on Investment
Cisco
  • Since they are easy to setup, you save a lot on manpower hours.
  • First you configure an SSID in the Meraki Dashboard and associate it to a tag name(s). Then, when you add a new access point to the network, you just have to associate the tags to it and it will start working. Super easy and time saving when provisioning new access points in the network.
  • Since the access points report back to the Merak Dashboard, you can easily rule out any network connectivity issues when they are successfully reporting back, which also saves troubleshooting time.
  • You can also save time by looking at the Meraki mobile App, which also gives you availability and statistical information.
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Ubiquiti Networks
  • The access points and switch were extremely affordable and we've had minimal downtime over the life of the products.
  • The switch was in our main rack and there was a bug in the firmware that would reboot the switch if you made a change to one of the switch ports (that was not in use at the time). This caused our entire organization to have a network outage, in the middle of the day. Fortunately we didn't have any customer refunds to issue. We've had to purchase different switches for the main racks, and place the UniFi switch in a better suited place.
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ScreenShots