Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers vs. Ubiquiti WLAN

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers
Score 8.8 out of 10
N/A
Cisco offers wireless LAN.N/A
Ubiquiti WLAN
Score 9.1 out of 10
N/A
Ubiquiti offers a family of WLAN products, namely the UniFi line of products.N/A
Pricing
Cisco Wireless LAN ControllersUbiquiti WLAN
Editions & Modules
No answers on this topic
No answers on this topic
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
Cisco Wireless LAN ControllersUbiquiti WLAN
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 Wireless LAN ControllersUbiquiti WLAN
Considered Both Products
Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers
Chose Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers
I would say the Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers would be a top contender as the best enterprise wireless controller that I have used. It has so many features and settings that can be controlled compared to other vendors. The newer Cisco 9800 is a different technology. At …
Chose Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers
The feature set was better in Cisco wireless solutions as compared to Motorola Wireless and Ubiquiti. In cost comparison, Cisco was cheaper than Motorola but Ubiquiti was even cheaper, build quality and hardware specs were also better in Cisco, and we used the D-Link product …
Chose Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers
Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers in my experience handles a larger quantity of wireless devices than the offerings from Ubiquiti. But that's not to say Ubiquiti products do not have their place. In my experience, Ubiquiti products do very well in small business environments. …
Ubiquiti WLAN
Chose Ubiquiti WLAN
There is no comparison really. The fact that I am not using those others, as in, not even considering what they have to offer, should speak volumes on how well Ubiquiti WLAN stacks up. It just ranks across the board as the best solution. In fact, when a new Ubiquiti product …
Top Pros
Top Cons
Best Alternatives
Cisco Wireless LAN ControllersUbiquiti WLAN
Small Businesses
Ubiquiti WLAN
Ubiquiti WLAN
Score 9.1 out of 10
WatchGuard Secure Wi-Fi Cloud
WatchGuard Secure Wi-Fi Cloud
Score 8.6 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10
Enterprises
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Cisco Catalyst 9800 Series Wireless Controllers
Score 9.8 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
Cisco Wireless LAN ControllersUbiquiti WLAN
Likelihood to Recommend
9.5
(66 ratings)
8.9
(15 ratings)
Likelihood to Renew
7.3
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Usability
6.4
(2 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Availability
8.2
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Performance
8.2
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Support Rating
8.2
(4 ratings)
1.0
(1 ratings)
Implementation Rating
7.3
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Configurability
7.3
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Ease of integration
8.2
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Product Scalability
7.3
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Vendor post-sale
8.2
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
Vendor pre-sale
8.2
(1 ratings)
-
(0 ratings)
User Testimonials
Cisco Wireless LAN ControllersUbiquiti WLAN
Likelihood to Recommend
Cisco
In a corporate environment that requires strong security and the ability to block / allow a large variety of users, the Cisco Wireless platform excels. The system is extremely robust and can provide literally a blanket of coverage, with very good performance. They also offer external/out doors access points which provide excellent performance. Because the system is well built and designed, you often go through the lifetime of the product (you really need to apply updates) with very little issues. However, when you reach the end of the support life on the box, it is not cheap at all to upgrade/replace. You really need to keep an eye on the current life cycle and plan accordingly for a replacement date and fund.
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Ubiquiti Networks
Ubiquiti is well suited to not just indoor WLAN access, but also outdoors. In fact, the range of the outdoor applications, while maintaining throughput is astonishing. I would say this is not a solution for a 1-5 person small office, due to the costs.
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Pros
Cisco
  • It's Cisco and like all our other Cisco products, chiefly switches, once you get it set up to your liking, it just runs itself after that. The reliability factor has been huge for us.
  • Ease in deploying new APs has been nice. We have a DNS record (and DHCP Option 43 as a fallback) that helps new AP find the WLC. The WLC takes it from there.
  • Good monitoring of connections, kicking people off, [and] blocking certain MACs are all useful features.
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Ubiquiti Networks
  • The access points are rock solid for uptime. Once configured, they don't skip a beat and you'll forget they're there.
  • Excellent range and signal strength.
  • Very comprehensive configuration and administration via the UniFi Controller software.
  • The Ubiquiti access points look great! Whether wall or ceiling mounted, they are discrete and neutral enough to just blend in with the building.
  • Being powered via PoE, it's easier to place the access points where they're most useful.
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Cons
Cisco
  • Configuring wireless settings is very confusing because various settings are scattered all over the interface in different tabs
  • Lots of settings use Cisco's technical verbiage rather than common phrasing, so it's confusing what a lot of settings will do and requires researching the meaning before modifying the setting
  • The interface could be easier to use to do simple tasks such as reboot an access point
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Ubiquiti Networks
  • Management of devices has become much simpler with the UNMS application, but personally, I would like to see some AirMax-like devices from their Unifi line where everything could be managed from an Unifi controller.
  • Most Ubiquiti devices are 24V PoE, which is the bane of my existence. I have had several devices fried when staff plugged into standard 48V PoE. They generally don't fail catastrophically, either. You just get strange issues that are difficult to diagnose and eventually need to replace them.
  • Devices seem to have trouble with many patch cables/switches. Make sure you certify any patch cables you make and don't over crimp.
  • Sending devices from the factory with same 192.168.1.20 IP instead of DHCP makes it a pain to bulk-setup devices.
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Likelihood to Renew
Cisco
Although it is a very good product, support is easy and can manage by Level 1 support persons and downtime is too much less but still there is a cost factor matters which is consider by each organization. Furthermore, organizations also compare with other competitors so it is hard to pursue and defend the high prices.
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Ubiquiti Networks
No answers on this topic
Usability
Cisco
As I said before, the only thing we miss in our old model is the fact that the management interface never received an improvement in design. It has the same look and feels since it was launched. It's not that it's hard to use. It's just the case of could be modernized.
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Ubiquiti Networks
Ubiquiti makes great Access points at various tiers provided far better coverage and throughput than consumer-grade wireless repeaters and routers. We have not had any performance complaints from guests or from the administration who use the wifi on a daily basis.
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Reliability and Availability
Cisco
Downtime fear is the first fear which IT persons look and want to eliminate as much as they can but eventually you have to face it as nothing is perfect. Cisco Wireless Lan controller are feasible to use and easy to manage and other than this their issue reported are pretty low so you can get the best up time. now it also depends on scenario as well as environment.
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Ubiquiti Networks
No answers on this topic
Performance
Cisco
Cisco Wireless Lan controller are feasible to use and easy to manage and other than this their issue reported are pretty low so you get the better uptime. if your get the uptime then it means its a stable product in your environment. Product performance also depends on the product management and Cisco Wireless Lan controller management is easy so you can get the great output.
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Ubiquiti Networks
No answers on this topic
Support Rating
Cisco
As usual, the support from Cisco's TAC (Technical Assistance Center) is lacking. Granted, they always get the job done, but the amount of lead time on a non-emergency is enough to make you just handle it yourself. The good news is that if you ask for Cisco's assistance and forget about it, they'll jump on by the time you've forgotten where you were in troubleshooting it and have it fixed for you.
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Ubiquiti Networks
Ubiquiti's support is basically non-existent by design. However, their forums are a great resource if you are willing to do the research and ask questions. Keep in mind Ubiquiti sells hardware, not support so the responses will be from the community of professionals also using Ubiquiti just like you.
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Implementation Rating
Cisco
That was a great experience of having a new project and working on it. Although we got some hurdles and challenges but we overcome all the things and try to work efficiently for this. in this time Cisco support team also helps a lot an give pro tips which help us.
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Ubiquiti Networks
No answers on this topic
Alternatives Considered
Cisco
The Aironet access points are used for employee WiFi access, and they integrate well with Meraki. They would offer a separate guest network, too, but the decision was made to physically separate the guest network, so even if a bad actor would gain access to the ethernet port of the AP, they'd still not see any company traffic.
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Ubiquiti Networks
We have used products from Netgear, ZyXEL, Cloudmesh, Datto, Mereki, and EnGenius previously often choosing products based on a specific situation, since starting with Ubiquiti [WLAN] we have pretty much stopped [usage] of all other vendors in the networking field and standardized which better allows us to stock spare equipment. Best part is if you need to replace equipment it is easy to swap it out quickly as the controller also acts as a live configuration backup.
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Scalability
Cisco
Cisco is a brand name and people trust on it. if any one thing about the networking then Cisco is among those brand which is count as trusted brand and people rely on it. Also it support is good so people can use it. Cisco Wireless Lan controller are easy to use and manage so it requires less effort.
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Ubiquiti Networks
No answers on this topic
Return on Investment
Cisco
  • Positive impact 1. Our employees are able to move around anywhere in our 12-story building and have access to our corporate network. Employees are not tied down to an office and can easily move around to meetings and stay connected.
  • Because the equipment is so reliable, we do not have any unscheduled outages. Employees come in the building and connect without issues and have a sense that the wireless network "Just Simply Works."
  • When performing network maintenance, I usually have to block out several ours for our maintenance window. Upgrades sometimes do not go as smoothly as planned. This can be frustrating for the engineer.
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Ubiquiti Networks
  • Initial ROI was positive - but now we need to replace them
  • We were able to deploy rapidly - configuration is easy if not consistent
  • Upgrades are easy to apply when they don't take the radios offline - which happens more often then not
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