Ruckus unveils controller-less Wi-Fi access points for small business market

Ruckus Unleashed APs provide small businesses with reduced costs by removing the need for controllers and AP licences and are easy to set up and manage with few IT staff

Ruckus unveils controller-less Wi-Fi access points for small business market

Ruckus Wireless has unveiled access points (AP) based on a new controller-less Wi-Fi architecture. Ruckus Unleashed APs are designed to reduce ownership costs and deliver up to 50% higher Wi-Fi performance for small business environments.

By removing the need for separate controllers and access point licenses upfront costs are significantly reduced. Set-up is also easy, as all that is required is access to a simplified web interface that helps businesses configure Wi-Fi in just 60 seconds.

Small business continues to be an important growth engine globally, with 65 million small businesses representing more than half of the global workforce (700 million people). An SMB Group survey shows 60% of small business leaders regard mobile solutions as critical to their business.

Ruckus Unleashed has therefore been custom-designed to help small business owners grow their business, deliver an excellent customer experience and manage costs, while supporting a variety of mobile devices with minimal IT staff.

“Ruckus Unleashed access points level the playing field for local retailers, coffee shops, and restaurants, helping them to deliver a high-quality Wi-Fi experience for customers and employees with much lower total cost of ownership,” said Dan Rabinovitsj, Ruckus’ chief operating officer. “We’re excited to help small business owners make high-performance Wi-Fi affordable and simple to install and maintain.”

Ruckus Unleashed is available now with two models of Ruckus access points: ZoneFlex R500 Unleashed and ZoneFlex R600 Unleashed access points – priced at $645 and $795, respectively. The Unleashed version of these access points are similar to the standard R500 and R600 APs, meaning customers receive the controller at no additional cost.

Each access point delivers Wi-Fi performance at extended ranges for up to 512 simultaneously connected devices. Unleashed access points feature the familiar Ruckus Smart Wi-Fi technology, including patented breakthroughs such as:

• BeamFlex Adaptive antenna technology
• ChannelFly capacity-based adaptive channel selection
• Zero-IT Activation automatic user-device configuration 
• Dynamic PSK Wi-Fi security.

For retail and hospitality environments, Ruckus Unleashed access points deliver fast and reliable broadband Wi-Fi to engage visitors via their mobile devices and ensure easy guest access.

An easy-to-use self-service interface provides business owners with insight on Wi-Fi usage, so they can easily optimise the Wi-Fi experience of employees and visitors without the need for dedicated IT staff. As needs grow, the business can easily plug-and-play more Wi-Fi access points – boosting performance without needing to re-configure the network.

Unleashed access points have built-in controller capabilities similar to Ruckus’ ZoneDirector controller software, including user access controls, guest networking functions, advanced Wi-Fi security and traffic management.

The APs can manage up to 25 access points as part of a single-site network. As businesses grow to multiple sites, Ruckus offers an easy migration path to controller-based Wi-Fi, using the same Wi-Fi access points.

“Smart devices are playing a critical role in influencing consumer decisions and behaviours,” said Nolan Greene, IDC research analyst, Network Infrastructure. “Wi-Fi connectivity has become an absolute requirement for customers and employees of small businesses, but business owners are often challenged to provide reliable, business-grade networks within a limited budget. A solution like Ruckus Unleashed access points can provide accessible enterprise-grade functionality to small and medium businesses.”

“The small business market has been under-addressed by the Wi-Fi industry for a decade,” said Gary Berzack, CTO/COO at eTribeca, a New York-based system integrator. “In the past, small deployments required a controller to get features such as guest access or BYOD on-boarding and still not get the performance for best user experience.

“With Ruckus’ controller-less solution, small business owners can get high-performance and reliable Wi-Fi solution even if they have less than 10 access points -- without having to pay for a fifty access point design.”

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