Q & A with Cisco's Meraki

meraki elevated partner
Earlier on this year, we announced that we had joined the Cisco Meraki Elevate Partner Programme, to bring a secure, easy to manage and cost saving cloud networking solution to our SME and Education clients.
We got in touch with Pablo Estrado, who has been with Meraki since January 2011, where he started as a Solution Architect and  is currently the Director of Marketing, to find out about the kind of projects they have been working on and their plans for Meraki.
Who Uses Meraki?
The benefits of a cloud-networking solution aren’t limited to a certain industry or line of business. We have customers in the large enterprise space, in colleges and universities, in retail, healthcare, manufacturing, construction, hospitality and tourism and in large event venues. Customers range in size from the small mom-and-pop coffee shop all the way up to a large enterprise with tens of thousands of employees.
What is Meraki / Cloud Networking
The Cisco Meraki solution is completely web-based so lean IT staff can reconfigure any of their equipment without even being onsite. Our cloud-managed edge and branch networking solutions simplify enterprise-class networks, and includes wireless, switching, security, and devices that are all centrally managed from the cloud.
Via this approach, Cisco Meraki gives network administrators complete visibility and control through a browser-based dashboard, without the cost and complexity of traditional architectures. Administrators are able to gain unmatched visibility into what is happening on their network, all through a single pane of glass that makes managing a network painless.
Why Embrace Cloud Technology?
Just give it a try! We offer three ways to try the solution for free. You can request eval gear, which allows you to try for free any Cisco Meraki product on your network. We provide the technical support to get you set up.
We believe that once you try our solutions, you’ll be amazed at the simplified management and increased visibility into your network activity.
You can also receive a free Meraki access point (AP) by attending a webinar, or you can test drive the Cisco Meraki cloud management platform directly from your browser.
Innovative Examples of Meraki?
Just this summer, the Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix used Cisco Meraki gear to bring connectivity for journalists and photographers at the event. The network was built on the two floors of the historic, 107-year-old Casino Building on Belle Isle, which was dedicated to media personnel during the race weekend.
A simple design started with a 45Mb/s Internet connection with a backup DSL connection, feeding into a Meraki MX100 Security Appliance and then relayed out to an array of strategically placed switches and wireless access points.
Meraki cloud networking is the perfect solution for events like this one. In the case of the Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix the network was put together in half a day by the networking team, who had never worked with the equipment before. Meraki’s excellent application and client visibility available in the dashboard allowed the team to manage the network effectively even during peak times.
Financial Benefits For SMEs?
Cisco Meraki solutions allow smaller IT shops to provide their business with a large-scale enterprise experience without the large enterprise price tag. In addition, due to cloud-networking’s easy management capabilities, a smaller IT shop is able to manage a network with less manpower, freeing up IT to focus less on “keeping the lights on” and more on creating innovative IT solutions for the business.
Plans for the future?
We’ve grown our product line quite a bit over the last few years, adding dozens of new switches, access points, and security appliances. We’ve always kept a close eye on the problems our customers face and how we can help them solve those issues.
One of our most popular features is something called the “make a wish button.” This is a place where customers can directly enter suggestions and feedback and about the Meraki product.
It’s available on every page of the web-based dashboard and sends feedback directly to the engineering and product teams. We’re continuing to invest in all our product lines and will use this feedback to help ensure our products meet customer needs.
Favourite Feature of Meraki?
I think the Meraki dashboard – the network management interface – is where Meraki really shows its value. The analytics and insights gained through the dashboard give network administrators real-time actionable data. The tight integration of the dashboard with high-performance hardware that simply works unlocks countless possibilities for administrators – it provides the key to innovation.
To find out how your industry peers are already using Meraki, and the benefits the solutions can deliver for your organisation, please watch this free webinar or email support@amsys.co.uk.