New access points more than four times faster than current WLANs

802.11n enables migration without disruptive upgrades

WLAN provider Colubris Networks claims it has launched the industry's first intelligent enterprise-class 802.11n access point.

The Colubris MultiService Access Point 625 (MAP-625) is part of the 802.11n-ready Colubris Intelligent Mobility Solution, which gives organisations a centrally managed WLAN networking solution to enable migration from legacy standards to 802.11n without disruptive upgrades, architectural changes or additional peripheral equipment.

Using dual radios, the company says the MAP-625 provides 802.11n clients with more than four times the performance of current generation WLANs, while simultaneously supporting legacy 802.11a/b/g devices at their full speeds.

IEEE 802.11n, a new WLAN standard expected to be ratified early next year, promises to operate at speeds four to eight times faster than current wireless standards and at double the range of today's 802.11a/b/g technologies.

According to Colubris Networks Australia sales director, Ross Chiswell, with the launch of the MAP-625, Colubris becomes the only company to provide smooth and incremental migration to an 802.11n network.

The Colubris Intelligent Mobility Solution combines intelligent access points at the network edge - for highly scalable distributed traffic forwarding and full performance - with centralised control and management for consistent services and enterprise-wide mobility.

"This advanced architecture is already equipped to deliver the next generation WLAN performance levels of 802.11n. Deploying 802.11n is as simple as adding a MAP-625, regardless of whether the customer purchased its network in the past or buys one today," he said.

The first product in Colubris' new 600 Series product family, the MAP-625, features the company's Always-n technology, allowing it to simultaneously support 802.11a/b/g client devices while delivering up to 300 Mbps performance to 802.11n clients.

"The MAP-625 eliminates enterprises' concerns about protocol fall-back; this is when 802.11n network performance falls short of the promised maximum speeds due to the presence of 802.11a/b/g devices," Chiswell said.

"You only need to add new access points that feature dual radios to support both 802.11n and legacy a/b/g client devices for full coverage without sacrificing n-speeds.

"The Colubris architecture is different from other main players. We were the first company to offer all of the benefits of centralised WLAN management without the performance and congestion penalties associated with first generation WLAN switches," he said.

"We released this over 18 months ago as we had the vision to see then, that the wireless LAN switch architecture of our competitors was going to become the bottleneck for the increased bandwidth of 802.11n, and introduce unnecessary latency for voice mobility.

"We provide centralised control of the distributed intelligence in our access points to switch traffic and enforce security, QoS and bandwidth policies at the edge. This delivers a multi-service environment that's very good at handling voice, data and,with the arrival of the n standard, video."

Chiswell said it is easy to deploy because it was designed to meet the needs of carriers and service providers where product stability and reliability is a high priority.

Earlier this month Meru Networks announced enterprise-class wireless LAN products supporting the IEEE 802.11n draft standard promising data rates of 300Mbps.

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