5 Amazing New @Cisco_Mobility Features Because of Exclusive Apple/Cisco Partnership

THE EDGE MATTERS! It matters what kind of AP’s we join and what kind of switch we plug in to. There are some who want us to believe the edge is a commodity because they don’t (or can’t) have what we have. Our products are built for digital business with security woven throughout (Be sure to ask about the Stealthwatch (demo) promotion when you buy Cisco ONE licenses!).

I want to bring to your attention a new Cisco Blog article on Spark & the Cisco/Apple Exclusive Partnership. It’s a GREAT one to share on social media! Then as I was putting this note together an article came across my Spark feed:

Neat article on the Cisco / Apple partnership and iOS 10. http://www.zdnet.com/article/cisco-apple-partnership-comes-to-fruition-with-ios-10

How timely! It’s funny though because there’s either super high level descriptions of what these new features are or it’s super technical. The statement “Apple devices work better on a Cisco network” is 100% true and 100% defendable. AND it’s true for both On Premises and Meraki Cloud Managed wireless! Trouble is some of the available detail is way too high level:

  • Higher reliability for real-time applications—66 times decrease in probability of poor audio quality experiences
  • Improved quality of experience—10 times more successful web browsing experience
  • Enhanced network performance—86 percent reduction in network message load from the device during roaming
  • Ease of management—Up to 50 percent reduction in network overhead due to SSIDs

Or it gets vague & overly-technical in the On Premises release notes for the new 8.3 controller code:

  • Fastlane QoS
  • 802.11r Fast Transition
  • 802.11v BSS Transition Support
  • Assisted Roaming
  • EDCA Parameters

So here’s the medium-techie way to describe the new Apple features.  These are available NOW with our 8.3 code for On Premises controllers and AP’s as well as our Meraki Cloud managed solution…

  • Fastlane QoS: With iOS 10 devices customers have the ability to “fast lane” certain applications, granting prioritized network bandwidth to apps with an iOS 10-embedded quality of service (QoS) tag. The new capability offers end-to-end improvement in performance across iOS applications.

(Configure On Premises Fastlane QoS) (Fastlane on Meraki)

  • 802.11r Fast Transition: 802.11r (aka. Fast Roaming) introduces a new concept of roaming where the process of roaming is done even before the client actually moves to the target AP (this is called Fast Transition).

(Configure On Premises Fast Transition) (Configure 802.11r in Meraki)

  • 802.11v BSS Transition Support: Two cool things happen here:
    • Network assisted Power Savings which helps clients to improve battery life by enabling them to sleep longer. As an example, mobile devices typically use a certain amount of idle period to ensure that they remain connected to access points and therefore consume more power when performing the following tasks while in a wireless network.
    • Network assisted Roaming which enables the WLAN to send requests to associated clients, advising the clients as to better APs to associate to. This is useful for both load balancing and in directing poorly connected clients.

(Here’s how to configure it for On Premises.)

  • Assisted Roaming: This is also known as 802.11k. The 802.11k standard allows clients to request reports containing information about known neighbor APs that are candidates for roaming.

(Configure On Premises Assisted Roaming) (Configure in Meraki)

  • EDCA Parameters: Enhanced Distributed Channel Access (EDCA) parameters are designed to provide preferential wireless channel access for voice, video, and other quality-of-service (QoS) traffic. This new version of code gives much better control to network administrators.

(Configure & tune On Premises EDCA) (Configure Meraki Bandwidth and Traffic Shaping)

Please comment below and share this article and ask your Cisco reseller/sales team about the Cisco & Apple partnership and how you can be ready to take advantage of these amazing features.

4 Replies to “5 Amazing New @Cisco_Mobility Features Because of Exclusive Apple/Cisco Partnership”

  1. Great blog and just the right amount of technical content to make this punchy.

    I have a question. 802.11r/v/k are standards available in many other vendors equipment. Does this not mean that at best only 2 of the 5 points are unique for Cisco/Apple, possibly less?

    1. Hi Simon! Thanks for the comment and the great question. I’m glad you asked.

      The reason I’m excited about this is more a result of the popularity of the iPhone and the desire to use them at work. Up until recently the software was geared towards the consumer, not the employee. These advancements allow us to give data preference to certain apps, roam in a more intelligent fashion, extend battery life, and more.

      It’s not to say other devices can’t do these or at least some of them… it’s just that (finally) a very popular device can…. and the reason they can is because Cisco and Apple are doing development work together.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: