Tuesday, September 27, 2016

New stuff from Meraki: security cameras and outdoor AP

Meraki's fall product release for 2016 includes some intriguing new offerings, including the release of yet another family - Meraki Vision for enterprise surveillance.

There are two security camera models: the MV21 and MV71. Both capture at 720p video quality. The primary difference between the two is their durability, as the MV71 stands up to harsh weather conditions (it's got an internal heater!) as well as the potential abuse of vandals. That's an important feature, because unlike most surveillance solutions, Meraki's video is saved directly on a the camera's 128 Gig hard drive - not on a central NVR.

Meraki MV21
I have to admit, that particular feature puzzled me at first. What happens to the footage if someone destroys the camera? The short answer: it's gone.

However, storing footage from several cameras on a central NVR comes with its own risks. If the NVR goes down, you loose ALL of your camera footage, not just one view. Backing up footage to the cloud means you'll be clogging your internet pipe with video uploads, in addition to paying storage fees.

Furthermore, MV cameras continue to record as long as they are powered, even if the local network is otherwise down, which is typically not the case in a more traditional NVR deployment.

Meraki MV71
Most camera designs are already looking to place cameras out of the easy reach of potential vandals as well as cover other cameras in a given deployment. At that point, storing video on the camera itself seems a reasonable solution, as it avoids the need for another on-premise device in a high-storage capacity NVR.

Still, a back-up option for Meraki's video footage is a bit of a gap in their current offering. I'd be surprised if if that option isn't on their short list of new features to roll out in the near future.

The MV21 retails for $1,299, and the MV71 for $1,499. Each unit also requires a license for $300 / year (includes support and next day replacement). Licensing can also be purchased in bulk for added discounts ($600 for 3 year; $900 for 5 year, etc).

Meraki MR84 w/ external antennas
Meraki also announced the MR84 - an outdoor AP featuring external antennas, four spatial streams and 802.11ac Wave 2 technology. The AP also includes Meraki's recently released multigigabit ethernet port, as well as a standard gigabit ethernet port.

The MR84 represents an expected expansion to Meraki's outdoor options with the latest and fastest WiFi technology. Before the MR84, the MR72 served as Meraki's primary outdoor offering, but only includes three spatial streams at the 802.11ac wave 1 standard. The MR84 is built for more density and retails for $2,399.

Meraki continues to set the bar high among the competition when it comes to simplified, intuitive network management for small IT departments as well as for individuals without traditional network administration experience. Meraki's cloud solution is built out-of-the-box for fast-growing enterprises looking for quick deployment solutions that are easy to manage and configure.

This year alone, we've seen Cisco Meraki offer new product families and cloud-based networking solutions in IP phones, and now video surveillance. It'll be interesting to see where they go next.

These new products are available now. Demos are also available for IT departments looking to test things out before committing to anything. For more information, contact us at sales@copperwifi.com, or give us a call at (888) 331-7490.

1 comment:

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