What’s a Cisco Meraki Access Point, and Why is It Better Than Other Brands?

What's a Cisco Meraki Access Point?
January 5, 2022

Cisco Meraki Access Points are the most powerful, intuitive wireless solution to deploy, configure, and manage. With their dynamic analytics, you’ll get a smarter and safer network with unparalleled visibility and control.  

If you’re already familiar with access points and what they do, keep reading to learn more about what makes Cisco Meraki Access Points different (and better) than the rest. If you’re new to access points, hit the FAQs section first to get the basic answers you’re looking for. 

Features: What Makes a Cisco Meraki Access Point Better

The enterprise-grade features Cisco Meraki is known for include:

  • 5 Gbps of Traffic
  • Automatic RF Optimization
  • Centrally-Managed Cloud Dashboard
  • Dedicated Security Radio
  • Identity-Based Firewall
  • Layer 7 Application QoS
  • Location and User Analytics
  • Mission-Critical Traffic Prioritization
  • WIFI6
  • Wireless Health

Now you’ll surely want to know the benefits you get with these full features. With them, Meraki:

  • Intelligently analyzes wireless networks
  • Visualizes trends
  • Detects network anomalies

And with this information handed straight to you as the IT lead, you can quickly identify troubling patterns and problematic clients to proactively mitigate issues before they become full-scale emergencies. Finally—you’ll get the credit you deserve from your C-Level team. 

Types of Cisco Meraki Access Points

With a variety of Cisco Meraki Access Points available, you can get the exact configuration you need to get the job done according to your specifications. 

  • Cisco Meraki Indoor Access Points
    • MR20
    • MR30H
    • MR36
    • MR42 and MR42E
    • MR44
    • MR45
    • MR46 and MR46E
    • MR52
    • MR56
  • Cisco Meraki Outdoor Access Points
    • MR70
    • MR76
    • MR86

Access Point FAQs for Beginners

Let’s get back to basics for a minute and answer some fundamental questions regarding access points.

What Is an Access Point?

An access point (also known as a wireless access point or WAP) is a networking device for connecting wireless devices (laptops, tablets, phones, etc.) to a wired network. When a tablet, for example, is used for going online, its signal can go through an access point to connect to the internet without having to plug in a cable first.

What Is an Access Point Used for?

An access point is used for creating a wireless network within an existing wired network. For example, it allows employees in an office to wirelessly connect to the intranet within the building.

The access point creates a wireless local area network in an office via a Wi-Fi signal. For example, if you have a solid Wi-Fi signal in the conference room, but the breakroom Wi-Fi signal needs a boost, you’ll want to install an access point there.

What Is an Example of an Access Point?

Here’s a great example of an access point that will do everything it should: Cisco Meraki’s MR56 is a dual-band 802.11ax-compatible access point with separate radios dedicated to security, RF management, and Bluetooth (among other impressive features). This access point is designed for next-gen deployments with simple management.

What Is an Access Point Router?

This is a trick question—access points and routers are two different things. Move along. 

What Is the Difference Between a Router and an Access Point?

A router is a local area network (LAN) hub network device that connects all personal devices to the internet and manages those connections. 

However, an access point acts as a secure portal (sub-device within the LAN) for allowing personal devices to wirelessly connect to the existing LAN to create a wireless LAN (WLAN).  

What Is the Difference Between a Wi-Fi Extender and an Access Point?

An access point is a device that enables Wi-Fi access via projected signal by providing a WLAN for devices to connect to within a building. 

A Wi-Fi extender (also called a range extender) is placed near the router’s strong signal to lengthen the reach of a Wi-Fi network and eliminate potential signal dead zones. It picks up Wi-Fi signals and retransmits them to user devices.

How to Get a Cisco Meraki Access Point

When you choose Stratus as your Meraki reseller, your Cisco Meraki Access Point purchase is more than just a transaction. Our close partnership with Cisco and years of in-depth experience means you get ongoing advisory support at every level. Plus, no one can beat our prices.

For a wireless access point that does everything you need doing, contact Stratus. We’ll be waiting for your quote request