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Aruba claims enterprise-grade Wi-Fi 6E industry first

HPE subsidiary introduces new access points to take advantage of 6GHz spectrum band to deliver greater performance, lower latency and faster data rates to support high-bandwidth enterprise applications and use cases

As firms increase their use of bandwidth-hungry applications, cope with increasing numbers of client and internet of things (IoT) devices connecting to networks – all leading to soaring demand for Wi-Fi – Aruba is offering a solution to the subsequent oversubscription of networks that is throttling application performance.

The intelligent edge-to-cloud networking provider’s 630 Series of campus access points (APs) is designed to resolve such network issues, which are increasingly frustrating network users by negatively affecting the user experience, reducing productivity, putting digital initiatives at risk and stifling innovation.

The Aruba Wi-Fi 6E offering is part of Aruba ESP (Edge Services Platform), claimed to be the industry’s first artificial intelligence-powered, cloud-native platform designed to unify, automate and secure the edge. The range is said to be able to take advantage of the US regulator the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)’s decision in April 2020 to open the 6GHz wireless spectrum band in the country – the largest expansion of Wi-Fi capacity in nearly two decades.

The devices are engineered to predict and resolve problems at the network edge before they happen. Aruba ESP’s foundation is built on AIOps, zero-trust network security and a unified campus-to-branch infrastructure. This is said to deliver an automated, all-in-one platform that continuously analyses data across domains, tracks service-level agreements (SLAs), identifies anomalies and self-optimises, while identifying and securing unknown devices on the network.

Key features of the 630 Series Access Points include tri-band coverage across 2.4GHz, 5GHz and 6GHz with 3.9Gbps maximum aggregate data rate and ultra-triband filtering to minimise interference. The APs support up to seven 160MHz channels in 6GHz to better support low-latency, high-bandwidth applications such as high-definition video, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR).

Aruba said it has application assurance to guarantee application performance for latency-sensitive and high-bandwidth uses by dynamically allocating and adjusting radio resources. Cloud, controller or controllerless operation modes can address campus, branch and remote deployments.

Aruba stated that its Wi-Fi 6E offerings would allow firms to take advantage of the increased capacity, wider channels in 6GHz, and significantly reduced signal interference with 3.9Gbps maximum aggregate throughput to support high-bandwidth, low-latency services and applications such as high-definition video, next-generation unified communications, AR/VR, IoT and cloud.

Additionally, with a new ultra tri-band filtering capability that minimises interference between the 5GHz and 6GHz bands, Aruba expressed confidence that organisations could truly maximise use of the new spectrum. 

One organisation that is aiming to reap these benefits is Chapman University, a private research facility in Orange, California. “As we progress in our digital transformation, we are continually adding an increasing number of IoT devices to our network and transitioning to Wi-Fi as our primary network connection rather than Ethernet,” said the university’s network manager and enterprise architect, Mike Ferguson.

“We are being asked to support an expanded array of mission-critical, high-bandwidth applications that support research, as well as hyflex learning and entertainment, like streaming video, video communications and AR/VR for our students, professors and staff,” he added. “With Aruba’s Wi-Fi 6E APs, we’re confident that we’ll be able to support our short-term needs and have room to grow as well, which will keep all of our users happy, increase our competitiveness and allow us to extend the lifecycle of this network deployment by 50%.” 

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