Netgear recently announced their Orbi Pro with numerous configuration options from in-ceiling to outdoor coverage. Insight remote management means management is as simple as logging on to a web portal. Features include enhanced security and rapid setup.
What’s not to love? This solution should be fantastic for businesses looking for better WiFi coverage and faster throughput to keep workers productive as well as visitors and customers happy.
To learn more, we conducted an exclusive interview with Doug Cheung, Senior product line manager (PLM) for ReadyNAS and SMB Wireless Networking for NETGEAR.
Why should businesses purchase NETGEAR Orbi Pro instead of an alternative solution?
While many businesses would benefit from providing WiFi for their guests, employees and business systems, the cost and complexity of setting up and managing such a network can be daunting. With NETGEAR Orbi Pro, there is no wiring, professional installation or added IT costs. The Orbi Pro Tri-band WiFi System guided install allows anyone to set up separate WiFi for guests, employees and business traffic and can be easily expanded as a business grows, allowing for more than 40 connections. In addition, the product is designed to complement office décor and sit unobtrusively anywhere or be mounted out-of-the-way.
Should a business purchase a WiFi access point – even if their ISP gives them one for free?
Cable and satellite providers typically dictate WiFi coverage with their provided router situated in the center of a business. Further, paying for gigabit service usually means speed near that router and degradation of service the farther away a customer gets from the router. In larger businesses, coverage can suffer in areas of the building that are not near a router’s position. WiFi access points are a great way to ensure WiFi consistency regardless of where a customer is situated within a business.
What are the biggest WiFi challenges businesses face?
The top WiFi challenges we hear from SMB customers center around bandwidth limitations and spotty network connections. Bandwidth limitations are usually the result of too many customers, employees and guests utilizing the same network. Spotty network connections can result from improperly configuring a network or router. An additional challenge we are hearing from customers on a more consistent basis is network security. Lastly, the final pain point we hear from small business owners is not having a dedicated IT staff member that understands the latest IT devices available and knows how to properly set up IT on-location.
How does Orbi Pro solve these issues?
Orbi Pro is a DIY business-grade mesh network system. Mesh routers or whole-business WiFi systems use a router, and multiple satellite or nodes, to ensure coverage of the WiFi signal throughout the square-footage of a given business location, which results not only in greater coverage, but faster speeds and a more reliable connection as well. Additionally, Orbi Pro pre-defines three dedicated and completely isolated WiFi networks to keep data separate and safe. Orbi Pro’s easy setup (without wires) allows businesses to deliver business-class WiFi without complicated installation and without needing an IT staff on-site. Also, the product provides advanced security options, supporting WPA/WPA2-PSK.
How about providing WiFi to customers? How should this be handled? Should they be forced to give an email? Logon with a social media account, etc. What do you suggest?
With Orbi Pro, Guest Access for use by customers, patients and clients is isolated by design from Admin and Employee networks for safe, secure and speedy network separation. A landing page for Guest Access can be a handy marketing tool and provides another layer of protection for the business and the customer. It also can help prevent non-customers from taking advantage of free WiFi and hogging bandwidth. Specifics for permitting access would depend on the use case for the individual business.
How about ensuring a bandwidth hog doesn’t destroy performance for others – possible having a unified communications call disrupted? Can this be done?
With Insight from NETGEAR for Business, the cloud-based management platform that enables easy set-up and configuration, businesses can manage their WiFi through their mobile device. With Insight, users can quickly discover, setup, monitor and manage their Wireless Access Points and VPN Router, as well as their ReadyNAS storage devices from anywhere. Users are in control of their network and can enjoy IT peace of mind like never before.
Does Orbi Pro work better with either Apple, PC or Android?
The Insight from NETGEAR for Business and NETGEAR Orbi app is compatible with both Apple and Android. In addition, customers can also manage their Orbi Pro system on their PCs by leveraging orbilogin.net.
What about cybersecurity – how can this device help with that?
Orbi Pro keeps SMBs up and running uninterrupted. Data security and network reliability is the most important value we deliver. The Orbi Pro includes three pre-defined networks for traffic separation. The networks include an admin channel designed for access to critical infrastructure like private servers, VolP system, computers, an employee BYOD channel designed for access to the Internet, but not critical systems on the Admin network, and, finally, a guest network which is isolated from the other two and designed to be used by customers, patients and clients.
Is this device future-proofed?
The Orbi Pro system has the ability to grow with a customer’s business. In fact, the system can easily extend WiFi network coverage up to 10,000 square feet with additional Orbi Satellites.
How can a business buy it? Do you sell through the channel?
The Orbi Pro product suite for Small Businesses is available worldwide through authorized NETGEAR partners and other reseller channels and ecommerce sites.
What’s next for NETGEAR?
As a networking company innovating for more than 20 years, NETGEAR anticipates SMBs needs with new products that are easy to install, easy to use and rugged. As major technology shifts continue to impact customers’ daily routines, NETGEAR will deliver innovative and future-facing products to help connect the world to the internet and spur sustained growth for SMBs utilizing our forward-thinking technology.
Learn about the latest in everything you need! SIP Trunking, UCaaS, the Channel, IT, IOT, Edge, Cybersecurity, AI, SD-WAN, and the Future of Work at the world’s only SD-WAN Expo and MSP Expo, part of the ITEXPO #TechSuperShow, Feb 12-14, 2020 Fort Lauderdale, FL.