December 16, 2022
Mark Bartley
No Comments

What is Managed WiFi?

If your office or school just doesn’t seem to have the WiFi coverage or speed you’ve always wished for, and you don’t have the necessary skills and experience within your IT teams, Managed WiFi may well be a good option.

If you’ve never heard of managed WiFi, let us go all D-Generation X and Break it Down for you. A managed WiFi network is often cloud-based and controlled by a third party, while still allowing a number of devices to gain access simultaneously via multiple access points. The third-party is able to provide remote support services including maintenance, cyber-security, troubleshooting and general configuration and day-to-day running of the WiFi network. Essentially, it equals having an entire team dedicated to your WiFi networks, but without the need to expand your internal IT teams.

It might even be easier to describe what unmanaged WiFi is, as this is what most people will access in their day-to-day lives, whether they’re aware of it or not. It’s the type of wireless network that you may have at home, that provides you access to the internet via a single wireless router but doesn’t offer any extra bells or whistles. Unmanaged WiFi requires on-site setup and typically, it’s a plug-and-play solution and it’s suitable for a few devices, not the hundreds or thousands you may need to connect within your office or school.

Office of working staff using WiFi

How does Managed WiFi work?

For businesses and institutions, managed WiFi works by providing a centralised platform that allows for a third-party WiFi support service to monitor, manage, and control access on their wireless network.

To a user, a managed WiFi platform automatically swaps their device’s connection to the access point with the strongest signal securely, through an office or school. This means that the user will always have the strongest signal available, which results in a more stable connection speed.

Because a managed WiFi network can be maintained by external service, you will also gain benefits such as:

  • Scalability – as your business or institute grows and requires more access points, these can be added seamlessly to the network by your support service.
  • Security – your managed service will be able to implement security updates and secure your network seamlessly and remotely.
  • Remote support – if you don’t currently have the expertise in-house, rather than try to find the perfect candidate, you can quickly and easily contract a remote team of skilled engineers to manage your network.

What's included in a Managed solution?

Managed WiFi services aren’t just restricted to simply managing the network and its users. Managed WiFi can also include radio frequency surveys, which measure the effectiveness of the network’s transmissions, network design, equipment procurement, and network installation.

Managed WiFi Use Cases

Managed WiFi is a perfect solution for commercial organisations and educational institutions because it can be used to implement secure networks and access points in large-scale buildings, whereby hundreds, if not thousands, of users and devices are required to access it daily. Some examples of use cases include:

  • Offices
  • Schools, colleges and universities
  • Apartment buildings
  • Gyms
  • Hotels
WiFi sign in a window

The Benefits of Managed WiFi

At first sight, you may be wondering why you’d use managed WiFi instead of unmanaged WiFi… However, if you take a deep dive into the key differences between the two, you’ll have a better understanding of why managed WiFi is worth the cost.

  • Cost effective – While the upfront costs for unmanaged WiFi may seem attractive, it won’t be long before you’re paying for ad-hoc WiFi support or paying your IT teams for a dedicated WiFi/network specialist, or even worse, having to go out and hire one. Managed WiFi in most cases, is better value for money and takes away the risks of a network being managed by someone who may not have the necessary experience and skillset. You can simply lean on a managed service provider to maintain your network, resolve issues, and look after your security.
  • Safe and secure – A WiFi provider keeps security high up on its list of responsibilities and services. As a provider, Haptic Networks can attest to the fact that one key aim is to invest in and maintain the latest technology to keep connections and networks secure. If you were to use unmanaged WiFi, this burder would sit purely with your in-house IT teams, who would be required to upgrade hardware, software, and firmware on a regular basis.
  • Reliable – We all know that in this day and age your staff or students can’t achieve their highest output with a shoddy connection. If your networks go down, your productivity goes with it. It’s a potentially huge pitfall for your business, but with Managed WiFi, you’ll have a team on-hand who are monitoring your network’s reliability and preparing for the worst-case scenario. If the worst does happen, they will have a team to deal with it as quickly as possible.
  • Scalable – Managed WiFi solutions are easily scalable. Whether you’re looking for more speed or more access points, your provider will be able to upgrade your network when required.
  • Business-specific functionality – If your business requires bespoke functionality, then a managed WiFi network is a good choice for you. Your managed WiFi provider will be able to design a network to your requirements, and as an example, will be able to provide bandwidth restrictions to particular areas of your office or school, while up-rating other areas of the building, where higher speeds may be required for daily tasks.
  • Reporting – Your managed WiFi provider will be able to monitor usage and performance, and then provide this data in a manner that you understand. If you need to keep an eye on employees or you simply want to understand which areas of your building have a weak signal, your provider will be able to report on it.

One thing you need to be aware of is that to get the best out of managed WiFi, you’ll need someone in your business or institution to be the main point of contact between you and the provider.

If you’re struggling with your WiFi, a managed solution may well be a good solution to your problems. We’re experts in WiFi and our in-house experts can identify your requirements, before designing a network that works efficiently for your needs and users. If you’re interested in discussing a WiFi solution get in touch with us today and our friendly team will be ready to provide the Haptic Touch.

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram