Historically, small organizations such as small and medium businesses with limited or no IT staff as well as distributed enterprises were the only natural candidates to move their WLAN architecture to the cloud. However, with the innovations and decreasing costs of unlimited processing power and data storage, the cloud has now become a viable alternative to on-premise controller WLAN architecture for larger institutions such as universities and large enterprises.
The many benefits of Cloud-Managed Wi-Fi include reduced capEx and opex, less downtime, BYOD, greater scalability, quicker deployment, greater security, remote management.
Since cloud services can be accessed from anywhere, the wireless network can be managed from on-site, from home, or from any other location with a wireless connection.
As the modern workforce has become more mobile, businesses of all sizes and shapes have started to rely more and more on WLAN networks, with many questioning whether the traditional Ethernet connection is still relevant. These all wireless offices are more agile to change and can adapt to the business changing needs more rapidly than wireline. Since the introduction of Wi-Fi in 1997, wireless local area networks (WLANs) have undergone several architectural shifts. Starting with autonomous access points (APs), WLAN architectures have spanned through centralized controllers, hybrid controllers, cloud controllers, and, more recently, distributed control with cloud management. As more and more organizations are driven to cloud-managed Wi-Fi, it is important to understand the drivers and benefits of this new approach.