Meraki – Make a Wish

Every page in Meraki’s control console has a text box labeled “I wish this page would” with a button labeled “Make a wish”. Companies have tried A/B testing, surveys, or just listening to support forums to see what people complain about. Something as simple as putting a small form on every page allows Meraki to harvest customer requests in-situ, right when the user is looking at page and realizing it doesn’t have something he wants, and they have made the process about as painless as it can possibly be.

Meraki itself makes wireless access points with an internet based cloud controller. The devices also do mesh networking, saving a few cable runs. It’s best suited to large installations where one would normally need a separate controller device – I ended up passing for a small single-building manufacturer. The interface is pretty well designed, and as something of a visual thinker I appreciated the maps and color/shape indicators.

The major downside is that the cloud controller becomes a single point of failure. It’s provided as a service, and to get full features you have to pay per access point. For large scale installations, that may compare favorable with controller devices, which may need to be replaced every few years. The other issue with a service is that if Meraki ever went out business, you would lose the ability to configure the APs.

Posted Monday, July 19th, 2010 under Review.


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