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Extreme Networks launches Wi-Fi 7 AP5020 & 4000 series switches
Wed, 31st Jan 2024

Extreme Networks has launched two innovative solutions to bolster network connectivity, security, and application performance for highly distributed enterprise organisations. The company has introduced the AP5020, its first Wi-Fi 7 access point, and the 4000 Series cloud-managed switches, both of which aim to enhance network functionality and security.

The AP5020 is a Wi-Fi 7 Universal access point that operates on the 6 GHz spectrum. It has been engineered to support high-bandwidth, latency-sensitive applications and IoT devices, thereby offering a modern and efficient way for businesses to manage operations. Moreover, the 4000 Series cloud-managed switches, the latest addition to Extreme's Universal portfolio, virtually eliminate all manual configurations, significantly reducing setup time. Bundled with ExtremeCloud Universal ZTNA, these solutions can facilitate automated onboarding, configuration and policy enforcement, bolstering security as organisations transition to a Zero Trust network architecture.

The designs of both the AP5020 and 4000 Series switches capitalise on the features of AIOps (Artificial Intelligence for IT Operations) and machine learning from the ExtremeCloud IQ cloud management platform. These capabilities help to proactively identify network issues and suggest recommendations, thus reducing IT time to resolution.

The AP5020 is suited for high-density environments, as it supports bandwidth-intensive, latency-sensitive applications and IoT devices. This aim to improve user experiences and operational efficiency. Notably, the built-in dual IoT radios simultaneously support multiple IoT use cases while improving performance, and offer a reduced total cost of ownership by facilitating the operation of various IoT devices from a single access point. To ensure ongoing connectivity for critical activities in sectors such as healthcare, manufacturing, and education, the AP5020 also features PoE failover. Additionally, it contains a unique, dedicated 2x2 security sensor, which can be paired with Extreme AirDefense for wireless intrusion prevention capabilities.

The 4000 Series includes the 4120 and 4220 families, which extend Extreme's innovative Universal Switching portfolio. Through ExtremeCloud solutions, the 4000 Series markedly shorten the time required to deploy and manage new switches. Key features include Instant Stacking, automating setup via a single button across multiple switches; Instant Port, eliminating the need for manual port configuration; and Instant Secure Port, offering integrated authentication and policy enforcement through ExtremeCloud Universal ZTNA.

Nabil Bukhari, Chief Technology and Product Officer and General Manager, Subscription Business at Extreme Networks, articulated the significance of the new launches: “Enterprises are more distributed than ever and need the flexibility to add users, devices and applications across their environment without sacrificing time, security or performance. Our new solutions further expand the flexibility of our portfolio and work in concert with our Universal ZTNA solution for a frictionless user experience applied to hybrid work."

Bob Laliberte, Principal Analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group, commended the anticipated impact of these solutions, saying "The improved connectivity, reliability and responsiveness of the Wi-Fi 7 access point will ensure better end-user experiences, as well as boost overall productivity across the organisation."

Meanwhile, Alan Weckel, Co-Founder and Technology Analyst, 650 Group, highlighted the enhanced security offered by these innovations: "When paired with ExtremeCloud Universal ZTNA, these new cloud-managed switches provide an additional layer of network security and peace of mind when it comes to managing security in a complex, distributed environment."