Most helpful critical review
15 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Could be Amazing! (Updated)
on May 29, 2012
The UniFI Outdoor AP is awesome! I have it sitting next to a Belkin and it out performs it in every way. I have worked with a lot of wireless routers & access points trying to find one that works in our environment. Our facility is part manufacturing part retail, so we have a lot of heavy machinery and a lot of concrete, plus our build is a sprawl over a couple block radius.
The UniFI AP gets very good range, the setup is amazingly easy, and the PoE is a boon.
The range is about twice that of our Belkin and Linksys WRT54, and the range does not seem to change like our other routers.
The setup, I should say the management software, is amazing. The setup took less than 5 minutes and was very easy. Though I did have some Java trouble on my Win7 computer, but I attribute that to me. The management software has a couple flaws but overall it is better than anything I have come across from any other router/AP vendors. Being able to manage multiple APs across our entire factory/buildings is so helpful that I am surprised others have not started doing this. Viewing who is connected is also most helpful, the UI lets you know who is connected and what AP they are connected to. It gives a lot of details about the connection if you need to troubleshoot any issue. The map is another helpful tool, this allows you to upload a map and place the APs and see a estimated signal strength. Finaly, the voucher, guest, and hotspot features are very nice. I would expect to see this on a high-end AP but you get the ability to allow and monitor guest access from this unit without paying the enterprise tax.
PoE is nice, allows us to easily mount it without running extra power.
- Enterprise grade without the price tag!
- The UI is intuitive
- So many cool features (Unified management, vouchers, hotspot, redirection, easy install, AP coverage map, nice unit design, and so many more!)
- Excellent range
- Feels a little cheap, though time will tell
- Google maps integration was not working
- The firmware update is not well documented and is harder to figure out than it should be
- Since I only have 1 unit this may be a moot point once I receive my next one but the way the UI works is a little confusing, every time I want to connect to my management console on a different computer I have to download the setup and restore it on the new computer. The overall feel seems strange and a little different but since it works and I only have 1, I will say this is only a minor flaw so far.
Overall this is a great product, I can't wait to buy more and UniFI my whole factory, this is an enterprise grade product at a fraction of the cost. I hope this makes other vendors stand up and take note.
*** Update: 6/25/12 ***
After testing this product for a month or so I found the Outside AP seems to disconnect from the Unifi Controller, it still allows people to access the WiFi but you can't manage it unless you physically reset the device. This is not so nice if you have to mount this on a hard to get to area. I can not use this product for what it was intended, and will update this review when an update fixes this issue but until then I have a useless piece of junk hanging around my office.
*** Update: 8/15/12 ***
As a commenter pointed out, keeping it on a single computer has improved the reliability but if making serious changes I still would be leery if you have them mounted in hard to reach places.
I also noted some issues with the voucher system, while it worked perfectly on my iPhone and 2 or my laptops I have a handful of customers have issues. The portal wants to use SSL and since the device does not have a cert this seems to cause issues. Ubiquity has a fix but it is rather involved and requires some technical finesse. The devices I noted where mainly iPhones, but I did have a Macbook Pro and an Android phone not able to process the voucher page.
I have raised my rating but until all advertised features work reliably I can't give them the 5 stars they should have!