Xirrus Unveils Access Point Post-Riverbed Acquisition

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Xirrus, the Wi-Fi provider, launched its first product since Riverbed Technology acquired it earlier this year.

Riverbed on Tuesday announced that Xirrus has made a new Wi-Fi access point available. The companies say Riverbed Xirrus Wave 2 AP (Model XD2-230) will allow for stronger intelligence at the network edge. The access point will enhance SteelConnect, Riverbed’s SD-WAN offering, by improving its wired and wireless LAN capabilities.

Xirrus's Bruce Miller

Xirrus’s Bruce Miller

Xirrus Vice President of Product Marketing Bruce Miller tells Channel Partners that the new product reflects the monumental increase in wireless use cases.

“Now everybody uses their Wi-FI everywhere — on their phones or wherever. The density, the number of users and just the ubiquitous coverage of that has opened up lots of requirements for different types of use cases for Wi-Fi,” Miller said.” It’s always upping the ante of more traffic, more devices, more wireless needs. The challenge has been greater scalability and complexity as you add all of these areas for coverage.”

Users can manage the 802.11ac access point from on-premises or the cloud. It offers layer 7 application visibility and can support IoT devices. The bandwidth moves at 3.9 gigabits per second.

Miller says Riverbed will have access to the access point in the future. That part of the integration is still ongoing.

“We are working to make these products available to the Riverbed partners and, conversely, the Xirrus who are selling these Wi-Fi products today will be merged into that program over time,” he said.

Miller says SteelConnect is the “focal point” of Riverbed’s acquisition of Xirrus. Riverbed first announced plans to buy Xirrus in April. Miller says that although Riverbed hasn’t historically labeled itself an access network vendor, it has pivoted toward the enterprise with SD-WAN in recent years.

“What you can think of Xirrus doing is adding the LAN component to that story. Think of Xirrus as adding SD-WAN and then putting that all together under one common cloud framework so that configuration and policy can be orchestrated across the LAN, the WAN, the WLAN, the data center,” Miller said.

Miller says Riverbed and Xirrus have synergy and share a similar foundation.

“If you look at Riverbed, they’ve historically been a WAN optimization company; that’s what kind of what they’re known for going way back to early 2000s,” he said. “In a lot of respects we were a Wi-Fi optimization company and looked at optimizing the Wi-FI and connectivity layer of the access side while they were optimizing the WAN piece.”

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