Cisco launched their merchant based 1830/1850 series Wave 2 AP’s with integrated controller, and we did get our hands on one – but have not done a full review yet.
Meraki has now hit the street with the M42, a full on AC Wave 2 AP 3×3:3 with support for MU-MIMO – or Multi User MIMO.
The new Bluetooth Low Energy and Beacon technology is in there as well – also a feature not commonly used yet. If you are still running on older Meraki gear without the dedicated security and RF optimization radio, this does have that and it will give you better security performance. Plus you can do cool real-time spectrum analysis from your couch.
It’s worth mentioning – investment in MU-MIMO technology for AP’s might be a little early, as MU-MIMO 100% requires client side support in order for it to function. Right now nobody is selling Laptops, Phones, or anything with 802.11 AC Wave 2 support – and it’s not something you can just upgrade.
You can still get the 802.11AC MIMO benefits on your existing AC clients — of which there are very few, most new Apple products support AC, but smaller products are generally 1 stream anyway, so it doesn’t make a big difference. The big deal here is once we have 1 stream Wave 2 clients, we can use multi streams for more clients instead of more speed. Which for multi user environments is more important.
Wave 2 – doesn’t help you right now – at all – so jumping on the Wave 2 bandwagon on your AP’s will give you great bragging rights but no more performance.