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Wherever, Whatever, Whenever – Meru Education-Grade Wireless Delivers Campus-Wide Wi-Fi Roaming


Today’s Higher Ed Community Expects Always-on Connectivity

Streaming music on Spotify, Skyping between classes,P2P file sharing, Facetime on the way to the café, downloading lecture notes in and between classes. These are just a few of the always- on, wherever and whenever activities that today’s college students expect to “just work” on their smartphones, tablets and laptops. University and college campuses are increasingly expected to perform as one giant Wi-Fi hotspot, with little tolerance for dead-zones, drop-offs, and time intensive hand-offs that are typical of traditional micro-cell Wi-Fi deployments.Requiring devices to reconnect or the user to re-login to the school’s portal several times a day just because the student is mobile is unacceptable. Even worse, with thousands of students roaming the campus, even users not on the move may be forced to re-login to the school’s portal due to load balancing, call admission control, rate scaling, band steering or other algorithms which require clients to seek another access point. Streaming music on Spotify, Skyping between classes,P2P file sharing, Facetime on the way to the café, downloading lecture notes in and between classes. These are just a few of the always- on, wherever and whenever activities that today’s college students expect to “just work” on their smartphones, tablets and laptops. University and college campuses are increasingly expected to perform as one giant Wi-Fi hotspot, with little tolerance for dead-zones, drop-offs, and time intensive hand-offs that are typical of traditional micro-cell Wi-Fi deployments.Requiring devices to reconnect or the user to re-login to the school’s portal several times a day just because the student is mobile is unacceptable. Even worse, with thousands of students roaming the campus, even users not on the move may be forced to re-login to the school’s portal due to load balancing, call admission control, rate scaling, band steering or other algorithms which require clients to seek another access point.


Seamless roaming for Wi-Fi clients across classrooms, residence halls, libraries, laboratories, stadiums, quads, and throughout the whole campus requires a different approach to wireless. Higher Education campuses require the purpose-built Virtual Cell technology uniquely found in the Meru Education-Grade wireless solution.

Zero-handoff Roaming

With Meru Education-Grade (MEGTM) wireless, there is effectively zero-handoff roaming – Meru delivers a seamless, always-on connectivity experience wherever the client is, on whatever device they are using, whenever they need to access the network. With MEG’s powerful Virtual Cell technology, roaming decisions are placed in the hands of the network infrastructure and not the client. Meru uniquely provides a way to convince all Wi-Fi devices that they are under a single virtual AP – effectively creating one giant hotspot. Therefore, the client believes there is no need to roam – and thus no need to search for a handoff. In reality, devices are being handed-off to just the right access point, at just the right time, with network control. Virtual Cell solves the fundamental roaming issues inherent in the 802.11 standard.

Meru Education-grade Wireless: Purpose-built for Seamless Roaming
    Persistent Connectivity Throughout The Campus

  • Unlike traditional networks—where devices see dozens or even hundreds of access points operating on different channels—Meru gives each user device a single virtualized point of access that enables your network to manage connections over the best available access point. No matter how many physical access points your network has, the campus has a single seamless layer of coverage.
  • With Virtual Cell technology, because there are no boundaries, and the network—not devices—makes connectivity decisions, there are no dropped connections. Students, professors, staff and guests can move freely around the campus without losing access.


    Up to 100x Faster Roaming

  • Meru System Director OS manages client roaming and is designed for zero-handoff speed while ensuring clients are associated to the optimum access points. Unlike other WLAN solutions where clients must re-associate on each roam, Meru allows clients to stay connected at the 802.11 layer and IP layer, so there is virtually no handoff.
  • MEG wireless reduces problems associated with sticky or promiscuous client devices so that voice communication continues uninterrupted, improving user satisfaction. Meru roams are ~3mS compared to 300mS (or even 3 seconds under real-world conditions) on legacy WLAN.
    Network, not Client Control

  • MEG wireless is built on the premise that the network controls the air, not the client. By taking this unique approach Meru eliminates the boundaries created by a hub-like patchwork of access points. This allows users to move freely, without disruptive handoffs—giving them the convenience they expect from their wireless devices.
  • Because of Meru’s unique network control, Airtime Fairness assures that even under roaming conditions, every client gets the same amount of time; every transmission moves at its highest potential speed; the network is equally accessible to all devices (BYOD policies) and both legacy and mobile traffic are blended to coexist with each other.
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