On-network deployment of wireless presentation solutions offers significant advantages over products designed for standalone, off-network deployment. On-network deployment delivers the best possible user experience and participation in the meeting room and dramatically reduces the cost and risk of managing and maintaining large scale deployments over time. Being on-network, however, requires the most robust security measures so that the benefits can be realized without introducing additional risk to IT infrastructure.
Let’s explore the benefits and requirements of putting your wireless presentation solution on-network specifically through the dimensions of user participation, network management, and enterprise security.
User Participation. Getting the most out of a wireless presentation system means maximizing participation among users of the system in the meeting or huddle space. Given that some meeting participants may be partners, vendors, other third-parties, or simply an employee visiting from another division or region that will need to use the guest wireless network, the wireless presentation system should allow for connectivity to the guest wireless network in addition to the corporate network being used by employees. This allows all participants to share content and collaborate without having to switch networks, which effectively turns your wireless presentation system into a wireless collaboration system. Enterprise solutions designed and equipped for deployment on one or multiple existing user networks offer significant advantages when it comes to usability, adoption, and ROI on the technology. Systems that are not designed for on-network deployment require users to swap networks or plug in additional equipment to connect and start sharing, which negatively impacts the user experience and ultimately adoption and ROI.
Centralized Management. On-network deployment should not just benefit the user experience; however, it should also benefit the administrator experience. One of the most important requirements of wireless presentation systems deployed on-network is the ability to manage every room in the deployment from a single console regardless of location. Need to install an update or reboot a unit? How about changing or updating a security setting? Off-network solutions require technology managers to physically travel to a room to update, reboot, or change settings, which is very expensive, risky, and potentially unfeasible for large-scale deployments. Enterprise solutions should offer centralized, one-to-many management from anywhere on the network to support deployments of any size. Also, look for a solution that provides monitoring and alerts so your technology managers get notified automatically when a room needs attention.
Enterprise Security. Off-network solutions allow users to connect to a display by making their devices in-room WiFi access points that stream content between user devices and the display. These “WiFi islands” within the enterprise network violate most enterprise IT policies because they create innumerable WiFi networks that need to be secured and managed with no centralized way of doing so. In contrast, true enterprise solutions are designed for deployment on the IT network and will feature all the configuration, partitioning, management, and security capabilities required for security best practices (click here to read our previous blog post on security requirements). To securely realize the added benefit of allowing both guest and corporate network users to share content without switching networks, look for wireless presentations systems that have two separate network cards with separate routing tables, one for the guest network and one for the corporate network.
Although on-network deployment requires a little more configuration up-front and robust security built into the wireless presentation system, it’s by far the best option for large-scale enterprise deployments. Not only do users of all flavors get to participate, administrators also get the ability to manage the wireless presentation systems from a single console.
Once you decide that on-network is the way to go, the next major step is to understand what systems the wireless presentation system should integrate in order to optimize the presentation and collaboration workflow of both in-room and remote participants. Subscribe to our blog to be sure you don’t miss the next post!