Oxford Brookes University Chooses Aerohive’s WLAN to Address Runaway Growth of Student and Staff Mobile Internet Devices

Sunnyvale, Calif.– January 10, 2012 - Aerohive Networks, the pioneer in controller-less Wi-Fi and cloud-enabled networking, today announced that Oxford Brookes University, a leading UK centre for higher education, has deployed an Aerohive WLAN to manage the 100% year-on-year growth of dynamic mobile internet device access among its students and staff.  The WLAN, implemented with support from LAN3, is spread over five campuses and 10 halls of residence, providing wireless connectivity for 18,000 students and 2,500 staff.  It is also part of the eduroam initiative, supporting global network access for visitors, staff and students at valid participating organisations.

News Facts

  • During the past three years, Oxford Brookes has seen a 100% year-on-year growth in mobile internet devices on the network, driven by a greater influx of smartphones, tablets and changing working and studying practices. With an average of 1000-2000 devices currently accessing the WLAN per day, exponential growth is expected to continue.
  • An existing Cisco WLAN already provided hotspot wireless coverage in libraries and large teaching rooms, but there was little intelligence in the network and no central management capability.
  • Extent and quality of wireless access coverage is seen as a key differentiator for UK universities in attracting students, hence Oxford Brookes’ keenness to achieve an optimum WLAN quickly, cost-effectively and with minimal management overhead.
  • During the procurement process, Oxford Brookes compared leading solutions from Cisco, Meru, Aruba and Trapeze but found that none met their requirements as well as Aerohive.  The university also referred to Gartner’s Magic Quadrant and consulted other HE institutions across the UK.
  • Aerohive’s superior scalability and cost model were major factors in being selected by Oxford Brookes.  These are enabled by Aerohive’s simple licensing approach, and unique controller-less WLAN architecture.
  • The Aerohive solution has the capacity to support 10,000 devices, concurrently, on the network.  A HiveManager Virtual Appliance provides a central view of all network activity across the entire estate.
  • Oxford Brookes’ WLAN is now also part of the JANET Roaming Service (eduroam), a secure, world-wide roaming access service. Using 802.1x authentication, visitors, staff and students can securely access the wireless network of any valid organisation that subscribes to eduroam, using their own log-in details. 
  • In 2012, the university intends to provide blanket wireless coverage, and later incorporate voice over Wi-Fi services and manage a higher proportion of latency-sensitive video and other application traffic.
  • To read the full Oxford Brookes University case study, please visit http://www.aerohive.com/resources/oxford-brookes-university


“Like other large universities, we are seeing demand for wireless connectivity increasing, but then so are expectations around coverage and speed.  It has become so important for attracting new students each year: if you don’t have wireless, you won’t have students,” explains Robin Breathe, Chief Technology Officer at Oxford Brookes University.

“With Aerohive I get all the functionality in one licence, as opposed to having to buy multiple licenses for multiple functionalities.  This includes firewalling and user profiling for enforcement throughout the edge of the network – something that other vendors would normally impose incremental charges for.  And being controller-less has made the network easy to scale: whether we’re installing the 51st or 251st AP, network performance remains just as resilient, and there are no controllers to purchase and licence.”

“In five years time, it’s possible that all our network access will be wireless,” added Breathe.  “To sustain the tens of thousands of concurrent devices such a system would have to support in an environment like ours, Aerohive’s architecture is the only way we could foresee achieving this.”

About Aerohive Networks

Aerohive Networks reduces the cost and complexity of today’s networks with cloud-enabled, distributed Wi-Fi and routing solutions for enterprises and medium sized companies including branch offices and teleworkers. Aerohive’s award-winning cooperative control Wi-Fi architecture, public or private cloud-enabled network management, routing and VPN solutions eliminate costly controllers and single points of failure. This gives its customers mission critical reliability with granular security and policy enforcement and the ability to start small and expand without limitations. Aerohive was founded in 2006 and is headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif. The company's investors include Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Northern Light Venture Capital and New Enterprise Associates, Inc. (NEA). For more information, please visit www.aerohive.com, call us at 408-510-6100, follow us on Twitter @Aerohive, subscribe to our blog or become a fan on our Facebook page.