The 7signal Sapphire system includes a set of patented sensors called Sapphire Eyes that connect to the network like wireless clients and perform continuous Wi-Fi experience testing from the clients’ point of view. Wi-Fi analytics software included with the system continually benchmarks the data collected against targets for acceptable Wi-Fi performance to quickly identify where students and faculty may be having a poor Wi-Fi experience. In addition, the software provides a list of WLAN action items for improving the performance of the Wi-Fi network. “As a permanent system you put in place, Sapphire keeps close watch through continuous testing and alerts network administrators when there are any changes to the Wi-Fi experience, before students and faculty raise a complaint,” states Reedy.
Unlike other WLAN monitoring systems that measure performance from the central controller out to the clients, 7signal designed their Sapphire system from the outside-in, with the end-user experience at the center.
“Our user experience testing simulates real-world Wi-Fi network usage in the form of 24×7 HTTP, FTP, SIP, voice over IP and URL testing,”
We empower network administrators with a proactive set of information and alerts which allow them to get ahead of Wi-Fi performance issues before students and faculty complain
7signal has helped many universities proactively manage campus Wi-Fi services amidst limited technical resources and constrained budgets. The University of Northern Iowa (UNI), one of the company’s clients, had only one network engineer and hence it was difficult to manage, monitor and troubleshoot transient Wi-Fi issues. Many times, the undiagnosed problems left high density areas with chronically poor signals. UNI implemented 7signal’s Wi-Fi Performance Management System to capture the real-time data to address Wi-Fi performance and connectivity problems. The solution relieved the pressure on UNI’s wireless network engineer to troubleshoot problems as they occur. Adding to it, UNI has also been able to address performance and connectivity issues campus-wide and take steps to ensure that its infrastructure will be capable of supporting growing numbers of users and devices.
Besides the Education sector, the company’s offerings are equally sought after by other market verticals including hospitals, distribution centers and other enterprises. To facilitate sales, 7signal has introduced the Sapphire Cloud, which removes the need to install and manage servers on client premises. “Our cloud services centralize Wi-Fi performance management. This is an excellent solution for organizations with many locations who need visibility into remote wireless networks,” concludes Reedy.