Aerohive extends value-oriented Connect line to all access points and switches

Aerohive introduced a new, value-focused model on two of their entry level APs earlier this year as a test case. Results were positive and it has been extended across the whole portfolio, including high end solutions.

Today, Aerohive Networks is announcing the extension of the Aerohive Connect product line they unveiled earlier this year, across their entire portfolio. The Connect line is based on a simplified version of Aerohive’s HiveManager NG, and is designed to provide enterprise grade connectivity, without the additional cost of enterprise features. It is however fully upgradeable to Aerohive Select – the company’s traditional type of solutions offerings.

“Aerohive has always had a straightforward value proposition, in having a truly scalable technology in our wi-fi platform,” said Mat Edwards, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Aerohive. “We’ve always been able to scale from mom and pop businesses to large multinationals, and combined that technology with cloud networking years back for flexibility. So while we’ve always had the ability to serve growing organizations, what we’ve done with Connect is take it to the next level.

“Plenty of customers want really good connectivity – as opposed to the SMB-focused solutions on the market – but they don’t want to break the bank doing it,” Edwards continued. “They don’t need things like advanced troubleshooting tools or VPN services. Connect gives customers and partners the ability to start very small – to get access points and cloud management, and support, and to get them subscription-free. That, for many organizations, is enough to get them going, and get enterprise grade capabilities without the enterprise price.”

The Aerohive Connect Line was launched on January 31, 2017 on two of Aerohive’s entry point access points.

“It was done this way to test the market,” Edwards said. “It was a new strategy and we wanted to make sure we got it right. On the front end, with the pricing, it’s a compelling offering, but on the back end for partners, it also simplified operations. It halved the number of SKUs, and simplified hardware and software purchases.”

Edwards said the positive reaction from the initial two products green-lighted the decision to extend Connect throughout the portfolio.

“We took the decision a month ago to offer Connect over the entire switching portfolio,” he said.

“Connect offers some clear advantages for the low and mid-part of the market,” Edwards stated. “Every organization today needs wi-fi of some description. But traditional Cisco or HPE –even traditional Aerohive – doesn’t fit in that budget.”

“The exciting thing about this is that it can grow with them,” Edwards said. “It’s not a cut down version. This costs significantly less than HPE or Cisco. With others, you will pay less than this, but you get what you pay for, and when you change your needs, you have to change your solution.”

Edwards described the target market for Connect as SMBs, SMEs, some retailers and the hospitality industry.

“It’s customers that just want great connectivity and centralized management,” he said.

Aerohive also made the decision to sell Aerohive Connect for a flat rate – without subscription pricing. U.S. list prices for APs range from $229 for 2×2 802.11ac, to $1129 for the latest 4×4 802.11ac wave 2.

“The subscription-free model addresses the needs of the mid-market,” Edwards said. “We know that hardware is not the true value for our customers. It’s the software and feature set. But for ones who who just want connectivity, this is a subscription-free cloud.”

For Aerohive partners, Edwards stressed that this will be a new and disruptive offer for its target segments.

“For the traditional marketplace, it gives our partners an opportunity to be disruptive, and say this will be the only solution that can meet those customers’ needs as they change,” he said. “The disruptive price point will let partners build out managed services as well, because we are also developing an MSP offering around Connect.”