WiFi operates in two unlicensed frequencies, 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. Most devices, including the iPad, are dual-band clients that can operate in either frequency. "The fact of the matter is that the 5 GHz frequency is much cleaner, much more space than the 2.4 GHz," says Kozup, "so we want to make sure those iPads are connecting as frequently as possible into the 5 GHz frequency."
The problem is that dual-band devices tend to connect into the 2.4 GHz. Cisco has come out with a product called BandSelect that automatically gets dual-band devices to use the 5 GHz frequency.
Cisco's advice: Because 5 GHz has eight times the spectrum of 2.4 GHz, and it is usually less congested, Cisco BandSelect helps make sure that clients that can use the 5 GHz bands do so. This helps free up 2.4 GHz in mixed client environments.
5. Are Mobile Devices Secure?
Are iPhones, iPads, Androids, and other mobile devices secure enough for the enterprise? They can be, says Kozup, as long as they are properly configured with the right authentication protocols.
Cisco's advice: Certain mobile devices support a variety of 802.1x authentication methods for enterprise environments. WiFi networks are automatically displayed by each device or can be located under the WiFi settings profiles. The correct 802.1x method is automatically selected for each wireless SSID or it can be manually chosen at Settings > WiFi > Security.
If no digital certificate is required, users simply enter their user ID and password in order to gain secure access to the enterprise wireless network. If the organization's authentication method requires digital certificates, configuration profiles can be created by IT and sent to mobile device users.
6. Clean up the Air Space
If you're experiencing poor performance with the WiFi network, it could mean that you need to clean up the airspace. Microwave ovens, cordless telephones, Bluetooth devices, wireless speakers, baby monitors, and garage door openers can be cluttering one of the frequencies, Kozup says.
"Think about all the Bluetooth devices that enter a business," Kozup says. "They could potentially impact performance of iPhones, iPads and Androids in that environment."
Cisco's advice: Cisco has a spectrum analysis tool called CleanAir that detects and automatically mitigates wireless radio frequency interference by configuring the wireless network around the interference source so that devices can communicate in a clean spectrum with the access point.