The Network Hub

Jan 28 2009   5:10PM GMT

Aruba courts Nortel customers with multivendor WLAN management suite

Shamus McGillicuddy Shamus McGillicuddy Profile: Shamus McGillicuddy

Aruba Networks has joined the growing ring of vultures circling above Nortel Networks’ Toronto headquarters, where executives are busily trying to restructure Nortel while under the cover of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Aruba announced an “investment protection” program for customers of Nortel wireless LAN (WLAN) technology. The vendor is offering Nortel customers a discount on Aruba’s AirWave Wireless Management Suite, a WLAN management technology that can work in multi-vendor environments.

Nervous Nortel customers, who are worried that Nortel might not be around a year or two from now to support their wireless infrastructure, might find this offer from Aruba appealing. It gives them a a way of managing legacy Nortel infrastructure.

And Aruba no doubt sees this as a potential foot in the door with Nortel customers who will likely give new WLAN vendors a good luck when it comes time to refresh or expand their infrastructure. Today, Aruba can sell them AirWave. Next year, Aruba will have a better chance of selling them access points. Now if only Aruba had a wired networking division as well, they could attack Nortel on multiple fronts.

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