Uniquiti Networks -> Ubiquiti Labs -> AmpliFi

  • Fancy a fun & meaningless discussion on the marketing of AmpliFi products?
    Everyone has a different introductory experience with new products, none of which are right or wrong, just personal
    So nobody is trying to change anyone's mind or anything like that - just sharing

    I personally found Ubiquiti Labs to be an interesting study of a professional / enterprise grade networking company trying to break into the consumer grade mesh router market

    Ubiquiti Labs was set up as subsidiary to sell the AmpliFi consumer product range, among other initiatives

    But for me their marketing message was schizophrenic, lacking brand identity

    Starting with on product branding, Ubiquiti Labs had their own shiny new logo which is hard to see as white on a light background...

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    ...the difference being the word 'LABS' underneath the traditional Ubiquiti Networks U Logo as found on their official Marekting Logos website...

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    ...compared to Ubiquiti Networks logos which always have 'UBIQUITY' & 'NETWORKS' presented with the traditional U logo

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    Then there is the AmpliFi product line branding...

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    (Sorry - I can't control the image scaling when linking the official artwork)

    The HD routers have Ubiquiti U logos prominent on the tops of the cubes...
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    ...no Ubiquiti Labs logos, and the AmpliFi logo underneath the cube

    MeshPoint HD's at least have both the Ubiquiti U logo and AmpliFi presented on the front sides...
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    ...but still no Ubiquiti Labs

    Teleport (arguably the least consumer friendly product in the range) has the AmpliFi logo on the front...
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    ...and the Ubiquiti Labs logo on the back against the wall...
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    AmpliFi Instant, for both the Router and the MeshPoint in the kit, put the Ubiquiti U logo on top and the AmpliFi logo on the front...
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    The Gamer's Edition kit has the Ubiquiti U logo on the top of the cube and some other AmpliFi range branding on the MeshPoints...
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    Disclosure: I don't have a Gamer's Edition, but I do own and use all of the other products, and unfortunately I am currently not in a position to check to see if any of the products have any other logos hidden on them anywhere
    The above summary is only based on the images located on the AmpliFi Store

    For me personally it was interesting that the HD router placed a Ubiquiti U logo prominent on the top of the device (especially visible on the black edition that I preferred) and essentially hid the AmpliFi logo underneath

    But that is just branding and they are proud to be a Ubiquiti product, although I wonder what ever happened to Ubiquiti Labs?

    The AmpliFi website has evolved since I remember first visiting it, but thankfully they have retained their Blogs which I read with interest, especially The Evolution of Home Wi-Fi posted by Ubiquiti founder Robert Pera where he describes the origins of the AmpliFi product line and states:
    "...the goal of “AmpliFi” is to amplify modern home network coverage and performance"
    "Ubiquiti was in a unique position to solve the general dissatisfaction with consumer Wi-Fi technology by leveraging my personal experience in the original Apple Airport Router product designs combined with our development experience and IP from the Enterprise Wi-Fi UniFi platform (which is quickly becoming the standard for high-performance Wi-Fi applications in professional applications). The result is the elegant AmpliFi Mesh Wi-Fi technology platform which we hope will set a new standard for consumer Wi-Fi networking design and performance."

    While Mr. Pera talks a lot about design inspiration and performance, he never once mentions 'consumer friendly' or 'plug-n-play' being objectives for AmpliFi
    Part 2 of his blog and the other early blogs only serves up technical explanations and solutions reinforcing the introduction of Ubiquiti technology into the home and are quite far away from the casual general consumer audience

    But what about the AmpliFi Press page which links to the online reviews that Ubiquiti seeded with product?
    To me it was a mixed bag:

    Gadget Review primarily focused on design and performance, although they did compliment the easy intuitive setup

    Gizmodo made similar comments but pushed the Ubiquiti angle with "It’s from Ubiquiti Networks, an enterprise networking company" and also interestingly commented "The pre-release version of the Amplifi that I tested didn’t have a way to adjust settings on the router via the web. (I’m told that feature will be there when it ships to consumers August 1)" which while true, probably didn't have as many options in the Web UI as expected

    I can't read the WSJ review without a subscription, but the intro teaser is addressed to a "home tech-support personnel" audience, and not casual consumers

    Forbes even titled their article "Ubiquiti AmpliFi Ships August 1, Brings Professional Networking Home"

    BGR was complimentary of the performance and ease of use

    TweakTown make similar comments but largely associate the product with Ubiquiti..."leading the way into consumer homes for Ubiquiti"

    ArsTechnica make an interesting comment that Ubiquiti was trying to reach both the plug-n-play crowd and a more technical crowd, providing additional information such as "...firewall (the device runs BusyBox and uses iptables under the hood)", "...the Amplifi kit supports ssh access out of the box (via LAN or WLAN, not the WAN side) and if you prefer to sysadmin from the command line, it looks like there’s some stuff for you to play with there without having to use the app" and "...fans of the command line can connect to the base via ssh for some configuration flexibility (use ubnt as the username and the SSID password as the password, though a separate admin password can be configured if desired). A quick bit of poking around shows that the base is running BusyBox with Linux (using the 4.1.6 kernel) and is powered by a Qualcomm Atheros QCA956X SOC with 128MB of RAM. The default ruleset for iptables can be seen here."

    Geek Dad compliments the design, performance and applauds Ubiquiti for bringing professional grade networking equipment into the home in a very easy to set up and easy to use "forget about it" product

    PC Mag doesn't really say much of anything...

    Finally design milk complimented the design, the technology, and concluded "Amplifi engineers and designers have created a wi-fi router system that feels instantly recognizable and understandable by anyone already used to activity tracker apps or other app-based interfaces. The Ubiquiti Networks Amplifi HD isn’t the first, nor will it be the last a next generation of connected home devices, but it represents one of the best current consumer-friendly experiences in a category not traditionally known for being easy nor understandable, especially for larger residences with wi-fi signal challenging floor plans."

    Reading through all of that research, some people like myself, see too much emphasis on Ubiquiti Networks, very little mention of Ubiquiti Labs, totally get that AmpliFi is a consumer focused line, which doesn't preclude it from having more advanced features even though they subsequently adopted a 'plug-n-play' mantra (never alluded to by the founder's product design philosophy) to justify some product choices (and arguably completely violated with Teleport) - that is my personal experience

    Other people see a purely consumer product line (AmpliFi) without much of a brand identity to speak of (Ubiquiti Labs?) and no need to associate the products with their parent company (Ubiquiti Networks) - nothing wrong with that

    Doesn't really matter either way...I really like the AmpliFi router range and I will personally wish them further success

    But I totally accept when some people feel that the AmpliFi line should lean a little more towards Ubiquiti Networks than it currently does and encourages AmpliFi to improve in that direction, as it only makes for better products all around

  • @derek-saville
    Look at the end of the day I do understand where you're coming from and yes the device has a lot of short comings but that doesn't mean it's not a still kick ass products.

    But it appears that you took a bunch of articles at face value, they are sole opinion peices of their authors, you can easily email the sales department for validation of such information as to weather or not SSH functionality is available or even hell Google the product manual that's what I do before I buy something.

    I still failed to see how it has a schizophrenic identity when the base of the router has ubquity labs branding on it, it just appears to be not picking for the sake of it.

    All I've seen so far is a pointless exercise in time wasting with no obvious end goals.

    ..... Alternative Thought Ahead in an attempted to understand what you are trying to articulate......

    Ubquity should consult with publication before hand in order to verify that the information they are providing to the potential customers is as accurate as humanly possible and you are perceiving this as a falure in quality control, and a lack of branding consistency in visible areas which to me is a major nitpick for something that you are not going to be looking at all the time, but I can sort of see your point about it where there should be a consistent recognisable logos and or branding, I understand how that is important.

    If I'm understanding this correctly there is a major lack of consistency with the branding of the product line and information about it's functionality which is something that I could understand if you had just said that simply in the first place, but you forgot to touch on the USB port an the website that mentioned the Nas functionality.

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