Sophos is retiring the AP series of indoor access points. This news comes as no surprise to us. We have already speculated about it in the eleventh episode of our podcast. When the UTM version 9.7 with support for the APX access points was released at the end of 2019 it no longer made sense for owners of a UTM Firewall to buy the old AP models.
End of Sale - 31 March 2020
So now it is official and the AP series can only be ordered until the 31 of march 2020. Here is a summary of all indoor access points of the AP series and which APX Sophos recommends as an alternative:
- Sophos AP15 and AP15C > Sophos APX 120
- Sophos AP55 and AP55C > Sophos APX 320
- Sophos AP100 and AP100C > Sophos APX 530 or Sophos APX 740
End of Sale even for Central Wireless licenses!
If you have managed your AP series access points via Central Wireless, you will no longer be able to purchase licenses for them after the 31st of March 2020, except for the AP 100X (outdoor access point). After that, no new features will be introduced for these models in Central and only critical security patches and bug fixes will be released, but only until the 31st of March 2021 (End of Support).
End of Support - 31 March 2021
Sophos explains the 'End of Support' status as follows:
- RMAs are still being processed, provided a valid warranty or support license is in place.
- Technical support will no longer be provided. Calls to the hotline will only be accepted for RMA processing.
- No more software updates or bug fixes will be provided for the affected AP models.
- The APs can still run on the last supported firmware version
End of Life - 31 March 2023
However, on the 31st of March 2023, this will definitely be the end and all affected AP models will no longer be able to be used in Sophos Central, the XG Firewall (SFOS) or SG UTM.
Price increase of 30%
If you now switch from the AP series to the APX Access Point, you will face a price difference of about 30%. While today (January 2020) you can buy the AP15 Access Point for 107.25 CHF / 97.50 € net, the small APX 120 is available for 140.25 CHF / 127.50 €.
In my opinion, this would be okay if the devices were state of the art. But the APX series is currently not delivered with the latest Wi-Fi 6 standard IEEE 802.11ax, but still with Wi-Fi 5 IEEE 802.11ac.
So if you are thinking of replacing all APs with APX, I recommend waiting a little longer. Maybe Sophos will bring an update with the latest Wi-Fi standard later. Because Sophos itself also believes that access points should last longer. That's why you get more warranty with the APX series. The AP series had 1 year warranty, the APX now have 5 years warranty. This is certainly one reason for the higher price.
Outdoor Access Point AP100X not affected
As stated in the Sophos announcement, only indoor access points are affected. The AP100X is the only outdoor access point from Sophos to date, and will remain in the product range for the time being. According to our information there will be a change as well soon. In the coming months, Sophos is expected to introduce the first outdoor access point in the APX series (APX 320X).