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Cisco Meraki

Solution Overview

This section explains how Kontakt.io Bluetooth beacons and tags can be used with Meraki Access Points.

Leveraging Your Current Wi-Fi Infrastructure

Every office space, hospital, or factory floor is already populated with a grid of access points in order to provide wireless network connectivity. Some of these access points may not only be limited to provide sole Wi-Fi capabilities but versions such as Meraki MR32, MR42, MR52, MR53, and MR72 which are BLE-enabled can now provide various IoT solutions. . Kontakt.io & Meraki integration offers our customers lower TCO (total cost of ownership) by leveraging the existing infrastructure with Kontakt.io Bluetooth Low Energy beacons and tags.

How It Works

Architecture

Meraki Access Points feed the Kontakt.io Cloud with captured data about signal strengths through API that we are integrated with that data. It is then processed by the Kontakt.io Cloud, allowing customers to access this data through reliable, well documented Kontakt.io Apps API. We offer the following endpoints:

  • Positions - allow you to get the position of a device, for example, the x, y coordinates, and the floor where the device (beacon, tag) is located.
  • Collocations - allow you to get a list of all devices that were in ‘contact with’ a specific device. Meaning that distance between these devices was less than 2 meters.
  • Data Streams - the configured streams containing processed telemetry and positions (location) data. Note that this data can be also pre-computed by the Meraki Cloud and sent to the Kontakt.io Cloud, which will be covered in the next sections.

Expand Your RTLS Accuracy With Additional Gateways

Kontakt.io customers can use the combination of Meraki Access Points with Kontakt.io gateways - Portal Lights in order to add flexibility and enrich your current solution with additional gateways for more precise, room-level accuracy needed for contact tracing or asset tracking use cases.

Prerequisites

Integration Requirements

This section explains what steps need to be taken before you start configuring the integration.

Access Point Configuration

In order to configure the integration you need to have access points installed physically and have an account created on the Meraki Cloud management panel with all your access points associated with it.

Kontakt.io Location Engine Subscription

Processing data from Meraki Access Points also requires an active Location Engine subscription for all Kontakt.io beacons or tags. Also, you should have an account created on panel.kontakt.io - please see Getting Started section in our Knowledge Base to learn more.

Access Point Compatibility

The majority of of Meraki Access Points are already equipped with Bluetooth technology, but MR 20 and MR 70 do not support these capabilities. Please refer to this official Meraki list to see if your access point is Bluetooth-enabled.

Note

Please note that this integration requires at least the MR 27.5 software version installed on all access points.

Configuration

This section explains how to configure integration on both Meraki Cloud and Kontakt.io Cloud sides.

Enable Cisco Meraki Dashboard API

Integration with Meraki devices requires enabling access to Cisco Meraki Dashboard API. Please log in to your Cisco Meraki Dashboard, select Organization and click on Settings (Pic.1) . Scroll down and make sure that "Enable access to the Cisco Meraki Dashboard API" is selected (Pic. 2).

Pic. 1 Organisation -> Configure -> Settings
Pic. 2 "Enable access to the Cisco Meraki Dashboard API"

Generate Meraki API key

Click on the link in the description below the Enable access to the Cisco Meraki Dashboard API checkbox or in the top right corner click on your email address and select My Profile(Pic. 3). Once you're on your profile settings page, scroll down to the API access section and click on Generate new API key button. This API key needs at least read-only access to your Meraki organization. Copy the API key to a safe place, you'll need it later.

Pic. 3 Go to "My Profile"
Pic. 4 "Generate New API key"

Get Validator

Go to the Network-wide section in the Dashboard's sidebar and select General from the Configure column. Scroll down to the Location and scanning section on the newly opened page. Make sure that the Analytics and Scanning API is enabled. Then, just as with the API key, copy the Validator value for later use.

Pic. 5 "Get validator"

Add new Meraki Integration

Now you will need to switch to panel.kontakt.io On the left side menu please go to Gateways -> External providers and select "Start Meraki Integration.

Pic. 6 "Start Meraki Integration"

Populate following fields with the "API Key" and "Validator" we previously generated and saved from the Meraki Cloud management panel. After the API Key and Validator are pasted, please select Generate Secret, you'll need it later.

Pic 7. "Configure Meraki Integration""

Add Meraki devices

In the next step a new form will appear where you should enter a MAC address that identifies your Meraki device, and then press the Add Device button. Repeat this process for all Meraki access points you want to add as Location Engine sources.

Pic 8. "Add Meraki devices"

After this operation, your access points should appear in Gateways -> Gateway List just like other gateway i.e. Portal Light Gateway.

Pic. 9 "Gateway list"

Note

Please note, Gateways -> Overview dashboard is currently not supported for external gateways or access points.

Data endpoint configuration

Integration options

As mentioned before there are two possible ways to configure integration:

  • Positions on map are being calculated by Kontakt.io Cloud only
  • Positions on map is calculated by Meraki Cloud and sent to Kontakt.io Cloud For these two possibilities there are two different endpoints being used.

  • https://meraki.prod.kontakt.io/v3/signals/company_id

  • https://meraki.prod.kontakt.io/v3/positions/company_id

Note

Company_id can be found on Meraki Integration Panel.

Pic. 1 "Edit Meraki integration"

Location and scanning

Go to Meraki Cloud Panel -> Network-wide -> General and scroll down to section "Location and scanning".

Pic. 2 Location and scanning

After you paste a chosen endpoint with the correct company_id please paste the secret key generated before and go to the bottom of the section and click "Save changes"

Additional steps on Meraki Cloud Panel

If you decide to use position endpoints, there is additional configuration needed on the Meraki Cloud Panel side - please see the following articles on Meraki Documentation:

  • Using a Floor Plan or Custom Map in Dashboard https://documentation.meraki.com/General_Administration/Monitoring_and_Reporting/Using_a_Floor_Plan_or_Custom_Map_in_Dashboard
  • Placing Devices on the Map in Dashboard https://documentation.meraki.com/General_Administration/Monitoring_and_Reporting/Placing_Devices_on_the_Map_in_Dashboard