Cutting The Desktop Cord?

April 2005
Business Communications Review;Apr2005, Vol. 35 Issue 4, p4
Trade Publication
This article presents information regarding the future of wireless technology and wireless LANs. It costs somewhere between $80-$200 to pull a cable to one location. By comparison, enterprise-class access points will be in the mid-$300 range this year, according to Greg Collins of the Dell'Oro Group, who also writes in this issue. If the access point serves 2-4 stations or more, it's cheaper than pulling the cable. The tricky part about wireless is its properties of uncertainty. Just about anything can affect radio waves' propagation; the only thing these effects have in common is that they make throughput worse, never better. But the case for wireless-only LANs won't be a slam-dunk. It may be expensive to wire up a station, but once the wiring is in, there's little additional cost. Even if one does have to pull new cabling to meet a new standard, that's a once-in-a-decade or so event. In contrast, the 802.11 WLAN standards are advancing rapidly, and the more APs one installs, the more one has to replace or at least firmware-upgrade when new standards come around. And it's not just standards on throughput that are in flux, new standards are still emerging around security and quality of service.


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