The Wired Infrastructure Growing Challenge
Due to the rapid growth of ever-more powerful mobile devices, enterprise networks are struggling to keep pace with rising bandwidth demands. Adoption of advanced wireless connectivity technologies, such as 802.11ac WiFi and small cells, means that network-access speeds must move beyond their designed limits of 1 Gigabit per second (Gbps) to 2.5 Gbps and 5 Gbps. NBASE-T™ technology supports these faster speeds without requiring a cable upgrade, thus economically meeting end-users’ needs.
How About Upgrading the Cable Infrastructure?
Upgrading the cable infrastructure requires replacing existing copper cabling with higher speed copper or fiber-optic cables. The cost of a cable upgrade is estimated to be $300 per cable pull. A campus-wide upgrade could cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Category 5e (Cat5e) or Category 6 (Cat6) copper cables represent close to 100 percent of the installed cable infrastructure in enterprises around the world. Wholesale replacement requires substantial installation costs, time, and invasive disruption to the physical infrastructure of any enterprise building—cost estimates are billions of dollars worldwide. Running on already-installed cable, as well as supporting better cable in greenfield deployments, NBASE-T technology avoids cable upgrade expenses, reducing total cost of ownership (TCO).
Power Over Ethernet
Power over Ethernet (PoE) is fundamental in enterprise deployments, as well as large-building infrastructures, such as airports, shopping malls, and stadiums. As its name suggests, PoE provides power to remote systems via legacy Cat5e or Cat6 cables. Fiber-optic cable connections, for example, do not have PoE capabilities. NBASE-T technology supports all PoE standards, facilitating its use as a replacement for existing 1 Gbps networks and making it ideal for greenfield deployments.
The NBASE-T Solution
Introduction of NBASE-T technology can increase network speeds of existing Cat5e/Cat6 cables up to 5 Gbps at lengths up to 100m. Using advanced physical-layer integrated-circuit technology, NBASE-T solutions can be deployed on next-generation wireless access points and network switch interfaces, allowing administrators to avoid the wholesale replacement of cables as well as substantial installation time, cost and disruption associated with replacement. In short order, NBASE-T solutions will be deployed widely, providing content creators, broadband consumers and others a low-cost path to multigigabit speeds.
Networking products based on this economical multigigabit technology are available today, and organizations seeking to upgrade their 1 Gbps networks should factor NBASE-T equipment into their plans.