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Want solid wireless performance? Get fiber

By Donna Donnawitz
March 7, 2013

Lots of people are talking about how smartphones and tablets are suddenly all over the place. You can't walk into an office anymore without seeing almost as many people on a mobile device as a desktop. PC component sales, particularly memory revenues, echo this trend and point toward a present, not just a future, where smartphones and tablets are used just as widely, if not more frequently, than traditional PCs. This trend isn't just changing the hardware industry, it's leading to a complete shift in networking. The end result - cabling matters more than ever.

I know, I know, it sounds like I have things backwards. After all, we live in an increasingly wireless world where mobile is dominant. But that bandwidth used by mobile devices has to come from somewhere and it needs a destination and let's face it, radio signals really aren't that good. I mean, they can carry our calls, video and apps, but they aren't going to provide backhaul anytime soon, that's where cabling comes in.

Considering the mobile performance equation
Wireless network services are integral to the increasingly mobile global computing landscape, but if you look closely at how mobile networks are constructed, you'll notice that they aren't that different than traditional systems.

In a typical business network, the end user only sees the LAN, which is made of a bunch of Ethernet cables that attach to routers and switches in the office. What you don't see is how those switches go back to the data center access network, which connects to the data center core, which eventually extends, along with the access system, to a backhaul network that supports all bandwidth and attaches to the service provider network.

Most companies still have these networks installed and are using them. At the same time, they are also supporting mobile users, whether through Wi-Fi or by allowing them to connect to the mobile service provider network. Wireless performance is a priority for many users and the key deciding factor is backhaul. Radio signal towers increasingly have to be attached to fiber backhaul infrastructure, a major problem since most signal towers use Ethernet. Media converters play a key role in enabling interoperability, allowing the data to flow from end users to the web quickly and efficiently. Without fiber, the current mobile revolution would be impossible. As smartphone and tablet use rises, many experts agree fiber will become even more important as a mobile enabler.

Perle has an extensive range of Managed and Unmanaged Fiber Media Converters to extended copper-based Ethernet equipment over a fiber optic link, multimode to multimode and multimode to single mode fiber up to 160km.


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