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BYOD Got You Down? Think Wireless First
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Susan Fogarty
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Susan Fogarty,
User Rank: Strategist
12/19/2013 | 3:14:20 PM
Re: Cost savings?
Mike, thanks for your response! It looks like a large university (or a large business) could potentially save a lot of money over time, if they think about this before they implement.
Marilyn Cohodas
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Marilyn Cohodas,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/18/2013 | 4:53:43 PM
Re: Cost savings?
I'm quite surprised that universities are bothering with LAN ports -- especially in  new dorm construction. With Gen Y growing up with practically ubiquitous wifi and mobile hot spots. I wonder if these coeds would even know what to do with the cable!  
mlouis@nwnit.com
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mlouis@nwnit.com,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/18/2013 | 1:02:48 PM
Re: Cost savings?
Susan,

Thanks for your reply. The cost savings from deploying dense WLAN versus wired LAN in some situations are definitely there. Deploying LAN cabling in older buildings is particularly expensive. WLAN installations can require less cabling and switch ports (1 cable per Access point versus dedicated LAN cabling per user) for the same basic connectivity in a given area. APs can support lots of users at high speed, even though they are shared medium. Since many of the users in university settings today rely predominantly on WLAN for mobile device connectivity you are going to end up deploying WLAN in most areas anyways. Forgoing the installation of additional LAN cabling not required for WLAN or building services (electronic door locks, cameras, etc.) can result in a lot of cost savings. Consider the cost of cabling to each user + networking switching hardware and maintenance costs. The cost can really add up if you are deploying LAN switches with 50 percent of the switch ports unused due to WLAN adoption.  In addition, since the access points are relatively inexpensive when compared to the cost of LAN switches, some customers don't even carry maintenance on access points, and thus don't incur ongoing on maintenance on the APs themselves. They just use spares. 

I think you will find that in some of these cases, like the dorm use above, you will see that adopting WLAN first and end-user-LAN cabling second will result in less overall cabling and network switching hardware freeing up money to spend elsewhere (security, addition WLAN services, etc.). I can't say that there will never be a need for LAN hard wired ports in some cases like this, just that as we move to more mobile computing platforms we are seeing a growing trend of overbuilt LAN capacity that can be eliminated and added back as capacity is required.
Susan Fogarty
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Susan Fogarty,
User Rank: Strategist
12/18/2013 | 8:31:24 AM
Cost savings?
Mike, this is some great advice for readers, obviously coming from the voice of experience. I'm wondering about the cost difference between wired vs wireless networks. It seems to me that not having to run cables and ports,  -- especially in a dense area like a dorm, or an office for that matter -- would save a lot of money in installation and maintenance. Do you have any sense of whether institutions are saving money with wireless?
Susan Fogarty
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Susan Fogarty,
User Rank: Strategist
12/18/2013 | 8:27:37 AM
Re: Wireless and BYOD
Paul, I agree. Assuming users will be wireless and then making exceptions for those who will not be makes sense to me too. I bet businesses have a lot could learn form universities about BYOD, since most of their users have always been bringing their own devices.
PaulS681
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PaulS681,
User Rank: Strategist
12/17/2013 | 8:11:47 PM
Wireless and BYOD
 

It makes a lot of sense to beef up your wireless. With BYOD most of those devices are connecting to the WLAN. I'm not a fan of BYOD but in certain applications, like a university, it makes perfect sense.


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