Re: Cost savings?
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.