Speed and Affordability
Cisco or any other vendor Gigabit Ethernet Switch is fast and able to meet the data transfer needs of most small businesses. To illustrate: A 1GB file takes less than 15 seconds to transfer across a gigabit network, compared to more than 2.5 minutes on a Fast Ethernet network. Indeed, mid-level network attached storage (NAS) appliances that I’ve tested over a Gigabit Ethernet network have comparable performance to that of a fast local hard disk drive; combining two cables using link aggregation further increases the speed.
Ethernet has always been designed to be easily up gradable and where possible, backwards compatible. A small business setting up a wired Ethernet environment for the first time will probably want to lay Cat 6a cable for inherent support of up to 10Gbps. This is especially true in the server closet, or for up links between buildings. Companies that plan to upgrade their Network — and have existing Cat 5e Network infrastructure in place — can switch to Gigabit Ethernet without any rewiring needed.
Speed up your Wi-Fi
The fastest ratified WLAN specification in the market today would be 802.11n, which in 3×3 mode offers up to 450Mbps of raw throughput. This works out to be 900Mbps if operating at both 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands, though the numbers are completely theoretical.
On a practical note, I’ve seen business-grade 3×3-capable Wi-Fi access points push 300Mbps in speed tests. This makes it evident that sticking to 100Mbps Fast Ethernet will only serve to limit Wi-Fi devices.