Wi-Fi vs. Ethernet: Why Businesses Should Be on a Wired Connection

We live in a wireless world. At home and in the workplace, we adore the convenience that wireless protections provide. The popularity of this approach was evident years ago, but this solution is even more desirable due to the past decade’s significant improvements in Wi-Fi technology. These developments have prompted faster and more reliable connections that allow us to browse, stream, and download to our heart’s delight.

Given the inherent flexibility and convenience of modern Wi-Fi, it can be tough for the average user to understand why anyone would opt for a wired connection instead. Unfortunately, however, while Wi-Fi offers a myriad of benefits, it’s not yet free of downsides.

Security concerns, in particular, warrant consideration, particularly for businesses that are prone to breaches. While a variety of tools and protocols are available for making Wi-Fi more secure, it remains highly vulnerable to interference from malicious parties. Thankfully, ethernet remains an excellent option for improving both security and performance in business settings.

Advantages of Ethernet for Your Business

Ethernet connections might not be as convenient as their wireless counterparts, but they hold a variety of benefits worth considering, as outlined below:

Speed

Modern Wi-Fi may achieve lightning speeds that were unheard of just a few years ago, but ethernet retains a notable edge. Category 7 ethernet cables can support transfer speeds up to 10 Gigabytes per second (Gbps). The fastest widely available consumer Wi-Fi speeds pale in comparison.

With dozens or even hundreds of employees all sharing the same network, a reliable, blazing-fast connection is critical. Even the slightest delays may lead to downtime that can hamper productivity and cost your business in the process.

The cliché “time is money” is certainly true when it comes to office internet speeds. Wired connections make it easier and more efficient to send large files throughout companies and to clients all around the world.

Latency

Raw bandwidth does not work alone to determine the quality or speed of a given connection. Latency is also critical. While impressive latency isn’t absolutely essential for most residential users, it is crucial in the workplace.

Imagine each work task on your office computer taking an extra millisecond to perform. Now, multiply that by several hundred, and you’ll be shocked by the amount of time wasted. The wireless nature of Wi-Fi means that latency will always exist in some form, whereas a wired ethernet connection’s latency is minuscule enough to render it practically unnoticeable.

Interference

No two offices look exactly alike. These inherent differences cause numerous interference issues for Wi-Fi networks. Building materials such as concrete and metal block signals from reaching certain parts of the office. Various wireless devices may wreak havoc on Wi-Fi signals. Satellite dishes and other electronics pump out signal interference, thereby hampering the effectiveness and speed of office internet connections.

While it may not be realistic – or practical – to wire every single room in an office for ethernet, it certainly beats the alternative of having a spotty, unreliable Wi-Fi signal. Communal areas such as cafeterias, break rooms, or office lobbies can get by just fine with exclusive Wi-Fi access, but individual offices, cubicle rows, and other workspaces should feature ethernet connections.

Security

Security represents one of the most notable benefits of ethernet over Wi-Fi. While wireless security can be strengthened through the use of strong encryption and firewalls, it remains decidedly vulnerable. This is especially true in the age of the Internet of Things (IoT), in which wireless connections encourage the use of far more devices. While this improves convenience, each additional device presents yet another opportunity for infiltration.

With ethernet connections, physical access requirements ensure greater security. On a wireless connection, outside threats can attempt to access networks from anywhere key signals can be received. However, with a physical ethernet connection, it’s far more difficult for hackers or other malicious entities to gain access to otherwise vulnerable networks. Thieves looking to steal information are far more likely to attempt to do so via wireless networks than by physically breaking into business locations.

Improve Your Connection with Expert Business IT Services

Are you currently on the hunt for effective solutions that will improve the speed, reliability, and security of your business network connection? The experts at NerdsToGoare happy to help. As a top IT company, NerdsToGo offers a range of commercial solutions, including full office ethernet and cabling services. Additionally, we’re pleased to provide custom business networks and business managed IT solutions for a variety of local companies.

At NerdsToGo, we’re determined to help you make the most of your internet service provider (ISP) setup. In many cases, that involves taking full advantage of ethernet. Contact us today to learn more about the value of implementing a wired connection – and to discover how your company can benefit from our expert business IT services.

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