WIred vs Wireless Backhaul

Which should your organization choose?

When determining the best underlying infrastructure to deliver reliable and effective network communications, enterprises, telecom carriers, academic institutions, and government agencies have two main options: wired vs. wireless backhaul. While each option has its unique advantages and disadvantages, backhaul that works for one business may not be the best fit for another.

Benefits of Wireless Backhaul

Wireless backhaul uses point-to-point or point-to-multipoint microwave or radio waves to transmit signals between access points to the end user. Wireless backhaul is often touted as the most flexible and cost-effective backhaul technology, enabling organizations to quickly install and scale as needed.

Benefits of wireless backhaul include:

  • Affordability
    Wireless backhaul requires less infrastructure assets compared to its wired counterpart, reducing the equipment and installation costs.
  • Ease of Deployment
    Compared to wired backhaul, wireless backhaul is much simpler to install and implement, allowing businesses to get the network up and running faster. As communications technology such as 5G emerge, telecom carriers looking to upgrade their infrastructures quickly can leverage wireless backhaul for carriers to expand their coverage offerings within short timeframes.
  • Scalable Capacity
    Organizations will likely need to continue increasing their network capacity to meet the needs of their customers who increasingly require stronger infrastructures to support more video and multimedia applications accessed via mobile devices. Wireless backhaul addresses this challenge by providing enough bandwidth to support this trend, while allowing businesses to upgrade as needed.

Disadvantages of Wireless:

Compared to wired backhaul, wireless backhaul provides slower transfer speeds, shares network space used by other devices, requires more maintenance, and has a lower maximum bandwidth. In addition, wireless connections are more susceptible to interference compared to wired variants.

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Advantages and Disadvantages of Wired Backhaul

Wired backhaul, a setup traditionally leveraging fiber, ethernet, or coaxial cables to transfer, offers organizations virtually unlimited bandwidth with minimal maintenance, however the setup is more expensive compared to the wireless option.

Benefits of wired backhaul include:

  • Higher Max Network Speeds
    Wired backhaul options allow businesses to offer faster download and upload speeds for their end users compared to wireless connections.
  • More Stable Connection
    Businesses leveraging wired backhaul have a better performing and more reliable connection compared to wireless backhaul, partially due to less network interference.

Disadvantages of Wired Backhaul

Compared to wireless backhaul, wired technology has a high price tag for installation and equipment. In addition, businesses are physically limited to where cable is placed, making it more difficult to quickly expand compared to wireless technology.

Which to Choose?

Wireless backhaul is a great option for organizations looking to expand network capacity without spending too much money to install cables and build infrastructure. This aspect enables businesses to quickly adjust their networks to address customer needs or emerging technology. 

For businesses with the budget available and who want maximum performance, wired backhaul will be the optimal choice. The increased stability will reduce network strain and promote uninterrupted connectivity.

Learn more: Speak to an Expert to Discuss Options

Receive Managed Wireless Backhaul With SCE Carrier Solutions

SCE Carrier Solutions’ wireless backhaul infrastructure provides organizations with reliable network services that promote uptime. While building and maintaining a wireless infrastructure can be time-consuming and expensive, SCE takes over the installation and maintenance responsibility for customers, enabling businesses to quickly scale as needed.


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