What Is a PoE Switch

What Is a PoE Switch

PoE switches are a crucial enabler of Power over Ethernet (PoE) technology, which has taken over the telecommunication and business world. With the introduction of Industry 4.0 and more IoT devices than ever before, PoE switches have immense potential and applications.

But what exactly is a PoE switch, where is it used, what does it do, and how does it benefit your business?

Let’s discuss all these points in detail to help you understand this device, its function, benefits, and more.

What Is a PoE Switch?

A Power over Ethernet switch is a network device that enables PoE technology. It allows you to supply power and network connectivity to the powered devices (PDs) through a single Ethernet cable. This switch mechanism provides increased efficiency and structure to your business network and cabling.

There are many different PoE switches available in the market, mainly managed and unmanaged, that can enable better management of your business network. These devices typically come with 8, 12, 24, and 48 Ethernet ports, so you have a wide range of connectivity options.

PoE applications are wide, and while they are primarily used for business networks, you can also use them for your home network and outdoor or indoor applications. They allow you to simultaneously transmit data and power to various connected devices.

You can connect PoE devices to your office desktop computers, wireless access points (APs), VoIP phones, video conferencing devices, TVs, monitors, security systems, IP cameras, and many other powered devices through Ethernet cables.

Why Use PoE for Business?

Using Power over Ethernet technology or PoE switches becomes obvious when you compare it to a non-PoE switch. As the name suggests, non-PoE switches do not support PoE technology and are the most basic network switches you can get.

They only provide data transmission for your employees and users over Ethernet cables and no power supply. If you want to enable PoE technology with a non-PoE switch, you have to set up an intermediary or midspan power sourcing equipment (PSE) such as a PoE injector between the PDs and the non-PoE switch.

A Power over Ethernet injector “injects” or enables power supply with the data transmissions from the Ethernet cable connected to the non-PoE switch. Then, it transmits the data and power supply to the connected PDs.

While you may think this eliminates the need for a Power over Ethernet switch, it only complicates matters for a non-PoE switch system. The PoE injector requires a separate power cable to inject power and enable PoE. If you are using multiple injectors, they will all require their power cables.

This is not the case with a PoE switch because you only need a single power cable connected to the switch. The switch will supply power and transmit data to all connected PDs via Ethernet cable. PoE switches enable businesses and organizations to deploy convenient wireless networks with fewer cables and maintenance problems.

Benefits of a PoE Switch

Here are some key benefits of opting for a Power over Ethernet switch for your business network.

·       Savings

When your business has a PoE switch, you can save time and money on buying, installing, and maintaining additional PSEs, cables, outlets, and connectors.

·       Convenience

A PoE switch can simplify your business network in various ways. You do not need to consider installation areas for PSEs or worry about the power supply to PDs. Less cable management is involved, which is great for maintenance and can also help reduce network downtime for your business.

Moreover, you do not require special cabling or various power cables. Power over Ethernet switches work with regular Ethernet cables, depending on the data rate supported by the PoE port. Of course, you’ll need better Ethernet cables and network devices such as a PoE switch for a higher data rate.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Remember that your business network will only be as fast as its slowest network component. If a single cable or network device is inferior, it compromises the performance of the entire business network. Hence, you should consult expert professionals like Communications Solutions Inc. before installing any new business network components.

·       Flexibility

You can expect better flexibility with PSEs and non-PoE switches since they do not restrict your business network. Power over Ethernet switches allow you to install PDs where they are required and not where PSEs will allow them to be.

For example, with PoE switches, the IP cameras of your security system can be installed where they are best for security. To set up IP cameras, you do not have to overcome hurdles like outlets, power cables, cable management, or PSE connections.

Of course, Power over Ethernet switches have a limited range of 100 meters, which is enough for most businesses to set up their required PDs. However, if your business requires more range, you can always opt for extenders and converters that can increase this range up to 300 meters.


Power over Ethernet technology is a great way to simplify complex business networks and reduce costs, maintenance, and network downtime. Therefore, Power over Ethernet switches are an excellent network device for any business. We strongly recommend you opt for these switches for your business.

However, since every business has unique requirements and there are so many switch options in the market, it is always best to consult experts like Communications Solutions Inc. in Jacksonville, Florida. They can help you deploy the best business network components that suit your current business and future growth.

If you want to learn more about PoE switches, Power over Ethernet technology, or want the most comprehensive professional business network solutions for your Florida business, Contact Us today.



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