The Rise of Media Converters in Addressing Growing Bandwidth Demand


Media converters are a flexible and necessary piece of equipment for today’s varied network infrastructure demands. These cost-effective solutions transmit ever-growing numbers of data types and needs.

Dylan Han, Product Specialist and Jei Mercado, Regional Sales Engineer, both with EtherWAN, gave their thoughts and insights on media converters’ versatility and effectiveness as a solution.

“The way networks have improved and expanded can best be described in terms of speed and functionality,” Han said.

Simply put, networks are getting faster – much faster.

“It’s not just improved, but evolved,” Mercado added.

Han and Mercardo pointed to the demand for IoT devices as one factor requiring the need for increased speed.

“When we look at IoT, the camera was the starter,” Mercardo said. “It’s something that evolved into, ‘Hey, let’s look at this feed to more analytics,’ which not only drives the number of devices in the network but also drives the amount of bandwidth needed.”

One of the advantages of media converters is their flexibility to work with new and legacy data transmission types. There are common connector types, but there is still a need to integrate older devices and connector types with the more common ones found today.

“When we look at legacy equipment and we look at infrastructure where we’re using copper and fiber,” Mercado said, “there are still RJ11’s, and there are still coax cables that can be leveraged using media converters.”

Because so many networks utilize various devices and connection types, the desire for solutions to lessen the complexity exists. And there are expensive professional-level switches available to connect many different data types.

On the flip side, there are low-cost solutions available that can be purchased but may not meet the network’s demands. Knowledge and understanding of what is required ensure the deployment of the correct network solution.

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