Before choosing between a Gigabit Ethernet switch and a Fast Ethernet switch for your network, you’d better take your current deployment, budget, requirements for transmission speed, and future needs into consideration.
Fast Ethernet Switch—–Slower Speed at a Lower Price
The cost of Gigabit switches has dropped dramatically, so even common users can afford to have it at home or in small businesses. Certainly, there are many good reasons to migrate to Gigabit switch as they boast obvious advantages of speed and performance. At the same time, not every type of business requires that speed. If you only plan to expand your internet traffic to 100Mbps and beyond, or simply use the internet for non-resource-intensive tasks like e-mail, instant messaging, or surfing the web, you may not see enough benefit to upgrading to Gigabit switch. Instead, a Fast Ethernet switch that has one or more Gigabit uplinks can also justify the need.
Gigabit Ethernet Switch—–Faster Speed and Great Flexibility at a Higher Price
If you need to perform other network-intensive tasks, such as hosting files on a server, or playing online games, you would likely benefit from a Gigabit switch. In addition, medium to large enterprises that have multiple users that access the same network device, or need to add devices that require PoE+ for power, might want to consider upgrading the edge to Gigabit because it will be more efficient. The Gigabit switch comes in various port configurations, such as 8 port Gigabit switch, 16 port Gigabit switch, 24 port Gigabit switch, etc to satisfy different cabling needs.