What You Need To Know About PoE Standards

What You Need To Know About PoE Standards
What You Need To Know About PoE Standards

Power over Ethernet, or PoE, is a technology for delivering electricity to devices over an Ethernet cable. It’s commonly used for powering network devices like IP cameras and WiFi access points, but can also be used for other purposes like charging electric vehicles. PoE standards define the power requirements and maximum current that can be delivered over an Ethernet cable. There are three main PoE standards: IEEE 802.3af, IEEE 802.3at, and IEEE 802.3bt. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at each of these PoE standards and what they mean for you and your devices.

What is Power over Ethernet (PoE)?

PoE is a technology that allows Ethernet cables to transmit both data and power. This means that devices that are PoE-enabled can be powered through the Ethernet cable, eliminating the need for a separate power source. PoE is becoming increasingly popular as it helps simplify device connectivity and reduces installation costs.

There are two main types of PoE: active PoE and passive PoE. Active PoE uses power injectors or midspans to deliver power to devices, while passive PoE relies on the cable itself to provide power. Active PoE is more expensive but offers greater flexibility and easier installation. Passive PoE is typically used in small installations or where cost is a concern.

There are three main standards for PoE: 802.3af, 802.3at, and 802.3bt. These standards define the maximum amount of power that can be delivered over an Ethernet cable, as well as the voltage and current requirements for devices. 802.3af is the most common standard, offering up to 15 watts of power per port; however, newer devices may require up to 30 watts of power, which can be provided by 802.3at or 802.3bt-compliant equipment.

When choosing equipment for aPoE installation, it’s important to make sure that all components are compatible with the chosen standard(s). Incompatible equipment can damage devices or prevent them from functioning properly.

What are the different types of PoE standards?

PoE standards are constantly evolving to keep up with the demands of the latest devices and technologies. The most common PoE standards in use today are 802.3af and 802.3at.

802.3af is the standard that most PoE-enabled devices are compliant with. It can provide up to 15 watts of power per port, which is enough to power most devices such as IP phones, WiFi access points, and security cameras.

802.3at is the newer standard that provides up to 30 watts of power per port. This is ideal for powering newer devices that require more power, such as 4K video cameras or high-powered WiFi access points.

Which PoE standard is right for my application?

When it comes to Power over Ethernet (PoE) standards, there are a few different options to choose from depending on your application needs. The most common PoE standards are 802.3af and 802.3at, which are typically used for devices such as VoIP phones, wireless access points, and security cameras. For higher power applications, 802.3bt is the newest PoE standard that can provide up to 100 watts of power per port.

So, which PoE standard is right for your application? It really depends on what type of devices you will be powering and how much power they require. If you need to power multiple devices that require a lot of power, then 802.3bt would be the best option. If you only need to power a few low-power devices, then either 802.3af or 802.3at would suffice.

If you’re still not sure which PoE standard is right for your application, feel free to reach out to one of our expert tech support representatives who can help guide you in the right direction.


As you can see, there’s a lot to know about PoE standards. But don’t let that discourage you from using this technology in your business. PoE is a great way to save money and increase efficiency, and it’s definitely worth taking the time to learn about the different standards. With a little research, you’ll be able to find the right PoE standard for your needs and start reaping the benefits of this cutting-edge technology.


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