Wireless technology has become part of everyday life. Everything, from phones and satellites, to computer equipment and the Internet, no longer requires long, bulky wires to work properly. However, many wireless forms of transmission media have shortcomings when compared to wired transmission media. In instances where reliability, compatibility and security are necessary, it can be advantageous to have wired networks.
Operability and Reliability
Sometimes wireless devices don't work as well as they should. They can experience interference, fluctuations in bandwidth and instability from the weather. Wired networks experience little interference and rarely have disruptions due to inclement weather. In the case of a wireless home alarm, the system can experience radio frequency interference and distance limitations, whereas wired alarm systems can transmit without nearly as much interference, making distance almost a moot point.
Many older computer systems are not compatible with wireless technology. They require extra hardware, such as a Bluetooth adaptor, to use a limited range of wireless devices. Even then, some older operating systems are not compatible with wireless transmission media at all. Wired data transmission, on the other hand, is highly compatible with both older cell phones and computers, using everything from phone lines to USB or Ethernet cables to transmit data from system to system. With the right hardware, it's possible to connect more devices to one another using wired means than with wireless.
Wireless networks and other transmission media have made gains in speed and reliability, but they pale in comparison to the speed that wired networks can provide. DSL Internet access, for instance, will transmit data far faster than a wireless Internet connection. Wireless connections often suffer from interference and weaker signals, depending on location, affecting the speed of data transmission. Wired connections overcome both quite easily without any loss in speed.
Wireless networks tend to suffer from more security attacks than wired networks. In a wired network, a hacker would have difficulty walking into a home or business and tampering with the wires. However, in a wireless network, a hacker only needs to have close proximity and a knowledge of how wireless data transmission works to get inside. A hacker can simply use a vulnerable wireless connection to surf the net, or he may steal personal data stored on a computer within the network. He also will have an easier time intercepting data sent wirelessly than data sent through a wired connection.