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Definition: 802.3af

An IEEE standard for powering network devices via Ethernet cable. Also known as "Power-over-Ethernet," it provides 48 volts over 4-wire or 8-wire twisted pair. The 8-wire cable uses one twisted pair for the power, while the 4-wire transmits the power over the same pair as the data, but uses different frequencies. Designed with IP phones and wireless access points in mind, it allows devices such as these to be placed in locations that have no electrical outlets. Only the Ethernet cable needs to be connected to the device. See inline power.