What Is Power over Ethernet (PoE)? – Explained

Cisco developed and first delivered a proprietary version of PoE in the year 2000.


As per the current era, the PoE technology is extensively wide with various requirements like Surveillance cameras, wireless APs, IP phones, electronic door locks, signals & power, etc. It works with reference to the equipment via network cable, which is convenient and cost-effective. You may have a doubt, Whether it is possible to power devices like laptops through PoE technology. Even though PoE technology supports many devices to draw power and singles via network cable, but, powering power-crazy devices like laptops has much demand.

What is PoE?

PoE abbreviates Power Over Ethernet and is an extended tool that is utilized to set up multiple devices over a network. Where PoE can implement an all-in-one solution for the cabling process. Further, the PoE cables are like ZOSI Cat53 (Amazon), utilizing the Cat5/Cat6 ethernet standard to transfer both data & power.

When it comes to description, let’s list out the best:

General Description:

When two or more four paired copper wires have been inserted into the ethernet cable are well perfect to create a loop for power to run on. This means the PoE-enabled devices connected to this network don’t require any external power source to access.

Eventually, it is a time-saving technique during the installation and can also restrict the costs of pulling multiple wires. Now, PoE can be enabled with all sources of devices that includes security cameras i.e. IP Cameras, alarm systems, PoE switches, wireless access points, and VOIP telephones.

Versions of PoE:

PoE Type 1: This is completely dependent on IEEE 802.3af standard and even can allow maximum power of 15.4 watts. As per the recent stats, we have only the upgrades to this standard with PoE Plus Type 2.

Which aims to support devices with advanced power needs, up to 30 watts. In reference to the technology growth, try to ensure the system power needs. Due to these classified reasons, it has a huge development of even more advanced PoE standards.

PoE++ (The Most Advanced PoE Standard):

PoE++ is also framed as Type 3, & which is the lasted developed and can support devices that require up to 60 watts. Whereas, this standard utilizes extensively via all four of the ethernet cable’s paired wires to bring out stable power. Till now the market uses it and currently has restricted applications. You may have previously seen some PoE++ devices around.

The majorly used commercial application is setting up clients, or barebones computers, running point-of-sale systems in restaurants, and other retail launches. In which, these devices only trust on the single PoE connection in order to power the system and eventually to transfer data across the network.

Why Laptops Can’t Charge Over PoE

  • PoE in Laptop- If you are trying to power a compatible laptop over PoE, you may end-up with some sort of errors.
  • This can be implemented with the kind of proper power that the laptop needs to operate and the kind of power that a PoE system can generate.
  • Note: In which, majority of consumer laptops aren’t designed to work with PoE. Eventually, we have advanced computers which can be performed based on PoE, but they have built-in power limitations and access to higher PoE standards.
  • While higher PoE power standards support improved wattage, most systems you see today are typically depend on PoE Type 1, with reference to some exceptions for PoE plus. Whereas, the systems that use the higher standards, Type 3, are typically fitted for specialized equipment. The majority of users, see the PoE hardware which doesn’t have the type of power required to support a device like a laptop.
  • To proceed next, you at least need a basic consideration of amps and watts reference to the device. As we know, the IEEE 802.3af standard will be 15.4-watts, lower than the 50+ watts required for a laptop. The PoE standard also won’t support the required amp rating for your laptop.
  • PoE standard can allow around .35 amps, whereas the everyday laptop needs .5 amps.

How it works: PoE in Laptop

Generate a Rated Power PoE System

The majority of the laptops in the market are rated near to 50w, on the other hand, most of the PoE systems support 15-30w power, which is drastically less power required by laptops. Hence, If you wish to use the PoE system to power a Laptop, it is essential to confirm the power of the PoE system that reaches the rated power of the Laptop.

Laptop Laptop Wattage-List
MACBOOK PRO 13” 61 Watt
MACBOOK PRO 14” 67 Watt
DELL INSPIRON 15(7000) 90 Watt
DELL INSPIRON 15(3000) 45 Watt

Connect a PoE Splitter

Once you have done with a proper PoE power system, Can I connect the PoE network cable to the computer directly?

It’s absolutely not!! The PoE power supply system may consist of its own transmission protocol, that is IEEE802.3AF/AT/BT. So, to activate the efficient connection and transmission between the PoE system and the Laptop, it must support the PoE protocol.

Unfortunately, the majority of the laptop models on it support only PoE protocol in the current market, which is not compatible. To rectify such issues, you can try the PROCET PoE splitter between the PoE switch and the laptop.

PROCET’s freshly launched PT-PTC-D-BT PoE splitter tracks the trend, this splitter may consist of a USB C socket, that has the ability to transfer data and electricity (up to 60w) to devices like laptops or tablets which consists of only USB C interfaces.


Is PoE Power Charging Safe for Laptops?

We always recommend the guidelines by placing safety first. If the output power of the PoE switch beats the rated power of the laptop, the PoE protocol might be backward compatible, & the power might be able to be forced directly.

Result of this, the laptop will stay safe even if there is bigger wattage. If we attempt to select PoE switches and PoE splitters, try to be more careful if they support PoE standard protocol, which can also be a protection for our laptops.

PoE in 5 Minutes – Reference Video