AP Density Per Square Foot For VoIP

Answered Question
Apr 15th, 2009

Does anyone have a general AP per square foot suggestion for new commercial construction materials?

We have WLCs running 4.2.130.0 with 1131AG access-points. A site survey is not in the budget and I'm looking for general suggestions for adequate coverage.

I have this problem too.
0 votes
Correct Answer by gamccall about 7 years 8 months ago

Yep. Cisco says 5000 sf/ap for data, but a little sparser than that is just fine in my experience.

The 3000 number also applies for location tracking deployments.

Correct Answer by George Stefanick about 7 years 8 months ago

Budget numbers:

Data 6,500 sq feet per ap

VoIP 3,000 sq feet per ap

Vocera 2,000 sq feet per ap

I always add 10% to the final number.

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Correct Answer
George Stefanick Wed, 04/15/2009 - 08:10

Budget numbers:

Data 6,500 sq feet per ap

VoIP 3,000 sq feet per ap

Vocera 2,000 sq feet per ap

I always add 10% to the final number.

Correct Answer
gamccall Wed, 04/15/2009 - 08:32

Yep. Cisco says 5000 sf/ap for data, but a little sparser than that is just fine in my experience.

The 3000 number also applies for location tracking deployments.

asafayan Wed, 04/15/2009 - 09:18

Wow - we have a 7500 square foot office space and by those stats, we would only need 2.5 APs to support VoIP???? That seems low.

We've had a new hospital and a new tower for another hospital built and the Cisco Gold Reseller has installed soo many APs that in some areas you can easily see 4-5 APs in a hallway.

George Stefanick Wed, 04/15/2009 - 10:22

Thanks for the rating :)

Design, design, design ... oh did i mention design?

Design is very important. Low power (25mW or around), stay out of hallways or limit the APs just in the hallways (for large designs) signal and co- adjacent channel will be a concern. Look at cell edges, etc etc ...

asafayan Wed, 04/15/2009 - 10:45

Design....that's no fun! Troubleshooting issues is more fun! :)

Per the recommendation, we have a 7,500 square foot space and would therefore need only 2.5 access points. Have you successfully split an access point in two? :)

So we have 3 access points in place but we have over 20 7921 phones. And I'm already seeing load threshold alarms in my WLC for the AP nearest the room where the 7921s is.

And what if 1 AP fails. Then we're immediately below the 1 AP / 3000 square feet suggestion from Cisco.

I've uploaded a screenshot of our floor plan. The area in red is my 7,500 square foot office showing three APs.

Attachment: 
George Stefanick Wed, 04/15/2009 - 11:44

Some good points. I had 20 VoIP calls all live on a cisco LWAPP ap with no concern. The APs can handle the calls.

WCS does like to yap about every little thing. If this is a concern then you can add say a 4th AP at lower signal strenth to offset some of the clients.

Scott Fella Wed, 04/15/2009 - 18:22

Looking at what you posted, that area in red is also being covered by the other ap's in the hallway. If you moved the red box to the top of that section and only had 3 ap's.... I don't think you would have voice coverage. We have done surveys where Cisco has told our clients that for location, it is 2,500 sq ft per ap in a hospital. We came up with double the number of access points in one hospital and almost triple in another. Using these base numbers are fine, but you knowing what building materials are in place will change that number drastically.

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