What is a Wi-Fi Access Point

Often abbreviated as AP, an access point is a networking device that creates a wireless local area network (or WLAN) commonly used in large buildings, public areas, shopping malls or restaurants, for example.

For businesses and public spaces offering Wi-Fi access to guests, clients, and employees, the number of connected devices can add up quickly. Access points are what makes managing this high volume of simultaneous connected devices possible, and scalable.

Depending on a number of variables, building structure, number of simultaneous users, the nature of the Wi-Fi usage, etc., you will need to plan for a certain number of access points that delivers the best performance/cost ratio.

Some access points include a clustering feature—a single point from which the IT administrator can view, deploy, configure, and secure a Wi-Fi network as a single entity rather than a series of separate access point configurations.