The Ethernet Alliance, the global consortium dedicated to the advancement of Ethernet technologies, hailed the ratification of the IEEE 802.3bz standard, allowing an upgrade path for existing infrastructures, considering the more than 70 billion meters of Cat5e/Cat6 cabling installed worldwide. The new IEEE standard allows network access layer bandwidth to evolve incrementally beyond 1 to 2.5 Gbps and 5 Gbps.
The new IEEE 802.3bz Standard for Ethernet Amendment: Media Access Control Parameters, Physical Layers and Management Parameters for 2.5 and 5 Gbps Operation (http://standards.ieee.org/develop/wg/WG802.3.html), enables access layer bandwidth to evolve incrementally beyond 1 Gbps and will help address emerging needs in a variety of settings and applications, including enterprise, wireless networks, and more.
Building upon the success of and laying out an upgrade path for 1000BASE-T, IEEE 802.3bz defines 2.5 Gb (2.5G) and 5 Gb (5G) BASE-T Ethernet. It specifies Ethernet Media Access Control (MAC) parameters, physical layer specifications (PHYs), and management objects for balanced twisted pair transmission media found in structured cabling. Facilitating up to five times the speed without requiring expensive infrastructure changes, IEEE 802.3bz enables cost-effective network bandwidth scaling. This enterprise technology addresses various needs, including scientific and research computing, content production and editing, industrial design and automation, machine vision, and more.
Source: Ethernet Alliance