I have a WAP connected to a switch via a twisted pair cable. Aside from the communication medium to other nodes (electrical signal vs radio waves), do they operate the same way? Specifically:
- When wireless devices communicate with each other, does the WAP have a MAC table and do the packet forwarding itself? In other words, do the data packets travel back and forth to the switch, which reduce the bandwidth to half of the wire's max link speed?
- When the WAP sends data packets, does it send unicast to a specific device (like a switch) or broadcast to all devices (like a hub), which also reduces total bandwidth?
As of now, I still think of access points as some sort of "wireless switch".