I’ve occasionally searched for this kind of information but the last time I saw an article describing the hardware & software used at Apple HQ was probably around 2005. At that time they were using many of the same products as most companies, IBM midrange computers, SAP software, Microsoft Office, etc. Today, who knows? They may be using brain to brain networking and hoverboards.
I don’t recall even seeing Apple listed as a customer by those few companies whose products they are known to use. Let us know if you learn anything. “Enquiring minds want to know”
I’m absolutely certain that they would use both: wired for workstations, and an enterprise WiFi system for notebooks, tablets, and phones.
The largest system that I’ve built had several hundred access points (autonomous at first(!)) and several thousand concurrent users. Colleagues at other places have systems with thousands of APs and tens of thousands of concurrent users.
I think adapters are a non-starter on something portable like the iPhone. Even in a test lab where the device didn’t have to move much, I’d still think they’d be doing wireless just because almost no consumer is going to Ethernet tether an iDevice.
Also, Apple got to design the building from the ground up. Literally. So if they wanted wi-fi throughout, it would have been pretty easy to design things like wired backhaul infrastructure into the building as a whole.
The problems most consumers have with network coverage just fly out the window if you’re smart and you’re building a completely new building to spec.
One of my last projects before moving from the network group to starting the security group at my employer was migrating the autonomous AP Cisco WiFi network to one based around 5508 WiFi controllers
The network team has recently migrated to Extreme for WiFi.
(We were an all Cisco network for most of my tenure (my first major project was to migrate the core to 6500 series switches (back when they ran CATOS for switching and IOS for routing on the same supervisor) from Nortel. Loved Cisco stuff, but really, really wish they’d have adopted Juniper’s options for command line output in XML and JSON)
And how exactly could Apple even have WiFi in such a massive campus? There is no way the signal could go that far. Again, I find it more likely that Apple is using Ethernet adapters for any devices that don’t have Ethernet ports.