Short for Category 7, Cat-7 network cabling is used as a cabling infrastructure for 1000BASE-T (Gigabit Ethernet, or GbE) and 10GBASE-T (10-Gigabit Ethernet, or 10 GbE) networks. The Cat 7 standard provides performance of up to 600 MHz (1000 MHz for the Cat-7a, or Augmented Category 7 standard) and can be used up to a maximum length of 100 meters.
Category 7 cable is able to achieve higher performance than preceding Ethernet standards such as Cat 5, Cat 5e and Cat 6 by requiring each of its twisted wire pairs to be fully shielded. This is known as Screen Shielded Twisted Pair (SSTP) or Screened Foiled Twisted Pair (SFTP) wiring, and it almost completely eliminates alien crosstalk while significantly improving noise resistance.
The Cat 7 standard was published in 2002 by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and is also known as Class F cabling. While more expensive than Cat 5e and Cat 6 cabling, Cat-7 cabling does have a 15-year lifecycle (compared to estimated 10-year lifecycles for Cat 5e and Cat 6), which helps improve its overall return on investment (ROI).