Wireless Supply, which manufactures iDAS (indoor Distributed Antennas Systems), oDAS (outdoor Distributed Antenna Systems) and small cell systems, recently launched a new version of its True Connect Low-profile Omni antenna, Inside Towers reports. The company’s solution is a ceiling-mount, low-profile omni-directional antenna designed for in-building applications.
The antenna was originally released four years ago and had a reputation for blending in with its surroundings. However, this new version has coverage for the latest spectrum that mobile network operators use.
This new antenna, IOSWB/X, has been installed in office buildings, convention centers and hotels, according to Inside Towers. Mounting options vary based on installation requirements; options are available for drop ceilings, fall ceilings and hard deck. The antenna is discreet—at just a quarter-inch thick and nine inches in diameter it looks like a ceiling access panel.
“The biggest compliment we have received is when a customer told us they went back to do maintenance on the system and couldn’t find the antennas,” Jeff Hall, VP, General Manager, Wireless Supply, told Inside Towers. “These antennas basically blend in with the surroundings, and it’s very difficult for somebody that doesn’t look at them, day in and day out, to find them.”
What makes the IOSWB/X different
Vertically polarized antennas must be cone shaped. The IOSWB/X is so thin because it is horizontal. The horizontal polarization makes it easier to control the antenna’s coverage beam, Inside Towers reports. And while other slimline antennas exist, they aren’t as easy to mount. They often have long cylinders coming off the back where their electronics reside. So, while these antennas look slim they take up more space.
Hall also noted the IOSWB/X offers superior coverage in low signal areas for DAS systems. After the Federal Communications Commission designated several bands of additional spectrum for wireless four years ago, IOSWB/X offers expanded spectrum coverage in the 600 MHz, 700 MHz, 800 MHz, PCS AWS, 2.5 GHz, CBRS, LAA bands, and the C-band, according to Inside Towers. The antenna covers 5400 megahertz, versus 2700 megahertz for the typical antenna.
“Once CBRS and C-band became available, and now that some of the MNOs are using the unlicensed Wi-Fi frequencies to offload traffic, it has become important to have an antenna that is designed so that you can have one antenna solution for all commercial wireless frequencies that are being deployed today,” Hall said. “It covers everything from 600 MHz all the way up to 6 GHz.”
Hall also noted that the carriers, integrators and distributors that purchase Wireless Supply’s products advised that there’s more focus on rolling out in-building wireless networks, between both enterprises and MNOs.
“The market is ready and waiting for an antenna that will cover all of these different frequency bands,” Hall said.