Deutsche Telekom develops compact small cells with Huber+Suhner

The new small cell antennas will first operate in DT’s 4G network and later be upgraded to 5G. (Deutsche Telekom)

Deutsche Telekom is working with the Swiss company Huber+Suhner to develop five small cell antennas for DT that support both 4G and 5G frequencies. The Sencity Urban antennas cover the spectrum range from 1.7-4.2 GHz. 

The new small cell antennas will first operate in DT’s 4G network and later be upgraded to 5G. Sencity Urban antennas will be used for the first time in Kiel, Lüneburg, Osnabrück, Munich, Mülheim among other cities.

DT says small cells will play an increasingly important role in its mobile network because they increase data capacity in their coverage area by up to an additional 150 Mbps. 

“The new types of Huber+Suhner antenna make it possible to increase quality further with what is referred to as the MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output) technology,” said DT in a statement. “Using this technology, several antennas provide higher data throughput – both at the transmitters and in the receiver.”

Small cells are also a big part of the roll-out of 5G in the United States where carriers are tapping mmWave spectrum. And carriers are coming up with new ways to deploy the small cells because cities are objecting to the unsightliness of wireless antennas dotting the urban landscape.

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“Developing small cell antennas that support 4G and 5G technology and can be integrated properly into the cityscape despite the limited space was a challenge,” said Claudia Bartholdi, product manager at Huber+Suhner, in a statement.

The Sencity Urban antennas are very compact for installation in existing infrastructures. They will be installed on public telephone boxes, bus and streetcar shelters, walls, or on LED furniture. There are various types of antennas and housing, adapted to different requirements. Omnidirectional antennas are used for market squares, for example, and directional antennas for narrow streets.

RELATED: Deutsche Telekom kicks off 5G in Germany

DT just kicked off its 5G network in Germany in July. The company said that by the end of 2019 it expects to roll out about 300 5G antennas in more than 100 locations. It’s starting in six German cities: Berlin, Bonn, Darmstadt, Hamburg, Leipzig and Munich.