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Miniature Smart Antenna Promises Better Reception

Edinburgh firm SOFANT Technologies has developed a new antenna for next-generation mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. It's a smart antenna that promises lower power consumption, better signal quality, and higher data rates. The antenna is RF tunable and employs MEMS (microelectromechanical system) devices to allow it to create a steerable electronic beam which can boost the strongest signal and reject the others.

In the BBC news article Edinburgh technology firm unveils new 'smart antenna.'

“Smart phone and tablet users expect to be able to make and take phone calls while browsing the web, send texts while downloading emails and stream data while uploading videos to YouTube,” said Sofant chief executive, Sergio Tansini. “The reality is that, until now, the antenna has acted as a bottleneck to performance in mobile devices. As a result, every new generation of smart phone performs less well than its predecessor, resulting in dropped calls, lost signals, weak connections, slow internet and battery drain.”

There is little technical data on the Sofant Website, but Sofant says it antennas work on both high- and low-frequency LTE bands. It appears the technology could be adapted for TV band reception, at least at UHF.

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.