Kathrein Delivers Eight Millionth Antenna for Mobile Communication

Kathrein recently delivered its eight millionth base station antenna. Due to the extremely high demand on the market, the ten million mark is already in sight.

At present, Kathrein manufactures over 100,000 antenna systems per month, which adds up to over 1.2 million per year. Due to the extremely high demand for mobile communication antennas in the world market, the company is ramping up their production capacity across the globe. At present, a new plant with roughly 400 employees is being set up in Mexico. What’s more, the existing production plants in Europe and Asia are also being expanded.

As a leading innovator, Kathrein was already involved in the development of the infrastructure of analogue mobile networks (A, B and C networks). Kathrein was also a pioneer during the introduction of digital mobile services in Germany (GSM 900) in 1992. In the following years, the number of users increased rapidly and mobile operators expanded their networks accordingly. The number of antennas delivered by Kathrein grew substantially from year to year, reaching roughly one million by the end of the 1990s.

Supplier for all major operators

In the past 15 years, data volumes have virtually exploded due to the introduction of new standards (UMTS in the year 2000, LTE in 2010). Operators are forced to continuously upgrade their infrastructure. Kathrein is a key supplier to all prestigious operators and system manufacturers. The company offers a broad range of highly integrated, complex antennas: next generation quad-band, penta-band and hexa-band antennas unite four, five or six independent antenna systems in one housing. In addition to passive antennas, Kathrein also provides the active antenna system AIR, created in collaboration with the Swedish network equipment provider Ericsson.

Future-proof indoor solution

Aside from new equipment for base station antennas, networks also require constant optimisation of their design and planning. Mobile data traffic in buildings plays an important role here, as roughly 80 % of total traffic occurs indoors. In addition to offices, shops, hotels and households, this also includes public places such as airports and train stations, where the quality of signal reception is hindered by modern building materials.

The innovative system solution K-BOW can dynamically allocate capacities in building sections where and when they are actually needed. This allows mobile operators to flexibly adapt their networks to customer demands in buildings and to react quickly to changes in user behaviour.

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