The Holidays: A Time to be Thankful for Innovation

“Creativity is thinking up new things. Innovation is doing new things.”  Theodore Levitt

We get so busy this time of year, but we want to take a moment to reflect on the technological breakthroughs that we’ve seen in such a short amount of time.  As consumers, so many of the gifts we give include the latest technology innovations (new phones, electric cars, not to mention all the toys.)  We all seem to have the “need for speed,” and that will continue to fuel our wireless industry.  But let’s take a moment to think back to how things were not that long ago, and how innovation has drastically changed our lives.

You Can Never Go Back!

Can you imagine going back to the cellular days when you paid roaming fees when you left the state?  We counted every minute we were on the phone and every text message we sent… there were no unlimited plans!  And the signal was analog- we actually heard noise and static! Remember when 56K was about the fastest internet speed you could get at home?  In the late 90s, you could have a BRI circuit installed and have 128K of bandwidth- speed that made the neighbors jealous (but was quite expensive).

How about the days before USB and HDMI?  Cables had a million pins in them and you had to worry about port availability and setting dip switches to add peripheral devices to your computer. Your choice of connections? Parallel or serial.

Before the days of LTE and even 3G, webpages took at least 30 seconds to render on smartphones… and that was impressive in 2007!  Today, we would throw our phone away if web pages took that long to view.

Continual Innovation is Critical on “the Road” to 5G

Theodore Levitt once said, “Creativity is thinking up new things. Innovation is doing new things.” Just last week Kathrein introduced Street Connect:  a new, literally ground-breaking solution that is not only turning heads, but turning the antenna industry upside down.

Kathrein announces

Kathrein’s Street Connect Antenna

Building on a legacy of 100 years of quality and innovation, Kathrein has created an in-ground microcell antenna system in which the base station is incorporated into what appears as a typical manhole cover. It has been specially designed for ease of deployment and to withstand weather, road vibration, and heavy road cargo weight.

Street Connect is the ideal solution for congested cities and urban hotspots and it resolves cumbersome zoning restrictions and site acquisition issues because the antenna is deployed in the ground. Thorough testing and site trials in conjunction with Swisscom have proven the safety and effectiveness of Street Connect in even the most adverse conditions and situations. As an example, Street Connect tests well below SAR thresholds and still performs if the antenna is covered by a parked vehicle or truck.

To learn more, please email us at [email protected] or click here for our recent announcement. 

Happy Holidays from Kathrein!

It’s fun to look back and wonder how we could have possibly survived in the early days of computers and wireless technology. Yet there’s no doubt we will look back at 2015 someday and wonder how we made it with the technology of today.   It takes innovative leaders and companies to bring about the amazing technology we see today.  And at Kathrein, the innovation continues.  We wish you and your families a very safe and relaxing holiday season and a prosperous New Year in 2016!

Kathrein Announces Street Connect for Wireless Densification in High Traffic Locations

Woman calling a taxi with Kathrein's Street Connector antenna providing a strong signal

A New In-Ground Antenna That Revolutionizes Mobile Communication in Cities

(PRWEB) December 10, 2015

Kathrein, the leading global LTE antenna provider* today introduces an innovative solution for wireless densification in city centres. In collaboration with Swisscom, Switzerland’s leading telecom provider, Kathrein developed “Kathrein Street Connect”, an in-ground antenna system that enhances mobile capacity at hotspots with high data traffic. Following a trial period in Bern, Switzerland, the antenna will be deployed in selected cities in early 2016.

According to Swisscom, the mobile data volume generated by customers by surfing, streaming, and downloading doubles approximately every twelve months. The mobile communication network increasingly reaches its capacity limits at highly frequented hotspots such as downtown pedestrian zones. Due to the skyrocketing usage, networks need to be continuously upgraded in order to provide the needed data rates. The way this is currently accomplished is by supplementing macro cells with micro cells mounted on street furniture (street lamps, building walls, etc.). However, the availability of suitable sites, the high cost of site acquisition, regulations with zoning ordinances, and the ability to connect to the core network are problematic.

Making Use of Existing Infrastructure:
To solve these issues, Swisscom developed the concept of a micro cell in which the base station is incorporated into existing cable manholes of the landline infrastructure. The antenna is embedded into the ground in the immediate vicinity by way of a core drilling and is not visible. For the realization of this innovative idea, Swisscom selected network supplier Ericsson for the base station and Kathrein for the antenna solution. “In close collaboration with the experts from Swisscom, we were able to develop this unique antenna to production standard,” explains Manfred Steinbacher, Head of Mobile Communication Antennas for Kathrein.

“An in-ground antenna is a unique innovation”, says Steinbacher. “The particular challenge was to design an antenna and bracket resistant to road vibrations and with exceptional quality. The solution was specifically designed for use in environments with high building density. Additionally, the special lid above the antenna is extremely rugged and sturdy allowing the deployment in streets with heavy goods vehicle traffic”.

Swisscom will test the system in Bern, Zurich, Basel und Lausanne through the end of 2015, followed by large-scale antenna installations throughout Switzerland. “I am very proud that this product will be another milestone in our history of innovations,” says Heinz Herren, Swisscom’s CTO and CIO. “When we brought Kathrein on board, an experienced and competent partner, their profound know-how helped to turn our idea into reality.”

“Kathrein Street Connect“ will be available to network operators in other countries in mid-2016. “We see a high potential for this innovation“, says Joe Doering, Chief Sales Officer of the Kathrein Group.

About Kathrein
Kathrein is a leading international specialist for reliable, high-quality communication technologies. We are an innovation and technology leader in today’s connected world. Our ability to provide solutions and systems enables people all over the world to communicate, access information and use media, whether at home, at the office or on the road. We cover a broad spectrum: from outdoor and indoor mobile communication solutions, to satellite reception, broadband and broadcast technology, to transmission and reception systems in vehicles. As a hidden champion and family-owned enterprise, we have been working on the technologies of tomorrow since 1919. We take pride in our dedicated employees and our passion for customers and quality.

Find out more about Kathrein at

About Swisscom
Swisscom is Switzerland’s leading telecom provider and one of its foremost IT companies, headquartered in Ittigen, close to the capital city, Bern. Outside Switzerland, Swisscom offers broadband Internet in Italy with Fastweb. Around 21,000 employees achieve annual revenues of approx. CHF 11.5 billion annually. Swisscom is one the most sustainable companies in Switzerland and Europe. Find out more about Swisscom at

*According to ABI Research 2015 LTE Basestation Antenna Deployments

For the original version on PRWeb visit:

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Kathrein Automotive Lands Major Order From Daimler

Kathrein Lands Major Order from Daimler

Kathrein has received a major order from German automaker Daimler. The Kathrein Automotive Division will deliver telematics and radio antennas for various Mercedes-Benz vehicle classes. After two-and-a-half years in development, the systems will be ready to go into series production in early 2018.

Kathrein Automotive has been awarded the order after an intensive selection process, in which the company came out on top of other competitors. Antennas for mobile communication and navigation systems, and digital and analogue radio reception units are among the more than 30 different systems that will be incorporated into Mercedes-Benz vehicles. The majority of these systems will not be visible in the vehicles but integrated for example into the side mirrors or vehicle windscreens. Kathrein plans to have the antennas manufactured in its plants in Portugal and China. Daimler AG will receive some 40 million components between 2018 and 2023.

Michael Heise, CEO of Kathrein Automotive, points out the long-lasting close collaboration with Daimler. “This exceptional order proves once again that Daimler places great confidence in our company’s systems and solutions,” says Heise.

Joe Doering, CSO of the Kathrein Group, puts it this way: “Kathrein is a pioneer in vehicle transmission and reception systems. Our innovative solutions and decades of experience have made a lasting and distinct impact on the market. This major order makes it quite clear that our systems and solutions are the best to meet our customers’ requirements.”