It has been a busy start of the year for Kathrein USA with the Verizon IBTUF Event and the Kathrein USA Quarterly Sales Meeting both taking place in awesome Austin Texas, the “Live Music Capital of the World” – nice change of pace from the usual Las Vegas craziness for tradeshows. The two events also had a common theme: How to Meet the Challenge of Growing Mobile Data Usage by Supplying Strategic Solutions (such as Kathrein USA’s antenna and filter products).
Kathrein USA’s Inaugural IBTUF
It was Kathrein USA’s first time attending IBTUF (In Building Technical Users Forum), and the tenth IBTUF hosted by Verizon Wireless. It was an unqualified success, as this Verizon specific show had exhibits and technical presentations on par with the best industry tradeshows.
The Kathrein booth was not the only one featuring Kathrein antennas- ConcealFab, located down the hall, also featured Kathrein antennas with the ConcealFab enclosures designed for Passive Intermodulation (PIM) performance and mechanical integrity – a great fit for Kathrein’s antennas and filters.
There were numerous discussion opportunities among vendors around the best way to combine complementary products for Verizon’s densification initiatives. As an example, CablCon provided an immediate “consultation’ for new jumpers with 4.3-10 DIN connectors that Kathrein needed for a Verizon trial in Detroit the following week.
Of all of the IBTUF presentations, a favorite was “Spectrum – Where are We? Where are we Headed?” with Scott Townley, Fellow, Network Technology, RF Technology Planning, Verizon. Scott gave indications of future directions of the Verizon network and what Verizon vendors need to do to meet those needs. Starting with the fact that mobile data usage will increase fivefold over the next five years, Scott showed the need for network densification to properly handle this increasing data demand.
Scott went on to reveal the “densest square mile” in various cities requiring network densification – Western US cities that many in the audience believed to be quite spread out, such as Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, Seattle and Denver. According to Scott Townley, “Microcell is happening” almost everywhere (not just in the biggest cities). Kathrein’s new small cell antennas and filter solutions fit nicely with this widespread need for network densification.
RF solution providers, such as Kathrein USA, were very interested in Tom Bell’s (Anritsu) presentation that made a clear case for the importance of improving PIM, as more carriers are added at each site as network densification occurs. Tom pointed out additional challenges, such as Intermodulation products derived from the new FirstNet spectrum, that will be added for public safety considerations in future network designs. Again, Kathrein is leading the way with PIM performance by constantly improving manufacturing techniques and using components like the 4.3-10 DIN connector (all of which Kathrein tests extensively in the lab and in the field before deploying). To view a video explaining how Kathrein solves PIM issues with the 4.3-10 connector, click here.
Austin- The Perfect Place for a Quarterly Sales Meeting
After IBTUF, Kathrein USA remained in Austin to kick off 2016 with our Annual Sales Meeting. This continued the theme of Kathrein USA supporting the wireless industry with new products to provide solutions for increased mobile traffic needs in the coming years. Kathrein’s innovative Product Roadmap, with new small cell antennas alongside existing macro and higher port size antennas, fits the bill for the densification of networks.
The Sales Meeting included the Executive team, Regional Sales Managers, Marketing, Technical Support, Sales Engineering and Customer Service; employees from all over the United States and Rosenheim, Germany. One of the most anticipated sessions was Stefan Kohl’s Kathrein Product Roadmap. Mr. Kohl, Kathrein Germany’s Head of Sales for Mobile Communications, laid out an exciting plan for new solutions and updates to existing solutions.
For the Small Cell and oDAS antenna products, there are many new developments for existing antenna designs. Kathrein’s lineup of Slim Pole antennas, Smart Pipe antennas, “Super” Canister antennas, F-Panel antennas and the new Kathrein Street Connect antenna all have product enhancements in 2016. The classic Canister antenna is now going into production with extended high band frequencies to extend performance to 2690 MHz. There are also plans to extend the Slim Pole and Smart Pipe antennas to the lower frequency bands. The latest Kathrein Street Connect antenna system provides a great solution for difficult zoning situations and will be deployed in the United States this year after successful trials in Switzerland. The current version of these antennas can be viewed in the Kathrein Catalog. Kathrein has also continued research and development on their line of Filter products to support and supplement the antenna products.
Concurrently, Kathrein development proceeds full steam ahead with its roster of macro cell antennas featuring 8-port, 10-port and 12-port antennas, as well as improvements to existing antennas (e.g. starting preparation for the 600 MHz auction). Kathrein macro cell antennas, with increasing numbers of ports, allow for increased network data requirements in their own way by increasing the spectrum possibilities and carrier aggregation. Again, Kathrein Filter products play an important role in providing a complete system solution.
At Kathrein USA, the motto is “Work Hard, Play Hard”, so after a full day of informative presentations and meetings, the team enjoyed an evening of “Top Golf”, regardless of their golfing ability.
Both the Verizon Wireless IBTUF and the Kathrein USA Communications Sales Meeting highlighted the importance of Kathrein providing new antenna and filter solutions for the ever increasing mobile data demand in 2016 and beyond.