Reaching the places mobile signals can’t otherwise reach

Reaching the places mobile signals can’t otherwise reach

The addition of a cascadable multi-site repeater and a device that is ideal for smaller offices and shops – along with 5G support – gives Zyxel’s ZoneDAS active distributed antenna system even wider appeal, says Patrick Hirscher, EMEA Wireless Market Development Manager at Zyxel.

At the start of this year, I wrote a blog introducing Zyxel ZoneDAS – an active distributed antenna system (DAS) that can be used to boost a cellular phone signal, so that users can make and take calls, and make use of mobile data (something we all do more now on our smartphones), throughout a large building or complex where it’s difficult to get good cellular signals across the whole area.

This is often an issue in high-rise office buildings, conference and sports venues, hospitals or college campuses, and hotels and resorts. Many of these locations will have rooms or areas that are completely enclosed or subterranean. They may have elevators and underground car-parks where getting any kind of signal is impossible.

Strong signals

ZoneDAS overcomes these limitations by picking up cellular services from a central base station and then amplifying them through one or more repeater devices, over a wired network, to active antenna devices situated around the building or location where coverage is required. This provides a smooth and strong reception everywhere, overcoming the physical limitations that prevent cellular signals being picked up from the nearest base station.

The main advantages of Zyxel ZoneDAS is that, as well as being really effective, it runs across existing Cat5e cabling, making it low cost to deploy. We’ve had a good response to ZoneDAS since it was launched, but we’re always looking to make improvements to our solutions, and we have now released some new ZoneDAS products that extend its appeal to more customers.

In addition to the ZoneDAS One solution for larger locations, such as sports stadiums, convention centres, college campuses and large multi-storey buildings, we have now introduced the MultiSite cascaded repeater and the Magic Office repeater. The former is designed for use in mid-sized locations that may have a number of buildings over a fairly wide area, the latter for smaller office locations and shops.

Support for 5G

Also, very significantly, we can now support 5G services through ZoneDAS. Services from multiple carriers can be picked up and distributed through ZoneDAS allowing users to take advantage of the higher bandwidth and data speeds that 5G technology offers.

What you really need to know about the MultiSite offering is that up to seven of the repeaters can be cascaded to provide coverage over an area of more than 25,000 square meters – the size of almost five football pitches. This is an ideal solution for warehouses, factories, hospitals and hotels, and places where there are several floors to cover or extensive basements or covered areas, such as high-rise buildings, large retail outlets or shopping malls.

The Magic Office repeater is perfect for smaller offices or shops where picking up a good mobile signal is a problem. It can provide full, four-band support, which means it will work with every major cellular carrier.

Simple to deploy

These additions to the ZoneDAS range are significant because the problem of getting a good cellular signal all over a location is not only confined to big buildings and complexes; it is an issue for many shops, smaller offices, guest houses, leisure centres, sports clubs and other places where people want – and maybe expect – to have a good mobile signal.

Many of these places have basements, elevators and areas that are just out of reach of mobile service coverage. Now, there is a simple to deploy solution that will enable them to offer good coverage everywhere. In these days where – for now at least – social / physical distancing is going to be the norm, it’s more important than ever to provide cellular coverage everywhere, so there could be increased demand for ZoneDAS over the coming months.

If you’d like to find out more about ZoneDAS, please get in contact with your local Zyxel office.

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