The term ‘in building coverage solutions’ refer to communication solutions that maintain connectivity inside a building where signals from the core infrastructure are not reachable. In-building coverage solutions are often used for the enhancement of customer satisfaction by providing adequate level of RF signal in the degraded signal environments.
The growing demand for smartphones and increasing data usage by the consumers are the major factors mainly responsible for the requirement of the in building coverage solutions. This issue is more significance in the case of LTE (4G) Networks requiring better signal quality at the reception.
The in building RF signal can be boosted for all the cellular technologies like CDMA,GSM 2G,GPRS,EDGE,WCDMA 3G,HSPA,LTE 4G.
A phone reception or coverage blackspot is generally defined as a geographic area that experiences reduced mobile phone signal due to factors other than being too far from a cell tower. Blackspots have a similar impact as being too far from a cell tower and are typically associated with symptoms such as:
- Call drop-outs
- Digital garbling/noise during a call
- Difficulty in hearing other caller
- Highly variable signal
- Slow mobile internet
- Internet timeouts
- Increased battery usage
The above issues can also be experienced inside a building area where outdoor coverage is adequate. But the signal quality is poor in the indoor due to excessive building penetrations losses.The repeater solutions are the ideal remedy for such places.
IN BUILDING PENETRATION
Experiencing poor reception indoors, despite ample coverage outside the house/office is a clear indication that the building itself may be the culprit. Dense or metal-based building materials can reflect or absorb RF signals, reducing the level of signal that reaches indoors. Unfortunately during building construction indoor coverage is rarely considered, in fact materials that insulate best and provide most structural strength are typically the worst offenders for reducing indoor coverage. These materials can include:
- Window Insulation/Tinting
- Foil-based Roof Insulation
- Metal Roofing
- Concrete & Brick
- Metal Support Structures
- Large Metallic Surfaces (eg. Garage Roller Doors)
- Copper Plumbing & Wiring
IN BUILDING REPEATER OPERATION
In building repeater is deployed to boost the uplink and downlink signals with in a building where outdoor RF signal is of good quality, but the indoor coverage is poor. The main components of an in building solution is as follows:
- High gain outdoor antenna
- In building Repeater supporting the cellular technology and the RF band.
- Suitable indoor antenna ( ceiling / panel/ whip )
- Low loss RF cables
- RF Splitters, Couplers etc.
EXTENDING THE BTS COVERAGE THROUGH REPEATER (COMPONENTS OF THE SOLUTION)
RF ENHANCEMENT THROUGH REPEATER
As already stated, the normal repeater operation can be ascertained if the outdoor coverage is satisfactory .
The RF signal is picked up by a high gain directional antenna like yagi or log periodic antenna by directing the antenna towards the serving BTS sector/site.
The RF signal picked up by the outdoor directional antenna is fed to the downlink section of the repeater. This signal is amplified and distributed in the rooms, halls, basements through indoor ceiling or panel antennas.
In the uplink direction, the RF signal transmitted by the mobile phone is picked up by the indoor antennas and fed to the repeater. The uplink chain in the repeater amplifies the RF signal and feed the same to the outdoor antenna, which in turns provide the connection with the BTS sector/site.
BENEFITS OF REPEATER INSTALLATION
The user can enjoy trouble free voice calling and data connectivity after boosting the in building coverage after deploying the in building repeaters . The subscriber can enjoy the below benefits:
- No Call drop-outs
- No distortion /noise during a call
- Smooth transmission and reception
- Smooth call origination and termination.
- Highly stable signal
- Fast speed of the mobile internet
- No Internet timeouts
- Increased mobile battery life.
The price of a RF repeater solution shall depend upon the following factors:
- The technology adopted by the cellular network ( GSM,WCDMA,LTE 4G etc. )
- The RF band used by the serving technology.
- Distance from the serving BTS site. For larger distances, the high gain outdoor antenna and high gain repeaters shall be used.
- The indoor area to be covered. For a larger indoor area, the number of indoor antennas will be more and the high power repeater option will be used.
- Number of users to be connected simultaneously with the repeaters.
- The length and type of RF cable used for the connectivity of indoor antennas and the number of splitters, couplers used.