5G-capable small cell antennas help to boost mobile communication performance

Written by 

Cristina Olimpieri

Product Manager Antennas

In an exclusive collaboration with HUBER+SUHNER, Europe’s largest telecommunication company – Deutsche Telekom AG – is preparing its network to use 5G technology. HUBER+SUHNER has developed five different MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output) antenna types to meet a range of specific technological requirements. The SENCITY Urban 100 and 200 outdoor MIMO antennas support the 4G and 5G frequency ranges and are being used in the Telekom network with immediate effect. These enable the targeted expansion of data throughput in urban areas frequented by large numbers of people requiring mobile Internet use.


Small cells are ideal for supplementing and consolidating the network, especially in inner cities, locations with a high user density and high demand (such as pedestrian precincts), or popular town squares. They significantly improve capacity, which refers to the number of people who can use mobile services simultaneously within a small area while ensuring a high data throughput.

A small cell is a mobile communication cell with low transmission power that covers only a small area. In this respect, it is similar to a WiFi hotspot, although it is integrated into the mobile communication network. Compared to conventional mobile communication antennas (macro cells), small cells are significantly smaller and have a coverage of around 150 metres.


Within their area of coverage, small cells significantly increase the data rate available to customers and thus make mobile communication more enjoyable. As mobile Internet usage will only continue to grow, small cells provide a suitable technical basis for increased efficiency. Currently, they provide up to an additional 150 Mbps. The new small cell antennas will also be able to provide 5G services in the future. The 2x2 MIMO technology featured in the new small cell antennas increases data throughput even further compared to other antennas currently in use. It improves signal quality for a better customer experience.


SENCITY Urban antennas provide a highly efficient solution for consolidating the mobile communication network and offer a wide range of models for diverse applications. The different antenna types and mounting options allow optimal adaptation to the environment. For instance, omni-directional antennas can be installed in marketplaces, with directional antennas used in narrow streets. The discreet design of the small cells allows them to be integrated into the existing city infrastructure, such as public telephone boxes owned by Telekom, bus shelters, street lights and traffic lights.

The new small cell antennas form an important part of the expansion strategy of Deutsche Telekom AG. They increase the performance of the Telekom network in urban areas by providing the required coverage and capacity. The integration of these antennas into the Telekom network is already underway. The first SENCITY Urban antennas are operational in the German cities of Kiel, Lüneburg, Osnabrück, Munich, Mülheim, Cologne, Brühl, Leipzig and Plauen, with plans in place for further locations.

“Developing new small cell antennas for the 5G frequency ranges together with HUBER+SUHNER has enabled us to tailor the characteristics specifically to meet our requirements,” said Thomas Jansen, Head of the Small Cells Competence Team at Deutsche Telekom. “The new antennas will enable us to provide additional capacity in high-traffic areas with support for 5G.”

In combination with existing macro cells, the new SENCITY Urban antennas from HUBER+SUHNER will enable Deutsche Telekom AG to provide optimal yet cost-effective 4G network coverage, together with 5G coverage in the future. The resulting increase in data rates and improvements to battery life provided by the higher signal level will make a significant contribution to increasing customer satisfaction. In addition to the performance boost, the innovative 5G technology lays the foundation for additional forward-looking mobile communication services, such as virtual reality, multi-user telepresence, social gaming and smart sensors.