We offer a range of indoor and window mount antennas. By placing an antenna near, or in a window and connecting it to a dongle or router, the signal can most often be improved to deliver the desired quality of service.
Our solution works through induction and is therefore a passive solution, not a broadcast solution. The passive solution requires a cable to be attached to the phone whilst a broadcast solution requires a repeater which can only be supplied by your cellular service provider. A repeater id expensive and getting approval for an installation is more complicated.
The passive solution is often used by people in rural areas such as farmers who have no other means of obtaining a connection. It works by mounting an external antenna, with a cable that runs to either:
- A generic adapter pad that attaches to the back of a phone. This solution takes away the mobility of your mobile phone and acts like a fixed telephone line. (This does not work for I-Phones as the antenna of an I-Phone is part of the outer case between the front and back covers. The technical drawing of the I-Phone antenna is available on request to further illustrate this point.)
- Installing the antenna cable to connect to a 3G/4G router enables one to make Skype and WhatsApp calls. By plugging in a normal analogue or cordless phone (as used by fixed-line operators such as Telkom) one can use the cordless phone, via the sim card in the router, to make and receive calls. This means using a second number and not the handset. In South Africa Vodacom offers “slave sims”, sim cards that only become active once you lose signal with the primary device. This is often used by farmers and affords the ability to stay connected via a single number although switching between the cellular phone and an analogue phone connected to a router.
Extending the range of Wi-Fi coverage in a house can be done in two ways:
- Firstly by plugging in a range extender at more or less the place where the wi-fi signal disappears. The benefit of a range extender is that it does not require any cabling but it does have a drawback in that the Wi-Fi speed delivered via a range extender is half the speed of the primary/master router.
- The second option is to install a second access point, this can be achieved with a 3G/4G router, connected via a network cable to the primary router (computer cable with big connectors that resemble telephone connectors). The same speed can be achieved as with the primary router but the drawback is that it requires the installation of a cable between the two routers and usually needs the services of an installer.
There is no right or wrong when considering the above-mentioned solutions. One has to decide on which is the most practical for the specific circumstances. Factors such as the type of ceiling will assist in making an informed decision. Concrete ceilings for e.g. prohibit the use of cables in the roof; necessitating a cable run along the wall or floor. If aesthetics are critical such as in a house the range extender may be the preferred solution whereas a second access point connected via cable may be selected for an office.
Improving performance for voice and data require different approaches and needs to be addressed separately and independently.
A fixed external antenna installed outdoors, connected via a cable to an indoor 3G/4G router, Mi-Fi device or dongle will provide excellent Wi-Fi performance indoors. In a typical 3G/4G LTE installation the router shall allow up to 32 users to simultaneously connect to the internet via a single sim card inserted into the router. When using a 3G/4G router one has the option of plugging in a normal cordless phone into the small (RJ 11) jack at the back of the router. This offers the option of making voice telephone calls via the sim card in the router, using the cordless phone, whilst using data simultaneously.
Boosting voice requires the use of a repeater which is illegal if not supplied by the service provider. Only the service provider to whom a specific frequency has been assigned by ICASA (Independent Communication Authority of South Africa) may legally own equipment that transmits on that frequency. As much as we would love to help we simply cannot. Your service provider however has access to the necessary equipment and can help in this regard.
It is against the law. Only the service provider to whom a specific frequency has been assigned by ICASA (Independent Communication Authority of South Africa) may legally own equipment that transmits on their allocated frequency. As much as we would love to help we simply cannot. Your service provider however has access to the necessary equipment and can help in this regard.
The maximum extension that may be added to the standard length of cable supplied with an antenna is 10 meters. Extensions are available in standard lengths of 5 and 10 meters. Longer extensions are possible but such an extension must be installed by a qualified technician. A shorter cable has less losses and therefore is desirable. The advantage of having an outdoor antenna generally diminishes if the cable length becomes excessive.
Yes, all our antennas are backwards compatible with 4G, 3G, 2G (edge) and GPRS protocols. Some models even cover the ISM or unlicensed bands used by Wi-Fi.
No. Line of sight (LOS) is always desirable but not a critical requirement to establishing good performance. Using a fixed outdoor Poynting antenna improves performance and reliability for 3G/4G LTE even though line of site is not available. Check your service provider’s coverage map, to see if you fall within the coverage area. If you happen to be outside the covered area, often a Poynting antenna solution will still allow for a reliable and stable connection.
A fixed external antenna installed outdoors, connected via a cable to an indoor 3G/4G router will provide excellent indoor Wi-Fi performance. In a typical 3G/4G LTE installation the router shall allow up to 32 users to simultaneously connect to the internet via a single sim card inserted into the router.
From past experience with many happy clients and successful installations, we can confidently say that mounting a permanently fixed outdoor external antenna solves most problems.
The question of antenna gain is not always well understood as atmospheric conditions such as rain and heat, time of day and number of users, proximity to the metal structures connected to the tower all play a role in the results achieved.
Faster speed is always desirable but the stability resulting from a fixed permanently mounted outdoor antenna results in big improvement in the user experience.
A big improvement may often be seen in gain (measured in dB), yet a stable signal will generally offer faster up-and download speeds. Gain is not everything and is a metric that is often misinterpreted, overstated or over-emphasised. Gain should be considered in context of many other parameters that affect your online experience.
Should you not be satisfied with your purchase, Poynting offers a full refund on all antennas returned in its original packaging, if returned within 14 days of purchase. There is absolutely no risk to the customer as we refund within 72 hours of receiving the antenna from the customer.
A slow connection directly influences your online experience. Generally the outdoor signal is about -20db stronger than the signal indoors. Indoor performance is therefore greatly compromised. By mounting a fixed external antenna and coupling it via the cable to the 3G/4G device, performance will be greatly improved. This is done by attaching the antenna cable to the router via a fly lead (30cm cable and device specific connector) or generic adapter pad.
Our antennas do not contain active electronics that require power and are not susceptible or vulnerable to typical lightning damage. Simply attach the connector at the end of the cable to the router and the antenna is ready for use.
Lightning protection can be added at an additional cost, often far exceeding the cost of antenna and the router. Statistically the chance of lightning damage is very low, only a few cases over the last twenty years. The choice of adding lightning protection is a discretionary choice left to the customer after having considered their own risk versus cost. Adding lightning protection does not guarantee that equipment may not be damaged during a strike. Damage due to lightning is not covered by standard warranty.
There is always debate on if and how which type of electromagnetic fields are influencing the health condition of humans. So far, there is no scientific evidence that the frequencies and signal strengths typically used in 3G/LTE have any negative influence. With respect to using an antenna even to the contrary: an antenna is a focal point for electromagnetic waves and using one results in reduced fields around the antenna.
Your local antenna supplier will be able to assist you, but consider the following when choosing your Poynting antenna:
If you have a very poor signal in a rural area of far from a base station and you are able to mount the antenna outside, choose a directional antenna that operates in the correct frequencies.
If you work with more than one service provider and you are in an area that have better signal strength, such as in an urban area, then you should choose an omnidirectional antenna. You should keep an eye on the antenna gain and its frequency to make sure you choose the correct antenna.
Read more on high and low gain antennas in our section on How to choose an antenna.
A good high gain mobile antenna will improve the signal to noise ratio, which will help you to get better data rates than was previously possible.
Keep in mind that your signal strength is also influenced by other factors, such as the walls and other buildings between you and the signal source, the length and quality of the cabling to the antenna and even things such as the number of users that your service provider has allowed to share a certain bandwidth with you.
With walls and a lot of clutter inside the house, you would be better served to place the antenna outside of the house. By some calculations your gain in placing the antenna outside the house can be up to 20 dB.
Most routers and some modems have an antenna connector. You will use a so-called pigtail connector to connect your antenna with the router.
If you use a USB modem or something similar that does not have an antenna coupling, you can use a special adapter. Have a look at the Adapter section of the website to evaluate various adapters.
There are a multitude of websites and online measurement tools that can track the speed of your connection.
Test the speed before installing the antenna and then again after you have connected to the new antenna. That way you will be able to calculate the improvement in connectivity speeds that your antenna has given you.
Most of the antennas manufactured by Poynting are shipped with a connector or bracket that allows you to fasten the antenna to a wall – by drilling holes and fixing the connector to the antenna and the wall or by fitting it to a pole, with a U-clamp that connects around the pole.
More information on the various connector-options can be found on the download section of each antenna.
The antenna offers the opportunity to receive the signal from an outdoor environment which is not prone to the multi-path fading experienced in an indoor environment.
There is a 10-20 dB advantage when receiving the signal in an outdoor open space environment as compared to a cluttered indoors. This together with the antenna gain provides anything between 20-30 dB gain when using an external antenna even if the antenna gain is only 11 dBi. So the received signal will be better than -80dBm.
Provided that you are within the 3G/LTE signal range a suitable antenna will provide you with higher data rates as your signal to noise ratio is increased, thus a better transfer rate can be achieved.
A high gain antenna mounted outside in a fixed position aligned with the relevant base station will give you best possible performance and result in a more stable signal.
Please bear in mind that the 3G/LTE data rate will also be affected by the number of subscribers online at a particular time, so don’t be surprised if throughput varies during the day. Also, rain, trees and metal obstacles can influence your throughput rate.
To find the best solution to increase throughput and signal speed with an antenna several dimensions should be considered.
Indoor / outdoor:
If you can mount it, a suitable outdoor antenna can deliver much better performance
Directional (panel, LPDA) or omnidirectional antenna:
If you are in a remote area where the direction of the next base station can be clearly identified, it is best to use a directional antenna and align it with the base station.
If you are in an (urban) area where there are different signal sources and/or you are working with different providers an omnidirectional antenna offers the better and more flexible solution.
High or low gain:
In general – the higher the gain the better. But gain correlates with size of an antenna so typically there are limits. Further, if you are in an area with very strong signal strengths, a lower gain antenna may work better.
To find the right antenna please visit our antenna selection guide.
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