Nordic Semiconductor announced that cellular IoT products and applications can now be brought to market in days using the first publicly announced third-party modem to be based on the Nordic multimode LTE-M/NB-IoT nRF9160 System-in-Package (SiP).  Called the 'Skywire®Nano', the NimbeLink modem enables this by having achieved 'end device certification' for use on both LTE-M and NB-IoT cellular IoT networks worldwide. This means any product or application using the modem doesn't have go through the normal carrier certification process.

NXP Semiconductors announced a new series of Layerscape Access processors, designed for 5G Access Edge applications. These new Layerscape Access processors target a variety of deployment scenarios compliant with O-RAN Alliance specifications, including Central Units/Distributed Units (CU/DU), Radio Units (RUs), along with Integrated Small Cells and Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) systems. From antenna-to-processor, NXP’s programmability, performance, and security products offer a flexibile portfolio of 5G technologies that scale from 2x2 RU systems to mMIMO arrays to 100 Gbps CU/DU platforms. These products include the NXP Airfast family of RF cellular multi-chip modules. To learn more visit,

Pivatol Commware had a live Echo 5G demo set up at a nearby hotel using a mmWave gNB located around the block. They were relaying the signal around the corner of the building with their repeater unit and through the hotel window to demonstrate a 5G mobile connection with high data throughput. The Echo 5G Subscriber is a self-installable, on-the-window, precision beamforming repeater designed to counteract mmWave penetration, reflection, and structural shadowing losses so it can gently flood an interior with mmWave signal which has been a major challenge for mmWave signals.  For fixed wireless access (FWA) providers serving homes and enterprises, the Echo 5G facilitates Gigabit speeds and introduces superior broadband choice. The compnay uses holographic beamforming that requires a single, simple, biased control component like a varactor or transistor at each element. This leads to a cost advantage of over 50x against MIMO or Phased Arrays. We hope to have a lead article on this technology in our Feb issue.

As a Chinese telecom test system supplier, RFLIGHT, was on hand to show off their PIM tester, millimeter-wave solid-state power amplifier and channel emulator. RFLIGHT also recently released some new products including an RF switch matrix, 5G MIMO test system and OTA test system.

R&SRohde & Schwarz recently supplied mobile network testing tools used in drone-based network coverage, performance and operation tests managed by Ericsson. The unique procedure enables 3D accessibility, positional accuracy and repeatability of the testing. It also opens up new possibilities to ensure end user Quality of Service (QoS) for demanding 5G use cases such as industry 4.0, automotive and public safety. The new system uses mobile network testing scanners and smartphones from Rohde & Schwarz mounted on a drone that can be programmed to execute automatic tests with considerable flexibility, for example for precise route selection and drone speed control. This solution is especially valuable for industrial use cases. It also has the advantages over traditional walk and drive tests by providing high repeatability and positional accuracy with the ability to verify beamforming and map coverage in 3D. The R&S TSMA6 network scanner is mounted on a drone and is able to simultaneously verify important LTE and 5G NR coverage metrics such as reference signal received power and signal-to-interference-plus-noise ratio in accordance with 3GPP standards. When combined with the R&S QualiPoc Android smartphone-based optimizer, IP trace, application QoS metrics such as serving cell parameters are possible. The solution currently uses LTE user equipment (UE) but will soon be further developed to include 5G UEs such as the Samsung S10 5G. View R&S demos for 5G OTA testing and emergency systems location testing below.





Siklu announced the general availability of its new EtherHaul™ 2-foot (61 cm)  dual-band antenna (EH-ANT-2ft-DL5). This new antenna is designed to work seamlessly with Siklu’s ExtendMM™ feature on the EtherHaul™ 8010FX, 2500FX and other Siklu E-Band models. ExtendMM is a Siklu product suite consisting of the new dual-band antenna, software for monitoring and provisioning, a built-in switch in the EtherHaul™ radios, and purpose-built accessories, all of which are integrated with Siklu SmartHaul™ apps – such as LBC for link planning and WiNDE for network design. This system of hardware and software easily and seamlessly combines a high-capacity EtherHaul™ link with an inexpensive, unlicensed, low capacity and lower frequency link, such as 5, 11, 18 or 23 GHz.  The net result is that customers can have confidence in engineering and extending their EtherHaul™ links to distances never considered before.

Skyworks launched the SKY66405-11, a 2.4 GHz front-end module (FEM) designed for Zigbee®, Thread, and Bluetooth® (including Low Energy) ultra-low power IoT applications spanning sensors, beacons, smart meters and thermostats, wireless cameras, smoke and CO detectors, wearables and medical wearables. The highly integrated multi-chip module comes in a compact form factor (1.9 x 1.9 x 0.56 mm) and provides increased efficiency as well as more than 4X range extension versus system-on-chip (SoC) alone.  The solution includes a power amplifier, low-noise amplifier, low-loss bypass path, transmit and receive switches, and digital controls compatible with 1.6 V to 3.6 V CMOS levels.  Its wide supply voltage range also allows the device to be used in battery powered IoT applications over a broad spectrum of the battery discharge curve and it covers worldwide unlicensed bands.  Operating temperature ranges from -40 to 105° C, making this module suitable for lighting and industrial applications.

TMYTEK is a group of Taiwanese mmWave engineers that have designed a unique mmWave phased array box that you can use to prototype 5G systems. You can easier attached you own phased array antennas to the front end to test new designs and at MWC Los Angeles, they were also demonstrating how the phased array could be used to test a DUT by electronically scanning to great improve speed. View this video demo here to see how it works.



ublox announced its new ultra‑robust meter‑level M9 global positioning technology platform, designed for demanding automotive, telematics, and UAV applications. The M9 technology platform and the NEO‑M9N, the first module based on the platform, can receive signals from up to four GNSS constellations (GPS, Glonass, Beidou, and Galileo) concurrently, in order to achieve high positional accuracy even in difficult conditions such as deep urban canyons. The u‑blox M9 offers a position update rate of up to 25 Hz, enabling dynamic applications like UAVs to receive position information with low latency. The u‑blox M9 also features a special filtering against RF interference and jamming, spoofing detection, and advanced detection algorithms that enable it to report fraudulent attacks quickly so that users’ systems can react to them in a timely fashion. A SAW filter combined with an LNA in the RF path is integrated in the NEO‑M9N module. This setup guarantees normal operations even under strong RF interferences, for example when a cellular modem is co‑located with the radio.