Scottish technology could transform phones forever
21 November 2012
Having worked closely with Scottish Enterprise and received support through the Proof of Concept programme, Sofant Technologies has now attracted worldwide interest and is working with industry experts to take its high performance miniaturised steerable antenna to market.
"The reality is that, until now, the antenna has acted as a bottleneck to performance in mobile devices," explains Sergio Tansini, CEO of Edinburgh-based Sofant, in regards to the tiny inbuilt technology in smart phones.
"As a result, every new generation of smart phone performs less well than its predecessor, resulting in dropped calls, lost signals, weak connections, slow internet and battery drain."
It is a problem that the Sofant team, recently spun out of the University of Edinburgh, has spent seven years trying to crack.
The result - the world’s smallest smart antenna – integrates three core technologies and comprises the tuneable RF MEMS modules and Sofant intelligent software. It is also around the size of the tip of the average biro.
"New communication protocols, such as LTE and 4G, mean more pressure than ever on existing antenna technology, further impacting smart phone performance and user experience," continues Sergio.
"Smart phone and tablet users expect to be able to make and take phone calls while browsing the web, send texts while downloading emails and stream data while uploading videos to YouTube.
"Sofant’s high performance miniaturised steerable antenna will change the performance and user experience of smart phones forever."
With the smart phone market now producing 40 new phones every second, overtaking the PC market, the company is projecting a turnover of over £10 million in year five.
Publicity, including coverage by the BBC, Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal, has highlighted the urgent requirement for technology of this nature.
"Smart antenna technology presents some very exciting opportunities for Sofant, and Scottish Enterprise's commercialisation team is actively helping the company raise the funds needed to turn these opportunities into reality" says Eleanor Mitchell, Director of Commercialisation at Scottish Enterprise.
"We look forward to continuing to work with Sofant in the future to help achieve its ambitious growth plans both in Scotland and on a global scale."