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March 22

A Note on Modern Architecture

Earlier this month, Zinwave was in Barcelona at Mobile World Congress, the largest wireless trade show in the world. After the conference center closed its doors for the last day of the show, we had an opportunity to catch our breath and take in some of the sites of the city. One of the most striking aspects of Barcelona is the city’s rich architectural history, thanks in no small part to the work of Antoni Gaudí around the turn of the twentieth century.

 Case in point – La Pedrera, an unconventional building with a wavy façade and spiral chimneys that was Gaudí’s final residential design. It’s now a UNESCO world heritage site.

 Architecture is by definition both an art form and a feat of engineering. Modern architectural marvels around the world are instantly recognizable for their abstract appearance, but their designs are no less susceptible to the laws of physics than the steel cubes that surround them. Their artistic vision is only possible with the support of centuries of using technology to push the envelope of what is possible, just like Gaudí did.

 But not every building has to make a bold architectural statement as an excuse to use the latest and greatest technology. In fact, many of the high-tech buildings under construction today are for the business and industry sectors, which is largely due to the rapid expansion of the industrial internet of things.

 You’ve no doubt heard of the internet of things and its promise to revolutionize industry. From inventory tracking to manufacturing control applications, the industrial internet of things is inevitable, and as any real estate developer knows, it’s just as important to plan for wireless connectivity as it is electricity or water.

 Buildings tend to be rather permanent installations, however, and today’s architects know they need robust infrastructure that will last for years or even decades with minimal maintenance. On the other hand, history shows that the evolution of wireless technology happens at a much faster pace.

 There’s little doubt that this disparity in timelines is why so many CRE developers reach out to Zinwave to provide the cellular connectivity layer for their projects. Zinwave has become a trusted name in the developer community because of its patented wideband distributed antenna system (DAS), which covers all common cellular and public safety frequencies, plus CBRS and the 3.5-6GHz range that will come into play as carriers roll out their 5G networks.

 With wideband capabilities, CREs can ensure tenants will have cellular coverage regardless of future carrier changes, all on a single, software-configurable hardware layer. The public safety coverage also helps developers comply with local regulations, or get ahead of regulations in markets with pending mandates.

 Zinwave also has the advantage of using fiber cabling throughout the installation. This makes cable routing easy and inexpensive, and minimizes the impact of building wireless infrastructure into a structure’s blueprint.

 Developers love working with Zinwave because it’s the only DAS solution that provides a full turnkey solution for cellular wireless. Additionally, Zinwave is the only DAS provider that empowers developers to bring cellular signals into the building with an RF base station, distribute it through the DAS, and provide post-installation support and maintenance through its network operations center. This is particularly important as developers realize the responsibility for bringing cellular connectivity to their properties will fall on their shoulders, as network carriers will prefer to focus on developing outdoor networks.

 While Gaudí was limited by the technology of his day, his embrace of novel architectural concepts allowed him to craft structures that stand today as beacons of an era. Not every architect today will embrace abstract aesthetics, but any architect today can appreciate the benefits and necessity of building in a cellular connectivity layer. And who knows? Perhaps the world’s next great architectural masterpiece will come equipped with a Zinwave DAS!

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