Newlans’ radio filtering (RF) technology sits deep inside the guts of a cellphone, and it could end up helping you connect to a strong 4G signal faster. Especially if it’s a Verizon phone. The Acton, Mass. company makes a small filter that shuffles through all the 4G signals it can find, then selects the fastest and strongest one to connect to.
Unlike previous RF filters, the Newlans product can be programmed to zero in on a carrier’s best bands, and it takes up less space inside the phone.
Here’s the phone geek version from Newlans’ funding announcement: “Since the inception of the mobile phone, the area between the antenna and transceiver has changed little with regard to architecture, while there has been substantial digital integration. Newlans has developed breakthrough technology that will change the way future front ends of mobile devices are implemented.”
Verizon, at least, is sold on the idea. It’s thrown $5 million in back of the Newlans. Part of the reason might be the fact that the Newlans filter can also be used in small cells, which are increasingly being used by carriers to fill coverage gaps.
The new money adds to the $15 million Newlans collected in February from Paladin Capital, Lockheed Martin, and two new (unnamed) strategic partners.
Newlan says it will use the new capital to “accelerate the development and commercialization of Newlans Programmable Duplexer, targeting front-end radio frequency modules for 4G LTE mobile devices and small cells.”
Of course, Verizon will sell millions upon millions of 4G phones in the coming years and has a lot to gain from better RF performance and smaller devices. Verizon was the first wireless provider to build a national 4G LTE network, and its 4G network is at least the most expansive in the country.