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Is your business suffering from Urban Canyon Syndrome?

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Unfortunately, suburbs in and around Brisbane top the list of mobile black spots because of the “urban canyon” effect. This phenomenon is caused by the density of high rise buildings, where the mobile signal bounces around with the result that small pockets have reduced or no coverage at all.

But it’s not limited to Brisbane, with every major city in Australia affected to a lessor or greater extent.

A 4 star hotel in Brisbane is now a recovered patient. 

This hotel is centrally situated in the Queensland capital of Brisbane within walking distance to shopping, entertainment,  dining and the best that Brisbane has to offer.  Despite the fantastic location certain floors of this hotel were experiencing mobile signal problems. The higher floors of the building had great mobile coverage, but the basement and lobby had little or no coverage – from any of the three major phone carriers.

Not only were guests unable to use their mobile phones in the ground floor lobby/restaurant area – exactly where they needed them for work or socialising – but staff in basement offices were not able to communicate via mobile with the rest of the hotel causing work inefficiencies and health and safety problems.


The solution was a very simple one – installation of the CEL-FI Smart Repeater.

A Smart Repeater is a mobile phone repeater designed to complement an existing mobile network and not interfere with its operation.

The CEL-FI can take a weak signal (just one bar is enough) and boost it across a 600m2 area. The device is actually two units, each about 20cm tall: one that sits in a spot where the mobile signal is strongest, and the other sits a short distance away from the receiving unit. The receiving unit ‘grabs’ the phone signal from outside and the coverage unit boosts and rebroadcasts it. If needed, an external antenna can also be fitted to further boost the signal. CEL-FI is currently the only Smart Repeater in existence.

In the basement, 1 x CEL-FI was used along with a wideband Omni antenna to amplify and disburse the mobile signal to ensure the hotel phone plan was able to be accessed by staff. The Omni antenna connected with 20 metre cabling to the CEL-FI Coverage Unit was positioned at the gate of the basement just outside the building to redirect the maximum signal level possible into the basement space.

The lobby was an interesting challenge as it needed to amplify coverage for all the mobile carriers used by guests – Telstra, Optus and Vodafone.  The reception had very low signal but at one window there was sufficient coverage to set up the Window Unit for each of the carriers.

The Coverage Units – 1 for each carrier – were then discreetly placed strategically throughout the ground floor.

The Result

The mobile coverage went from very low and non-existent, to medium and high – allowing guest’s full mobile access throughout the hotel, and staff to be covered by the hotel phone plan in the difficult basement area.

Client diagnosed and treated – case successfully closed.

Note: CEL-FI is the only consumer mobile phone repeater that has been approved by all mobile carriers in Australia. Currently approved for use on the Telstra, Optus and Vodafone mobile networks, CEL-FI is a mobile enhancement device called a Smart Repeater. There are other companies selling non-compliant consumer repeaters that appear to be from Australia. Buying non CEL-FI repeaters from them may result in large fines and loss of the equipment. Refer to the Government website www.acma.gov.au for more information.

For more information about the CEL-FI PRO or to find an installer in your local area, don’t hesitate to contact Powertec on 07 5577 0500 or sales@powertec.com.au.

More on legal mobile coverage repeaters HERE.

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