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Numerous types of antennas are currently available on the market, spanning designs embedded within devices and antennas mounted externally. Choosing an antenna best suited for a particular project involves a raft of considerations, including device design, antenna size, cost, performance, efficiency, and radiation pattern, among others. 

To help simplify the process and lower the development cost for hardware engineers, antenna vendors are growing their Off-the-Shelf (OTS) antenna portfolios, using more simulation software, and expanding partnerships with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and module makers. While these developments are all positive, antenna selection and integration remain among the major stumbling blocks of any IoT project.

This whitepaper introduces a new approach to antenna technology, called the Virtual Antenna™ technology, which aims to remove complexity for the hardware designer and help OEMs streamline their approach to building IoT solutions. It starts with a discussion of the technology and business factors affecting IoT antenna choice. It then outlines the key antenna design requirements and the challenges faced by OEMs to meet these requirements, including an analysis of existing antenna types. The paper concludes with an examination of the Virtual Antenna™ technology’s benefits and limitations relative to current antenna technologies, including an assessment of the IoT antenna market opportunity.