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iPhone 6 and Samsung Galaxy S5 up against RF-tuned Chinese smartphones

iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, Apple Watch – it's all go in Cupertino isn't it? While Apple focuses on larger screens though, one Chinese OEM is developing antenna to surpass the capability of Apple devices and that of Android competitors like the Samsung Galaxy S5 and the Sony Xperia Z3.

Lars Johnsson, vice president of product marketing, Cavendish Kinetics, was tight-lipped about which particular OEM the company had struck a deal with. Representing the tunable components supplier with its roots in Cambridge Univerisity's renowned Cavendish Labs, Johnsson was keen to impart to me just how valuable Cavendish's offering is to the smartphone market.

What with smartphone makers' adamance to create devices with larger screens and body thinness, antenna development has been neglected, Johnsson told me. A thinner phone body, with a screen that extends all the way to the edge, means less room for an antenna of optimum functionality.

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"The form factor trends make it hard for traditional antennas to radiate efficiently."

"Performance of an antenna is directly correlated with the volume it's given, but if you can tune that antenna, if you can change its electrical characteristics, you can overcome some of these challenges."

Cavendish Kinetics adds a small capacitor to the radiating antenna, which allows for the sending or removal of charge from the antenna. By adding or removing this charge, the electrical characteristics of the antenna change, and this allows the antenna to be more efficient and enter frequencies of choice, giving "up to twice the transmit power".

Cavendish's offering rests on its all-important microelectromechanical systems (MEMS (opens in new tab)) technology.

Though China has been regarded as a copycat producer of Western products, Cavendish has "really seen a change to quality and performance" in the company's dealings with Chinese OEMs, Johnsson assured me.

So who could it be? Huawei, Lenovo? Perhaps an OEM we haven't encountered yet. We'll be sure to keep you posted when the Cavendish team say more.