The Difference Between Wireless Omni-Directional Antennas and Directional Antennas

Catalina Joseph, Telecom Tech Outlook | Tuesday, February 16, 2021

A directional antenna transmits the signal in a targeted way. It directs coverage in a particular area in which they are mounted.

Fremont, CA: Omni-directional antennas transmit signals in every direction around it, like poles sending signals on a 360-degree circular plane. Omni-directional antennas are the default selection on most access points.

With Omni-directional antennas, WiFi connection can be created in any direction and alleviate effort in planning a wireless connection between remote buildings. An example of this antenna is a dipole antenna.

However, since the signal is sent in all directions, it gets weaker with distance. Additionally, if all the receiving nodes are in one direction, the other direction's signal transmitted is wasted.

Omni-directional antennas can be used in enterprises and in a small office and home office WiFi deployment.

A directional antenna transmits the signal in a targeted way. It directs coverage in a particular area in which they are mounted. They are the default choice for outdoor PTP access point wireless network.

Directional antenna centers the WiFi signal in a specific direction, thus putting out a higher gain, unlike omni-directional antennas. It also reduces background noise or interference since the antenna cannot hear the WiFi signal from any other direction except the ones received from where it is pointed. It also increases the signal traveling distance in a specific direction, making the directional antenna an ideal option for long-distance connections.

But to get the required throughput, the link between the directional antenna should be planned well. Some instances of directional antennas are yagi antenna, parabolic/dish antenna, grid antenna, and sector antenna.

Directional antennas are used for the wireless network over long distances and for outdoor wireless communication.