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Thanks to Buzz Bruggeman at ActiveWords for telling me about Cantenna. I have been talking about the Pringles Can WiFi antenna for quite some time but Cantenna has taken the idea to the next level. If you’ve never heard of a Cantenna, don’t worry — you are not alone. A Cantenna is simply an inexpensive version of the long range antennas used by wireless Internet providers and mobile phone companies. The idea is to extend WiFi’s 100 meter range to miles — how many miles depends on many factors.

The Cantenna folks claim that their engineers have optimized can length and diameter for maximum signal strength and distance. The cantenna connects via industry standard cables and connectors and the mounting socket is designed for easy mounting on standard camera
tripods and mini tripods. To use the Cantenna just connect the antenna to your wireless access point, card or base station, then “point and shoot”. In addition to the access point or base station, you’ll need a short cable called a “pigtail” which you can purchase from Cantenna or at many other sites online. Cantenna provides instructions and tips to help get started and optimize performance.

Cantenna guarantees their parts makes no guarantee of actual performance. There are several factors that can inhibit antennas including how well it is aimed and various obstructions that may be in the line of sight. Finally, Cantenna says “If you don’t like the way your cantenna looks, paint it, wallpaper it or cover it with a fig leaf”. You can send pictures of your finished Cantenna for posting in the Cantenna Gallery”.