The mushroom growth of devices that require connectivity has led to an increase in the demand for spectrum resources as well as high data rates. 5G has introduced numerous solutions to counter both problems, which are inherently interconnected. Distributed antenna systems (DASs) help in expanding the coverage area of the network by reducing the distance between radio access unit (RAU) and the user equipment. DASs that use multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) technology allow devices to operate using multiple antennas, which lead to spectrum efficiency. Recently, the concept of virtual MIMO (VMIMO) has gained popularity. VMIMO allows single antenna nodes to cooperate and form a cluster resulting in a transmission flow that corresponds to MIMO technology. In this chapter, we discuss MIMO-assisted DAS and its utility in forming a cooperative network between devices in proximity to enhance spectral efficiency. We further amalgamate VMIMO-assisted DAS and network coding (NC) to quantify end-to-end transmission success. NC is deemed to be particularly helpful in energy constrained environments, where the devices are powered by battery. We conclude by highlighting the utility of NC-based DAS for several applications that involve single antenna empowered sensors or devices.
Part of the book: Network Coding