Antenna Placement (next to battery)

Does placing the antenna next to a battery weaken the cellular connection? We are using these 18650 battery packs and due to our space constraints we are placing the antenna right alongside the pack. We are deploying our devices on farmland so the cellular is already fairly spotty. Will the battery pack placement make any significant difference?

Yes, any metal placed close to the antenna will affect it’s performance. The antenna radiates the most power from it’s broad sides, so pointing those away from metal is generally the best approach.