The emergence of industrial internet of things applications in “smart testing” will have significant ramifications for the test and measurement space, according to a new report from Frost & Sullivan.

“Through digital connectivity, the use of test equipment can be maximized, improving the quality of testing and opening a host of future opportunities,” Frost & Sullivan concluded. “In a highly competitive environment, vendors must develop product differentiation and branding strategies in order to penetrate smart testing opportunities.”

Frost expects that the value of industrial IoT in the test market will reach $104.8 million by 2022, reflecting a compound annual growth rate of 6.7%.

“Currently, original equipment manufacturers are cautious when it comes to IIoT technology adoption with significant concern toward security issues and limited entrants in the market,” said Anisha Nikash Dumbre, research analyst for Frost & Sullivan measurement and instrumentation. “However, by 2020, a number of IIoT-enabled test systems are expected to be launched, catering to diverse services and fields within the industrial ecosystem.” Dumbre went on to add that “in the future, there will be more focus on achieving zero defects in products and therefore the need for smarter test systems. Thus, no waste or rework will be caused, thereby avoiding revenue loss. With this in mind, there will be a heavy focus on the research and development stage of the equipment to ensure zero defects. Continuous monitoring of equipment and IIoT technology will become the most important aspect to achieving zero defects.”

Frost anticipates that by 2025, the next generation of T&M systems will have “learned” from their past experiences and enable more advanced testing and better outcomes, and that “democratization of IIoT [will]lead to cheaper Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) models, ultimately leading to more than 80 percent of testing vendors adopting this technology within their test systems. The integration of testing capabilities with modular form factor will further augment growth opportunities in this sector.”

In other test news:

-RootMetrics released another round of testing analysis from several markets. In Kansas City, the company found that both Verizon and AT&T significantly improved their network performance and tied for top spot in overall performance in the market. T-Mobile US was the previous winner and still joined the other two national carriers in the best rankings for network speed and text performance.

In the testing conducted last month, RootMetrics found that AT&T’s median download speed had increased from 25.0 Mbps in its previous round of testing, to 33.3 Mbps; Sprint also had notably improved performance, with median download speed jumping from 19.0 Mbps to 29.1 Mbps — but the other carriers had improved even more, so Sprint didn’t earn the highest rating. RootMetrics conducted its Kansas City analysis based on more than 1,200 miles of drive-testing and testing at 61 indoor locations.

In Los Angeles, Verizon was the clear winner — although the test company noted that its competitors did make strides in data speeds. Verizon had the fastest median download and upload speeds at 30.9 Mbps and 17.3 Mbps respectively. AT&T improved its median upload speed to 11.7 Mbps, while Sprint more than doubled its median download speed from 10 Mbps to 22 Mbps and T-Mobile US boosted its median download speed from 13.6 Mbps to 19.3 Mbps.

-Managed mesh Wi-Fi company AirTies has opened a new research and development center in Austin, Tex. AirTies is based in Turkey and this is its first research center outside of Europe. The company said that it has “signed undisclosed contracts with additional service providers in North America, prompting this additional investment in the R&D facility.” AirTies also relocated its EVP of Customer Programs, Mujdat Pakkan, to oversee the new test facility in Austin.

AirTies’ carrier customers include Orange, Singtel, Sky, Swisscom, Vodafone and others. AirTies said that the new test facility in Austin, in addition to being a research center, will “support automated in-home Wi-Fi testing using the company’s AirBot system,” which uses remote-controlled robots on tracks to move around a home carrying Wi-Fi devices in order to simulate real-world use in a multi-story home. Watch AirBots at work in the video below:

Keysight Technologies supported a narrowband IoT and LTE-M pilot with Telia, both in the lab and in a live Nokia network. Testing to validate coverage and network performance was conducted with Keysight’s Nemo Outdoor test equipment and its Nemo Analyze software.

“With these tests, we can truly say that the future of connected devices begins now,” said Telia business manager Mikael Sundholm. “We have proved that users can measure and transfer temperature values, for example, with this new technology via the mobile network, directly from the sensor to the customer’s display. With the success of this pilot, we can now start building new solutions for our customers in the coming months. This will lead to a significant increase in the information and knowledge available for making a variety of business decisions.”

“In the pilot, we enabled the measurement of Telia’s IoT service in a network delivered by Nokia,” said Kai Ojala, Keysight’s head of Nemo measurement solutions. “During the initial phase, our measurement applications were used to test LTE-IoT [Radio Access Network] together with the core network, after which we offered solutions to test the coverage of LTE-IoT compared to the existing LTE service area. These test phases are crucial to operators for verifying network performance as well as for understanding how operators can offer LTE-IoT services commercially to new applications and service businesses.”

– Semiconductor test company InTest said that it has received its largest-ever order for optical transceiver product testing. The $2.6 million order is for 112 ThermoStream temperature forcing systems for testing and calibrating transceivers at different temperatures, from two existing Asia-based InTest customers customers.

“Worldwide demand for increased data bandwidth is driving the need for faster communications in smaller packages,” said InTest EVP and COO James Pelrin. “Transceivers use lasers whose frequency is affected by temperature and require calibration at various temperature points at the end of their production cycle where ThermoStream systems are used.”

– Network emulation company Apposite Technologies released a 100G network emulator this week for pre-deployment testing and validation.

-Napatech partnered with market access and analytics company MayStreet in order to provide a custom solution for a proprietary trading firm. The joint solution utilized Napatech’s SmartNIC and Pandion recording software, as well as MayStreet’s data monitoring capabilities.




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