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Wireless test equipment makers seize the IoT opportunity

Embedded systems are set to connect more and more devices to the internet, and the testing of these systems represents a new opportunity for makers of wireless test equipment.

Keysight Technologies recently said its narrowband IoT RF performance test solution was selected by RDA Microelectronics, a developer of radio-frequency and mixed-signal system-on-chip solutions, to help accelerate its narrowband IoT chipset testing. The company said the deep coverage and extremely low power consumption of NB-IoT has created new reserch and development challenges in RF performance and new working modes.

Keysight said chipset makers must evaluate the RF performance under real working modes to ensure a good connection and coverage. By setting the chipset into different working modes with Keysight’s NB-IoT test solution, RDA can completely test the RF performance and potentially accelerate chipset development.

Helping companies get to market faster is also a goal for LitePoint, a subsidiary of Teradyne. LitePoint wants to be a leader in IoT test. The company says it developed the industry’s first production test solution for 802.11ac, and now wants to revolutionize testing of IoT devices.

According to LitePoint, failure analysis is much more difficult when a device is fully assembled. Even if the failure was caused by one inexpensive part, the whole device may have to be scrapped. The company says that by designing an RF signal access and chipset control interface into a device, developers enable testing at the board level. This allows for a conducted RF verification test before the final assembly. The goal of testing should be qualitative information that can show what is not working, rather than just binary pass/fail data. LitePoint makes cellular test systems, as well as a test system for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and Zigbee devices.

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