Keysight’s Nemo Outdoor drive test solution enables mobile network operators to perform field measurements of LTE-M and NB-IoT networks.
Mobile network operators are currently testing or rolling out first LTE-M and NB-IoT networks. Once the networks are in field-testing phase or in use, the operators need to verify that the network connectivity quality meets set standards, expectations and defined service levels of customers.
Nemo Outdoor drive test solution connected to an NB IoT or LTE-M device measures the network connectivity between the device and the base station, providing (and visualizing) data on the quality of the IoT network for the operators. This data can be further analyzed forming a basis for optimization and potential investments in the network.
Are there any differences in performance between network equipment manufacturers, IoT device manufacturers, and different operators? How should the network be configured and planned to achieve optimal performance? Is the service coverage network wide, including deep inbuilding? How long is the battery life of my IoT device? Answers to these questions are dependent on the field performance of the commercial network equipment and IoT devices, interoperability between the equipment, and the network design and configuration. The 3GPP specification provides boundaries for the performance and operations of IoT, but the equipment implementations and the network design play a major role on the real field performance. Hence, field measurements are needed to obtain definite answers.
The 3GPP standard defines the technologies to deliver the key features of IoT, but many of the details on how these technologies are used and implemented are proprietary and vendor-specific. Further the device antennas and housing may have significant impact in the practical performance achieved. Hence, testing and benchmarking of network equipment manufacturers as well as the devices available in the market is crucial to verify the interoperability and performance of the equipment to be deployed. In this initial field/lab testing, tools are needed that will provide a holistic view from application level down to RF and control of plane signaling.
Cellular IoT performance is heavily dependent on IoT devices, network equipment implementation, interoperability between the equipment, and network design. Field measurements are important for operators and industrial IoT customers to verify and benchmark the performance of IoT solutions.
Enhanced coverage is one of key features of Cellular IoT. The coverage boost is achieved with the expense of quality of service (QoS). Hence, active testing and verification of both QoS and signal coverage are needed to understand and benchmark the true IoT service coverage. Coverage has also direct impact to the network capacity and device power consumption.
Keysight Network Testing develops and sells RF measurement and analysis equipment under the Nemo brand. Nemo Outdoor drive test solution has been used by operators in multiple pilots and coverage measurements in IoT networks.
Keysight Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: KEYS) is a leading technology company that helps enterprises, service providers, and governments accelerate innovation to connect and secure the world. Keysight's solutions optimize networks and bring electronic products to market faster and at a lower cost with offerings from design simulation, to prototype validation, to manufacturing test, to optimization in networks and cloud environments. Customers span the worldwide communications ecosystem, aerospace and defense, automotive, energy, semiconductor and general electronics end markets. Keysight generated revenues of $3.2B in fiscal year 2017. In April 2017, Keysight acquired Ixia, a leader in network test, visibility, and security. More information is available at www.keysight.com.