Azimuth Case Studies for Infrastructure Vendors

Case Studies from the Real World

Azimuth Systems is a leading provider of wireless test solutions for 
Wi-Fi, WiMAX, and 4G wireless technologies like LTE and 802.16m. Azimuth’s test solutions are used by the world’s foremost wireless semiconductor, device manufacturers, infrastructure vendors, and service providers to speed time-to-market and improve wireless IP performance. Azimuth’s test solutions simplify laboratory performance and certification testing of mobile IP devices and networks designed to support data, voice, and video applications.

Infrastructure Vendors

Leading base station, access point, and WLAN switch vendors rely on Azimuth Systems test solutions for performance test and functional validation of their products. Infrastructure vendors are expected to deliver products that have been thoroughly tested to assure performance in enterprise, service provider, college campus, and metro-scale wireless IP networks.

Network infrastructure vendor have a significant investment in test equipment and processes designed to validate the packet-based performance of switches, routers, and bridges for wired networks and connections. Wireless networks pose a new test challenge—validating the effect of mobility on packet-based performance. Additionally, the freedom that wireless products deliver to your customers forces the necessity for robust interoperability testing; you need to assess how various wireless client devices perform with your infrastructure equipment—before your customer does.

Azimuth test platforms’ unique architecture eases the burden that mobility and interoperability place on your team and processes. The time spent rolling carts through “real-world labs” can be nearly eliminated. The repeatability and precision of Azimuth’s automated range and handoff solutions significantly reduce test time and allow you to easily correlate results among departments in your company or with customers or client partners. You can spend your time fixing issues rather than finding them.

Vendors developing wireless network infrastructure components use Azimuth’s test solutions to:

  • Automatically baseline motion performance such as rate (throughput) vs. range and roaming.
  • Determine variations on baseline performance due to interoperability.
  • Automatically analyze the variations on baseline performance related to the many permutations of configuration modes of both infrastructure and client devices (e.g., security, QoS, etc.).
  • Easily correlate results throughout the supply chain—client device partners, silicon suppliers, ODMs, system integrators, and service providers deploying.
  • Automate the regression test process for new software releases.
  • Use real-world testing as a simple validation with automated, lab-based testing to find, isolate, and fix problems.

The following example illustrates some circumstances our infrastructure vendor customers have encountered in testing their products, and the successful outcomes Azimuth has enabled.

These real-world examples include brief customer profiles and the testing challenges met with Azimuth solutions, while preserving the anonymity in each case.

Example #1

Customer Profile

One of the world’s leading wireless infrastructure providers

Customer Challenge

  • Automate software regression performance testing for mobility performance.
  • Reduce the time spent on correlating results between geographically dispersed development sites.

Key Questions

  1. Does a new software release affect rate vs. range performance?
  2. Does a new software release affect roaming performance? Does roaming or rate vs. range performance vary among different laptops in my customers networks?
  3. How can test time be reduced?
  4. How can correlation issues between development sites be reduced?

Azimuth’s Solution

The infrastructure developer has positioned Azimuth’s ADEPT-n test platforms at the heart of its engineering development, design validation, and quality assurance testing processes with the following applications:

  1. Azimuth’s automated rate vs. range test test solution delivers simple, repeatable analysis of the impact of range on data throughput. The W-Series RadioProof™ controlled environment and SmartMotion technology have allowed the vendor to establish precise and definitive baseline expectations for a wide array of laptops interacting with various combinations of the customer’s access point and WLAN switches. The automated tests have been integrated through Azimuth APIs with the customer’s nightly software build processes dramatically reducing test time. Issues are isolated and corrected quickly in the lab due to the repeatability and precision of the W-Series test platform.
  2. Azimuth’s roaming test solution delivers precise measurement and analysis of the inter-AP roaming process. Roaming is a function that is dependent on both infrastructure and client performance. Roaming performance can vary greatly from one client device to the next. Testing roaming performance using “emulated” clients will not uncover users’ experience with roaming. Tests for users’ experience require interoperability-based tests. The customer has established a number of automated roaming test-beds using Azimuth’s roaming test script and precisely set baseline thresholds that meet customer expectations for Quality of Service performance during a roam. These test-beds are integrated through Azimuth APIs, with the customer’s nightly software build processes dramatically reducing test time. Test results are correlated with laptop and silicon vendors that also have Azimuth test systems, which allows for continual refinement of roaming performance for the “system.” Roaming times have been reduced by over 80% since the start of this process.
  3. The infrastructure vendor is ultimately responsible for delivering solutions that conform to end user expectations. Thus, the requirement to test performance versus motion for a number of client device/access point/switch combinations and for a wide variety of network and device configurations. Such a vast number of combinations demands automated testing. The purpose of engineering development and quality assurance testing is to find and fix problems; this demands the highest level of test repeatability and precision. Azimuth’s unique test architecture is designed to automatically test for real-world performance in the lab with both repeatability and precision. As a result, the customer’s test processes now built around Azimuth’s solutions have dramatically reduced test time and increased product quality.
  4. The customer has deployed W-Series platforms at three development sites and an ODM site. The sites are able to e-mail test scripts and test results back and forth during the development process, which enables correlation and reduces the frustrations associated with identifying and isolating issues. The same scripts are shared with outside test labs, silicon vendors, and the ODM, increasing supply chain efficiency.