Feature Article

July 17, 2013

Aeroflex Rides the Wave of Mobile Handset Testing to the Top

While it’s no secret that the mobile device industry is hot, it’s easy to forget that other technologies that support mobile proliferation are growing quickly alongside it. One of them is mobile testing equipment, which is designed to ensure the quality of mobile devices such as mobile phones and tablets.

At the recent CTIA event held in Las Vegas, TMC CEO Rich Tehrani spoke with Tony Robson, Product Line Manager for Aeroflex, a provider of specialized test and measurement equipment and microelectronic solutions. Based in Plainview, New York and the UK, Aeroflex provides testing equipment for wireless mobile and broadband communications as well as for other industries such as aerospace.

At CTIA, Aeroflex launched its new Phase Five Manufacturing Test Platform, the fifth generation of the company’s platform that has been used to test three billion mobile handsets worldwide since its introduction. The product includes a signal generator which has the widest bandwidth of any instrumentation available in the PXI format. Robson says the company considers itself the leader in the PXI field and cellular testing.

“Our customers are the manufacturers and the contract manufacturers making mobile handsets and other high volume products such as tablets,” he said. “Their problems are cost of test and speed of test, so they need to have very accurate measurements. They need to have those measurements taken very quickly and very reliably and with a very high degree of ‘right first time.’ Any loss of performance in our equipment means a loss of throughput or a loss of yield, and that to them means dollars,” he added.

According to Robson, Aeroflex’s solutions are the fastest, taking only about 10 seconds to test a handset, which is what earns it customers. The company’s competitors can take as long as two to three minutes to test each phone. Given the volume of smartphones and tablets being produced worldwide today, it’s easy to see why speed is appealing.

“That pretty much is the final say in deciding which vendor is best: throughput through the factory,” said Robson. “Since we are the fastest, we are the best.” Robson notes that as wireless devices proliferate, the speed and throughput of testing will become even more critical, which bodes well for Aeroflex’s business in the future, particularly as the world slowly shifts to LTE.

While the majority of the world still operates on 2G/3G when it comes to wireless, Robson says Aeroflex is prepared for the upcoming LTE revolution.

“We’re catching the wave now for LTE,” he said. “China is a huge market for us. The Chinese government is now licensing LTE to Chinese operators, so there will be a huge wave in a few years.”

Aeroflex’s leadership in LTE-A spans a complete range of end-to-end test systems that cover research and development, performance, service, and manufacturing test applications for both TDD and FDD, from network equipment and mobile devices to RF chipsets.

For more interviews, check out the MobilityTechzone video page here.




Edited by Rich Steeves


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