Industry's First NB-IoT Test Solution for Interference and Performance Measurement

Viavi Solutions has announced that its CellAdvisor Base Station Analyzer will support the unique signal analysis required for NB-IoT (narrowband Internet of Things) connectivity. This capability meets the needs of service providers who need to test the overlaid IoT infrastructure that must co-exist seamlessly with the traditional mobile communication networks. Viavi is introducing this upgrade following successful trials with Tier-1 global service providers and collaborations with major network equipment manufacturers.

The Internet of Things will ultimately enable billions of smart devices to maintain low-speed and low-latency connections to mobile communications networks via narrowband signals. These networks will simultaneously need to support high-bandwidth applications such as video streaming using wideband signals, setting up an inherent tension between these usage models. Network operators are seeking solutions to help manage these disparate types of connections while maintaining the required quality of experience for each, and minimizing the need to invest in new equipment.

Viavi has responded to this need by developing a software-based NB-IoT testing solution that can be installed as a license on existing CellAdvisor handheld instruments. The addition of this feature via a software update further enhances CellAdvisor as a comprehensive solution for the market, offering RF over CPRI and BBU emulation in addition to LTE testing and automated interference hunting to help maximize efficiency of technicians while visiting cell sites.

With NB-IoT support, CellAdvisor measures the interference and performance impact the NB-IoT signal may have on the LTE wideband signal. It also confirms whether the signal has the reach and coverage required to serve the number of devices in the assigned geographic area, taking into account considerations such as building penetration. Comprehensive analysis includes signal power levels, digital demodulation analysis and interference analysis down to the single PRB (Physical Resource Block) for the signal under measurement. These detailed measurements provide customers with a full picture of how well the network is operating in terms of performance, coverage and data traffic capacity, while identifying potential issues related to interference or intermodulation that need to be resolved. Click here to learn more.