Telecommunications technologies have evolved tremendously over recent years. New variables continue to proliferate, and legacy technologies aren’t being discontinued.
As new innovations such as 5G and VoLTE come to market, the industry must develop new ways to test and validate those services. Meanwhile, customers still expect 2G, 3G, landlines, and even fax to continue to work just as well as before.
Customers don’t care about the complexities; they just want everything to work. Keeping pace with technology and continuously enhancing the customer experience are significant challenges for network operators.
Automated Testing is the New Standard
Manual testing is a thing of the past. It’s nearly impossible to perform comprehensive testing and achieve consistent results without an automated testing platform.
Test More Scenarios, in Less Time, at a Lower Cost
Automated testing enables you to broaden your testing portfolio with various smartphone types and OS versions. For instance, a leading European operator needed to test over 60 devices and 200 firmware versions per year, and this amount was expected to grow. SEGRON, a leader in cutting-edge active testing solutions, helped them tackle this challenge with its Automated Testing Framework (ATF) and intelligent Device Automation (iDA) solution.
SEGRON’s iDA uses artificial intelligence to quickly integrate new and pre-released devices, as well as firmware versions into the ATF. Within a couple of minutes, existing test cases can be executed to validate all your digital services on any new device. The advanced capabilities of the ATF, combined with the iDA, enable day-one availability and decrease test duration time significantly.
Ongoing Network Verification
Ongoing network verification testing is a crucial element of quality management. These tests run periodically and automatically in the background to continuously ensure everything is working as expected. Notifications and alerts will flag test engineers of any irregular or inconsistent results.
SEGRON’s platform integrates with any backend services within the customer’s environment to do comprehensive, end-to-end testing that will help uncover errors and potential issues would otherwise remain hidden.
Automated testing takes your agile product development processes to the next level. By incorporating it into your CI/ CD (continuous integration/continuous deployment) pipeline, you can perform comprehensive test suites and detect issues more quickly than ever before.
For example, a leading European operator has integrated SEGRON’s ATF into its product lifecycle. With each software deployment, they execute 3000 test cases overnight. They have significantly improved time-to-market while enhancing quality assurance with thorough and consistent testing.
Roaming verification is critical because customers expect a seamless experience when crossing over network boundaries. Not only that, excellent roaming performance results in increased revenues from roaming services.
There are two primary methods for roaming verification testing: modems and real smartphones.
Legacy Testing with Modems
Modems are the traditional method for roaming verification testing. A testing provider would have hundreds of modems deployed globally. Some are equipped with VoLTE testing capabilities and even less with 5G. Additional modems, larger arrays of boards, and additional interfaces are necessary for testing each new type of technology.
Innovative Testing Solutions with Real Smartphones
The latest innovation uses real smartphones deployed out in the field. SEGRON will have deployed smartphones in over 200 locations by the end of 2022. Every location will have full testing capabilities.
Smartphones enable more flexible and comprehensive testing. With one smartphone, you can verify various radio technologies, over-the-top (OTT) apps, such as WhatsApp, Messenger, and many more, including web browsing. There is no modem or wireless interface that can cover all these scenarios at once as a complex setup with several interfaces would be necessary.
Why Testing with Real Smartphones is Necessary
It’s imperative to ask yourself what are you testing and why? Do you need to verify all the latest technologies? Is the performance of OTT apps and web browsing important to your customers? Do you want to provide adequate coverage or exceptional coverage?
Several mobile operators have confirmed that VoLTE roaming tests yield more accurate results with real smartphones. Modems gave the same test results as real smartphones in about 95% of cases, but in today’s environment, your competitive advantage is in that extra 5% of improvement.
Plus, only real smartphones can test OTT and mobile web browsing. In today’s world, OTT apps and web are huge aspects of the customer’s experience. And looking into the future, 5G low latency use cases, like gaming and VR, will be even more difficult to test on a modem.
Mirror the Customer’s Experience
Modems are typically in the field for three to five to over ten years. How does a ten-year-old modem demonstrate the customer’s experience on today’s devices?
SEGRON continuously updates new OS versions and integrates new devices as they become available on the market. A device generation usually remains in the field no longer than 12-18 months. Again, it’s essential to test using the same devices your customers are using if you want your results to reflect their experience.
Partner with SEGRON to Achieve an Exceptional Customer Experience
Customer expectations are higher than ever. Adequate service coverage isn’t enough to retain and grow your revenue base.
SEGRON’s Digital Network Automation (DNA) is the ability to orchestrate all testing demands through a comprehensive set of innovative solutions. The product platform delivers immediate results with a turnkey solution. As a result, you can test more, faster, at a lower cost.
See how SEGRON helps you achieve an exceptional customer experience. Contact us today to schedule a demo.