Availability of network validation tools that emulate realistic data usage scenarios has been vital to the development and rollout of LTE, and in the future it will be equally important to include the characteristics of the predicted volume of IoT devices in the traffic models, in order to ensure quality of service and quality of user experience as 5G networks develop.
The philosophy of testing by design will provide the wireless industry with the blueprint to begin developing this framework, and this will necessitate the use of a validation environment based on virtualised network functions that can apply realistic scenarios for all types of users—consumers, businesses and things.
Latest generation of TM500 network test system already has the capability to emulate certain types of M2M/MTC devices, to evaluate the effect on the network of connecting large numbers of these low-power, low-complexity devices. This helps network operators and infrastructure vendors to validate 4G mobile network performance in preparation for deploying IoT connectivity.
Phil Medd is senior technical product manager, Cobham Wireless