Driving down the cost of test is a key challenge in high-volume component manufacturing. The trend towards adding more ports on components such as antennas, cables, and frontend modules (FEMs) increases the need for accurate and fast multiport network analysis. Minimizing operator intervention and reducing connection and calibration times is essential to increase measurement throughput. Optimizing your vector network analyzer (VNA) configuration is critical to minimizing the cost of test in manufacturing. That’s when the multiport and multisite testing concepts come in, but there are challenges.
5G is entering uncharted territory. 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) Release 16 enables entirely new applications, expanding commercial mobile communications from familiar mobile broadband to the vast internet of things (IoT). 5G engineers stand before their greatest challenge yet: achieving the International Mobile Telecommunications 2020 (IMT-2020) vision for 10−5 reliability and 1 ms end-to-end latency. Will it be an engineering marriage made in hell or heaven? Part of the answer, like in marriage, is to find out what you are getting into.
The 5G market represents a significant opportunity for device manufacturers, particularly for smartphones. Jumpstarting device acceptance testing in the labs of device manufacturers is easier said than done, though. Solutions exist that address the challenges, including leveraging developed and flexible conformance test solutions, network emulation and power analyzers and virtual drive testing.