Aeroflex demonstrated a system for testing the offload of live data calls between LTE and Wi-Fi at Mobile World Congress 2014.
The Wi-Fi offload test system comprises an Aeroflex E500 LTE Capacity Test System, including D500 Real Data Generator, Evolved Packet Core (EPC) for LTE/Wi-Fi, and Wi-Fi STA (station) systems. For the MWC demonstration Aeroflex used a small cell LTE eNodeB and commercially available Wi-Fi wireless access point (AP).
'With LTE and LTE-A networks experiencing ever-increasing demands on their capacity, Wi-Fi offload is one of the most important areas of technology advancement in the industry today,' said Evan Gray, product and marketing director of Aeroflex.
'Aeroflex test tools are used by virtually every base station developer worldwide, and by many large operators, for performance benchmarking. We are continuing our policy of tracking the LTE ecosystem roadmap to provide advanced test capability ahead of market need. We are pleased to provide an early demonstration of how vendors and operators will be able to test and optimize their Wi-Fi offload designs, delivering the maximum benefit to their customers.'
The Aeroflex E500 Capacity Test System is used by base station vendors worldwide for development, design optimization, regression testing and performance and network testing. Built on the de facto industry standard TM500 test mobile platform, it is increasingly being used by operators for benchmarking networks and for testing new features prior to commercial rollout.
Wi-Fi offload is just one of the features being introduced in the LTE and LTE-A standards that will give operators new tools to manage higher data consumption and also offer improved quality of service to subscribers.
To gain the maximum advantage from these features, operators and vendors need to ensure that they are correctly implemented and are commercially robust, but will also need to optimize performance, scheduling and offload algorithms and to model a wide variety of real world traffic scenarios.
The TM500 platform already supports 3GPP Release 10 features such as eICIC, carrier aggregation and 4x4 MIMO. The addition of Wi-Fi offload test capability to the TM500 test mobile and E500 capacity test system enables them to test ever more complex scenarios in an efficient manner prior to commercial roll-out.