As end users gradually migrate to software-defined technologies, many unforeseen issues are bound to arise and fuel demand for comprehensive testing. Software-defined radios (SDR) are seeing rapid uptake in military and commercial applications due to their phenomenal flexibility the radio can be configured at the factory based on the options purchased by customers. However, this greater flexibility calls for improved technology breadth and flexibility in SDR test equipment. Additionally, the advent of 5G and its various modulation formats is expected to intensify the need for modular test systems that are customizable through software.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Strategic Analysis of the Test Equipment Market for Software Defined Radios (SDR), finds that the market earned revenues of $1.57 billion in 2014 and estimates this to reach $2.83 billion in 2021. The study covers electronic test equipment used for the development, manufacture and field support of SDR.
“The wide range of features and options enabled by SDR has made it necessary for test equipment vendors to increase the technology breadth and flexibility of their products,” said Frost & Sullivan Measurement & Instrumentation Industry Director Jessy Cavazos. “The complexity of innovative devices also demands thorough testing across the product lifecycle, from research to deployment. Further, new test solutions must be able to test a range of radio parameters and protocols, including emerging standards, which vary between different agencies and countries across the globe.”
Speed-related improvements are another challenge facing test equipment vendors. Radio manufacturers have expressed a desire to control configuration and program instrumentation. They hope to enhance the speed of testing by doing away with the need to switch between instruments to perform all the necessary measurements. Test equipment manufacturers are responding by developing configurable equipment and instruments that can work in tandem. Pre-programmed and specialized test modes can accelerate the testing process by enabling rapid testing of numerous channels.
Although the cost of tests would theoretically increase due to the multiple channels, frequencies, power levels and additional customer-based configuration to be tested, end users are making concerted efforts to reduce costs. Test vendors may be compelled to lower the price of instrumentation.
“Nonetheless, the growing SDR market and end-user preference for commercially available test solutions present attractive opportunities for test vendors,” stressed Cavazos. “The U.S. is the most developed market for SDR, followed by Europe. Asia will present strong opportunities in the near future as military forces in several countries of the region including China, Korea, Taiwan, India, Vietnam and Singapore are also moving towards SDR.”
Strategic Analysis of the Test Equipment Market for Software Defined Radios (SDR) is part of the Test & Measurement (testandmeasurement.frost.com) Growth Partnership Service program. Frost & Sullivan’s related studies include: Global Integrated Automotive Test Solutions and its Future; Key Trends in the Test and Measurement Vertical: Radio Frequency and Wireless Testing Equipment; Internet of Everything/Things: Implications for Test & Measurement; and End Users' Perspective on the Global Wireless Communication Test Equipment Market. All studies included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.
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Strategic Analysis of the Test Equipment Market for Software Defined Radios (SDR) / NEA6-30