I see a growing demand for Wi-Fi performance analytics (location, content, and experience analytics are a separate discussion piece) and assurance to form more robust and accountable service level agreements with wireless service providers. Customers want to know if their network is performing properly, and the wireless network is no exception.
While wireless engineers can perform surveys to check coverage and interference, and perform packet analysis in various locations to assess operations and the user experience, and monitor network management system logs and reports; it is expensive to send engineers onsite at the hint of any wireless issue (and as we know, more often than not it can be an issue with the client device as opposed to the wireless network; or an issue further down the line in the wired network infrastructure), and it is difficult to replicate issues and correlate them to certain points in time.
I also see a strong use-case for post-implementation performance baseline establishment. Performing post-implementation wireless surveys, end-user acceptance testing, throughput and packet analysis, and application tests are all necessary components of verifying if a wireless network is operating as per design. However it would be great if there was a way to perform longer-term testing of the network to establish normal and expected operating conditions over say a two week period, perhaps pre and post-go live. Continue reading