Telecom and datacom
Verification of products, services, and end-user interfaces
- Customer specification and verification of portfolio of products to power communications networks
In this international carrier study, we conducted expert interviews with power engineers and power and network planners to characterize the emerging requirements for equipment to power communications networks. Using a multi-stage process, we helped the client identify potential barriers to acceptance of particular power system architectures, as well as to identify valued attributes of the concepts. The process resulted in the specification of an innovative portfolio of network power products.
- Verification of telephone set portfolios for large and small businesses
In expert interviews with customers and distributors in North America and Europe, this study verified design decisions for telephone sets targeted to large and small businesses; here, it was important to verify not only the individual telsets, but also the portfolio as a whole, including its scope and internal structure
- Simulated-sales customer verification of Web-based call management product
Assessment of operational requirements
- Carrier requirements for an E-service network operations product
As the Internet becomes more entrenched as a business tool, voice and data operating companies are looking at Web-based tools as a way to improve support to their operations workforce and perhaps cut operating costs. In a series of expert interviews with carriers in North America and Europe, this project characterized the requirements for an e-service network operations product.
- Maintenance and operational requirements for public switching products.
Here, we examined the cognitive and manual load borne by maintenance and installation craftspeople as the public switching environment becomes more complex. This project required familiarity with a variety of switching products owned and operated by operating companies across North America; examination of performance requirements for the operating company, for the craftsperson, and for the equipment; and an ability to interview and videotape skilled craftspeople (in both unionized and non-union shops) about their jobs and the products they work on.
- Characterization of procedural issues with optical networking equipment
- User interface verification of management tool for optical networks
Evaluation of new network technologies
- Market verification of voice-over-IP product concept
The use of Internet Protocol (IP) to carry voice and data signals could reduce the cost of communications for end-user customers. However, voice-over-IP (VOIP) concepts have a variety of barriers to overcome, both real and perceived. In this project, we used a simulated-sales technique to obtain feedback from about 50 enterprise customers concerning the business justifiability of moving to a VOIP solution.
- Customer value of Advanced Intelligent Network (AIN) services
- Exploration of market opportunity for wireless data product
- Broadband PCS field trial: user behavior and operational data
We designed and conducted the entire user feedback portion of a broadband PCS field trial for a service provider, obtaining and analyzing responses from several hundred users to evaluate coverage, quality of service (blocking, dropping, etc.), audio quality, the PCS handset, and customer support. By incorporating operational measures as co-variates, we were able to analyze user responses according to the level of usage of the PCS network, as well as evaluating usage of PCS versus the legacy network during the trial period. By identifying problem areas, we were able to help the provider flesh out the network for a successful launch and prepare the support group for customer inquiries.
- Field trial of Local Multipoint Communications / Distribution System (LMCS / LMDS)
- Market characterization for Ka-band satellite services
- Customer-driven definition for deployment of public wireless voice service.