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We were approached by a MNO to provide 2G/3G/4G Cellular Testing on defined train routes, across the UK.

We began by assessing the 2G/3G voice and 3G/4G packet data performance of the cellular network along the major national rail routes in the UK, as defined by the customer.

Measurements are performed with Anite’s Nemo Walker solution for compact mobile network benchmarking. The routes are scheduled and planned with the cooperation of individual train companies to make sure that they are aware of our presence on the trains. Deliverables include an analytical report for each route detailing the performance of voice and data calls as well as the radio measurements on the various technologies.

One challenge we faced was that this equipment utilises GPS to determine positioning information, but it was found that it was not possible to achieve a location fix with a normal GPS receiver and antenna. This was due to the speed of the train and enclosed environment. The effect of this was that the location information was an estimate and was therefore not as accurate as we would like. Surprisingly we found that the best solution was the GPS system in a smartphone, dramatically improving accuracy and eliminating the need for manual estimation during the survey.

Our work on the train lines is still ongoing with the

MNO being pleased with our insight, analysis, and progress.

Equipment Used:

  • Anite’s Nemo Walker solution is utilised with Nokia handsets and Huawei data dongles. Further details below:
  • 2 x Nokia C5 handsets
  • 3 x Huawei E392 data dongles
  • 1 x Anite FSR1 Scanner
  • 1 x GPS antenna
  • 2 x Wideband antenna
  • Lenovo Tablet Laptop
  • Samsung S3 Smartphone