InBuilding - Volume 2, Issue 1 - 78
PCTEL's IBflex (left) is the dominant inbuilding product in the United
States, and its MXflex® scanning receiver tests complex environments.
For example, when PCTEL
provided this technology to Day
Wireless for the testing of a tunnel,
it provided a time savings of 72
percent, cutting the work hours
from 56 to 15-and-a-half. In
addition, the quality of data and
reporting exceeded the ﬁre code
and contract requirements.
As PCTEL has entered the public
safety market, it has needed to
meet the requirements of multiple
players. These can range from
municipalities to the National Fire
Protection Agency to the Department of Homeland Security.
"Everyone has their own spin on
things," Miller says. "We're trying
to harmonize those requirements
so we have a solution that meets
the largest superset of those."
PCTEL also visits its clients at
their oﬃces to learn about their
business. "We're able to get into
more personal discussions," he
says. "The important thing you
can do is say, 'Show me how you
do this work,' and you talk to them
about their challenges."
These visits, Adams notes, lead
to conversations about how PC78 inbuilding-magazine.com Volume 2, Issue 1
TEL's products can help its clients.
"You start doing the what if, where
you say, 'What if you had a tool
that did X, Y or Z?'" he says.
In fact, this was how PCTEL
was able to help Day Wireless,
Miller adds. "At the end of the
day, it's all about meeting customers' needs and ﬁnding solutions,
and protecting the ﬁrst responders," he says.
"They need to have reliable, robust communications that support
their mission," Miller continues.
"We work through a number of
partners to provide that capability."
PCTEL plans to continue adding
new technologies to its oﬀerings.
"We're looking at automating a
thing called discriminated audio
quality - or DAQ ," Miller says,
noting that the company should
develop it in the next year to 18
months for the public safety market.
Currently, he explains, DAQ is
determined by having two parties
talk to each other and then assign
a voice quality score between zero
and ﬁve, where ﬁve is crystal clear
audio. "Obviously, this inserts a
human element to the process,
which makes it diﬃcult to calibrate
across dialects and speech rates,"
"PCTEL can measure bit and
frame error rates, which are easily
quantiﬁed and map that back to an
equivalent DAQ score," he continues. "The challenge is getting the
various bodies involved to agree on
a uniﬁed scoring methodology."
The company also is working on
licensed technology in 5G, although
the industry is a few years away
from consumer grade 5G. However,
"as the wireless technologies march
on, you'll see 5G in the public safety applications," he predicts.
PCTEL also will see more developments with regulations, Adams
adds. "It's really just beginning
where jurisdictions are enforcing
that building owners do the test,
make sure the networks work in
their buildings, put in a system to
ﬁx it and prove [that they] did it,"
Some speciﬁcations have been
around for more than a decade,
but they have been diﬃcult to enforce without PCTEL's tools. "We
expect a 1,000-fold increase in the
amount of testing that needs to be
done," he adds.