Swindon UK-based femtocell vendor Ubiquisys is using JTAG Technologies’ boundary-scan test solutions for volume production of its ZoneGate product. The provision of the test solutions is the result of extensive collaboration between the two companies and, by providing test development services and systems for factory testing, JTAG Technologies was able to relieve the burden of developing structural PCB tests.
Femtocell products address the urgent demand from consumers for cost-effective, high-quality 3G coverage in the home, and Ubiquisys’ offering introduces a fast and efficient way of opening the Internet to mobile users and delivering new revenue streams to operators.
ZoneGate, which is in mass production today at Sony UK Tech, is a single PCB product which architecturally splits into RF circuitry, baseband processing, clock circuits and power supplies. The baseband processing is achieved using a custom femtocell chip and an FPGA, memory is provided by DDR2 SDRAM and there is also a flash chip. Pete Keevill, founder and VP Engineering of Ubiquisys, comments: “ZoneGate is a relatively compact, mixed-signal design with about 1,000 nets – the majority of which connect BGA-packaged digital components.”
For testing purposes, traditional bed-of-nails style structural testing via an ICT was out of the question. Also, providing dedicated ICT test points would consume a significant percentage of the board real estate and would have introduced significant signal integrity issues (particularly impractical in the RF section of the PCB).
Keevill continues: “Our test strategy therefore is to marry functional testing of the board’s RF, analogue and power components with boundary-scan testing of the digital components. However, only two of the components on the board are boundary-scan devices, so they need to be able to cluster test several non-boundary-scan devices.”
Ubiquisys considered the products from a number of boundary-scan tool vendors and, based on solution suitability and experience residing within the company, selected JTAG Technologies. “Of particular merit was JTAG Technologies’ 4 TAP controller,” adds Keevill, “as the ZoneGate PCB has two boundary-scan chains, so we’re able to test two boards at the same time.”
James Stanbridge, JTAG Technologies’ Sales Manager UK, notes: “We built our reputation in the 1990s, supplying boundary-scan test and programming systems to the big cellular providers such as Motorola and Nokia. Now, some ten years down the line, we are still providing to leading companies which, because of the nature of comms business, need to be able to ramp up production [and by extension test] to meet market demands.”
About JTAG Technologies
JTAG Technologies is a market leader and technology innovator of boundary-scan software and hardware products and services. The company was the first to bring to the market such important advances as automated test generation, automated fault coverage analysis, automated flash and PLD programming via boundary-scan, and visualized boundary-scan analysis. Its customers include world leaders in electronics design and manufacturing such as Ericsson, Flextronics, Honeywell, Medtronic, Motorola, Nokia, Philips, Raytheon, Rockwell-Collins, Samsung, and Sony. Its innovative boundary-scan products provide test preparation, test execution, test result analysis and in-system programming applications. With an installed base of over 5,500 systems worldwide, JTAG Technologies serves the communications, medical electronics, avionics, defence, automotive, and consumer industries with offices throughout North America, Europe and Asia. JTAG Technologies headquarters are located in Eindhoven, The Netherlands.
Ubiquisys was formed in 2004 to bring its ground-breaking ZoneGate femtocell technology to market. ZoneGate femtocells are manufactured with Sony UK Tech and are available as standalone units or as part of a residential gateway device such as Netgear’s DVG834GH. The system supports multiple interfaces to the operator’s core network, and is remotely managed and updated using standard TR-069 management systems such as Motive’s Home Device Manager. Ubiquisys’ sole focus is femtocells, and in 2007 it created the Femto Forum to promote standards and partnerships in this fast-emerging industry. In May 2008 ABI Research named Ubiquisys as the world’s leading femtocell vendor in their Femtocell Vendor Matrix. The company is funded by Accel Partners, Advent Venture Partners, Atlas Venture, Google and T-Mobile Venture Fund.