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New analogue test facilities opened at The Landing

The Landing, MediaCityUK’s digital enterprise hub, has added analogue testing facilities at its SPACE Interactive Media Labs following the installation of traditional copper connectivity to add to its existing dedicated fibre footprint.

The SPACE Labs are some of the most sophisticated user-experience (UX) facilities in the UK. This install is in response to an increasing industry demand for highly advanced and multi-faceted ‘total testing’ UX environments, part of which includes the ability to replicate any type of broadband connectivity, whether analogue or fibre-optic based, in a controlled and monitored UX environment.

Jon Parker, Director of the SPACE Interactive Media Labs said of the new analogue testing facility:

“Every brand or service provider today needs to be offering a seamless, high quality and consistent user experience and despite the increasing roll-out of high speed fibre connections in the UK, millions of homes and businesses are still set to utilise analogue connections for many years to come.

“This means whether a user is streaming VOD content to a Smart TV, running apps on a tablet or enjoying a multi-player game via a console, there’s still a very good chance they’ll be accessing the content over copper wiring. Therefore broadcasters, ISPs, software developers and other digital content providers need to be able to ensure that their latest technologies can be delivered successfully over any type of connection.

“It is now entirely possible to test a mobile companion app, alongside a live broadcast via set-top box in order to capture authentic user insight. It is this insight which used correctly mitigates the risk of producing a brand damaging, inferior user experience.”

“This is where SPACE Labs come in by offering current, future and now retro-fitted ‘old’ connectivity.”

One of the main drivers behind a need to specifically test services and applications over copper and analogue networks is the high volume of users that still access their broadband via ASDL. In 2013 The Office for National Statistics reported that 45% of UK households still accessed the ASDL and other digital services via DSL infrastructure*.

DSL is almost exclusively delivered over traditional telephone lines.

Since installing the analogue testing facility, the SPACE Interactive Media Labs have been in talks with a wide range of leading brands and businesses keen to understand how their next generation of digital services will perform over older DSL networks as well as high speed fibre.

These are set to join many other top names who regularly road test both hardware and software products at the SPACE labs via its four monitored Usability Labs, eye-tracking facilities, 10-Bay Social Gaming Test Suite and other leading user-experience monitoring facilities.

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