“The Maxwell Pro Network Emulator helped us emulate the most probable real-world customer usage scenarios in the lab, so that we could learn how our product would perform under both extreme and routine network conditions. This meant that we could cover all required usage scenarios, provide clear information on product performance to our sales channels, pinpoint issues and problems before they arose.”
-Aron Rosenberg, Lead Engineer
Aether makes thinking things, beautifully crafted products that use powerful technology and simple, natural controls to make everyday moments nicer. The team at Aether is dedicated to building things that remove the effort and frustration from daily life, putting joy and surprise back into the everyday. Aether's flagship product is Cone.
Cone is a thinking music player which plays audio from streaming music services, internet radio stations, and podcasts all with a simple turn of a dial.
Challenge: Seamless, trouble free operation
For a successful product launch, Aether must anticipate every possible consumer usage scenario, including all the limitations and issues with home WiFi networks and last mile connectivity.
The Aether Cone will operate in home WiFi environments. These environments manifest a plethora of problems:
These environmental conditions cause packet loss, delay, duplication, jitter, and re-ordering, potentially wreaking havoc on the audio experience.
Emulating Home WiFi ScenariosAether took advantage of Maxwell Pro's home network scenarios. Aether went a step further to add even more custom scenarios for home WiFi to evaluate Cone performance under a wide range of conditions. These included latency, limited bandwidth, and packet drops to emulate an overloaded wireless network.
One use case that Aether's product must handle is its customers carrying the Cone around their house while streaming live music. Lab testing required only a single wireless access point connected to the Maxwell Pro as a means to route traffic through it. Then applying custom time-varying impairments, such as these two:
Maxwell Pro's time varying impairment GUI controls and support for multiple, concurrent network flows to target specific packets and protocols made it possible to perform the desired custom scenarios. Additionally, impairment statistics gathered from live networks were also used in scripts that controlled the time-varying impairments in the lab, allowing automated testing.
Because Aether knew how Cone would perform under real-world home networking conditions, Aether designers could provide sensing and detecting code to dynamically adjust the customer's music experience. Cone can reliably detect when the WiFi is overloaded, turned off, etc. to eliminate negative user experiences and user frustration.
Aether estimates that Cone's enhanced functionality has eliminated about 80% of network related development and testing time.
"By using Maxwell Pro to customize a comprehensive portfolio of home network performance and testing scenarios, we were able to perfect the experience for our users. We eliminated guessing games and tedious manual testing sessions. We are really pleased with Maxwell Pro.”
-Aron Rosenberg, Lead Engineer
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