Browse Definitions :
Definition

coexistence testing

Contributor(s): Sarah Lewis

Coexistence testing, similar to compatibility testing, is a method of measuring the ability of multiple devices to interact in a single environment with limited bandwidth. As the number of interconnected devices over radio frequency (RF) increases, coexistence refers to ensuring one user's wireless device will not impact another wireless device. Impacts can range from loss of function to corrupted data to interrupted signal.

The first step of coexistence testing is to define the intended environment that the device is most likely to operate under, such as a professional, healthcare or home setting. Next, the primary functions, associated wireless protocols and necessary radio frequency (RF) bands need to be determined. Testing begins by modeling the intended environment and introducing interferences to see how the device and signals react using a spectrum analyzer. Types of setup for coexistence testing include mimicking a realistic wireless open environment or conducting radio frequency over direct coaxial cable connection.

During coexistence testing, devices are categorized based on four risk-based tiers:

  1. Major risks associated with the failure of coexistence.
  2. Moderate risks, such as delayed or disrupted service, associated with device coexistence.
  3. Minor risk, such as inconvenience, associated with device coexistence.
  4. Negligible risk where no further testing is needed.

Depending on the device and the returned risk tier, product redesign may need to take place prior to release. Risk management standards require wireless technology to be assessed in relationship to external, potentially hazardous factors. Coexistence of devices can be improved through multiple techniques, such as physical separation, frequency allocation, improved security mechanisms and transmission variation.

The most extreme reason to perform coexistence testing comes from the medical field. As more medical devices are integrating smart technology and being used outside of clinical environments, it is important that their critical functionality is not interrupted. There have been recorded instances of cell phones causing infusion pumps to stop or pacemakers being controlled by unauthorized sources. Manufacturers must test that devices can perform when introduced to external devices or interferences to address concerns of safety, reliability and mortality.

Uses

Coexistence testing can be applied to a wide range of use cases, all varying in severity.

  • Ensuring that medical devices peacefully interact with other medical devices in a clinical or commercial environment.
  • Testing website functionality across a range of browsers and devices.
  • Running applications on a range of operating systems (OS) and versions.
  • Analyzing compatibility or integration of various software.
  • Examining that IoT devices or smart home configurations perform independently over one network.
This was last updated in December 2018

Continue Reading About coexistence testing

SearchCompliance

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

  • PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard)

    The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a widely accepted set of policies and procedures intended to ...

  • risk management

    Risk management is the process of identifying, assessing and controlling threats to an organization's capital and earnings.

SearchSecurity

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • risk mitigation

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • call tree

    A call tree is a layered hierarchical communication model that is used to notify specific individuals of an event and coordinate ...

  • Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)

    Disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) is the replication and hosting of physical or virtual servers by a third party to provide ...

SearchStorage

  • RAM (Random Access Memory)

    RAM (Random Access Memory) is the hardware in a computing device where the operating system (OS), application programs and data ...

  • business impact analysis (BIA)

    Business impact analysis (BIA) is a systematic process to determine and evaluate the potential effects of an interruption to ...

  • M.2 SSD

    An M.2 SSD is a solid-state drive that is used in internally mounted storage expansion cards of a small form factor.

Close