EXFO reported sales were up 1.9% year-over-year to $73.6 million, with sales for the nine months of the fiscal year so far up 8.2% over the same period last year.
Net earnings for the quarter were $21,000, compared to a net loss of $6 million during the third period of last year. This quarter’s net earnings included $1.7 million on after-tax amortization of intangible assets, EXFO said, as well as $500,000 in stock-based compensation costs and a foreign exchange gain of $100,000. For the nine months of its fiscal year so far, the company narrowed its net loss from $8 million during the same period in 2018 to $2.3 million. EXFO noted that its acquisition of Astellia was counted in all of this year’s results so far, as opposed to four months of the same period last year.
EXFO CEO Philippe Morin said that he was pleased with the company’s execution so far this year, noting the “significant year-over-year increases in sales, bookings and adjusted EBITDA” as well as third quarter revenues above the midpoint of its guidance.
“This heightened level of consistency reflects a strong performance against our growth strategy, leveraging fiber build-outs, data center interconnects as well as 5G deployments and network virtualization, while maintaining a sound financial discipline,” Morin added.
In other test news:
–IHS Markit says that Dallas is “primed to be a hotbed for 5G innovation,” since three of the four national carriers — AT&T, Sprint and Verizon — are all planning on early 5G roll-outs there. In the meantime, Dallas is already a high-performance LTE market and getting faster, according to RootMetrics’ latest numbers.
Dallas had an aggregated median download speed of 31.6 Mbps across the four major carrier networks, IHS Markit’s RootMetrics reported — meanwhile, Austin, Houston and San Antonio were all below 25 Mbps on that metric. Dallas also had the fastest median upload speed: 13.7 Mbps.
RootMetrics said that there have been “widespread data speed improvements” in Dallas, with three of the four carrier networks clocking faster speeds than in its previous round of testing. AT&T had the most impressive improvement, with median speed jumping from 17.9 Mbps to 24.8 Mbps. But Verizon still came out on top with the fastest median speed, at a whopping 44.9 Mbps — up only slightly from 42.1 Mbps that was recorded by RootMetrics in the second half of 2018. T-Mobile US, meanwhile, had the fastest median upload speed: 22.0 Mbps, up from 13.4 Mbps in previous testing.
-Analyst firm Frost & Sullivan said that the rise of digitalization, smart homes and connected internet of things devices is driving the need for electromagnetic compatibility test equipment and services. Frost said that the need to test products for electromagnetic interference, or EMI, will drive the market at a compount annual growth rate of 10.7% through 2022, with the market hitting $4.57 billion by the point. Testing services will be the largest contributor to the market, Frost & Sullivan said; services accounted for $1.9 billion in 2017 and is forecast to hit $3.21billion by 2022, while equipment generated $850 million in 2017 and will likely hit $1.36 billion in 2022.
–Keysight Technologies has launched a new automotive cybersecurity program that features hardware, software and testing aspects as well as a subscription service to an evolving threat database with updates on the latest security risks and attacks. The test hardware component connects to devices under test across all relevant interfaces, from Wi-Fi and cellular to automotive Ethernet, CAN and others. The software simulates attacks, reports on vulnerabilities and their severity, and recommends fixes, the company said, and the subscription service provides frequent updates and information on the threat landscape.
“In today’s vehicles, heavy reliance on connectivity and software improves convenience but increases the potential attack surface for emerging and evolving cyber threats,” said Siegfried Gross, VP and GM of Keysight Automotive and Energy Solutions. “This new program enables OEMs and Tier 1s to enhance vehicle safety by defining, implementing and deploying a consistent, company-wide approach to the testing of potential vulnerabilities.”
-Test companies Rohde & Schwarz and Marvin Test Solutions collaborated on a new 5G integrated circuit test solution. The two companies noted that beamforming is becoming a default concept in 5G New Radio for cellular communications, as well as in satellite comms — and it’s common in aerospace and defense, which is Marvin’s test specialty. The new TS 900e-5G from Marvin is based on the R&S ZNBT40 vector network analyzer and supports production testing. Rohde said that the collaboration started when Marvin showed interested in the VNA as the basis for its 5G beamforming IC production tester. The VNA has a frequency range from 100 kHz to 40 GHz and supports parallel testing of multiple, multiport devices using up to 24 ports.
“The large number of ports makes it possible to characterize a beamforming IC in full detail and see the cross-correlation effects while monitoring all antenna connections,” Rohde and Schwarz said.
–NYU Wireless professor and founding director Ted Rappaport was awarded the 2020 Eric E. Sumner Award from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), for his research in wireless communications, including millimeter wave.