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Test and Measurement: WTG, MTS, PCTel report results

As quarterly results continue to roll in for test companies, Wireless Telecom Group saw its net revenues rise 12% in the second quarter, compared to its performance during the same period last year.

WTG reported net revenues of $13.4 million for the quarter. The company also narrowed its overall profit loss, recording a net loss of $180,000 compared to a loss of nearly $1.4 million in the year-ago period. WTG’s revenues in its network solutions segment were flat, but its test and measurement business saw a revenue increase of 6.6% year-over-year. The biggest growth, however, was in WTG’s embedded segment, which saw revenues jump more than 40% year-over-year to $4.2 million.

WTG CEO Tim Whelan said in a statement that the company was “very pleased with a stronger than expected quarter of results, and we are especially pleased with the organic growth realized in our test & measurement and embedded solutions segment.” He went on to add that the company is continuing to invest in research and development and products for 5G and millimeter wave and that WTG also recently introduced products for in-building public safety networks related to FirstNet deployments.

Also this week, testing and sensor company MTS reported quarterly revenues of $194.7 million, which included sensors revenue growth of 14% year-over-year. MTS bolstered its position in the sensors space with the acquisition of PCB Group in 2016.

In test, MTS said that it has a current backlog of $326.3 million, which it is is “driven by strong sequential test orders growth of 33% over the prior quarter.” Overall net income was down slightly, to $8.9 million for the quarter compared to $10.6 million in the year-ago period.

Jeff Graves, president and CEO of MTS, said in a statement on the company’s earnings that its test segment “continued to navigate a dynamic and volatile auto industry as rapid technological advances in electric, autonomous and automated driver assistance vehicles continued to affect the timing of many of our test projects.” During the most recent quarter, revenues from its backlog were lower than MTS’ initial estimates and impacted its test business’ profits, which the company expects to continue for the rest of its fiscal year because many of the orders are custom projects which taken longer to realize revenue.

MTS earlier this year announced job cuts and the closing of two manufacturing facilities in its test operations in China, as it shifts production to a contract manufacturing partner. The restructuring is projected to save the company between $5 to $10 million annually, starting in the second half of its fiscal 2019.

PCTel also reported its most recent earnings this week, with flat second-quarter revenues of $21.6 million. PCTel said that its connected solutions revenue was up 4% year-over-year, while its radio frequency solutions revenues were down 11% compared to the same period in 2017. Net loss for the quarter was $1.2 million, compared to $353,000 in the year-ago period.

David Neumann, CEO of PCTel, said that his company “saw revenue growth for its connected solutions products in the enterprise Wi-Fi market during the quarter and the half but fell short of our expectations. RF Solutions revenue was down in the North American market in the quarter and the half, due to capital budget reductions by several U.S. carriers. We believe the carriers have reduced capital spending on legacy networks to prepare for more aggressive 5G deployments in 2019. Although this will negatively affect our 2018 results, PCTEL is positioned to take advantage of the long-term growth opportunities in our targeted markets, which require both performance critical testing solutions and antennas.”

In other test news:

Keysight Technologies said that it is first-to-market with a creation tool for LoRa devices and technology, aiming to speed up LoRa-based design validation and verification of IoT applications. Keysight’s N7610C Signal Studio for IoT

Keysight’s Ixia Solutions Group, meanwhile, announced this week that its CloudLens software-as-a-service visibility platform now offers packet-level visibility into workloads in containers and Kubernetes clusters across platforms including AWS’ Elastic Container Service for Kubernetes, Azure Kubernetes Service and Google’s Kubernetes Engine.

“The lack of granular access to cloud traffic creates blind spots which could compromise application performance or security, resulting in degraded customer experience and increased network security risk,” said Scott Register,VP of product management at Ixia Solutions Group, in a statement. “By expanding CloudLens support to containers, we offer the packet-level visibility that security and network teams need to diagnose critical security and performance issues in their container-based environments all in one platform.”

Spirent Communications launched a new solution that it says is the first that uses data breach emulation “to provide holistic and hyper-realistic security testing of networks and devices for awareness of data breach and intruder activity.” Spirents CyberFlood Data Breach Assessment tool, extends the company’s CyberFlood line into product environment testing of live networks and devices.

GL Communications introduced a new high-speed Ethernet link test offering, its Packet Expert 10GX, that is more compact than its previous offerings and including TTL trigger enhancements for detecting and timing events propagating over communication networks.

-The Ethernet Alliance will hold a plugfest next week at the University of New Hampshire’s InterOperability Lab, focused on improving interoperability of Ethernet equipment that supports speeds between 25 gigabits per second to 400 Gbps.

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