A world first as Dublin firm reveals test technology for connected TVs

2 May 2012

Dublin technology firm S3 has become the first company in the world to create a programmable solution for automating the testing of unmodified connected TVs.

Available immediately as part of S3 Group’s StormTest Development Centre, the multi-platform, multi-device automated testing suite enhancements enable digital TV operators, broadcasters and vendors to improve the quality of their connected TV applications and services.    

S3’s StormTest is used by the BBC and Swisscom and simulates customers’ experiences on connected TVs and set-top boxes. It has been shown to reduce elapsed testing time in complex cases by up to 80pc, while at the same time delivering better quality verification.

As consumers continue to demand and expect support for these popular devices, it is necessary for operators and vendors to ensure their reliability within the Content Delivery Platform ecosystem.  

S3 Group’s connected TV test units can be added to any of the current StormTest Development Center models supporting the testing of 1, 4 or 16 units simultaneously by each system.

Automated test scripts can be run on different sized connected TVs up to and including 43″ (106cm) without the need for modification of the TV set in any way.

“Until now, the testing of apps and services for connected TVs has been restricted to slow and unreliable manual methods,” Ian Harris, director of Product Marketing and Sales, TV Technology, S3 Group, explained.

“With this latest addition to our StormTest suite, Connected TVs can now be tested using the same automated scripting and graphical test creation methods that are being used to test set-top boxes (STBs) and tablets.

“This enables operators and broadcasters to bring to market new services and apps for connected TVs faster and more cost effectively, safe in the knowledge that the quality of experience their customers expect is maintained on these new devices,” Harris added.

South Dublin-based S3 Group was founded in 1986 primarily to focus on electronics and silicon design for semiconductors in multimedia communications systems and has since evolved to provide e-health and TV technology solutions.

Dutch electronics giant Philips is a shareholder and Dublin venture capital firm ACT Venture Capital has invested US$13m in the company. S3 Group employs more than 200 people.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years