User Requirements for SDR Terminals

Raquel Navarro-Prieto and Genevieve Conaty


2.1 Introduction

This chapter describes our user study to identify initial user requirements for Software Defined Radio (SDR) systems. Our work was completed for the Transparently Reconfigurable UbiquitouS Terminals (TRUST) project, conducted as part of the Information Society Technologies (IST) Programme of the European Union's Fifth Framework 2.4 [10] from 1999 to 2001.

SDR is a developing technology and although its consequences for end-users are not yet known, we expect it to offer them many advantages over current wireless systems, such as allowing them to move seamlessly between different types of networks to optimise their quality of service or minimise the cost of using the device. Cook studied the potential of SDR for the user, and concluded, among other benefits, that SDR will enhance the user's experience with mobile devices by enhancing roaming capabilities without changing the terminal and by allowing over-the-air download of applications software as and when required. However, these potential benefits of SDR can only be realised if the tasks and expectations of the end-users are taken into account throughout the development of the technology. Without the involvement of users, we run the risk of implementing systems that satisfy the technological goals but will not be accepted by users because they do not match the users' expectations, constraints, and desired functionality.

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