SOURCE: IneoQuest Technologies

November 05, 2007 10:49 ET

IneoQuest Provides Quality and Service Assurance Solutions for SureWest Communications

Market Leader in QA for IP Video Enables SureWest to Select Vendor Equipment, Improve Video Quality, Roll Out New Services and Retain Subscribers

MANSFIELD, MA--(Marketwire - November 5, 2007) - IneoQuest Technologies, Inc., the leader in Multi-Dimensional Video Quality Management Systems and global provider of advanced quality and service assurance solutions for IP Video, today announced that leading independent telecommunications holding company SureWest Communications (NASDAQ: SURW) has selected and deployed IneoQuest service probes as part of its ongoing commitment to provide outstanding quality of experience (QoE) to the large video subscriber base of its SureWest Broadband subsidiaries in the Sacramento region.

SureWest, which owns one of the largest providers of pure fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) connections in the United States, initially relied upon IneoQuest's award-winning Singulus Lite Cricket service probe to help evaluate and test video performance on the SureWest Broadband IP Video vendor equipment (BMR encoders, encryptors, routers, DSLAMs, modems, etc.) in its test labs. These IneoQuest products also have played an active role in the evaluation performance testing of hardware from such vendors as Occam, Allied Telesyn and Cisco.

"IneoQuest hardware, primarily the G1-T, has been incorporated into the test and evaluation phase of most vendor hardware that we are considering for purchase," says Scott Barber, vice president of network operations for SureWest. "The IneoQuest gear helps us evaluate a vendor's claims by delivering real-life field results. Most recently, IneoQuest's service probes allowed us to capture the data needed to analyze and identify any quality issues while working with a new encryption vendor on its broadcast units."

Impressed with the features offered by IneoQuest products, SureWest has elected to use the IneoQuest probes beyond its test lab -- at the homes of IP Video subscribers. This strategy has enabled SureWest to reduce operational expenses (OPEX) related to dispatching service technicians for trouble calls and has improved the ability to install residential IPTV services with little delay.

"Prior to this new technology offered by IneoQuest, customer video issues would require us to dispatch a technician to monitor picture quality and wait for something to happen. This was difficult, because there was no guarantee that the problem would repeat itself, and no way to accurately monitor the events leading up to the problem," Barber said. "We began strategically placing the Singulus Lite Cricket probes at targeted homes where it was necessary to monitor the incoming video feed."

Using IneoQuest's Cricket, a compact piece of hardware that fits neatly above a subscriber's set-top box, SureWest Broadband now has a real-time solution that empowers both the video provider and the customer. "Each Cricket features a call button that a subscriber can press as soon as a picture quality issue starts," Barber said. "We can set up thresholds to automatically capture the video feed, and allow the customer to manually hit the button to record the feed if they see an anomaly. This reduces the expenses associated with the customer call center and the truck roll -- and more importantly, the customer has control over the situation."

In an industry where customer retention is the key to continued success, a solution that emphasizes quality of experience is a true market differentiator. "IneoQuest's products are unique in that they address two challenges within the IPTV marketplace: improvement of viewer quality of experience, and the reduction of operational expenses," said Marc A. Todd, president and CEO of IneoQuest. "We are extremely pleased that SureWest Communications has found a value in our quality and service assurance products -- both in and out of the test lab."

About IneoQuest Technologies

IneoQuest Technologies, Inc., the leader in Multi-Dimensional Video Quality Management Systems, is a global provider of advanced quality and service assurance solutions for IP Video, serving customers in the telephony, cable, broadcast and network equipment industries worldwide. The company enables its customers with unique combinations of hardware, software and services to design, build, deploy, and manage IPTV networks. Headquartered in Mansfield, Massachusetts, IneoQuest has sales operations in the US, Asia and European regions. More information is available at www.IneoQuest.com

About SureWest

Serving the Northern California region for more than 90 years, SureWest Communications (www.surewest.com) is one of the nation's leading integrated communications providers. SureWest's bundled offerings include an array of advanced digital video, high-speed Internet, local and long distance telephone, and wireless PCS. SureWest's fiber-to-the-premise IP-based network features high-definition video and symmetrical Internet speeds of up to 50 Mbps.

Contact Information