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In July, Underwriters Laboratories (UL) announced that the acquisition of the National Analysis Center (NAC), a privately held company that is considered the standard for mobile phone, automotive infotainment and mobile accessory interoperability and usability testing. This purchase significantly increases ULs ability to expand into the high-growth areas served by NAC.
In a press release from UL, the following comment was made: As major trends in the consumer space, such as the Internet of Things, wearable technology and connected vehicles drive adoption of new consumer devices, the market for interoperability testing will continue to grow, said Sajeev Jesudas, president of the UL Consumer Business Unit. This acquisition provides us with an opportunity to expand our offerings and support the next generation of connected devices to help ensure they work together seamlessly and safely.
The NAC was founded in 2003 and tests products by using them as consumers would, with the goal being to identify problems before the products are released.
NAC: story behind the story
Although NAC has only been in existence since 2003, the founders have had plenty of cutting-edge experience in the telecommunications industry before that, starting in 1988 when McCaw Cellular Communications Regional Repair Center was created. The founders quickly realized how poor the quality was of cellular devices and this caused them to want to identify problems before products were released.
In 1992, the first digital phone network was launched and this company evaluated the very first TDMA mobile/portable phone, troubleshooting the network. McCaw Cellular was bought out in 1994 by AT&T, giving the team at McCaw Cellular access to AT&Ts Bell Laboratories.
They trained the U.S. Secret Service in cellular technology and were part of the release of the first text messaging system in 1995 and the first Bluetooth system in 2001 with plenty of other benchmarks in between. Its easy to see why UL wanted to partner with the experts at NAC.
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