Engineers want test equipment at home

A poll of element14 Community reveals that engineers want to adopt hybrid working and use test equipment at home to become more productive, but companies are failing to provide it

element14 has run a poll of its element14 Community which shows engineers have a strong desire to be able to use specialised test equipment at home in order to become more productive. However, many companies still don’t provide any equipment at all for home use, despite many convenient and low-cost solutions being available.

The poll revealed some interesting insights:

90% of the respondents felt that engineers needed some equipment at home

  • 50% have no test equipment provided for use at home
  • Less than a quarter (24%) of the engineers that responded can work fully remote
  • Around a third felt that only some testing should be conducted at home, with the company lab still required for specialised test equipment

These results show the need to deploy cost-effective PC scopes and similar products, offered through element14 by suppliers such as Pico Technology, to improve engineers’ efficiency by allowing them to create home labs.

James McGregor, Global Head of Test & Tools, at element14 said, “There is a growing trend to support a new hybrid working environment in the electronics industry. This demand will drive an increased need for test equipment that engineers can use on site, at the lab and at home. We want to help our customers achieve greater efficiency by providing them with market-leading test solutions that offer high performance with greater flexibility.”

Pico Technology prides itself on offering innovative, high-quality and affordable alternatives to traditional bench-top test and measurement equipment and their products have enabled hybrid working and new ways of remote learning throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. This trend has continued post-pandemic as more companies embrace the benefits of using low-cost PC-based scopes in combination with high-performance products to meet the changing application needs of customers in the test and measurement industry.

Pico Technology’s products available from element14 include:

  • PC-based Oscilloscopes ranging from 10 MHz to 1 GHz bandwidth
  • Portable Vector Network Analysers (VNAs) – low cost, portable, high performance, 6 GHz and 8.5 GHz models
  • Cloud data loggers for measuring voltage, temperature & current with optional cloud-based logging enabling users to view captured data from anywhere.
  • Pico Technology’s Software Solutions – are license-free enabling use on multiple devices. There are no costs involved to use the software and share data across multiple devices in the lab and at home.
  • Pico Technology’s hardware  - can capture data which can be exported to a number of third-party software packages for analysis
  • Value-added services – long warrantees as standard and lifetime technical support free of charge

Mike PurdayRegional Manager for EMEA, Pico Technology, said, “Far more could be done from home if engineers had access to portable equipment that met their needs. Historically test equipment has been complex, bulky and function specific, but new PC-connected test equipment now has the same performance as, or in many cases is much better than traditional bench top instruments. Other advantages include cost effectiveness, portability, enablement of remote working and ease of moving data. There will always be tests which engineers can’t recreate in a home lab, but for all those they can, they should be provided with the equipment to enable them to.”

Pico Technology has pioneered the design, development and manufacture of high-performance PC Oscilloscopes and Data Loggers for more than 30 years. During that time, the company has built an impressive portfolio of products including the PicoScope PC Oscilloscope range with bandwidths up to 30 GHz, the TC-08 and PT-104 Temperature Data Loggers and multi-award-winning Automotive Oscilloscope Kit.

Responding to the growth of test and measurement globally, element14 has invested significantly over the last 18 months to enhance its broad portfolio which includes the latest solutions from world leading suppliers. element14's in-stock range of test and tool products includes oscilloscopes, power suppliers, signal generators and digital multimeters, as well as soldering products, hand tools and 3D printers. Free technical support in local language is available to customers 24/5 from element14 in-house test and measurement specialists as well as access to online resources, data sheets, application notes, videos and webinars.

To get involved in element14's  latest snap polls on the element14 Community, go to:


About us

Farnell Global is a fast and reliable distributor of products and technology for electronic and industrial system design, maintenance and repair.  From research and design through prototype to production, Farnell helps its customers access the products and services they need 24/7.  With more than 80 years of experience, 47 localised websites, and a dedicated team of over 3,500 employees, Farnell provides every component its customers need to build the technology of tomorrow.

Farnell Global trades as Farnell in Europe, Newark in North America, and element14 in Asia Pacific.  It also sells direct to consumers through its CPC business in the UK.

Farnell Global has been part of the established global technology distributor, Avnet (Nasdaq: AVT), since 2016. Today, this relationship allows the company to support its customers at every stage of the product life cycle, offering a truly unique distribution model, as well as expertise in end-to-end delivery and product design.

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