Our high‑tech products are forward‑looking. We know how important it is to focus on the future and to make sure not to miss a chance. A great opportunity for a successful company is to develop young talents and support them with well‑established knowledge and also to learn from juniors and their ability to see things from a different angle. We want to contribute to your career development with interesting and challenging opportunities, because the future is important to us all.
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What do our former interns say about their experience at u‑blox?
BSc Electrical Engineering, ETH Zurich
Internship of 5 months
I was for five month part of the sensor fusion team in Thalwil. This team works on navigation algorithms that combine satellite information with additional sensor data. I worked on different tasks related to that topic. First, I enhanced and verified a device used to log data from road journeys with a test car. Afterwards, I designed and developed the software of a tool that allows to automatically identity sensor fusion issues in logged data.
Throughout the entire internship I had to familiarize myself with new topics that required a profound understanding and creativity to be solved. I mostly worked and planned the next steps to be taken independently, but I always had great support from my colleagues in Thalwil and when needed also from other offices. For example, when I encountered latency issues on the logging device and got stuck, I got together with embedded systems experts in Thalwil and had support from other colleagues in UK to solve them. This open‑door policy (that I was able to call anybody to ask for help) was much appreciated.
The road tests with the logging device were tricky, too. Many processes that work without any problems on the office desk are potential issues on the road that might totally screw up whole measurement sequences. Sometimes things did not work out well during the first or second run, but I was advised by experienced testing engineers and my colleagues that were waiting for road journey data showed understanding and supported my learning process.
These five months at u‑blox have been a great time as I got deep insights into various aspects of the R&D work that is done in Thalwil. All my expectations as deepening my knowledge in embedded systems and in software development were fulfilled and I gained a lot of hands‑on experience in real testing environments. The work was very interesting and enjoyable thanks to my colleagues that rapidly integrated me into their team. I can recommend an internship at u‑blox to anybody with similar background and interest.
BSc information engineering
at the University of Trieste
Internship of 3 months
Towards the end of my BSc studies of Information engineering at the University of Trieste, I decided to spend some time working on a project at u‑blox Italia S.p.a. The issues I addressed during these 3 months of internship also gave me the arguments on which I could develop my bachelor’s thesis.
I have been working with the protocol stack team as well as following some tests and trace analysis performed by the tests and measurement sector. I learned a lot in this period, as I upgraded the basic knowledge of CS and PS solutions I gained at the University with practical examples of it.
Despite the autonomy that was given to me, the u‑blox team has always been available for clearing doubts up, for cooperation, for solving some problems together. The arguments that I was dealing with were very recent, some u‑blox products implementing these features in the process of development, so I was given the opportunity to see the progress in the work really day by day. Being part of a team where everybody has different qualities and finding a way to cooperate in such a way to resolve big projects is really motivating.
The most gratifying feeling during this work was the awareness that even if a problem instance was completely new to me, previous work and studies of different arguments turned out to suggest which approach to choose and how to solve it.This is why I am most thankful to the u‑blox team, for showing me the way in which this company works, for giving me a lot of new knowledge, for helping me to develop a critical and useful attitude in solving real problems.Therefore I would suggest it to all the students that have the willing and the possibility to spend some time on any similar project.I am sure this experience will make my further work more rewarding and will help me to see the topics I will face during further studiesfrom a different and more focused point of view.
BSc Electrical Engineer at ETH Zurich
Internship of 6 months
In my Internship at u‑blox in Thalwil I got different tasks in multiple directions of IC design. In the first part I checked some existing reused digital IPs for possible issues. Afterwards I worked on different aspects of the characterization and power estimation in the latest 28 nm project. In the end I was able to get a small insight into the backend.
Changing the task multiple times means I had to familiarize myself over and over again with new topics and new tools. For example, for the checks of the IPs I needed to understand the behavior of the IPs and the theory behind the checked rules to be able to decide how to fix appearing problems. In another task I had to understand parts of the firmware to be able to debug a faulty HDL test simulation. Besides the reading and trying out part, my colleagues always tried to help with any questions or problems I had. Even though my questions were sometimes more based on my curiosity than on my actual task they were always very open to give me answers or even show me real‑life applications.
For me the internship at u‑blox fulfilled all my goals and wishes I had for my internship. I could get an insight in multiple parts of the IC design and gained a lot of experience. Additionally, all the colleagues were very helpful, friendly and open. So all in all I just had a great time at u‑blox.
Filip Gummersson &
We have done our MSc thesis at u‑blox in Malmö. For the first part of our thesis, we studied a set of time synchronization methods for short range networks connected with Bluetooth Low Energy. The second part of the thesis was to conduct a case study; implement such a synchronization algorithm using u‑blox products.
u‑blox gave us a description of what they wanted the thesis to be about, but still, they left a lot of decisions for us.
In the beginning of our study, we had to allocate time to catch up with the latest research on the subject. We built a solid foundation which we were able to base our case study upon. To implement applications for both energy and memory constrained devices, it requires you to make thought‑out design decisions. If we ever felt that we couldn't make the decision by ourselves, our colleagues, who have a wide experience in this area, was always willing to help.
During our study, we have learned that it is hard to compare performance between different time synchronization methods, because, when it comes to precision, the hardware really matter.
See more about our Master Thesis Short Range 2016 (Malmo, Sweden).
We have had a wonderful time at u‑blox. Everyone has been very helpful and has shown much interest in our work.
Student Electrical Engineering
ETH Zurich (CH)
Internship of 5 months
During my internship at u‑blox AG in Thalwil I implemented a new test system for interfaces of the GNSS modules. To do so I was able to gain valuable skills about FPGAs, the Linux Kernel, Linux Drivers, C++ and how to integrate a test into a big framework.
What I liked most about the internship was that I was free to decide on how to implement the system. On the other hand, when I needed to discuss the approach on how to implement a certain subsystem, I was always allowed to simply approach a colleague who had specialized in it. During those discussions we always tried to find the pros and cons of the different ways of how to implement the solution, but in the end I was still able to decide on my own which way was best for the project. I appreciated the freedom and responibility that were given to me.
Focus on Learning
The focus was not only on how to get the test system to work as fast as possible, but also to look deeper into different fields and get familiar with them. I was able to spend a lot of time reading documentation and books in order to find the best solutions. There was little repetitive work to do, the focus was much more on gaining knowledge and skills.
It was a great and valuable experience for me to work at u‑blox AG not only because of the interesting technical challenges I had to tackle, but also because of my colleagues who integrated me very well into the team.
Student Electronics and Telecommunication
University of Trieste (IT)
Internship of 6 months
During the internship at u‑blox Italia for my MSc degree, I worked on the characterization and optimization of an M2M application with the point of view of current consumption. The study involved gaining knowledge on how UMTS and LTE cellular technologies work, especially the protocol stack, and how to use instruments such as system simulators, power supplies and multimeters.
The topics I was going to investigate were completely new to me. The first challenge had been to gain knowledge of UMTS and LTE cellular technologies, in order to understand which network parameters can affect the cellular module’s current consumption. In order to do so, I was in contact with people from the protocol stack team; moreover, I spent a lot of time reading books and articles on previous works. Then, with the help of the hardware team I was able to set up the measurement test system, which was used to characterize the current consumption of a u‑blox cellular module in UMTS and LTE. In the final part of my work, I had to suggest techniques to minimize the current consumption of an M2M application running on a u‑blox cellular module. I think that this part was the most challenging, but discussing it with colleagues helped me to go through it and achieve the goals.
All in all, I enjoyed working on my thesis at u‑blox Italia because my colleagues were always very collaborative and I was in a position that has let me use my theoretical knowledge in real‑world scenarios.
Student Electronics and
University of Trieste (IT)
Internship of 8 months
I did both the BSc and the MSc internships and thesis at u‑blox. During my MSc thesis I studied models for controlled power reduction by data puncturing during a CS voice call and its impact on voice quality in UMTS. The most promising model was integrated in the Protocol Stack in one of our UMTS M2M radio products and empirically tested.
Putting the theoretical knowledge into a real‑world practice requires a lot of learning and experimenting. The knowledge of the colleagues I’m privileged to work with, and the possibility to simply approach them to discuss pros and cons in order to find the most optimal real‑world solution is priceless. Most of the time I had the freedom and the responsibility to make my own decisions on how to do things and then to discuss them with my colleagues that are very specialized in it. Apart from continuous learning and improving, the most important experience I gained was how to work in a very dynamic environment inside a team where everyone has a chance and the responsibility to give their best and to contribute to an immense project.
The valuable experience gained during internship and thesis was crucial when I joined u‑blox. Being a member of the company that designs and implements its own cutting edge technology in positioning and wireless communication is very challenging, but professionally also a very rewarding task.
PhD Information Engineering, University of Trieste (IT)
3 years of PhD studies
From January 2013 to December 2015 I worked at the University of Trieste towards my PhD in Information Engineering. The research project was undertaken in close collaboration with u‑blox, who financed the PhD scholarship and reviewed the signal processing of downlink LTE signals for positioning purposes.
A fascinating challenge
The topic of the PhD was agreed together with the R&D heads of the u‑blox cellular positioning group. At that time, u‑blox was interested in developing precise positioning solutions that exploited the signals of the terrestrial cellular networks. They asked me to join their research on the signal processing techniques needed to exploit all the properties of the LTE OFDM signals that could be exploited for time measurements in a localization system. This was a quite un‑explored topic, both in the industry and in academia, and I loved to work on such a leading edge aspect of positioning, with several challenges to face.
Research in a company
Industry and academia are often seen as two opposite poles, but in these three years with u‑blox I understood how powerful can be their interaction. Thanks to u‑blox, I met a large network of people spread in different countries and working on different aspects of the same problem I was facing for my PhD project. This network included u‑blox employees, and external collaborators, such as the ICOM team of the Hochschule für Technik Rapperswil. Thanks to this, I had the chance to travel a lot and to visit some different offices of u‑blox in UK and Switzerland. Being in contact and working with all these people made me learn a lot, from both the technical and human point of view. Finally, the thing I liked most is the chance I had to see the results of my research becoming something tangible and concrete, which is something that does not happen often if you work exclusively in academia.
The research project on which I worked together with u‑blox gave exciting results. Together with all the people involved, we published several papers on what we achieved, and we also filed a patent application. This permitted to me to pursue successfully the PhD title. Nowadays, I am a u‑blox employee in Sgonico, Italy, where I am continuing to work as an engineer on cellular positioning topics. Here I have the chance to continue contributing to the growth of the project I’ve been part of and to face every day new fascinating challenges.