Sensor performance and cost are typically the main features reviewed by potential users of MEMS sensor applications. However with more options becoming available, experienced users will begin to consider more than just performance and hardware cost and will seek packaging features which reduce the effort needed to set up, calibrate and successfully operate MEMS sensor systems. A reduction in the cost of effort needed to collect good data will impact test affordability. Data from MEMS shear stress testing on cylinder boundary layer and separation bubble features will be presented to show how packaging can affect both performance and affordability. Manufacturers should ask: What is remembered the most at the conclusion of a MEMS application, the cost of hardware or the cost of effort required to collect good data?

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