Monday, August 30, 2004

Lucent Lands $4.6 Million Optical Contract from U.S. Army

Lucent Technologies was awarded $4.6 million contract with the United States Department of the Army to provide optical networking systems and professional services to upgrade military communications systems at Fort Drum. Lucent will provide its Metropolis DMX Access Multiplexer and its new Metropolis Wavelength Services Manager (WSM).

The new agreement is part of the Army's Installation Information Infrastructure Modernization Program (I3MP) aimed at upgrading and modernizing the voice and data infrastructure at Army bases worldwide.

Convedia Claims Lead in IP Media Server Market

Convedia Corporation has captured a 47% share of the global market for media servers, according to figures from iLocus cited by the company. Convedia said its media servers are now operational in more than 50 in-service networks in 20 countries. The media servers are used for consolidating the functions of traditional announcement and recording servers, interactive voice response units (IVR/VRU), audio/video conference bridges, voice mail servers, and speech platforms onto a single shared media processing platform.

T-Systems Teams with Spanish VoIP Provider

International Carrier Sales & Solutions (ICSS), the carriers' carrier division of T-Systems announced a seven year strategic collaboration agreement with Aló Comunicaciones, a leading Spanish VoIP telephony and broadband provider. The operators will collaborate to launch a broad range of telecommunications services in Spain, which are currently part of T-Systems' Service Offering Portfolio. The carriers will also use their respective networks for the termination of national and international voice and data traffic.

Xten Appoints Robert Sparks as CTO

Xten has appointed Robert Sparks as its Chief Technology Officer, succeeding Rob Raymond, who will stay on with the company as Vice President of Engineering.

Sparks has been an active contributor to IETF protocol development, with a strong focus on improving interoperability of SIP and SIMPLE implementations. He spent the past 4 years as a principal engineer with dynamicsoft. Before that, he was a senior engineer with MCI WorldCom, where he was co-designer of MCI's SIP-based IP communications infrastructure; responsible for driving vendor development of SIP business telephones; and created and maintained a PC SIP user agent for use in interoperability testing and SIP/RTP protocol research.

Xten is a developer of carrier-grade SIP-based Voice and Video over IP software and softphones for service providers, cable operators, internet telephony service providers and OEMs. The company said it has more than 400,000 IP endpoints deployed worldwide.

Copper Mountain Networks Explores Strategic Options

Copper Mountain Networks, a supplier of broadband access solutions, has retained Raymond James & Associates to explore strategic options, including a possible sale of the company.

Copper Mountain said the recent cancellation of a large carrier broadband upgrade project and potential delays in decisions from several other large carriers made it necessary to explore these options. The company's VantEdge provides high-density interfaces for aggregation from T1/E1 for remote DSLAMs and access points, to OC-12/STM-4 and Gigabit Ethernet for video delivery to DSLAMs and PON OLT (Passive Optical Network Optical Line Termination) devices.

Marconi Opens R&D Center Near Boston

Marconi has opened a new research and development facility near Boston that will focus on a new a family of products to address the IP services market. The new carrier-class platform, which will provide virtual private networks in the mission-critical applications, is based, in part, on the technology of Crescent Networks' that Marconi purchased last year. The new platform will include Marconi's network management and quality of service capabilities.

Marconi also operates development centers in both Vienna, Virginia, Pittsburgh.

Foundry Doubles Performance of Load Balancing Switches

Foundry Networks is rolling out enhancements to its ServerIronXL family of load balancing application switches, including new configuration options, an enhanced operating system that doubles application switching performance, and reduced pricing. New configuration options for the ServerIronXL include a 16-port 10/100 model with two ports of Gigabit Ethernet-over-Copper (GoC) and a 16-port 10/100 model with two ports of Gigabit Ethernet-over-Fiber. Foundry also offers higher-density 24-port 10/100 Ethernet systems with options for one or two ports of Gigabit Ethernet uplinks. The company said that new algorithms and optimized software for the platforms effectively double the systems' load-balancing performance.

Foundry Networks noted that it has shipped more than 15,000 ServerIronXL switches to date.

Chelsio's 10GE Adapter add Support for Sun

Chelsio Communications, a start-up offering 10-Gigabit Ethernet adapter cards and protocol acceleration technology, is collaborating with Sun Microsystems to develop drivers for the Solaris Operating System for SPARC, AMD Opteron and Intel Xeon-processor based systems. Chelsio is currently shipping the driver for the Solaris OS for its N110 10Gb Ethernet NIC and will have a driver available for its T110 10Gb Ethernet Protocol Engine adapter later this year.
  • In August, Chelsio Communications, a start-up based in Sunnyvale, California, introduced a 10 Gbps Ethernet NIC priced at $1,995. The new half-size PCI-X card is a streamlined version of Chelsio's T110 host bus adapter, which achieves high-performance and low-latency by providing protocol off-load in silicon. Chelsio also leverages a VLIW (very long instruction word) "Terminator" ASIC that can handle more than one million concurrent sessions, enabling the T110 cards to support up to 64,000 simultaneous connections.

Netgear Delivers Gigabit Card bus Adapter for $60

NETGEAR introduced a Gigabit PC Card for notebook computers at a retail price of $59.99.

Widevine Signs TVN Entertainment for Content Security

TVN Entertainment, a provider of on-demand and pay-per-view television programming, has selected Widevine Technologies' Cypher Suite for secure transport of its VOD assets. TVN will use Widevine's Cypher Suite to provide persistent encryption of media from content provider to docking station. Widevine in turn would then be positioned to extend asset protection to the home for any video service provider. As a result of the agreement, TVN's affiliates will have the ability to protect content all the way from the provider to the consumer premise.

TVN Entertainment currently distributes more than 1500 hours of VOD programming from over 70 content providers. http://www.widevine.com

T-Com Carries 35 Petabytes Per Month with Juniper T640

T-Com, the fixed-line division of Deutsche Telekom, is routing more than 35 petabytes of data per month across its German IP network. Juniper Networks' T-640 routing platforms are used in the T-Com network. In the last two years T-Com has experienced massive traffic growth driven by strong demand for its DSL broadband services. This growth has contributed significantly to the overall traffic mix. The companies said that T-Com's T-640-based Points of Presence (PoPs) has been running without outages since the deployment was completed in 2003.
  • Deutsche Telekom now has almost 5 million DSL connections Group-wide: 4.7 million of those are in Germany, up 750,000 or 17 percent since the end of 2003.

Covad Deploys Cisco for Nationwide VoIP

Covad Communications is offering business-class VoIP services based on Cisco equipment to business customers nationwide. The services utilize the Cisco 3662/5350 Gateway, Cisco 7600 Series Routers and Cisco Catalyst 3550 switches. Covad is now part of the Cisco Powered Network program.
  • In August, Covad Communications announced the availability of its hosted, business-class VoIP service in 42 markets across the U.S. The VoIP services, which are aimed at small and medium-sized businesses, are managed end-to-end. Two versions are offered -- Covad vPBX and Covad PBXi. Covad PBXi is designed to work seamlessly with existing PBX equipment. Covad vPBX is designed as a full PBX alternative. Covad and Covad's dealer network install the service, train users and provide complete customer support. Covad provides a "Dashboard" user interface for the local and long-distance service, visual fax and voice mail, Instant Messaging, audio and web conferencing, call logs, directory services, "Find me/Follow me" and other features.

  • Earlier this year, Covad acquired GoBeam, a privately-owned provider of VoIP, for $48 million in stock. GoBeam, which was based is Pleasanton, California, had more than 13,000 VoIP stations (telephones) serving business customers throughout California and in the Chicago, Illinois area. The company offered a full-feature hosted PBX solution with online management tools.

Kasenna Expands Its VOD Patent Portfolio

Kasenna has been awarded three more key patents, adding to the company's patent portfolio in the area of media-on-demand and content management.

The first patent, "System and method for media stream indexing," protects Kasenna's technique for implementing VCR "trick-modes" in a video-on-demand system. Trick-mode access allows users to pause, rewind, and fast-forward video or audio streams being served from a video server, the same way they currently interact with a VCR or DVD playback system. The patented technology provides a way for time synchronizing between a normal stream and a fast-forward or fast-reverse stream, and enables delivery of content from any selected time in the program material. This patent is used by all Kasenna customers and is at the core of any video server providing trick mode access to on-demand content.

The second patent, "Media server system and process having device independent near-online storage support," protects Kasenna's technique to connect and access large content libraries with a media server system that allows the content to move automatically and transparently among different storage hierarchies. This technique also provides a way for different storage systems to be added to a video network easily and transparently. This patent is the basis of technology that enables customers such as Japan's broadcaster NHK to create and manage large archives of content in various storage hierarchies.

The third patent, "Media server system and method having improved asset types for playback of digital media," protects Kasenna's header-injection technology, which is used for seamlessly playing back sequences of content such as MPEG-2 video. By extracting header information from the content, storing it as metadata, and making the metadata available to client decoders, this technique ensures that transitions between different clips are handled smoothly. This technology is useful in creating play lists, ad insertions, and other IP video features.

Kasenna holds 11 core patents with 6 additional patents pending, which are incorporated into its products, such as the MediaBase XMP Video Server, vFusion video network management system, and the LivingRoom application for IP television.
  • In July, Kasenna outlined its plans for a Secure Video Delivery Network (Secure VDN) for enabling widespread broadband service provider distribution of premium video content. Kasenna's Secure VDN delivers content in an encrypted format all the way from the studios to viewers' homes, thereby addressing the digital rights management (DRM) concern that has so far impeded direct broadband delivery of first-run studio content.

  • Also in July 2004, Kasenna, a start-up based in Mountain View, California, completed a new $15 million round of private equity investment for its broadband IP video solutions. Kasenna recently announced two new major product line extensions -- vFusion and vForge -- along with the acquisition of ViewNow's content resources and studio relationships, new partnerships with SecureMedia, and customer wins that include Charter Cable, PrairieWave Communications, and Iowa Networks.

Path 1 Hires Former Ciena Sales Exec

Path 1 Network Technologies named Jeff C. Hale as its new vice president of sales. Hale previously served as Director of Sales, Western U.S. at Ciena, where he handled direct and channel sales to enterprise accounts of the company's line of DWDM, storage and enterprise products. He formerly was with Akara, until that company was acquired by Ciena.

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