Monday, January 24, 2005

Global Crossing Partners with Hong Kong's NWT

Hong Kong-based New World Telecommunications and Global Crossing announced a strategic alliance to deliver MPLS-based VPN and international private leased circuit (IPLC) services. The deal enables NWT to extend its reach through Global Crossing's MPLS-based IP network and its iMPLS service.

Agere Reports Q4 Revenue of $439 million

Agere Systems reported quarterly revenue of $410 million, compared to $439 million in the preceding quarter and $516 million in the year-ago quarter. The company reported a GAAP net loss of $67 million, or $0.04 per share, including $60 million in net restructuring charges and related costs.

"We achieved strong design win momentum in all areas of the business and we are pleased by our continued strength in storage where we increased shipments of read channels and system-on-a-chip solutions to key customers targeting PC and consumer electronics applications," said John Dickson, president and CEO.

Tellabs Reports Q4 Revenue of $379 million

Tellabs reported Q4 2004 revenue of $379 million (which includes one month of AFC revenue of $53 million), up 36% from $279 million in the fourth quarter of 2003. For the year 2004, Tellabs revenue totaled $1.2 billion, up 26% from $980 million in 2003. Tellabs recorded a net loss of $139 million or 32 cents per share in the fourth quarter of 2004 as a result of special charges related to the acquisitions of AFC and Vinci Systems and other activities. Excluding charges of $180 million, Tellabs earned 9 cents per share or $41 million in the fourth quarter of 2004.

"Revenue exceeded our expectations in the fourth quarter and in 2004 as a whole," said Krish A. Prabhu, Tellabs president and chief executive officer. "Going forward, Tellabs will stay focused on growth opportunities that fit our customers' needs for fiber access, next-generation wireless and broadband networking."

  • Transport -- Revenue from transport systems totaled $155 million, up 33% from $117 million in the fourth quarter of 2003.

  • Managed Access -- Revenue from managed access systems was $112 million, up 16% from $96 million in the fourth quarter of 2003.

  • Broadband Data -- Revenue of broadband data products was $3.2 million versus $2.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2003.

  • Voice Quality Enhancement -- Revenue from voice-quality enhancement and other systems amounted to $15 million versus $26 million in the fourth quarter of 2003.

  • Access -- Revenue from access solutions totaled $53 million. [Note: The access revenue category includes only December 2004 revenue from all products acquired through the merger with AFC, which closed on Nov. 30, 2004.

  • Services and Solutions -- Services and solutions revenue was $40 million, up 10% from $37 million in the fourth quarter of 2003.

BellSouth Adds Record 224,000 DSL Customers in Q4

BellSouth reported Q4 revenue of $5.15 billion, an increase of 0.8 percent compared to the same quarter in 2003. Income from continuing operations was $496 million compared to $836 million in the same quarter of the previous year. Reported EPS from continuing operations for the quarter was 27 cents compared to 45 cents in the fourth quarter of 2003. The company cited restoration expenses due to hurricanes, severance-related expenses and a previously announced change in the calculation of the retiree medical benefit obligation for its lower earnings. Some highlights from the quarterly report:

  • In 2004, revenue growth from long distance and DSL high-speed Internet service offset reduced revenue from access line declines, holding Communications Group revenue flat at $18.45 billion, compared to 2003. In the fourth quarter, revenue increased 0.6 percent to $4.65 billion compared to the same quarter the previous year. Operating margin for 2004 was 25.1 percent compared to 26.3 percent in 2003.

  • During Q4, BellSouth added 467,000 mass-market long distance customers, giving it more than 6.1 million mass-market long distance customers.

  • As of Dec. 31, more than 200,000 BellSouth customers have added DIRECTV to their communications services packages.

  • As of Dec. 31, total access lines were 21.4 million, down 4.1 percent compared to a year earlier. UNE-P access lines resold by BellSouth competitors were 2.8 million at year-end 2004 compared to 2.4 million at year-end 2003. In the third and fourth quarters of 2004, UNE-P lines began a declining trend and decreased a total of 165,000 over the second half of 2004.

Deutsche Telekom and T-Online Set Exchange Ratio

Deutsche Telekom and T-Online reached a common understanding regarding the exchange ratio range in connection with the proposed merger of T-Online International AG into Deutsche Telekom AG. Both companies expect the exchange ratio to be between 0.45 and 0.55 Deutsche Telekom shares for one T-Online share.

Alcatel Enhances Open Media Client Software

Alcatel launched its next generation 5955 Open Media Client (OMC) software as part of its Open Media Suite. The Alcatel 5955 Open Media Client is a set of software components for IP set-top boxes which add functionality in the set-top box required for advanced features needed for IPTV and enables full lifecycle content management.

With the Open Media Client, Alcatel is defining an industry reference model for IP set-top box vendors to interwork with Alcatel's Open Media Suite, facilitating the integration process for the service provider and lowering the integration costs. With this software, Alcatel is providing an easy way for integration and certification of the rapidly growing number of IP set-top boxes with its Open Media Suite.

Alcatel plans to sublicense the Open Media Client as reference client software to leading IP set-top box software porting partners, chipset (reference design) vendors, and set-top box vendors.

Cingular Goes Live With MobiTV

Cingular Wireless began offering MobiTV, a television network expressly for mobile phones. With MobiTV, Cingular subscribers can watch live news, sports and entertainment programming on 22 channels, including MSNBC, CNBC, ABC News Now, NBC Mobile, FOX Sports, Discovery, TLC, C-SPAN, and other music, sports, fashion, and comedy channels.

MobiTV will be available to Cingular Wireless subscribers using the Nokia 6620, Motorola V3 (RAZR), Motorola V220, Motorola V180, and soon on the Motorola V400 and V600 handsets.

Avaya Reports Quarterly Revenue of $1.148 Billion, up 18%

Avaya reported quarterly revenue of $1.148 billion, up 18% compared to a year earlier. The revenue increase largely reflected the impact of recent acquisitions and favorable currency rates. Excluding these two items, revenues grew at double-digit rates in all regions except the United States where sales were essentially unchanged versus the year ago period. Income from continuing operations of $33 million or seven cents per diluted share.

Avaya said its fiscal 2005 goals are to increase revenues between 25 and 27 percent compared to fiscal 2004 revenues of $4.055 billion, grow operating income by 40 percent compared to $311 million in fiscal 2004 and raise annualized operating margin to between 8.5 and 9 percent compared to 7.7 percent last year.

Avaya noted the shipment milestone of its five millionth IP telephony line.

Chunghwa Telecom Expands Licensing of Orca Middleware

Taiwan's Chunghwa Telecom has purchased an additional 10,000 licenses of Orca's RiGHTv IPTV middleware to accommodate growth in its multimedia on demand (MOD) deployments. Orca Interactive has partnered with leading IPTV companies to provide an end-to-end IPTV solution for CHT since its initial rollout. This is the second expansion requested from Orca within less than six month. This brings the total number of Orca middleware licenses at CHT to 40,000.

Siemens Mobile Invests in PhoneBites

PhoneBites, a San Francisco-based start-up, raised $3 million in first round funding provided by Siemens Mobile Acceleration, Cardinal Venture Capital, and Garage Technology Ventures.

PhoneBites has developed a software application that lets subscribers interject sound bites into live telephone conversations, outgoing messages, voicemails and photo messages. Subscriber can insert audio clips by pressing the handset keys during a phone call without interrupting it.
PhoneBites describes this as a "very funny entertainment tool" that mobile operators can offer to their subscribers. In the coming year, the company plans to launch a whole suite of interactive content and voice productivity applications.

Critical Telecom Appoints Former Ciena Exec as its CEO

Critical Telecom announced that Nancy Macartney has been appointed President and CEO. Prior to Critical Telecom, Nancy was the Vice President, Supply Chain Management for CIENA, during which time she was responsible for the Operations integration of Akara Corporation into CIENA. Most recently Nancy was the Vice President of Operations within Critical Telecom.

Critical Telecom is headquartered in Ottawa, Canada.

Fujitsu Cites North American Market Share

Fujitsu Network Communications holds a leading 27.7% share of the North America market for SONET aggregation equipment, according to figures from RHK cited by the company. Within the aggregation market, Fujitsu has a market share in excess of 40% in the $345 million Add/Drop Multiplexer (ADM) segment and a 23% share of the $1.05 billion Optical Edge Device (OED) segment.

Fujitsu cited strong market traction in the transition to OED devices with its FLASHWAVE 4000 MSPPs, which have become standardized in several RBOC, CLEC and MSO networks.

Equinix to Provide U.S. Peering for Allstream

Canadian-based Allstream will deploy its network to three Equinix Internet Business Exchange (IBX) centers in order to directly interconnect with the large aggregation of networks, carriers and ISPs located in Equinix's New York, Washington, D.C. and Chicago area centers. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Equinix's centers have become the primary peering locations in the U.S., serving the world's leading ISPs, broadband providers, international networks and major content providers. Other networks on the Equinix GigE Exchange service include Asia Netcom, British Telecom, Cox Communications, Japan Telecom, Swisscom and Verio. Leading content providers on the service include Electronic Arts, Google, Yahoo!, and others.

ADTRAN Reports Q4 Sales of $105 Million

ADTRAN reported Q4 sales of $104.9 million, compared to $113.8 million in the same quarter of 2003. Earnings per share, assuming dilution, were $0.19 for the quarter compared to $0.26 for the fourth quarter of 2003.

ADTRAN Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Mark Smith stated, "After experiencing significant revenue growth since 2002, we saw a pause in our markets in the last half of 2004. We anticipate this pause will resolve itself as employment and IT spending continue to expand and as carriers continue to aggressively promote consumer broadband services."

The company also announced that its Board of Directors declared a cash dividend for the seventh consecutive quarter. The quarterly cash dividend is $0.08 per common share to be paid to holders of record at the close of business on February 4, 2005.

RADVISION Enhances Test Suite for SIP, H.323

RADVISION released version 3.5 of its ProLab Test Management Suite , a scalable testing system suitable for development, quality assurance, deployment, and tuning of voice and video over IP (SIP and H.323) products. New features of version 3.5 include a new improved Graphic User Interface (GUI), improved ease of use, advanced signaling and media testing, advanced monitoring, and a large number of built-in media and scripts.

Designed to run on any standard Microsoft Windows PC system, RADVISION's ProLab Suite provides the ability to simulate a SIP User Agent, H.323 endpoint, Gatekeeper, SIP Server, as well as act as an advanced call generator. Using this platform, developers can test a multitude of voice and video over IP features, from call and signaling generation to simulated network packet loss, packet duplication, or delay. Manual and automated tests include performance testing, stress and load testing, functional testing, torture testing and interoperability testing.

Ikanos VDSL2/VDSL Chipset Selected by Netopia

Netopia has selected the Ikanos "CleverConnect" 600 VDSL2 chipset for its next generation CPE.
Ikanos' CleverConnect 600 is a single-port, standard-compliant solution for high-performance CPE such as modems, bridges, routers, VoIP Gateways and residential gateways. The chipset supports VDSL2, VDSL, EFM and VDSL Long Range.

WinSonic Selects Level 3 for Nationwide Network

WinSonic, a facilities-based application network provider, selected Level 3 Communications for the build out and maintenance of a nationwide VOIP, Multimedia, Video, Audio, and Digital TV network. Level 3 will provide WinSonic with private room collocation services in Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, and NYC. The collocation facilities will contain equipment that enables WinSonic to operate its wavelengths-based network. Level 3 technicians will help support and maintain the nationwide network, called WinSonic Digital Cable Systems Network (WDCSN). WinSonic plans to offer out-of-franchise products and services to other carriers and large enterprises. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Swisscom Employs Cisco Gear for World Economic Forum

Swisscom is using Cisco Systems' Long-Reach Ethernet (LRE) and wireless access equipment for this year's five-day World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos. The network will cover the congress center and 20 hotels around Davos, and will be used by approximately 3,000 summit attendees and 500 staff. IP telephony infrastructure will connect 200 fixed-line IP phones and 40 fax machines. Swisscom will also offer mobile phones to each attendee.

Equipment deployed for the World Economic Forum infrastructure includes Cisco CallManager on Cisco 7800 Series media convergence servers, Cisco Unity unified communications software, Cisco IP Phone 7960Gs (some with Cisco IP Phone 7914 expansion modules), a Cisco IP Conference Station 7936, Cisco VG200 Series analog phone gateways and Cisco ATA 180 Series analog telephone adaptors. In addition there are Cisco Access Control Servers, Cisco 2600XM Series multiservice routers, Cisco network modules and WAN interface cards, Cisco Catalyst 3550 Series switches and Cisco LRE equipment.