Sunday, March 26, 2006

HKBN Launches Free Movie Download, Showcasing its 100Mbps Service

Hong Kong Broadband Network Limited Free Legal movie download platform for all Hong Kong Internet users, irrespective of ISP. the only restriction is an 18 minute download time out. HKBN's Metro Ethernet bb100 (symmetric 100 Mbps) subscribers will be able to download an entire 4GB DVD format movie in less than 7 minutes. Unfortunately, other ISP subscribers on ADSL with 6 Mbps download bandwidth are likely to take more than 1 hour to retrieve the movies, thereby exceeding the time out limit.

The 5 movies, "Cocktail" staring Candy Lo and Race, "My Wife is 18" staring Ekin Cheng and Charlene Choi, "Heat Team" staring Eason Chan and Aaron Kwok, "Tiramisu" staring Karena Lam and Nicolas Tse and "Shiver" staring Athena Chu, are now available for downloading.
  • In April 2005, Hong Kong Broadband Network (HKBN) officially launched its 1 Gbps symmetric service for the residential market. The 1 Gbps symmetric service is priced at US$215 per month. HKBN noted that its 1 Gbps service is up to 166x faster downstream and 1,950x faster upstream than the advertised bandwidth of the incumbent's ADSL service. HKBN Premium bb1000 service is being offered on the same metro Ethernet infrastructure that delivers the company's Mass Market bb100 (symmetric 100 Mbps for US$34/month) and Entry Point bb10 (symmetric 10 Mbps for US$16/month) services.

  • HKBN has installed thousands of Cisco Catalyst LAN switches and more than 800 Cisco routers in buildings throughout Hong Kong. Category 5e copper cables are wired from the LAN switch cabinet to the apartments of each target customer. Fiber-to-the-building (FTTB) was deployed between the buildings using the Cisco ONS 15454 Multiservice Transport Platform (MSTP) and Cisco Catalyst 4507R Switches. HKBN is also using a Cisco Optical Core network. The deployment includes the Cisco ONS 15454 SONET/SDH Multiservice Provisioning Platform (MSPP); Cisco Catalyst 6500, Catalyst 4500, Catalyst 3350, and Catalyst 2950 series switches; and Cisco 2600XM Series routers.

Infinera Clocks New Speed Record -- 1.6 Tbps on a Chip

Infinera successfully demonstrated a large-scale photonic integrated circuit (PIC) capable of carrying data at a rate of 1.6 Terabits per second (Tb/s). This is the highest data rate yet achieved for a single PIC. Last year, Infinera demonstrated a PIC carrying data at 400 Gbps.

Infinera's 1.6 Tbps PIC includes more than 240 optical devices on a chip. It transmits 40 channels of optical data, with each channel operating at 40 Gbps. The aggregate date rate of 1.6 Tbps is equivalent to 160 of the line cards typically deployed in long-haul telecom networks today. An optical system based on a 1.6 Tb/s PIC would deliver substantial benefits to service providers in terms of density, space, power consumption, and cost-effectiveness.

Infinera said that while this PIC is still a lab demonstration, it shows the enormous potential of photonic integration to put more and more devices, as well as more features and functionality, onto a single chip.

Akimbo and HDNet Team on HD over the Web

Akimbo Systems will begin making select titles from HDNet's library of HD content available for download through the Akimbo Service for Windows XP Media Center Edition. Akimbo currently offers 8,000 on-demand programs through its Web-based subscription service.

Co-founded by Mark Cuban and General Manager Philip Garvin, HDNet features up to 20 hours of new original programming each week, all produced in the highest quality 1080i HDTV format. http://www.akimbo.com

Spirent and Lumenare Partner on Lab and Test Automation

Spirent Communications is teaming with Lumenare Networks to provide an integrated test automation solution addressing complex converged network technologies in the lab and during manufacturing.

The partnership brings together Spirent's suite of network test solutions and Lumenare's lab and test management and automation software.

The company said their joint solution can increase testing by five to eight times the manual rate by allowing complex tests to be performed repeatedly -- using fully automated hardware setup and software configuration -- getting consistent results, quickly isolating problems, and ensuring a successful product or service launch. http://www.lumenare.com

BT to Offer Managed Grid Computing based on United Devices

BT has selected United Devices' (UD's) to power its virtual services platform, a new managed grid service offering. The virtual services platform goes beyond traditional utility computing approaches in that it leverages BT's internal assets and network connectivity capabilities to create a real-time provisioning service that is network-aware and SLA focused. With real-time access to network heuristics and the opportunity to manipulate network controls, BT's offering will dynamically bind applications to the most eligible infrastructure components via the UD grid platform.

The virtual services platform is built on a shared infrastructure that consists of internal BT resources and those contained in its customers' enterprises to assure availability for mission-critical functions like Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) by adhering to policy-based SLAs.

BT will initially offer the virtual platform internally and develop managed grid services expertise. BT and UD's joint vision is then to rapidly make it available to customers who are seeking alternatives to their rigid and expensive application infrastructures.

Verimatrix and Heuris Team on Hollywood Production Tools

Verimatrix and Heuris, a manufacturer of video compression, processing tools and applications, have developed a suite of secure screening tools for the Hollywood theatrical film and television industry.

The integrated Heuris and Verimatrix screening products ensure security from the time of the shoot and throughout the distribution chain. Using Verimatrix's digital watermarking and its complementary forensics, as well as encryption prior to release to production and post-production crews, results in better internal controls from the beginning of the value chain. The RushPlay onDemand platform includes the Video-on-Demand (VOD) server from Streaming 21 and Numa Technology's VD-200 IP set-top box.

"We are providing the most simple and secure method for producers to view dailies, rough cuts, VFX tests, casting sessions, or screeners instantly from their screening room, office or even living room," said Brian Quandt, president of Heuris. "Our intention is to simplify the complex processes of producing a show or movie by creating an 'on demand' private channel, which streamlines the workflow for producers."http://www.heuris.com

Centillium's Optical Services Gateway Integrates VoIP

Centillium Communications has integrated VoIP capabilities into its Optical Services Gateway platform, which is designed for service providers striving to deliver superior voice, video and data services capabilities over passive optical network (PON) access infrastructure to both residences and businesses.

The new Optical Services Gateway platform combines Centillium's "Mustang" EPON system chip with the VoIP, routing and advanced security capabilities of its "Atlanta" product family. The solution could be used for enhanced optical network units (ONUs). Additionally, a common management interface simplifies the provisioning and monitoring of the Optical Services Gateway.

Centillium's Optical Services Gateway platform is supported by a development and evaluation kit which includes a multi-functional customer evaluation board, reference designs and a turnkey software package.

FiberZone Raises $8 Million for Fiber Mgt. Tools

FiberZone Networks, a start-up based in Bethesda, Maryland, raised $8 million in second round funding for its automated, physical fiber management tools. Beta trials of the system are planned for later this year. The deal was led by Novak Biddle Venture Partners, with existing investors Portview Communications Partners and Stage One Ventures participating.

ARM Signs UWB Chip Providers

ARM is building momentum for its ARM9 family of microprocessors amongst UWB chip developers, including Alereon, Focus Enhancements, Mindtree Consulting, Pulse~LINK and Staccato Communications.

UWB is positioned as a high-speed, short-range wireless technology for transferring digital content between devices in different entertainment and computing groups in the home, such as digital video recorders, set-top boxes, televisions and personal computing (PC) peripherals.

New Lycos Phone Combines IM, Video Chat, VOD and MP3 Player

Lycos launched a VoIP softphone application that integrates entertainment features, powered by Globe7.

Lycos is offering a free downloadable white label VoIP platform, in partnership with Globe7. Lycos Phone provides free calls and free video calls from PC to PC. Users can also receive unlimited free incoming calls from any landline or mobile phone, from around the world. Users also receive 100 free minutes of PC to landline and PC to mobile phone calls, and can earn additional free minutes through various promotional offers with Lycos Phone.

In addition, the Lycos Phone platform provides free video on demand access to more than 300 movie trailers, business news, world sports and more, allowing users to search the web while chatting with buddies. Additionally, unlike Skype and Yahoo, Lycos Phone offers a free U.S. phone number, free fax and free voicemail to email.

Currently, Globe7 supports Windows 2000 and XP. Future enhancements will support Linux, Mac OS, Palm OS and Pocket PC.

Metalink Shows 802.11n Carrying Multiple, Simultaneous HDTV Streams

Metalink has concluded a series of live demonstrations of its 802.11n-based WLANPlus chipset delivering multiple simultaneous high-definition television (HDTV) streams with QoS.

Metalink recently announced a partnership with Renesas Technology to jointly develop product designs that incorporate both companies' integrated circuits. Metalink has also announced its cooperation with Haier Corporation, the leading Chinese manufacturer of household electrical appliances, to develop advanced consumer electronics products enabling unmatched wireless multimedia networking throughout the home.

JAJAH Launches Low-Cost, Web-activated VoIP

JAJAH, a venture-backed VoIP start-up based in Menlo Park, California, launched its low-cost VoIP service that lets people use their landline or mobile phones to place long-distance or international calls.

JAJAH establishes phone-to-phone connections through the Internet for cheap calls. The process is simple: callers type in their own number (landline or mobile) at , and insert their desired destination number. JAJAH then rings both parties on their actual phones.

JAJAH is backed by Sequoia Capital. http://www.jajah.com

Nortel Retargets Network Services Business

Nortel announced a simplification of its integrated services and a series of new commercial services offerings. To better address this strategic area, Nortel is significantly simplifying its services business, focusing on multi-vendor integration, new technology migration, operating expense reduction and other specific business challenges where Nortel has unique strengths and expertise.

Nortel has organized its services business into five key areas - Integration Services, Security Services, Managed Services, Optimization Services and Maintenance Services. Customers will be able to order bundled services designed to help them develop and maintain secure network environments, transform and evolve their networks, focus on core business and improve network performance.

To drive new growth in services, Nortel has introduced several new commercial offerings, including:

  • IPTV Integration Services - a complete Integration Services offering that provides a single point-of-contact for multi-vendor network design, lab certification, engineering, configuration and acceptance testing of IPTV services. This will enable service providers to deploy and deliver new 'triple play' services more quickly and cost-effectively. Nortel has opened a new multi-vendor IPTV integration lab on its Ottawa campus.

  • VoIP Integration Services - another multi-vendor Integration Services offering, intended to speed carrier time-to-revenue by promoting smooth and reliable VoIP services deployment. One lead customer has already used Nortel VoIP Integration Services to launch residential VoIP in more than 60 rural markets.

  • Security Consulting Services - a Security Services offering that combines risk assessment, incident response, cyber forensics and policy development to help customers make informed security decisions and mitigate network security risks.

  • Hosted Services - a Managed Services offering that involves 'hosting' such network services as call centers, voice and multimedia on Nortel-owned equipment. Hosted Services allow customers to reduce or eliminate costs associated with operating, maintaining and evolving their own networks. Bharti Tele-Ventures in India has signed a five-year agreement with Nortel for hosted call center services.

  • Subscriber Quality of Experience Service - an Optimization Services offering that uses unique metrics from actual subscriber data to benchmark and provide recommendations for optimum end-to-end performance of wireless data networks. Lead customer Vodafone Italy used this patent-pending tool to help optimize end-to-end delivery of streaming video services from content source through the network to subscriber mobiles.

  • Multi-Vendor Repair and Managed Spares Services - Maintenance Services offerings that provide a single point-of-contact for repair services and spares management covering equipment from Nortel and most other major telecommunications equipment vendors. Two North American service providers recently became the first to take advantage of these services, consolidating hardware maintenance for more than 100,000 multi-vendor network elements for an anticipated 20 percent reduction in repair costs over the next year.

Nortel also announced today a new Advanced Mobility Services Center in Buenos Aires, Argentina that will offer wireless network planning, deployment, integration and optimization.http:/

ARRIS to Resell Telco Systems' Aggregator for T1/E1 over HFC

ARRIS will resell Telco Systems' Cable Services Aggregator (CSA) 9000, which acts as an aggregator when integrated with their metro Ethernet access platform offers an end-to-end circuit emulation services (CES) to cable providers.

The CSA 9000 will be marketed by ARRIS to key MSOs, allowing them to deliver T1 voice, frame relay, and leased line services in the US, and similar E1-based services worldwide, over standard DOCSIS infrastructure, without plant modifications. http://www.telco.com

Nextest Systems Completes IPO

Nextest Systems, a developer of ATE for Flash memory and System-On-Chip (SOC) semiconductors, announced the closing of its initial public offering of 6,210,000 shares of its common stock at an initial public offering price of $14 per share.

Ericsson Debuts Integrated Access/Transport Portfolio

Ericsson introduced its integrated access and transport networking portfolio that includes platforms developed by Marconi. Ericsson's acquisition of Marconi closed in January 2006.

The new broadband network portfolio comprises broadband access
solutions such as IP-DSLAMs; IP-Multi-Service Access Nodes
(IP-MSANs); microwave and optical transport and Ericsson's IMS and
softswitch solutions. The offering will be backed up by the company's
design, integration and service capabilities.

Ericsson said its broadband network portfolio will also support many of the new access technologies and standards expected to be rolled out
widely over the coming years, including VDSL2, Gigabit-Passive Optical Networks (GPON), Ethernet in the First Mile (EFM) for Fiber access and radio standards such as WiMAX and HSDPA for Fixed Wireless and Mobile Broadband applications.

Force10 Introduces Low Latency 10 Gig

Force10 Networks introduced a low-latency, 24-port data center 10 Gigabit Ethernet switch with an Infiniband-like latency of 300 nanoseconds.

Force10 said that at 300 nanoseconds in latency, its 22410 switch delivers the industry's lowest Ethernet switching latency and places 10 Gigabit Ethernet on par with other cluster interconnect solutions, eliminating the need to integrate Infiniband and other proprietary solutions into the network. By bringing ultra low latency to Ethernet, the S2410 allows IT managers to capture the computing benefits of high performance cluster architectures using a familiar and easy to manage technology, simplifying management and reducing operational costs.

The S2410 switch, which is available in a one rack unit form factor, also aims to provide the industry's lowest 10 Gigabit Ethernet port pricing starting at $854 per port.

The Force10 S2410 is available with both CX4 and XFP ports and will begin shipping in April. List pricing for the XFP version of the S2410 is $22,000. The CX4 version is listed at $18,000.

OEN Expands its IPTV Content Agreements

Optical Entertainment Network (OEN), which is deploying a FTTH network in Houston, signed IPTV carriage agreements with GSN, the network for games, Lifetime, Oxygen, and Tennis Channel. As with all of OEN's IPTV carriage agreements, the license is negotiated directly with each channel without any intermediaries. OEN plans to deliver up to 400 channels of TV content, Internet access at 10 to 100 Mbps per subscriber, VoIP and other services.

In addition to serving its own FTTH subscribers in Houston, OEN plans to re-license its content line-up for distribution in other communities.

InPhase Demonstrates Record Hard Disk Storage Capacity

InPhase Technologies demonstrated the highest data density of any commercial technology by recording 515 gigabits of data per square inch using holographic storage techniques. InPhase plans to deliver the industry's first holographic drive and media later this year. The first generation drive has a capacity of 300 gigabytes on a single disk with a 20 megabyte per second transfer rate. The first product will be followed by a family ranging from 800 GB to 1.6 terabyte (TB) capacity.

InPhase said densities in holography are achieved by different factors than magnetic storage. Density depends on the number of pixels/bits in a page of data; the number of pages that are stored in a particular volumetric location; the dynamic range of the recording material; the thickness of the material, and the wavelength of the recording laser.

In the InPhase demonstration there were over 1.3 million bits per data page, and 320 data pages spaced 0.067 degrees apart were stored in the same volume of material. A collection of data pages is referred to as a book, and InPhase's PolyTopic recording architecture enables more holograms to be stored in the same volume of material by overlapping not only pages, but also books. Three tracks of overlapping books were written with a track pitch of 700 microns. The InPhase "Tapestry" material was 1.5 millimeters thick, and the laser wavelength was 407 nanometers.

For the home video fan, one disk could hold the equivalent of 106 DVD movies.

Lucent and Alcatel Merger Talks Continue

On Friday, Lucent Technologies and Alcatel confirmed that they are holding merger talks. No further updates were provided over the weekend.

Market analysts continued to speculate on further mergers & acquisitions that are likely to occur should this deal be completed.


China Netcom Selects ZTE for IPTV in Beijing

China Netcom selected ZTE as an equipment supplier for an IPTV trial in Beijing. The new network will serve 50,000 IPTV subscribers by provisioning video services including video on demand (VoD), broadcasting, time-shifted television (TSTV), private video recorder (PVR ) and near video on demand (NVoD) as well as value-added services such as interactive games, information services, instant communications, online albums and e-learning. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The China Netcom IPTV project follows ZTE's three previous IPTV contract wins from China Telecom and confirms ZTE as China's largest IPTV systems provider.

ZTE said this contract will make one of the largest providers of IPTV infrastructure in the world.

China currently has over 30 million broadband subscribers, with more than 50% annual growth, making it potentially the world's largest IPTV market.