Monday, October 2, 2006

Fujitsu Network Communications Names CEO

Mr. Satoshi Ikeuchi has been appointed president and CEO if Fujitsu Network Communications. He succeeds Mr. Takanobu Yoden, who has retired from Fujitsu.

Ikeuchi's career in telecommunications began in 1975 where he was hired as an engineer in coaxial and optical transmission product development at Fujitsu. From 1987 through 1995, Mr. Ikeuchi took management positions with increasing responsibility in the Transmission Group at Fujitsu, and from 1995 to 2001, he served as senior director, vice president and eventually senior vice president of Engineering for Fujitsu Network Communications. In 2004, Mr. Ikeuchi was promoted to senior vice president of the Photonics Systems Group where he was responsible for the company's telecommunications business overseas.He holds a bachelor of science degree in electronics engineering from Tokyo Institute of Technology University.

FTS Enhances OSS/BSS with new Business Control Layer

FTS (previously Formula Telecom Solutions) unveiled its concept of the "Business Control Layer" -- a software layer in a service provider's infrastructure residing between the network/OSS and the BSS that could make it easier to adapt and re-provision service bundles.

The technology would dynamically adapt network or service behavior at the customer level. For instance, enabling end-users to dial-up more bandwidth on-demand and better QoS during a gaming session, and then return to normal service levels when the game is finished.

FTS said its Business Control Layer simultaneously connects to any network infrastructure and includes service management elements from the billing system coupled with real-time charging and network management elements. This enables cross-network service plans in a pre-IMS environment while using existing billing systems.

The Business Control Layer "harmonizes" information in real-time and enables customers to act upon that information.

The first product to include Business Control Layer technology is FTS' "Leap" BCE (Business Control Engine), which can connect simultaneously to multiple networks (POTS, Cellular, cable, etc.) looking at all events regardless of origin, whether user, network, calendar, financial, or BCE-generated. It then executes the operator predefined business rules for each event in real-time.

Telenet, Belgium's largest cable operator, is using FTS' Business Control Layer technology to improve upon its legacy flat-rate broadband charging model. The Telenet broadband access offering includes a number of services, all characterized by access speed, traffic quota (separate for upload and download), price quota and price per additional megabyte above the quota. Once a quota is reached, subscribers are redirected to a web page offering them three options: buy additional quota, move to a service plan that charges by the megabyte until the end of the month, or have their access speed reduced from broadband to narrowband until the end of the month without incurring additional charges (the default option). These options can also be pre-configured offering different level of services to for customers ranging from basic to premium.

Packet Design Raises $7.5 Million for IP Route Analytics

Packet Design, a start-up based in Palo Alto, California, raised $7.5 million in third round venture funding for its route analytics solutions for managing large IP networks.

Packet Design's "Route Explorer" creates a layer 3 topology map and analyzes routing events to let network engineers quickly pinpoint and resolve routing and other network problems. Its Traffic Explorer integrates traffic-flow information onto that map to provide an end-to-end, "topology-aware" view of network traffic.

The investors -- Advanced Technology Ventures, Allegis Capital, Masthead Venture Partners, Mayfield Fund and Packet Design LLC -- all have participated in previous Packet Design funding rounds. The new funding brings Packet Design's total venture financing to $32.5 million.

Equinix Announces Deal with Chicago Mercantile Exchange

Equinix, which operates network-neutral data centers and Internet exchange services, announced a joint service agreement with the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Equinix will offer direct fiber connectivity between Equinix's Chicago Internet Business Exchange (IBX) center and the CME. The service is available immediately to customers of the Equinix Financial eXchange service in the Chicago IBX and CME customers.


2Wire Names New CEO

2Wire, a supplier of broadband customer premise equipment, announced the appointment of Pasquale "Pat" Romano as its new president and CEO. Pat Romano (41), succeeds Brian Hinman (45), as chief executive, with Mr. Hinman continuing his service on 2Wire's board of directors.

Pat Romano and Brian Hinman co-founded 2Wire in 1998.
  • 2Wire has large distribution and service agreements with AT&T (SBC Communications), BellSouth, BT, Embarq, SingTel and TELMEX.

Alcatel to Build South Caribbean Fiber Network

Alcatel was awarded a turnkey contract by South Caribbean Fiber (SCF), a subsidiary of the LORET Group, to deploy a new submarine cable network spanning the eastern Caribbean islands.

The new submarine cable network will span about 1,000 km, connecting Antigua, St. Lucia, St. Kitts, St. Vincent, Barbados, Grenada, and Trinidad. SCF will interconnect with the Global Caribbean Network (GCN) - linking Guadeloupe to Puerto Rico and the Virgin islands, through the St. Martin and St. Barthelemy islands. SCF will also interconnect with the Middle Caribbean Network (MCN) submarine system linking Martinique and Dominica.

Alcatel will supply its new-generation DWDM submarine line terminal, unrepeatered systems, as well as its Optical Multi-Service Node (OMSN) systems for terrestrial applications. The Alcatel 1350 management suite will manage all the equipment. Furthermore, Alcatel will provide a comprehensive set of services including marine and terrestrial installation, commissioning and integration.


Nokia Debuts WidSets for Multicasting RSS Feeds to Mobile Devices

Nokia introduced "WidSets," a new initiative that automatically multicasts preferred RSS feeds and user-generated content.

WidSets allows users to build a Content Library, choosing from RSS feeds to blog posts to photo uploading sites that are multicasted to mobile devices.

Nokia said WidSets will be a phone manufacturer-independent service. It will also be mobile phone browser-independent, working with any new Java-enabled mobile devices. It will also be free to the end-user.

WidSets keeps such content updated and forms a symbiotic relationship with the web, enabling both mediums to work as one.

"Immediate access to information is expected by people today, thus we wanted to make it easy for everybody, from an individual blogger to a web service provider, to automatically have mobile access to website content," said Dieter May, Vice President and Head of Nokia Emerging Business Unit.


D-Link Debuts Dual-Mode GSM / Wi-Fi Phone, $600

D-Link announced a new line of "V-CLICK" dual-mode phones that allow users to switch between cellular and Wi-Fi networks by clicking a button.

The new D-Link V-CLICK line of phones will feature tri-band GSM (900/1800/1900 MHz) and 802.11 Wi-Fi (2.4Ghz) access. By sliding a cellular service provider's SIM Smartcard or chip into the V-CLICK phone, the user automatically gains GSM access.

By clicking the V-CLICK button, the phone activates or deactivates the Wi-Fi connection that allows users to access websites or an Internet phone service. It supports "Opera Mobile", a mobile browser for logging into Wi-Fi hot spots, web surfing and email.

Talk time is rated at up to 5 hours for GSM, and 2 hours in 802.11 wireless mode.

D-Link said the V-CLICK feature will become increasingly valuable as many cities continue to invest in metro 802.11 wireless technology designed to turn entire communities in Wi-Fi zones.

Manufacturer's suggested retail price is expected to be $599.99. D-Link also plans to offer accessories for its new dual-mode phone products. Commercial availability is expected early next year.

BellSouth to Resell Avaya IP Telephony Solutions

BellSouth agreed to resell Avaya IP telephony solutions to its business customers. Under the deal, BellSouth will market and sell Avaya IP telephony including the following product suites and services:

  • Avaya MultiVantage Communications Applications - includes Avaya Communication Manager IP telephony software and contact center, messaging, mobility and business continuity applications.

  • Avaya MultiVantage Express - designed specifically for mid-sized businesses, this single-server solution provides the Avaya Communication Manager with built-in communications, messaging, mobility and management applications.

  • Avaya IP Office - a converged voice and data system designed for small and mid-sized businesses. IP Office enables businesses to deploy an infrastructure that supports full-featured traditional voice functionality today with the option to migrate to IP telephony in the future.

  • Avaya one-X Mobile, Desktop and Deskphone Editions - a family of devices provides consistent business features and one number access
    to and from users with cellular, PC-based or desktop phones.

  • Avaya Professional and IP Support Services - deliver pre- and post-installation consulting and management services for IP telephony customer support.

Cingular Completes National GSM Network Integration

Cingular completed its GSM network integration project, which began shortly after the merger of Cingular Wireless and AT&T Wireless in October 2004. The network integration was one of several initiatives the company funded as part of its $13 billion 2005/2006 capital investment to enhance network quality and coverage.

The result of the integration currently gives customers access to nearly 47,000 cell sites throughout the country.

Throughout the integration process, hundreds of technicians from third- party testing companies, infrastructure vendors, and Cingular's own employees used specially designed vehicles to travel throughout the country testing the signal strength and coverage of the GSM network.

Cingular is currently deploying its 3G UMTS/HSDPA network throughout the country. The 3G service, which offers mobile wireless broadband connections averaging 400-700 Kbps, is available in 105 markets (populations of 100 thousand or more) in and around 44 major metropolitan cities.

AT&T Tweaks DSL Pricing Tiers

AT&T announced several adjustments to its residential broadband pricing. AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet now features the following speeds and rates for residential customers:

  • Basic (up to 768 Kbps downstream; up to 384 Kbps upstream) is available for $14.99 a month (NEW).

  • Express (up to 1.5 Mbps downstream; up to 384 Kbps upstream) is available for $19.99 a month.

  • Pro (up to 3.0 Mbps downstream; up to 512 Kbps upstream) is available for $24.99 a month.

  • Elite (up to 6.0 Mbps downstream; up to 768 Kbps upstream) is available for $34.99 a month.

Navini Announces 3.6 GHz Mobile WiMAX Solution

Navini Networks announced a version of its Ripwave) MX solution for the 3.6 GHz (3600-3700 MHz) band. Navini's Ripwave MX base station, in commercial shipment since April 2006, will now be available in 2.3 GHz, 2.5/2.6 GHz, 3.4/3.5/3.6 GHz bands.

Nominum Appoints President and COO

Nominum has promoted Tom Tovar to President and Chief Operating Officer. He previously was Vice President of Worldwide Sales and Business Development for Nominum. Prior to Nominum, Tom was the Vice President in charge of corporate development at Netscreen Technologies, which was acquired by Juniper Networks.

Nokia Unveils "Wibree" Alternative to Bluetooth

Nokia introduced its "Wibree" as an open industry initiative for extending local connectivity to small devices, much like Bluetooth. Target applications include mobile devices or personal computers, and small, button cell battery power devices such as watches, wireless keyboards, toys and sports sensors.

The Wibree radio technology, which was developed by Nokia Research Center, consumes only a fraction of the power compared to other such radio technologies, enabling smaller and less costly implementations.

Key aspects of Wibree include:

  • Operates in 2.4 GHz ISM band

  • Physical layer bit rate of 1 Mbps

  • Link distance of 5-10 meters.

  • Optimized for applications requiring extremely low power consumption, small size and low cost.

  • Provides ultra low power idle mode operation, simple device discovery and reliable point-to-multipoint data transfer with advanced power-save and encryption functionalities.

  • Link layer provides means to schedule Wibree traffic in between Bluetooth transmissions.

  • Can be implemented either as stand-alone chip or as Bluetooth-Wibree dual-mode chip. The small devices like watches and sports sensors will be based on stand-alone chip whereas Bluetooth devices will take benefit of the dual-mode solution, extending Bluetooth device connectivity to new range of smallest devices.

Nokia said it is committed to bring the new technology available to the market as fast as possible.

The company is collaborating with a group of leading companies representing semiconductor manufacturers, device vendors and qualification service providers, including Broadcom, CSR, Epson and Nordic Semiconductor. The technology will be made broadly available to the industry through an open and preferably existing forum.

\According to Nokia's estimate, the first commercial version of the interoperability specification will be available during second quarter of 2007.