Monday, March 5, 2007

Extreme Networks Hires ex-Sun Exec to Head Sales

Extreme Networks named Helmut Wilke as its new senior vice president of worldwide sales. Wilke previously was senior vice president of operations and support for Sun Microsystems. Prior to this, Wilke served as the vice president of sales and President of Sun Microsystems, Germany, where he led a group with 1,500 employees, transitioning it to a solutions-focused approach. Prior to Sun, Wilke was the CEO and president of Software AG, a leading manufacturer of software and systems for large corporations.

Verizon Business Links BEHRINGER Worldwide

BEHRINGER, a manufacturer and distributor of professional audio and musical instrument products, has implemented Verizon Private IP connecting six of BEHRINGER's key offices worldwide. Under a two-year contract, Verizon Business linking BEHRINGER's headquarters in Singapore with its manufacturing base in China and other primary business locations in the U.S.A., Germany and the Philippines.

New Venture Targets Digital Cinema Distribution

Warner Bros. Entertainment, Universal Pictures and Digital Cinema Implementation Partners (DCIP) have formed a joint venture for the digital delivery for digital cinema.

The company said it will develop the most cost-effective form of digital content delivery through technologies such as satellite or digital terrestrial distribution. The delivery system will be open and available to any content provider, vendor or exhibitor.

Under the current distribution system, individual prints of each movie are physically shipped to theaters in cans -- or hard drives in the case of existing digital cinema.

A digital distribution system, which streamlines the delivery process and limits the number of people who handle the product, is expected to increase security and support the fight against film piracy.

Ixia's IPTV Testing Generates Realistic Video Traffic

Ixia's new Aptixia IxNetwork 5.20 application running on its Optixia hardware platform is now supporting the ability to generate and analyze IPTV video traffic over emulated IP network topologies. Engineers can now test the routing control plane and simultaneously stress the data plane by directing both real-world video traffic and packet-based network traffic over the emulated topologies. This enables them to better characterize the performance of routers/switches that deliver IPTV services.

Ixia's IxNetwork characterizes the performance and scalability of routers, switches, and other Layer 2/3 forwarding devices by running large-scale routing protocol emulations and generating realistic video traffic. Technologies supported include IP routing, MPLS, Multicast and Bridging.

Acme Packet Extends Session Border Control Capabilities

Acme Packet introduced over 30 new features and enhancements that further extend the control capabilities of its Net-Net session border controllers (SBCs) for interconnecting IP voice (VoIP), video and multimedia networks to one another. The new features enhance security, service reach maximization, SLA assurance, revenue and profit protection and regulatory compliance.

Acme Packet said the new peering features in Net-Net OS Release 5.0 enhance the precise signaling and media control required by service providers in their interconnect deployments. More specifically, the numerous new edge routing features in Release 5.0 are designed to optimize the selection of the best-available peered network for sessions leaving a provider's network to ensure quality while minimizing transport or termination costs. Similarly, the admission and signaling overload control features assure SLAs for incoming traffic and police network usage. Many SIP, H.323, SIP-H.323 interworking and SDP enhancements facilitate greater interoperability to extend service reach while maintaining security. More flexible and optimized accounting for sessions crossing the interconnect border are enabled via RADIUS Call Detail Record (CDR) enhancements.

Acme Packet's control capabilities have also been extended to the data, text, image and application content of multimedia sessions such as gaming and collaboration.

To protect session privacy between peered networks, the scale of the IPSec encryption capabilities has been increased to 512,000 security associations per SBC using new physical network interface hardware. Lastly, service availability commitments in SLA agreements are addressed with several enhancements in the areas of SBC management, troubleshooting and high-availability operation.

ARCHOS Adds WiFi to its Mobile Touchscreen DVR

ARCHOS introduced a Portable Media Player combining WiFi and a 7-inch touch-screen and full wireless capabilities. The new 704-WiFi presents 800x480 resolution and 5x7 dimension.

It features an 80 GB hard drive with the capacity to store 100 hours of video, or about 70 DVD-quality movies, as well as two high-quality speakers for enhanced audio even without headphones. The 704-WiFi also supports video downloads from the online stores.

Battery life is approximately 25 hours for music playback and five hours for video playback and Internet browsing, according to the company.

The unit is priced at $549.99.

BT Teams with Avaya on Contact Centre Solution

BT and Avaya are launching BT Avaya OnNet, a new service designed to enable organisations to transform their contact centre operations.

The new hosted "pay-as-you-go" service means capacity and geographic location can be adjusted as consumer demands change. BT Avaya OnNet is expected to be of particular benefit to financial services, retailers and utility companies, who experience significant seasonal demand.

France Telecom Serving 577,000 IPTV Customers

As of year-end 2006, France Telecom was serving 5.9 million ADSL Orange customers in France for an estimated share of 49% of the nation's broadband market. There were 345,000 net ADSL additions in Q4 alone. In Spain, Orange is serving some 640,000 ADSL customers.

There were 4.1 million LiveBox users in Europe, of which 3.4 million are in France. That means that as of the end of 2006, 58% of the company's ADSL customers were equipped with LiveBox units.

The number of IPTV clients in France reached 577,000. Orange IPTV service has also been launched in Spain and Poland.

Some addition highlights of the annual report:

  • 97.6 million mobile subscribers (15.1% yoy growth)

  • 5.8 million mobile broadband subscribers

  • Fixed-Mobile-Convergence (FMC) -- a total of 64,000 "Unik" phones were sold in the first 2 months of availability.

  • Organic cash-flow of 7.15 billion euros, higher than the stated objective of 6.95 billion euros (adjusted to only include PagesJaunes Groupe until the date of its sale)

  • Gross Operating Margin of 18.54 billion euros, and a GOM rate of 35.9%, a reduction of 1.4 percentage points (on an historic and a comparable basis), in line with the Group's stated objective (a decrease in the margin of between 1 to 2 percentage points)

  • Capital expenditure (CAPEX) of 6.73 billion euros, representing 13% of revenues (12.5% in 2005), in line with the Group's stated objectives

  • Group share of net profit 4.139 billion euros compared to 5.709 billion euros in 2005. On a like-for-like basis, adjusted for exceptional items, the 2006 figure of 4.152 billion euros is slightly ahead of the 3.992 billion euros reported in 2005

TiVo and EarthLink to Bundle Services

TiVo and EarthLink announced an agreement to offer bundled Internet and television services. This brings together the stand-alone TiVo Series2 Dual Tuner DVR and TiVo service with EarthLink branded dial-up, DSL, or digital voice services.

EarthLink will begin marketing the bundle later this year. In the future, the parties could utilize TiVoCast to deliver additional content via broadband to EarthLink subscribers who use the TiVo service. Specific pricing and financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

AT&T Launches U-verse in Dallas-Fort Worth

AT&T launches its U-verse service in the Dallas- Fort Worth metroplex. The service will be available with more than 300 TV channels, including more than 25 HD channels, along with HD digital video recording (DVR) capability. Three tiers of Internet service are offered, the fastest of which reaches 6 Mbps in the downlink.

AT&T U-verse services are now offered in parts of 14 markets across five states

Verizon FiOS TV Adds VOD Titles in Spanish, Chinese, Hindi

Verizon has added content in Spanish, Chinese and Hindi to its FiOS TV service through an agreement with SIVOO Inc., an first Internet TV network of multicultural on-demand entertainment programming. SIVOO will provide 236 titles in Spanish, Chinese and Hindi to Verizon over three years.

During March, Verizon will offer eight films each in Spanish and Hindi and three in Chinese, and SIVOO will refresh the selection monthly. The on demand films cost $3.99 each for 24 hours of viewing.

Verizon FiOS TV Adds VOD Titles in Spanish, Chinese, Hindi

Verizon has added content in Spanish, Chinese and Hindi to its FiOS TV service through an agreement with SIVOO Inc., an first Internet TV network of multicultural on-demand entertainment programming. SIVOO will provide 236 titles in Spanish, Chinese and Hindi to Verizon over three years.

During March, Verizon will offer eight films each in Spanish and Hindi and three in Chinese, and SIVOO will refresh the selection monthly. The on demand films cost $3.99 each for 24 hours of viewing.

AT&T Pairs Homezone & Wireless Phones, Expands with Akimbo

Customers of AT&T's Homezone service can now manage their television recordings via wireless handsets. Customers can view listings and manage and schedule recordings on the Homezone receiver via compatible wireless phones and devices from wireless carriers. The remote programming capability was already supported via web browser.

Additionally, AT&T announced that it has expanded the service's on-demand content offerings via the Internet to include thousands of additional program titles offered by Akimbo.
  • AT&T Homezone integrates AT&T Yahoo! High Speed Internet, AT&T | DISH Network satellite television and AT&T Home Networking services via a single device. The AT&T Homezone receiver can support up to two televisions at the same time with access to recorded programs, movies, photo and music collections from either TV. The second TV receives its signal through a home's existing coaxial cable wiring. 2Wire is the CPE provider for the AT&T Homezone receiver.

Onstream Media to Acquire Auction Video

Onstream Media Corp., which delivers live and on-demand digital media, agreed to acquire Auction Video and Auction Video Japan. Auction Video is a developer of web based, user-generated content applications that are used in social networks, video classified advertisements, online auctions and other Web 2.0 applications. Financial terms were not disclosed.

One of the key components of the acquisition is the video ingestion and flash transcoder that is already integrated into Onstream Media's Digital Media Services Platform (DMSP) and an integral component of the social network services offered as part of Onstream Media's partnership with Five Across, Inc. (Cisco Systems).

Nokia and University of Cambridge Collaborate on Nanotechnologies

Nokia and the University of Cambridge announced an agreement to work together on an extensive and long term programme of joint research projects. Specifically, Nokia Research Center (NRC) will establish a research facility at the University's West Cambridge site and will collaborate with several departments -- initially the Nanoscience Centre and Electrical Division of the Engineering Department - - on projects that, to begin with, will be centered on nanotechnology.