Wednesday, August 1, 2007

NTT Reaches 6.8 Million Optical Access Lines, DSL Continues Decline

As of the end of June, NTT was serving a total of 6.782 million "B-Flets" consumer optical access lines, up by 706,000 for the quarter. Meanwhile, ADSL access lines declined to 5.193 million, a loss of 130,000 ADSL lines for the quarter. Major subscriber trends are highlighted in the company's newly issued Q2 financial report.

CableLabs and MoCA

CableLabs and MoCA have formally established a cooperative
relationship to share published and draft specifications as well as proposed documentation to ensure seamless integration of each other's technology within the home.

CableLabs and MoCA have always operated separately but in parallel. Both organizations will continue to develop specifications independently, but
acknowledge the benefits of cooperation.
  • In May, The Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA), which promotes the distribution of digital video and entertainment through existing coaxial cable in the home, named Charles Cerino as its new president. Cerino is currently vice president of new media development at Comcast Corporation, where he evaluates new technologies and how best to incorporate their value into the network. He joined Comcast in 1978 as a system engineer helping to build a cable infrastructure in the Philadelphia suburbs.

France Telecom Tops 872,000 TV-over-ADSL Subscribers

Citing strong growth from emerging markets and broadband services, France Telecom Group reported consolidated Q2 revenues of EUR 13.068 billion, up 1.8% compared to Q1 and up 2.1% compared to a year earlier. The Group consolidated net income was EUR 3.3 billion, compared with EUR 2.3 billion in the first half of 2006 (or EUR 2.4 billion versus EUR 2.2 billion on a comparable basis).

Some highlights for the quarter:

  • The number of mobile customers (excluding MVNOs) reach 102.5 million, up 13.9% on a comparable basis. There were 2.44 million new mobile customers in the quarter, compared with 2.47 million in Q1.

  • The number of mobile broadband customers (EDGE and UMTS) increased to 8.94 million.

  • The MVNO business grew to 1.43 million, of which 1.11 million are in France.

  • The number of ADSL access lines in Europe grew to 10.534 million, representing an annual grow of 23.1%.

  • ADSL Multiservices grew rapidly, with 5.216 Liveboxes installed, 3.640 VoIP subscribers, and 872,000 ADSL TV subscribers.

  • In France, there were 6.575 million consumer ADSL lines, 4.273 million Livebox rentals representing 65% of the ADSL base, 3.017 VoIP subscribers, and 837,000 ADSL TV subscribers. There were 938,000 paid VOD downloads in the first half of the year. The company holds a 49.7% share of the ADSL market in France.

  • Revenues from traditional telephone services dropped 17% due to lower calling volumes and the adoption of VoIP.

SS8 Networks Divests Signaling and SMS business to Skyview Capital

SS8 Networks has sold its signaling and SMS businesses to NewNet Communication Technologies, a limited liability company formed by Skyview Capital, for an undisclosed sum. According to the terms of the deal, the Signaling and SMS businesses, which include a core team of SS8 Networks employees, will transition to NewNet Communication Technologies. This new independence will enable an increased focus on customer service, product line development and product deployment in the SMS and signaling sector.

SS8 Networks said the deal will enable it to focus on its core lawful intercept and voice messaging business.

NewStep Interoperates with HelloSoft for FMC

NewStep Networks and HelloSoft have completed interoperability testing to enable fixed-mobile convergence solutions on a variety of dual-mode and multi-mode handset devices. Specifically, the NewStep CSN platform has been tested with HelloSoft's VoIP software client and is now available on HTC Dopod, the QTEK S200 and Samsung SPH M4500 handsets. The NewStep-HelloSoft collaboration will also provide support for upcoming Sony Ericsson handsets.

BigBand Reports Q2 Revenues of $54.5 Million

BigBand Networks reported Q2 net revenues of $54.5 million, an increase of 43% over the second quarter of 2006. GAAP net income for the quarter was $1.7 million, or $0.02 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $0.6 million, or ($0.05) per share reported in the second quarter of 2006. Gross margin improved to 53.4% on a GAAP basis from a gross margin of 48.7% in the second quarter of 2006.

"Video continues to be a major driver of capital expenditures in service provider networks. We believe that our technology innovation and time-to-market leadership are key competitive differentiators in our video and data markets," commented Amir Bassan-Eskenazi, president and CEO of BigBand Networks.

Widevine Sues Verimatrix

Widevine announced a patent infringement lawsuit against Verimatrix for unspecified damages. Specifically, Widevine asserts that Verimatrix's content security solutions, such as the Verimatrix Content Authority System (VCAS), infringe on Widevine's Apparatus, System and Method for Selectively Encrypting Different Portions of Data Sent Over A Network patent number 7,165,175.

For its part, Verimatrix refuted the allegation and said it would defend itself vigorously.

Nokia Ships 100.8 million Mobile Units in Q2, up 11% Sequentially

Citing strong sales of its new handset models (Nokia 6300, N95 and E65), Nokia reported net revenue of EUR 12.587 billion and diluted EPS of EUR 0.32, excluding special items, growing 39% from Q2 2006. However, Nokia Siemens Networks had a challenging quarter. Some highlights for Q2:

  • Nokia device volumes of 100.8 million units, up 11% sequentially and up 29% year on year. Nokia estimated device market share was 38%, up from 36% in Q1 2007 and up from 34% in Q2 2006.

  • Nokia now expects industry mobile device volumes in 2007 to grow by 10% or more from the approximately 978 million units Nokia estimate for 2006.

  • Nokia device ASP of EUR 90, up from EUR 89 in Q1 2007, however, the company expects this to decline, primarily reflecting the increasing impact of the emerging markets and competitive factors in general.

  • Nokia's year on year market share increase was driven primarily by strong gains in Europe, Middle East & Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America. Nokia's market share in China was at approximately the same level year on year. Nokia had strong sequential market share gains in Europe, Middle East & Africa, China, and Asia-Pacific and to a lesser degree in Latin America. Nokia's market share was down both year on year and sequentially in North America.

  • Nokia Siemens Networks posted Q2 net sales of EUR 3.4 billion. The company said sales were negatively impacted primarily by competition related issues as the price competition in the infrastructure market was unusually aggressive. Net sales were also impacted by challenges related to the start of operations, including delayed purchases by customers to a greater extent than expected, increased management focus on integration, and implementation of the previously announced compliance program, which also required certain management attention.

  • Nokia Siemens Networks second quarter operating profit was negative EUR 1.3 billion, with an operating margin of -36.8%.

  • Due to the weak performance, Nokia and Nokia Siemens Networks are accelerating and increasing the new company's annual cost synergies target. The new aim is to achieve the approximate EUR 1.5 billion of annual cost synergies by the end of 2008 rather than by 2010. A further EUR 500 million of annual cost synergies are also being targeted.

Centillium Reports Q2 Revenue of $10 Million

Centillium Communications reported Q2 revenue of $10.0 million, compared with $10.6 million during the first quarter of 2007 and $18.3 million during the second quarter of 2006. GAAP results were a net loss of $8.9 million, or a net loss of $0.22 per share, for the second quarter of 2007, compared with a net loss of $5.9 million, or a net loss of $0.14 per share, for the first quarter of 2007 and a net loss of $1.6 million, or a net loss of $0.04 per share, for the second quarter of 2006.

During the second quarter of 2007, revenues by region, as a percentage of the company's net revenues, were 47 percent from Japan, 32 percent from Europe, 13 percent from the U.S. and 8 percent from Asia, outside of Japan. Also, during the second quarter of 2007, revenues by market, as a percentage of the company's net revenues, were 67 percent from ADSL, 29 percent from VoIP and 4 percent from Optical.

SoftBank Telecom Chooses Openwave's AJAX Rich Mail

SoftBank Telecom, the fixed-line telecommunications segment of SoftBank group, has selected Openwave's Rich Mail, an AJAX-based Adaptive Communications solution that provides a dynamic Web interface for broadband and mobile communications solutions. Specifically, Openwave Rich Mail, part of Openwave's Adaptive Communications suite of products and solutions, will serve as the Web front-end for SoftBank Telecom's ODN Internet service, allowing SoftBank Telecom to combine content, communications and community into a seamless Web 2.0 Internet experience.

WSJ: Google Pushes Tailored Phones

Google has approached handset manufacturers with prototype designs customized for its ad-supported services, according to a front page story in The Wall Street Journal. Google reportedly is courting wireless operators such as T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless about offering the devices, although the industry appears to be wary of Google's role.