Sunday, August 19, 2007

Cisco and Microsoft Discuss Collaboration and Competition

Cisco and Microsoft have agreed to collaborate in certain areas of network convergence while competing in others. At a press event in New York, Cisco Chairman and CEO John Chambers and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer outlined 7 specific technology initiatives where Cisco and Microsoft will focus their efforts. These are:

  • IT infrastructure based on the Microsoft Infrastructure Optimization Model and the Cisco Service Oriented Network Architecture

  • Security, including integration of Cisco's Network Admission Control (NAC) and Microsoft's Network Access Protection (NAP)

  • Management, including finding common ground in defining a new standard called Service Modeling Language.

  • Wireless and Mobility, including extending Cisco Unified Communications Manager to Windows Mobile-powered devices.

  • Unified Communications, in which the companies will work together in complementary areas while competing in others. Microsoft's approach is that software is the hub of all communications, while Cisco's approach is that the network is the hub of all communications.

  • Connected Entertainment, where Cisco is a formal member of the Microsoft IPTV ecosystem.

  • Small and medium-sized businesses

Nokia Siemens Networks Supplies Carrier Ethernet for China Telecom

Yunnan CTC (China), a branch of China Telecom, has selected Nokia Siemens Networks for the supply and implementation of Carrier Ethernet switches. Under the contract, Nokia Siemens Networks will carry out a large-scale Carrier Ethernet switch deployment in China's south-western province of Yunnan. The deployment of SURPASS hiD 6650 Carrier grade Ethernet switches started at the end of July and the network is planned to start operations in September. Financial terms were not disclosed.

F5 Selects Mu Security for Automated Security Analysis

F5, which specializes in application delivery networking, is deploying Mu Security's Mu-4000 Security Analyzer to discover, document and eliminate potential security and robustness vulnerabilities for its BIG-IP and WANJet products. Mu's platform automates current vulnerability auditing and remediation processes throughout a product development lifecycle.

F5 customizes its Mu-4000 analysis for development processes including testing through dynamically generated and non-random Protocol Mutations. For example, SIP analysis ensures optimal VoIP application performance, as well as security and robustness readiness throughout F5's product line. By applying a rich suite of user-defined protocols over IPv4 and IPv6 transport, measurement and testing is automated throughout F5's product design, development and deployment phases, including product upgrades and patches. As a result, F5 is performing highly accurate and automated regression, trending and "negative testing."

Veraz Signs Global Energy and Technology for North American Distribution

Veraz Networks announced a new distribution agreement with Global Energy and Technology, a distributor of connectivity and convergence technology products with established sales channels into Tier 1 U.S. carriers as well as the Federal Government. Global Energy and Technology will distribute Veraz's I-Gate 4000 Media Gateways.

ZyXEL and Sprint Sign Deal for WiMAX CPE

Sprint Nextel has selected ZyXEL WiMAX Customer Premise Equipment (CPE) for use with its upcoming WiMAX mobile broadband network. ZyXEL will join Sprint Nextel's WiMAX ecosystem partners in helping incorporate mobile WiMAX technology in a range of computing, portable multimedia, interactive and other business and consumer devices.

ZyXEL's WiMAX product line includes the MAX-100 series PCMCIA card for mobile users and the MAX-200 series CPE, a plug-and-play router designed for home users, which will be used by Sprint. ZyXEL's product portfolio on the client/terminal devices also includes an Express Card, USB dongle, SOHO router, and both indoor and outdoor CPE for mobile WiMAX applications supporting 2.5GHz, 2.3GHz and 3.5GHz bands. ZyXEL's WiMAX product line also features the pico-cell and femto-cell base stations.

ZyXEL said its WiMAX CPE is currently in trial at more than 40 different sites throughout the world including major deployments in Canada, Europe, Asia, Australia and South America. ZyXEL has also been a major contributor for the M-Taiwan project, a nationwide WiMAX deployment in Taiwan featuring its 2.5GHz micro-base stations, Element Management Systems (EMS) and ASN gateways for a total end-to-end solution.

Verizon Introduces FiOS in Brooklyn

Verizon's fiber-based FiOS Internet service is now available to customers in parts of Brooklyn's Canarsie, Mill Basin, Georgetown and Bergen Beach communities. The service is also available in several buildings in Williamsburg and downtown Brooklyn. FiOS Internet is already available in many other New York communities, including the other New York City boroughs. Additional parts of Brooklyn and other New York neighborhoods will become eligible for the service as Verizon continues to deploy its new fiber-optic network.

Enea Enhances its Element Middleware Platform

Enea released Version 2.2 of its middleware platform, featuring higher levels of service continuity through an application management framework (AMF) that is aligned with the Service Availability Forum (SAF) AIS- AMF specification.

Enea's Element is a high availability middleware platform for telecommunications equipment. The latest release of Element adds the following:

  • Software Management - Management of application executables, image verification and synchronization, cluster boot, image distribution, and support for node-level upgrades

  • High Availability - Support for SAF AMF Service Units & Service Groups, and N+M redundancy model

  • Expanded Environment Support - Support for heterogeneous, mixed-endian processing environments

Sonus Outlines Access 7.0 Platform

Sonus Networks announced a new version of its enterprise and residential voice services software platform, enabling service providers to deliver IP-voice services regardless of the last-mile connection.

The Sonus Access 7.0 platform incorporates IMS/TISPAN-compliant access technologies and integrates with third-party or traditional last-mile connections.

Sonus said this latest release of its IMS network architecture allows local communications providers to deploy next-generation advanced voice and multimedia services, while optimizing the network to provide required safety and traditional call features.

Motorola Completes Acquisition of Leapstone -- IMS Software

Motorola completed its acquisition of privately-held Leapstone Systems. Financial terms were not disclosed. Leapstone is now part of Motorola's Home & Network Mobility business.

Leapstone's flagship Communications Convergence Engine (CCE) product suite is a real-time service delivery platform that enables fixed and mobile network operators to expand and evolve their service offerings through its Service Broker and Content Manager software products.
  • In May 2007, Leapstone released version 8.0 of its flagship Communications Convergence Engine (CCE) software, adding new capabilities aimed at IPTV providers. This includes a set of advanced blackout functions for regional sports events, as required by content owners. With this feature, enabled by Leapstone's Microsoft Windows-based middleware, IPTV providers can selectively allow content suppliers to automatically schedule, monitor and manage events for regional blackouts.

  • Leapstone was founded in 2001 and is headquartered in New Jersey.

Infineon to Acquire LSI's Mobility Business for $450 Million

LSI will sell its mobility products business to Infineon Technologies for $450 million in cash, plus a performance-based payment of up to $50 million payable in the first quarter of 2009. The division, which originally belonged to Agere Systems, designs semiconductors and software for cellular telephone handsets and complete chip-level solutions for satellite digital audio radio applications. It has about 700 employees.

"This move demonstrates our commitment to maintain and grow our leadership in the wireless market. The business acquired from LSI will significantly strengthen our position at important mobile phone makers and will add highly qualified experts to the Infineon team," said Dr. Wolfgang Ziebart, President and CEO of Infineon Technologies.

LSI said the sale is the result of its strategic review following its merger with Agere Systems on April 2, 2007. LSI now plans to pursue growth opportunities for its storage systems and storage and networking semiconductor businesses. Proceeds from the sale will be used for a stock repurchase program.

"This move demonstrates our commitment to maintain and grow our leadership in the wireless market. The business acquired from LSI will significantly strengthen our position at important mobile phone makers and will add highly qualified experts to the Infineon team," said Dr. Wolfgang Ziebart, President and CEO of Infineon Technologies.
  • In June 2007, Infineon Technologies agreed to acquire Texas Instruments' DSL Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) business. The transaction is expected to close in the summer of 2007. Financial terms were not disclosed.

  • In June 2007, LSI agreed to sell its consumer products business to Magnum Semiconductor for an undisclosed amount. The deal includes the LSI DoMiNo, Domino[X] and Zevio architectures, products and related intellectual property of the LSI consumer products business.

  • On 04-Dec-2006, LSI Logic first announced plans to acquire Agere Systems in an all-stock transaction with an equity value of approximately $4.0 billion. Under the deal, LSI and Agere shareholders will own approximately 52% and 48%, respectively, of the combined company.

  • Agere Systems was formerly the Microelectronics Group of Lucent Technologies. Agere was spun-off from Lucent in 2002.

Skype Identifies Causes of Two-day Outage

A huge number of users rebooting their PCs after last week's Windows Update from Microsoft triggered instability in Skype's peer-to-peer network, leading to the two-day outage for the service. The service was back to normal on Sunday.

In blog entry, Skype's Villu Arak said the high number of restarts affected Skype's network resources in an unforeseen way. Skype's network resource allocation algorithm was unable to keep up with the flood of log-ins as the rebooted PCs came back online. Skype said it has introduced a number of improvements to its software to ensure that the chain reaction does not repeat.

China Telecom Posts 1H07 Metrics -- 33 Million Broadband Users

China Telecom published key performance metrics for the first half of 2007, including the following milestones: 32.80 million broadband users and 223.78 million local access lines.