Thursday, November 1, 2007

Huawei Enhances its Mobile Softswitch

Huawei Technologies rolled out an enhanced version of its mobile softswitch solution in China, providing new capabilities for next generation mobile core networks. The new Huawei solution supports Fixed-Mobile Convergence (FMC) deployments by integrating softswitch, IMS, packet-based voice and IP-based networking. The switch allows the connection between the core network and the access layer to be completely IP. In addition, the enhanced solution continues to support Huawei's MSC Pool, which does not require any upgrades in the access layer.

Vodafone Portugal Demos DVB-SH with Alcatel-Lucent

Vodafone Portugal, in partnership with Alcatel-Lucent, demonstrated a Mobile TV service based on DVB-SH technology.

The demonstration used the S-Band frequency spectrum (2.17 --2.20 GHz), which is available throughout Europe and can be used for the EU-wide delivery of mobile satellite services, in particular Mobile TV. The handsets used for the demonstration are DVB-SH-ready handsets provided by Sagem Mobiles.

The demonstration took place on the premises of the Parque das Nações in Lisbon, where the informal Summit of the EU Heads of State and Government took place on October 18 and 19, 2007.
  • On August 22, 2007, the European Commission adopted a proposal to select systems for mobile satellite services at European level. If adopted by the European Parliament and the EU Council, this new selection mechanism will allow Mobile TV based on DVB-SH in the S-Band to develop across Europe beginning in 2009.

Ericsson Completes GSM Upgrade for T-Mobile Germany

Ericsson completed an EDGE network upgrade for T-Mobile Germany. Over the past 24 months, Ericsson has upgraded more than half of T-Mobile's radio network, replacing more than 10,000 base stations in seven federal states with the network operating commercially and without subscribers noticing any deterioration in service. Ericsson said the new EDGE-compliant GSM radio network consumes about 30% less power. Financial terms were not disclosed.

U4EA Expands its MultiService Gateway Line

U4EA Technologies has extended its multi-service business gateway product line with two new models for small-to-medium businesses (SMBs) and enterprises. The U4EA Fusion 200 and Fusion 400 Series are integrated IP communications devices that eliminate the need for separate router, firewall, NAT, Ethernet switch, SIP session controller, and security products.

The Fusion 200 series consists of small form-factor devices for managed service delivery to small office users, while the 400 series is made up of enterprise-grade, rack-mountable devices suitable for small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs). WAN options include Ethernet, DSL and T1/E1, as well as the use of external cable modems.

The products deliver high-performance QoS, IP security (IPSec), and Firewall/Network Address Translation (FW/NAT) that ensure secure, wire-speed performance and reliable multi-service support for today's converged networks.

The U4EA Fusion product line is supported by U4EA's patented "GoS" (Guarantee of Service), which guarantees service quality for applications of multiple media types (voice, data, video, collaboration), all accessible through a single access link (or WAN pipe).

U4EA said its Fusion Series was developed specifically for SIP-based next generation networks carrying multiple types of real time applications coexisting with data and other streaming IP media. These total one box solutions interoperate with multiple VoIP solutions (both IP-Centrex and IP-PBX) and multiple vendor's IP phones.

The gateway also supports VPN connections between multiple locations, allowing an IP-PBX at one site to serve multiple offices.

Canada's Rogers Renews Yahoo! Partnership

Rogers Communications and Yahoo! signed new multi-year agreements that build on their existing broadband alliance. Canadian high-speed Internet access subscribers will continue to be offered a Rogers Yahoo! customized portal and browser, Yahoo! Search, as well as premium services and content from both Yahoo! and Rogers. Under the terms of the expanded mobile agreement, Rogers and Yahoo! will also bring Yahoo!'s mobile products -- Yahoo! Go for Mobile 2.0 and Yahoo! oneSearch -- to customers across Canada.

Canada's TELUS Reaches 994,000 Broadband Lines, up 14% YOY

TELUS, the incumbent operator in western Canada, reported that Q3 2007 revenue increased 4.5 percent to $2.31 billion from a year ago. The performance was driven by nine per cent growth in both wireless revenue and wireline data revenue, partially offset by declines in local and long distance wireline revenues. Consolidated earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) increased 3.6 per cent to $987 million due to an increase in wireless EBITDA of eight per cent, while wireline EBITDA decreased by one per cent. Net income in the quarter was $410 million and earnings per share (EPS) were $1.24, up 28 per cent and 32 per cent respectively.

Some highlights:

TELUS wireless

  • Net subscriber >additions remained strong at 134,500, a small 2.0% decrease from the same quarter in 2006. Postpaid additions were 98,200, down 9.6%, while prepaid loading increased by 27% to 36,300

  • Revenues increased by $95 million or 9.4% to $1.1 billion in the
    third quarter of 2007, when compared with the same period in 2006

  • Wireless data revenue increased $42 million or 56% due to migration
    to full function personal data devices and increased text messaging

  • ARPU decreased by 1.3% to $64.80 as a result of increased voice re-price due to competitive pressures. The data component continued to increase, up by 41% to $7.20

TELUS wireline

  • Revenues increased by $4 million or 0.4% to $1.2 billion in the third quarter of 2007, when compared with the same period in 2006. Strong data growth offset declines in local and long distance revenues

  • Data revenues increased by $36 million or 8.7% due to strong year- over-year high-speed Internet growth and enhanced data and hosting services

  • TELUS added 31,300 net high-speed Internet subscribers, building TELUS' high-speed base to 994,000, a 14% increase from a year ago.

  • Network access lines (NALs) declined by 35,000 in the quarter. Total NALs were down 3.0% from a year ago, reflecting continued residential line losses from ongoing competitive activity and wireless substitution partially mitigated by an increase in business access lines.

Afghanistan Builds Microwave Backbone

Afghan Wireless announced the completion of a digital microwave ring backbone passing through 18 provinces and providing direct coverage and connectivity to the population residing in surrounding areas. The backbone will support GSM service to the largest customer base in Afghanistan, as well as enabling other services.

Until now, most areas in the country with network coverage were connected over satellite, which is prone to the inherent delays in the quality.

The Afghan Wireless Microwave Ring connects the North of the Country in Mazar, Takhar, Badakshan and Kunduz to Kabul over the Salang, which is further connected in the South to Kandahar and Spinboldak. The ring further extends West from Kandahar, passing through Hilmand, Nimroz and Farah, to reach Herat. It also extends from Herat to Mazar via Badghees, Faryab and Jawjan provinces. In the East, the ring connects Kabul to Jalalabad and the Turkham Border, along with the Kunar Valley. It also connects Gardez and Khost in the South East of the country.

The Microwave Ring has also helped in providing coverage to all major highways connecting Kabul to Kunduz to Mazar to Herat to Kandahar to Kabul.

Afghan Wireless also noted that it now operates one of the world's highest GSM sites at Salang (3980m in elevation).