Tuesday, February 19, 2008

XO Communications Deploys Cisco Ethernet over SONET/SDH (EoS)

XO Communications is deploying new Cisco Ethernet over SONET/SDH (EoS) technology on many of the more than 4,000 Cisco ONS 15454 Multi-service Provisioning Platforms (MSPPs) currently deployed in its network.

Cisco said that as part of this transition, XO Communications is evaluating two innovations to streamline its network transformation:

  • Cisco Multilayer, Multi-rate, 10-Port Line Card, with 10 Gbps Ethernet over SONET/SDH (EoS) capacity (ML-MR-10) enabling a wide range of Ethernet services with Layer 2 switching, RPR, and advanced QoS capabilities. Cisco ML-MR-10 cards can be used for any Ethernet service type by changing the SFP module plugged into the Ethernet port.

  • Cisco Carrier Ethernet, Multi-rate, 10-Port Line Card, with 10 Gbps Ethernet over SONET/SDH (EoS) capacity (CE-MR-10), a next-generation version of the Carrier Ethernet blade for the 15454, enabling private line Ethernet services.

Both of these platforms quadruple the capacity of previous cards in the same line from 2.5 Gpbs to 10 Gbps on a single blade, while still supporting a wide range of protocols. They also provide 10-client ports, each of which is soft form factor pluggable (SFP).

XO Communications offers a broad range of IP-based services, including Metro Ethernet for Dedicated Internet Access (DIA), private line (point-to-point) services, VoIP, IP Telephony and IP-VPN, which are available in 75 U.S. metropolitan markets. The XO network has a large SONET infrastructure and associated services, making Cisco Ethernet over SONET/SDH (EoS) technology well-suited to scaling the network.

"Soft At Home" Venture Aims for Digital/Broadband Interoperability

Orange, Thomson and Sagem Communications have joined forces to create a joint venture aimed at creating a standard for the interconnection of equipment within the multimedia ecosystem.

The new "Soft At Home" joint venture seeks to facilitate the deployment and interoperability of digital equipment in the home and make it possible to combine it with enhanced and innovative services. Soft At Home plans to harness technologies and experiences of its founding shareholders. The resulting software will be offered to players in this sector, such as telecommunications operators, third-party developers, OEMs and manufacturers. For instance, Thomson and Sagem Communications both will be incorporating the Soft At Home software into their offerings.

The companies said their initiative will enable operators to launch new innovative services more quickly, tailored more effectively to their differentiation requirements. In this way, the next generation of residential gateways and TV decoders that will be used by Orange in 2008 will be equipped with Soft At Home software.

Orange already is already serving over 6 million Liveboxes and has over 1 million subscribers for its IPTV package.http://www.softathome.comhttp://www.orange.com

ECI Telecom Debuts XDM-300with SONET for North America

ECI Telecom has expanded its XDM Multi-Service Provisioning Platform (MSPP) family with an XDM-300 model with SONET capabilities for North America. The XDM-300 is a compact packet optical platform offering 60 Gbps of switching capacity for converging Carrier Ethernet, SONET and WDM functionalities for metro access and metro edge applications. It accepts range of CWDM/DWDM SDH, PDH, and Ethernet interfaces with a high-density fan-out for metro aggregation.

ECI said its XDM-300 enables optimal transition to 10 Gbps and Carrier Ethernet and MPLS support for residential and business services. The Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) has certified the XDM product suite for MEF 9 and 14 test specification compliance for Carrier Ethernet.

  • In December 2007, ECI Telecom added Automatically Switched Optical Network (ASON) capabilities to its XDM Multi-Service Provisioning Platform (MSPP) family of products. Advanced control plane architecture offers new protection schemes to assure service continuation. The ITU ASON architecture, along with the GMPLS common signaling and routing protocol, enables the introduction of an extra layer of virtual management plane for differentiated service support based on Class of Service (CoS).

  • In September 2007, ECI Telecom introduced MPLS line cards for its XDM Multi-Service Provisioning Platform (MSPP), enabling support for real-time services such as triple play for residential customers, VPNs for businesses, and Ethernet-based 3G cellular backhauling. By adding MPLS line cards to new and/or deployed XDM-based SONET/SDH networks, ECI said service providers can efficiently migrate their networks. The new MPLS line cards are compliant with the Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) requirements for Carrier Ethernet. They are fully interoperable with existing ECI Carrier Ethernet solutions and with MEF-compliant third-party equipment, complementing ECI's end-to-end (E2E) Carrier Ethernet offerings.

    In September 2007, ECI also announced a new version of its multi-layer network management system, the LightSoft, to support E2E Ethernet service management. LightSoft Version 4 now enables MPLS tunnels and Ethernet service provisioning, delivering the same operational capabilities already available in previous versions to Ethernet Services, and providing one management solution for all platforms and technologies.

Fujitsu Enhances FLASHWAVE 7500 with 2D ROADM,

Fujitsu Network Communications announced several enhancements to its FLASHWAVE 7500 ROADM, including a new two-degree (2D) ROADM configuration for locations that only need two degrees of network connectivity (i.e. a single ring). The new release also includes other economical and operational enhancements, including new 19- and 23-inch shelves, an in-service upgradeable In-Line Amplifier (ILA), and a 10 Gbps Flexponder SONET ADM-on-a-card unit.

The FLASHWAVE 7500, which is widely deployed by some of the largest MSOs and telecom companies in North America, offers 400 Gbps of total capacity, provides up to 40 wavelengths, features transmission paths exceeding 1000 km, and supports up to 24 intermediate add/drop nodes. It supports both optical mesh and network hub architectures.

Fujitsu said that with this release, several enhancements have been made to the existing 19-inch FLASHWAVE 7500 small configuration to allow it to support 40-channel access via Wavelength Selective Switching (WSS) technology. This new configuration is designed for data center locations where 19-inch shelves are desired. Now, these customers have several alternatives to optimize cost and performance, including a 32-channel Fixed Optical Add/Drop Multiplexer (FOADM), 32-channel ROADM, 40‑channel FOADM, or 40-channel WSS-based ROADM.

The new FLASHWAVE 7500 2D ROADM configuration provides an economical solution for locations that require full add/drop and pass-through capabilities for up to 40 Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM) channels, but only have two degrees of network connectivity. The 2D ROADM system can be deployed in protected or unprotected point-to-point, linear, and ring applications across distances up to 1000 km with no regeneration required. Additionally, the 23‑inch 2D ROADM can interoperate in existing networks with the 23-inch standard configuration and the 19‑inch small configuration systems with access to all wavelengths.

The FLASHWAVE 7500 Extension configuration allows a remote tributary shelf to be placed away from a 23-inch standard configuration or 19-inch small configuration while supporting access to all 40 wavelengths. With the addition of a new bidirectional single channel amplifier unit, the FLASHWAVE 7500 Extension configuration can be located further from hub nodes (now up to 65 km away).

A new 10 Gbps Flexponder unit provides flexible interface and multiplexing/demultiplexing for up to eight client signals in the 23-inch standard configuration, 19-inch small configuration, 2D ROADM configuration, and Extension configuration. The unit supports advanced traffic management features, including non-blocking time-slot assignment (STS-1/STS-3c/STS-12c/STS-48c), ADM on a wavelength, VCAT, and hairpinning. The 10 Gbps Flexponder unit multiplexes up to eight Gigabit Ethernet, OC‑3, OC‑12, and OC‑48 signals into a single 10.7 Gbps optical signal with digital wrapper. ITU-T compliant narrowband optics allow the signal to be mapped to any of 40 channels.

Enhanced amplifiers available in this new release provide greater flexibility for uncertain traffic patterns. Existing ILA nodes, which provide in-line amplification of DWDM signals and extend the distance the signal can travel before regeneration is required, can now be upgraded in-service to full-featured ROADM nodes. http://us.fujitsu.com/telecom
  • In June 2007, Fujitsu Network Communications announced 40 Gbps transmission capabilities into its FLASHWAVE 7500 Reconfigurable Optical Add/Drop Multiplexer (ROADM), enabling 10-Gbps metro DWDM networks based on the platform to grow from 400 Gbps to 1.6 Tbps of total capacity. Fujitsu has developed an advanced modulation scheme and per-wavelength variable dispersion compensation (VDC) to support the 40 Gbps rate. Optical performance requirements such as optical signal-to-noise ratio (OSNR), chromatic dispersion, polarization mode dispersion (PMD), and spectral width become much more stringent as bit rates increase.

3Com Private Equity Deal Stalls on Huawei Ownership Concerns

3Com, along with affiliates of Bain Capital Partners and Huawei Technologies, have withdrawn their joint filing to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) concerning the parties' proposed merger transaction. The parties said they remain committed to continuing discussions.

"We are very disappointed that we were unable to reach a mitigation agreement with CFIUS for this transaction," said Edgar Masri, President and CEO of 3Com Corporation. "While we work closely with Bain Capital Partners and Huawei to construct alternatives that would address CFIUS' concerns, we will continue to execute our strategy to build a global networking leader. We remain focused on serving our growing base of worldwide customers and providing them with innovative solutions that deliver long-term investment for their network infrastructure and offer them a lower total cost of ownership."http://www.3com.com
  • In September 2007, 3Com announced a deal under which the company would be acquired by affiliates of Bain Capital Partners for approximately $2.2 billion in cash. The parties voluntarily submitted the proposed transaction, which included a minority ownership stake by Huawei Technologies, to CFIUS review.

Cisco's John Chambers Addresses Global Climate Change Challenge

In a keynote address at the first Connected Urban Development (CUD) Global Conference in San Francisco, Cisco's Chairman and CEO John Chambers made the case that the network could serve as a "green" platform for addressing global climate change. Specifically, Chambers called on industry and government to work together to develop technologies that address the world's pressing environmental concerns.

"It is our responsibility as global citizens to help address the challenges of climate change. As a technology company, we are approaching this by not only reducing our own company's carbon output, but also by helping our customers and partners use the network as a 'green' platform for sustainable business and government progress. If we are innovative and collaborative in our approach, ICT can dramatically improve how we manage our global environmental footprint and climate concerns," Chambers said.

Cisco cited a recent study by the American Council for an Energy- Efficient Economy, for every extra kilowatt-hour of electricity demanded by ICT, the U.S. economy increases its overall energy savings by a factor of 10.

Cisco's Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG), which provides consulting services, is collaborating with a number of cities on the development of best practices in the areas of smart transportation, energy management and environmentally friendly, alternative work arrangements. Highlights include:

  • The Connected Bus" -- a prototype hybrid bus developed by Cisco and the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority (SFMTA) that has a mobile hot spot that allows citizens to work while they ride. GPS gives commuters updated status of bus routes and connections. LED displays provide information on emissions saved through public transit; and an automated system reduces the environmental impact of the bus through better maintenance.

  • "Personal Travel Assistant (PTA)" -- a service being developed by Cisco with input from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Currently being considered by the city of Seoul for pilot testing, PTA improves the transit experience within urban environments by empowering citizens to make more informed decisions on day-to-day transportation options based on schedule, financial and environmental implications. Accessible from any Web-based interface such as a mobile phone, PTA is the first service of its kind that provides green route options, integrates with other communication needs such as calendaring, and enables city agencies to predict and manage evolving citizen transportation needs more effectively.

  • "Smart Work Centers" -- an approach developed by Cisco and embraced by the city of Amsterdam that enables local residents to work in remote stations without having to travel into the heart of the city.

The Connected Urban Development (CUD) Global Conference is hosted by Cisco and the city and county of San Francisco.http://www.cisco.com

T-Systems to Offer Alcatel-Lucent BiCS for Mid-Market Managed Voice

T-Systems, the business customer unit of Deutsche Telekom, has selected Alcatel-Lucent's Business integrated Communications Solution (BiCS) server as one of the platforms for its mid-market managed voice services. Specifically, T-Systems will offer the BiCS platform as part of its Octopus EP product line, focusing on integrating services and BiCS for German enterprises with between 100-500 employees initially, expanding to enterprises with 1,000 employees in the last quarter of 2008. Customers can purchase and own the system, or use the equipment as part of a managed service that combines phone system, maintenance and system upgrades for a fixed monthly price per user.

Alcatel-Lucent is a strategic partner of T-Systems. This is the second innovative voice solution agreement between the two companies.

The Alcatel-Lucent Business integrated Communication Solution is a multi-service, single-server communication solution for enterprises with up to 500 users.

Centillium Posts Q4 2007 Financial Results

Centillium Communications posted Q4 2007 of $8.6 million, compared with $10.0 million during the third quarter of 2007 and $10.0 million during the fourth quarter of 2006. For the year ended Dec. 31, 2007, net revenues were $39.2 million, compared with $64.6 million in 2006.

Net income was $2.4 million on a GAAP basis, or $0.06 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2007, compared with a net loss of $5.2 million, or $0.13 per share, for the third quarter of 2007 and a net loss of $6.0 million, or $0.15 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2006. The GAAP net income for the fourth quarter included an $8.9 million benefit from the reversal of accrued royalties; restructuring expense related to surplus space of $518,000; and a $1.4 million impairment of assets charge related to the divestiture of our DSL business.

"On Feb. 13, 2008, we completed the sale of our DSL business to Ikanos Communications, Inc. for $12 million in cash," said Faraj Aalaei, co-founder and CEO of Centillium. "The sale of our DSL business will allow us to focus our resources on Optical and VoIP, our two key growth businesses. We will continue to focus on delivering exceptional products, expanding our worldwide customer base, improving our competitive position and growing our market share," said Aalaei.http://www.centillium.com

Access Integrated Networks Merges with Birch Telecom

Access Integrated Networks completed its previously announced merger with Birch Telecom. The deal was first announced in November 2007. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The combined company now operates as one of the largest competitive local exchange carriers in the 26-state southeast, southwest and midwest regions, and will have approximately 300,000 voice and data lines, 100,000 small and medium business customers, annual revenues of $200 million and 400 employees.

Vincent Oddo, CEO of Access, leads the combined company as President and CEO.http://www.accesscomm.com/http://www.birch.com
  • Access Integrated Networks serves nine Southeastern states including: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. The company was founded in 1996 and is based in Macon, Georgia.

  • Birch Telecom serves 130,000 customers in more than 50 metropolitan markets across 12 states, including Kansas City, St. Louis, Houston, Dallas, Ft. Worth, Atlanta, Charlotte, Memphis, and Nashville. The company was founded in 1997 and emerged from Chapter 11 in 2006.

NeoPhotonics Adds G.984.5 Compliant GPON Transceivers

NeoPhotonics introduced a new line of "pluggable" GPON transceivers, compliant with the ITU-T G.984.5 networking standard, to augment its portfolio of Biplexer and Triplexer modules used for FTTP deployments. The new line includes SFP biplexers for FTTP central office, or optical line terminal (OLT), applications as well as modules for use in Optical Networking Units (ONU).

NeoPhotonics said its new transceivers meet the specifications for the enhanced wavelength allocation plan specified in G.984.5 as well as for the "reach extenders" that increase the servable PON distance beyond 20 km (from the "central office" to the customer).http://www.neophotonics.com

Occam Posts Q4 Revenue of $21.3 Million

Occam Networks reported Q4 2007 revenues of $21.3 million, a decrease of 4% as compared to the fourth quarter of 2006 and an increase of 36% sequentially over the third quarter of 2007. Annual revenue for 2007 was $75.1 million, representing a 10% increase over annual revenue for 2006. Net loss (GAAP) for Q4 was $4.6 million or $0.23 per share.

Occam said it capped the fiscal year by achieving double-digit customer growth for a thirteenth straight quarter. Among the new customer additions was GTA TeleGuam, Occam's first Asia-Pacific customer, which awarded the company an initial project to upgrade service on more than 10,000 access lines.http://www.occamnetworks.com

Kentrox Appoints New CEO

Kentrox, which provides automated network maintenance, management and control solutions for mobile service providers and large business enterprises, announced the appointment of Richard S. Cremona as the company's new CEO. Cremona, a 20-year telecommunications industry veteran has held executive positions with AT&T, Lucent Technologies, Sprint and, most recently, Openwave.

The Kentrox Board of Directors also announced today that it has appointed Charlie Vogt as Chairman of the Board. Vogt has been affiliated with Kentrox as a board member for the past 18 months and is the current President and CEO of GENBAND, a market leading Media Gateway and Application solutions provider.

Over the past 12 months, Kentrox has made two significant strategic acquisitions -- Applied Innovation Inc. and the Optima assets from DAX Technologies Corp.http://www.kentrox.com

Matisse Gains MEF Certification for its EtherBurst Packet WDM

Matisse Networks' EtherBurst Packet WDM system has been awarded Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) 9 certification. Matisse said the certification assures that its systems is compliant with Ethernet Private Line (EPL), Ethernet Virtual Private Line (EVPL) and Ethernet-Local Area Network (E-LAN) services.http://www.matissenetworks.com

WSJ: Google Considers Broadband Balloons with Space Data Corp.

Google is considering a scheme backed by Space Data Corp. to deliver broadband services across rural America using balloons at an altitude of 65,000 to 100,000 feet, according to The Wall Street Journal. Space Data Corp. is already launching 10 hydrogen balloons per day to deliver cellular services to trucking companies across Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Arizona. Google did not comment for the report.