Tuesday, January 27, 2009

RadiSys and Enea Team on Managed ATCA Platform

RadiSys has teamed up with Enea, a supplier of network software, to offer a managed ATCA platform for telecom applications that provides configuration, monitoring, control and platform software upgrade capabilities. The solution, which is based on the Enea System Manager software and the RadiSys Promentum ATCA 10G platform, provides telecom equipment manufacturers with a commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) platform offering. The companies estimate that their integration will save equipment manufacturers up to 54 man-months in development time.

Key capabilities of the Enea System Manager include:

  • Centralized, simplified consistent and persistent management of the RadiSys Promentum ATCA platform, delivered with a hierarchical, extensible system model

  • Hardware monitoring, command and control with standard northbound interfaces (CLI, HTTP, SNMP) for immediate integration into an overall Element Management System

  • The industry's first centralized, automated in-service update of chassis-wide system software for ATCA systems

  • Alarm management support for standard Telco Alarm handling and notification

  • Complete X.731-conformant State Management infrastructure and services

Qualcomm Announces Revenues of $2.5 Billion, up 3% YoY, Down 19% Sequentially

Qualcomm reported quarterly revenue of $2.52 billion, up 3 percent year-over-year and down 25 percent sequentially. Operating income came in at $745 million, down 2 percent year-over-year and 44 percent sequentially. Net income was $341 million, down 56 percent year-over-year and 61percent sequentially. Diluted earnings per share were $0.20, down 57 percent year-over-year and 62 percent sequentially.

Qualcomm noted that its revenues were at the high end of prior guidance and operating income exceeded prior guidance. However, net income and diluted EPS for the quarter were adversely impacted by other-than-temporary impairments to its marketable securities portfolio.

"Despite weak economic conditions, wireless subscribers continue to migrate from second-generation to third-generation CDMA networks around the world. Our first quarter revenues were at the high end of prior guidance and operating income exceeded our prior guidance driven primarily by the mix of higher-end chipsets, higher-priced data capable devices and improved expense management," said Dr. Paul E. Jacobs, chief executive officer of Qualcomm. "I am particularly pleased to see healthy demand for 3G as CDMA-based device shipments in the September quarter were at the high end of our prior expectations and reflect more than 30 percent year-over-year growth. While our operating performance was strong, the distress in the global financial markets continued, resulting in additional impairments of our marketable securities portfolio."

"The CDMA inventory channel has contracted as we expected, and the business environment continues to remain uncertain. Reduced visibility in the marketplace makes it difficult to forecast future inventory levels or predict when a recovery will begin. As a result, while we continue to estimate healthy growth in the CDMA-device market, we have lowered our shipment estimate for calendar year 2009. Although we are not providing earnings per share guidance due to the volatility of financial markets and the impact it has had and may have on our investment portfolio and net income, we are providing revenue, operating income and our other standard guidance. Qualcomm is very fortunate to have a strong balance sheet and operating cash flows in these difficult times and we are committed to supporting our partners and driving the market forward."http://www.qualcomm.com

Extreme Networks Posts Net Revenue of $87.5 Million

Extreme Networks reported quarterly net revenue of $87.5 million, compared to $92.5 million in the year-ago quarter. Net income on a GAAP basis was $2.5 million or $0.03 per diluted share. That compares to the year-ago net income of $4.1 million or $0.04 per diluted share. Excluding stock-based compensation charges, non-GAAP net income for the second fiscal quarter of 2009 was $3.5 million or $0.04 per diluted share, which compares to non-GAAP net income of $5.5 million or $0.05 per diluted share in the year-ago quarter.

For the second fiscal quarter of 2009, revenues in North America (U.S., Canada, and Central America) were $33.4 million, revenues in EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa, and South America) were $42.2 million, and revenues in APAC (Asia Pacific and Japan) were $11.9 million. That compares to the year-ago revenues of $40.5 million in North America, $35.7 million in EMEA, and $16.3 million in APAC.

Alcatel-Lucent to De-List Shares from Frankfurt Stock Exchange

Alcatel-Lucent has submitted an application for the delisting of its ordinary shares from the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (FSE). The company cited small trading volumes, in recent years, of Alcatel-Lucent shares on the FSE compared to the total trading volumes of Alcatel-Lucent shares globally. The company's shares will continue to trade on major stock exchanges such as Euronext Paris, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and the London Stock Exchange.


Alcatel-Lucent and Institut TELECOM inaugurate Joint Laboratory

Alcatel-Lucent and the Institut TELECOM have inaugurated a joint research laboratory, the aim of which is to work on future applications for digital media sector. This virtual laboratory comprises 64 researchers enjoying international recognition in the engineering sciences (networks, service architecture, security, semantics mining, etc.) and the social and human sciences, including one third of young researchers (doctoral research students, engineers and post-doctoral students), specifically hired for the project. The team is led by a scientific and operational joint management and has been set up for an initial 5-year period, with the aim of becoming one of the leaders in future applications and services. It is financed equally by the two partners.

The inauguration ceremony took place in the presence of Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, secretary of state for strategic studies and the digital economy, Jeong Kim, President of Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs and Pascal Faure, Chairman of the Institut TELECOM.

BroadSoft's Xtended Delivers Voice 2.0 and Telephony Mashups

BroadSoft cited progress in the rollout of its Xtended framework, which brings together its carrier-grade BroadWorks voice applications with leading Web 2.0 solutions. Launched in March 2008, BroadSoft's Xtended program enables service providers to offer enhanced, productivity-improving applications that extend the value of their telephony service.

Several service providers, including Alteva, SimpleSignal, Telesphere, Unity, and WorldxChange Communications, have implemented the Xtended platform. Xtended developers promote their applications to more than 450 service providers and their customers via the Broadsoft Marketplace. Broadsoft said application development is occurring at a healthy rate amongst Xtended's growing community of approximately 1,500 developers. BroadSoft's Xtended Marketplace showcases third-party applications a number of companies, including Salesforce.com, PhoneTag, ACT!, Kakapo, and Litescape. New applications include:

  • Attache´ -- an Apple Mac OS X client that gives users complete control of BroadSoft's advanced calling features

  • Chumby -- a Web-enabled consumer electronic device that allows users to view their call history, click to return missed, placed or received calls, and set ‘Do Not Disturb'

  • MobileSet -- a mobile Web application that provides users access to the services they use most

  • QuickSet -- a desktop application that runs on the Adobe Air platform, allowing access to several of your services from Windows or Mac

  • Xtended Dialer -- a native iPhone application that allows a user to originate calls from an iPhone through their service provider

NetXen Ramps up Production of Dual Port 10GbE and Quad Port 1GbE Adapters

NetXen announced high volume production of its new line of Dual Port 10GbE and Quad Port 1GbE adapters. The products, which are based on NetXen's third-generation Intelligent NIC silicon, support the PCI Express (PCIe) 2.0 standard and are offered with various cabling options: the NX3-20GxR supports pluggable SFP+ modules for SR and LR optics, whereas the NX3-20GCU uses direct attach twinax copper cabling. The 10GbE adapters have a starting price of sub-$300 per port for the twinax copper version.

IntelliNet Unveils Femtocell Gateway

IntelliNet Technologies introduced a femtocell gateway which combines a femtocell access point controller with a carrier grade security gateway in an AdvancedTCA platform. The security gateway was acquired by IntelliNet in 2008 from Azaire Networks and has subsequently been enhanced and is being integrated with the access point controller.

IntelliNet's platform provider network operators with the ability to manage thousands of femtocells simultaneously. The femtocell access point controller is a control plane, software solution. It consolidates the various elements of the Radio Network Controller (RNC) into a single unit, minimizing the complexity and much of the operating cost of a traditional network. Unlike existing Base Station Controllers (BSCs), it is designed to handle the many thousands of access points in the femtocell ecosystem. It is an Iu-based solution for 3G-UMTS networks supporting Iu-PS, Iu-CS and Gn network interfaces to the core network. It implements a pre-standards Iu-h based solution with RANAP and SCTP support and will comply with the final standards.

IntelliNet Technologies said its access point controller has been deployed in several technology trials in tier-1 operator networks through an OEM partner. The platform will be demonstrated at Mobile World Congresshttp://www.intellinet-tech.com

Juniper Networks Names Lauren Flaherty as CMO

Juniper Networks announced the appointment of Lauren Flaherty to the position of executive vice president and chief marketing officer. Flaherty will oversee the full breadth of the company's global marketing activities, and will report directly to company CEO, Kevin Johnson. Most recently, she served as CMO of Nortel Networks from 2006--2008. Prior to Nortel, Flaherty spent 26 years at IBM in a variety of product marketing leadership positions including software and servers.

Verizon Wireless Invested $6.5 Billion in Net Improvements in 2008

In 2008, Verizon Wireless invested $6.5 billion to enhance its nationwide digital network. The enhancements included building new and upgrading existing cell sites; adding new coverage areas and increasing capacity within existing coverage areas; and completing a high-speed wireless broadband network expansion.

Since the company was formed in 2000, Verizon Wireless has invested more than $50 billion -- an average of $5.5 billion each year -- on improvements to its network.

Verizon Wireless also noted that during 2008 its test engineers drove more than 1 million miles to test the company's and competitors' networks. Data collected by these test men and women helped the company direct its multi-billion dollar network capital expenditure program and is the basis for the company's "most reliable network" claim. According to the company, the voice reliability test results consistently show that the rate of ineffective attempts (a call that is blocked) for the Verizon Wireless national network is lower than any other national carrier. The test results also indicate that voice calls that connect on the Verizon Wireless network are more likely to stay connected for the duration of the call. Similarly, the data reliability test results establish that Verizon Wireless is able to set up data sessions and complete large file downloads and uploads at a greater rate of success than its national competitors.

Motorola Publishes Survey on Wireless Network Security

A new survey by Motorola's Enterprise Mobility business finds that 44 percent of the wireless devices used by retailers - such as laptops, mobile computers and barcode scanners - could be compromised. This significantly lower than results from the same retail shopping survey conducted in 2007 which showed security vulnerabilities in 85 percent of wireless devices.

Survey research included a review of wireless data security at more than 4,000 stores in some of the world's busiest shopping cities including Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, London, Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco, Paris, Seoul and Sydney.

Other interesting survey findings include:

  • Retailers in Los Angeles and New York City were deploying some form of encryption on 77 percent of their wireless APs. Paris retailers ranked second with 76 percent. Retailers in London and Boston ranked the lowest with only 51 percent and 60 percent of APs, respectively, using some form of encryption.

  • 12 percent of all APs monitored were using WiFi Protected Access (WPA) while another 27 percent were using WPA-PSK (pre shared key), which is only as strong as the shared password used to protect them. In total, only 7 percent of retailers were using WPA2, which is the strongest WiFi security protocol available today.

  • 22 percent, or 1,740, of APs were mis-configured, an increase from 13 percent in the 2007 survey.

  • Some networks were deployed using default configurations and service set identification (SSID), such as "Retail Wireless," "Cash Register," "POS WiFi," or "store#1234," and "Default". This signals to hackers that nothing has been changed on these devices or the entire wireless network.

  • WiFi signage has become popular for retailers, advertising they offer wireless. However, advertising an open wireless network may tip hackers in targeting other customers, who may not be using effective data security tools.

  • 32 percent of retail locations were leaking unencrypted traffic, with an additional 34 percent of retail locations leaking encrypted traffic, for a total of 66 percent. Data leakage is easily solved with simple configuration changes or modifications.

Motorola noted that security vulnerabilities in wireless networks typically are the result of weak encryption, data leakage, mis-configured access points and outdated access point (AP) firmware. One of the more overlooked issues with large retailers is a "cookie-cutter" approach to wireless technology. By using the same technology, configuration, security and/or naming conventions at all retail locations, vulnerabilities repeat themselves across the entire store chain, rendering them susceptible to attacks as well as Payment Card Industry (PCI) non-compliance.

NTT Com to Launch Data Center & e-VLAN POP in Shanghai

NTT Communications and China Telecom Shanghai announced the opening of a joint Yuanqu Data Center in Shanghai on February 2.

The facility will provide co-location, managed operation (monitoring, maintenance, security, etc.) and network, including NTT Com's Arcstar Global IP-VPN and Global e-VLAN services. Shanghai NTT Telecommunications Engineering Co., Ltd. will provide customer support in Japanese, Chinese and English on a 24/7 basis.

NTT Com also announced that the data center will introduce Global e-VLAN point of presence (POP) to provide international wide-area Ethernet service. Customers will be able to connect their servers and systems to a high-speed backbone network directly on the premises of the data center, thereby minimizing connection costs.

U.S. House Fails to Approve Delay in DTV Transition

The U.S. House of Representatives voted 258-168 in favor of delaying the mandatory transition to digital TV. However, the vote fell short of the two-thirds majority required to approve the measure on an expedited basis. Earlier in the week, the Senate voted to approve a DTV delay of four months. The deadline for the DTV switchover currently remains February 17, unless the issue is brought before the House for a second time and approved. The Obama administration had signaled that it is in favor or a delay.

AT&T Reports Robust Wireless Data Growth, but Slows U-verse Rollout in Some Markets

Citing robust wireless data growth, accelerated take-up of its U-verse TV service and double digit IP growth, AT&T reported Q4 revenues of $31.1 billion, net income of $2.4 billion and cash from operating activities of $10.9 billion. Full-year revenues totaled $124.0 billion, net income was $12.9 billion and cash from operating activities totaled $33.7 billion. However, the company is trimming its Capex forecast by 10% to 15% compared with 2008, lowering its growth target for 2009 to the low single-digit range, and slowing its planned U-verse rollout in some markets. As the U-verse network currently passes 17 million, AT&T said it now has a large base to which it will market its service. As such, rollouts to some markets will be pushed back, and the goal of passing 30 million homes is expected to be reached one year later than originally planned.

"Despite the economic environment, we grew revenues in 2008, and I expect 2009 will be another year of overall revenue growth and solid progress for our company," said Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and chief executive officer.

Some highlights from Q4:

Wireless Operational Highlights

  • 2.1 million Net Gain in Wireless Subscribers. AT&T posted a fourth-quarter net gain in wireless subscribers of 2.1 million to reach 77.0 million in service, up 7.0 million over the past year. Retail postpaid net adds topped 1.3 million, up 13.9 percent versus results in the year-earlier quarter. Total monthly subscriber churn in the fourth quarter was 1.6 percent, down from 1.7 percent for both the preceding quarter and the year-earlier fourth quarter. Postpaid churn was 1.2 percent, flat versus results for the preceding quarter and the fourth quarter of 2007.

  • 1.9 million Apple iPhone 3G Activations. Postpaid subscriber growth reflects the dramatic success of iPhone 3G, which was launched in July 2008. AT&T's fourth-quarter iPhone 3G activations totaled 1.9 million, approximately 40 percent to customers who were new to AT&T, and the company's total iPhone activations over the last half of 2008 topped 4.3 million. AT&T's iPhone exclusive continues to deliver high-value subscribers with ARPU approximately 1.6 times higher and churn rates significantly lower than the company's overall postpaid subscriber base.

  • Integrated Devices. During the fourth quarter, nearly 60 percent of the company's postpaid net adds came from customers choosing an integrated device (such as the iPhone), and 24.9 percent of AT&T's postpaid wireless subscribers now have an integrated device, up from 13.0 percent one year earlier.

  • 51.2 percent Wireless Data Revenue Growth. AT&T's wireless data revenues grew 51.2 percent versus the year-earlier fourth quarter to $3.1 billion. Wireless text messages on the AT&T network were nearly 80 billion in the fourth quarter, more than double the total for the year-earlier fourth quarter. Internet access revenues and multimedia message volumes also continued their robust growth. This marked AT&T's 12th consecutive quarter with wireless data revenue growth above 50 percent. Data represented 26.6 percent of AT&T's fourth-quarter wireless service revenues, up from 19.9 percent in the year-earlier quarter.

  • Retail Postpaid Subscriber ARPU Up 3.9 percent. For the fourth quarter, total postpaid ARPU was $59.59, up 3.9 percent versus the year-earlier quarter. Postpaid data ARPU was $16.30, up $4.29 or 35.7 percent versus the fourth quarter of 2007, and up $1.60 or 10.9 percent sequentially. Total wireless subscriber ARPU was up 1.1 percent versus the fourth quarter of 2007.

  • 13.2 percent Total Wireless Revenue Growth. Driven by subscriber gains and data growth, AT&T's total wireless revenues increased 13.2 percent to $12.9 billion, and wireless service revenues, which exclude handset and accessory sales, grew 13.3 percent to $11.5 billion. For the full year 2008, total wireless revenues were $49.3 billion, up $6.7 billion or 15.6 percent versus 2007 results.

  • Sequential Wireless Margin Expansion. On a reported basis, fourth-quarter wireless operating expenses totaled $10.2 billion, operating income was $2.7 billion and AT&T's wireless operating income margin was 20.9 percent versus 17.0 percent in the year-earlier fourth quarter. On an adjusted basis, fourth-quarter wireless operating expenses totaled $9.7 billion, operating income was $3.2 billion and AT&T's wireless operating income margin was 24.6 percent versus 25.7 percent in the year-earlier fourth quarter.

Wireline Operational Highlights

  • AT&T U-verse. AT&T reported a net gain of 264,000 subscribers in the fourth quarter, up from 232,000 added in the third quarter of 2008, to reach more than 1 million in service. AT&T U-verse network deployment more than doubled during 2008 and now passes 17 million living units.

  • 14.2 percent Growth in Wireline IP Data Revenues. AT&T posted its fifth consecutive quarter of mid-teens growth in total wireline IP data revenues, driven by expansion in AT&T U-verse services and growth in business products such as VPNs and managed Internet services. Consumer IP data revenues, which include broadband and AT&T U-verse services, grew 21.4 percent, and retail business IP data revenues grew 11.4 percent. IP services now account for 45.2 percent of AT&T's total wireline data revenues, up from 41.5 percent in the year-earlier fourth quarter and 37.2 percent two years ago.

  • Growth in Consumer ARPU. Reflecting growth in AT&T U-verse services and broadband, AT&T's revenues per consumer household served increased 3.4 percent versus the year-earlier quarter. Regional consumer revenue connections (retail voice, high speed Internet and video) totaled 47.0 million at the end of the quarter versus 49.4 million at the end of the fourth quarter of 2007 and 47.5 million at the end of the third quarter of 2008. Total wireline consumer broadband and TV connections over the past year increased by 1.8 million. Total regional consumer revenues were $5.3 billion, down 5.3 percent, as voice declines more than offset growth in data and video.

  • Broadband Growth. AT&T's total broadband connections, which include wireline subscribers and wireless customers with 3G LaptopConnect cards, increased by 357,000 in the fourth quarter to reach 16.3 million in service, up 1.5 million or 10.3 percent over the past year. The number of 3G LaptopConnect cards in service nearly doubled over the past year. AT&T U-verse TV continues to have a high attach rate for broadband, more than 90 percent in the fourth quarter, and sales of bundles that combine wireless with wired broadband service continue to be strong. Both wired and wireless broadband subscribers benefit from access to AT&T's industry-leading Wi-Fi footprint, with nearly 20,000 hotspots in the United States and access to more than 80,000 hotspots around the world.

  • Wholesale. AT&T extended its major turnaround in wholesale revenues, which grew 1.0 percent versus the year-earlier fourth quarter. This marks AT&T's second consecutive quarter of year-over-year growth in this category and compares with a year-over-year decline of 8.5 percent reported in the year-ago fourth quarter. The turnaround reflects solid demand for data services, offsetting expected declines in local voice. In addition, revenues from AT&T's global network alliance with IBM continue to ramp.

  • Retail Business IP Data Growth. AT&T enterprise and regional business operations continued to generate double-digit growth in IP data revenues, offsetting in large part expected economic pressures on usage-based legacy revenues, primarily in voice. Regional business revenues declined 0.9 percent versus the year-earlier quarter to $3.2 billion. Regional business data revenues grew 7.0 percent, consistent with results in recent quarters, led by Ethernet and IP data services, which made up 55.4 percent of AT&T's regional business data revenues and grew 18.3 percent versus the year-earlier fourth quarter. Enterprise revenues totaled $4.5 billion, down 3.7 percent versus the year-earlier quarter, reflecting pressures on voice and legacy data transport volumes. Enterprise sales flow and new service adoption remain solid.

Global Connectivity Scorecard 2009 Measures Infrastructure + Usage

The key to improving the economic and productivity performance of every country in the world lies with the greater and better-focused use of Information and Communications Technology, according to the Connectivity Scorecard 2009, a unique study by Professor Leonard Waverman, Fellow of the London Business School, and commissioned by Nokia Siemens Networks.

The study measured the extent to which governments, businesses and consumers in 50 countries make use of connectivity technologies to enhance economic and social prosperity. Connectivity is defined as the bundle of infrastructure, complementary skills, software and informed usage that makes communications networks the key driver of productivity and economic growth.

"At a time when governments around the world are looking to jump start their economies with a variety of stimuli packages, the Connectivity Scorecard shows that every single one of them, even the United States, has plenty of room to develop their ICT infrastructure and improve the actual use of it to the benefit of both the economy and society," said Professor Waverman. "Communications networks are the infrastructure of the 21st century and these networks are very large construction programs. There is great potential for them in using ICT to stimulate growth."

The Connectivity Scorecard 2009 ranks the United States first in the group of 25 innovation-driven economies, while Malaysia leads a table of 25 resource and efficiency-driven economies. The rankings are determined by the measurement of each country against two criteria -- infrastructure and usage plus skills -- in the realms of business, government and consumer, with weightings of each of the three tailored to each country. Low scores reflect gaps in a country's infrastructure, usage or both.

Detailed results for each country is posted online.

IBM Examines Social Networking Impact on Telecom Providers

Social Networks have become primary destinations for a rapidly expanding universe of online users to manage and enrich their digital lifestyles both personally and professionally. This rapid rise in traffic to social networking sites will have a major impact on telecom service providers, according to a new report from IBM on "The Changing Face of Communications."

Social networking has moved beyond being a fad. In June 2008, unique monthly visitors to social networks represented approximately two-thirds of the world's Internet audience. Based on the projected growth of the global Internet audience, IBM estimates that by 2012, the number of unique monthly visitors to online social networking sites will surpass 800 million.

Not only have social networking sites become a primary communication platform, but these sites are also increasingly being used as distribution channels for digital content which leverages the "viral" nature of an individual's network of relationships. While first gaining a foothold among individual online users, companies are now more actively recognizing the potential benefits of a social media strategy to build brand loyalty by involving these networks of consumers. Depending on the brand and its goals, establishing a social network site dedicated to its clients can attract a better-targeted audience, more actively engage them, and allow them to exchange information among a community that is most suitable for the user.

According to the IBM study, the rise of social networking is changing the fundamentals of the telecom industry and creating a future that is being shaped by two key trends:

  • Communication patterns are shifting from point-to-point and two-way conversations, to many-to-many, collaborative communications; sharing videos, photos and other multimedia content that substantially enrich the user experience.

  • Control of communications is shifting away from the proprietary domain of Telecom providers to open Internet platform service providers.

"The option of doing nothing is not a luxury many providers can afford, as a new ecosystem is emerging from these long-term shifts in communication patterns and trends that will require bold, significant changes by existing providers" said Gary Cohen, General Manager of IBM's Communications Sector. "By adapting new capabilities like social networking, communication service providers can develop new forms of communications and spark interactions that breed collaboration and innovation across all businesses and thereby, improve efficiency, reduce cost, increase productivity and enhance the quality of life."

IBM argues that the evolving communications marketplace represents both a window of opportunity and a challenge for telecom providers. Over the long-term, communication service providers (CSPs )should broaden the scope of their traditional "voice" business to more actively encompass both point-to-point communication and many-to-many collaborative models that include "voice, internet-based communications and content", and align their organizations and industry partnerships accordingly. This has strategic and transformational implications for the business, impacting areas such as product and services offerings, skills, platforms, revenue models and markets, among others.