Monday, January 25, 2010

FCC Seeks Data on Wireless Early Termination Fees

sent letters to AT&T, Google, Sprint Nextel, TMobile, and Verizon Wireless to gather facts and data on the consumer experience with wireless early termination fees. This inquiry follows last week's launch of the FCC's Consumer Task
Force, which was established to promote cross-agency collaboration on the Commission's
consumer agenda.

FCC Considers National Emergency Response Interoperability Center

The FCC will hold a public forum on February 10th to discuss the creation of an emergency response interoperability center for public safety broadband communications. The forum will examine ways to ensure coordination and cooperation among public safety entities on broadband issues.

Discussions will focus on how the interoperability center should be structured, what its role should be and how it
can accomplish critical tasks such as establishing a public safety interoperability profile,
interoperability standards, authentication, encryption, roaming, priority access, application uses and
interconnectivity. The forum will also focus on the role an emergency response interoperability center
would play in establishing a national framework for gateway functionality and interface capabilities, as
well as a national framework for interconnectivity and compatibility of user networks.

Meeting information is online.

Veraz Supplies Softswitching Korea's LS Cable

Korea-based LS Cable, which supplies optical cable and network infrastructure for projects worldwide, is working with Veraz Network to develop Quadruple Play Service (QPS) solutions for service providers in emerging markets. As part of the agreement, LS Cable will now deploy Veraz's ControlSwitch VoIP switching platform. The companies are actively working together to deploy the QPS solution with a service provider customer in the EMEA.

In addition, Veraz has licensed to LS Cable Veraz's Class 5 software platform. As a result LS Cable will be able to extend the platform to provide QPS specific features further differentiating the QPS solution.

Cisco Releases Telepresence Protocol to Public Domain

Cisco has released its Telepresence Interoperability Protocol (TIP) to the public domain. LifeSize, TANDBERG and RADVISION have signed agreements to license the Telepresence Interoperability Protocol (TIP). Cisco has offered to license its protocol to industry participants royalty free.

Telepresence Interoperability Protocol allows multiscreen telepresence systems to interoperate. Cisco said the release of TIP marks a significant step in creating a new open standard for telepresence, similar to other industry video standards. Cisco already supports H.323, which allows Cisco TelePresence to interoperate with standard- and high-definition videoconferencing systems and other collaboration applications. Cisco supports HD videoconferencing interoperability solutions via the Cisco MXE 5600 (Media Experience Engine) and Cisco Unified Video Conferencing.

More than 3,500 Cisco TelePresence rooms have been deployed worldwide. Cisco has also installed more than 685 Cisco TelePresence rooms on its own internal network in 47 countries for greater productivity and effective collaboration.

Nokia Siemens Networks and LGE Achieve LTE Rates of 100 Mbps

Nokia Siemens Networks and LG Electronics have achieved a maximum downlink rate of 100 Mbps for an LTE data call using a Class 3 USB wireless modem.

In LTE, user equipment is categorized into classes based on its potential uplink and downlink data rates.
Class 3 terminals are expected to be the first widely used commercial LTE terminals when they are launched later in 2010. The companies said this data call achieved the peak theoretical rate of 100 Mbps for a Class 3 terminal.

The call was made using Nokia Siemens Networks' LTE radio equipment including the Flexi Multiradio Base Station, its Evolved Packet Core network elements and standards-compliant software along with a pre-commercial LTE USB modem from LG Electronics (LG).

The data call was made as part of extended interoperability tests conducted by Nokia Siemens Networks and LG in the 2100 MHz and 2600 MHz frequency bands at Nokia Siemens Networks' LTE R&D centers in Oulu, Finland, and Ulm, Germany. In addition to initiatives at its R&D centers, Nokia Siemens Networks has deployed a number of LG's terminals in its live over-the-air field test network in the Espoo area of Finland, using real-life mobility scenarios. In addition, LG's terminals will be used in live trials with Nokia Siemens Networks' customers.

Missouri's Fidelity Comm Picks NSN's Metro DWDM

Fidelity Communications, an independent operating company (IOC) based in Missouri, has chosen Nokia Siemens Networks' hiT7300-based Metro DWDM for its core network. The carrier currently serves 25,000 access lines, and offers wireline telephony, long distance services, high speed Internet and IPTV services to residential and business customers. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Level 3 Provides Backbone for TDS Telecom

TDS Telecommunications (TDS) has selected Level 3 to provide more than 25 10 Gbps wavelengths to connect core locations for their new all-IP nationwide network. TDS also plans for Level 3 to carry voice traffic to support its local and long-distance services. The 10 Gbps network architecture enables TDS to deliver enhanced voice and data services, improved service reliability, and greater rural access to high-speed services across multiple markets in 30 states. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Inmarsat Shows its New Global Handheld

Inmarsat completed the first call using its new global handheld service, IsatPhone Pro, which is on track for launch in June 2010.

Inmarsat confirmed that upgrades to its ground network were completed on schedule by Lockheed Martin, and further testing on the integration between the handset and the ground network is underway.

Inmarsat's partner for the handset development is Sasken Communications Technologies. Elcoteq has been appointed to produce IsatPhone Pro at its facility in Tallinn, Estonia.

Eleven distribution partners, covering all geographic markets around the world, have been selected to sell IsatPhone Pro at launch: AST, China Telecom, Evosat, MCN, MVS, Network Innovations, NSSL, Satcom Global, Singtel, Stratos and Vizada.

Altair Teams with ANADIGICS on LTE

Altair Semiconductor and ANADIGICS announced a cooperation focused on LTE. Specifically, Altair is integrating ANADIGICS power amplifiers (PAs) into the recently announced FourGee LTE USB ExpressCard UE (User Equipment). The card has undergone extensive and successful interoperability testing (IOT) and is currently being used in various field tests.
http://www.anadigics.comIn November 2009, Altair introduced its FourGee LTE USB ExpressCard UE featuring:

  • Category 3 speeds of 100Mbps download and 50Mbps upload

  • Power consumption within the USB specification power budget (<2.5W)

  • ExpressCard34 form factor with a USB2.0 HS host interface

  • Available in select FDD/TDD bands in the range of 700M-2700MHz

IEEE Works on Coexistence of Wireless Nets in TV White Space

The IEEE 802.19 Wireless Coexistence Working Group is launching a new project (802.19.1), to develop a standard for coexistence between wireless networks operating in the TV white space.

TV white space channels are those not utilized by TV broadcasts, CATV headends, or other licensed devices. However, the IEEE notes that regulations for operation in the TV white space do not restrict access to any particular type of wireless device. Since these wireless networks are unlicensed, they do not have exclusive access to the TV white space. Therefore, in any given location there may be multiple types of unlicensed wireless networks accessing the TV white space.

There are already several projects for development of standards for wireless networks operating in the TV white space. The IEEE 802.22 Working Group has been developing a standard for wireless regional area networks (WRANs) in the TV white space. Recently the IEEE 802.11 working group initiated a project to develop an amendment to the 802.11 WLAN standard for operation in the TV white space. In addition to these two projects, other unlicensed wireless use of the TV white space is likely.

AT&T Now Supporting More than 370 Wireless Specialty Devices

Since forming a dedicated organization to focus on emerging devices in late 2008,AT&T has certified more than 370 wireless specialty consumer and machine-to-machine devices - such as eReaders, netbooks, digital photo frames, personal navigation devices, and home security monitoring and smart grid devices - for use on its mobile broadband network.

Aircell Debuts New Airborne Internet System aboard Gulfstream G200

Aircell announces that the first installation of its new ATG 5000 High Speed Internet unit is now complete aboard a California-based Gulfstream G200 operated by FlightWorks.

The ATG 5000 provides standalone Aircell High Speed Internet capabilities for customers that don't require the integrated voice and narrowband data features of Aircell Axxess. The ATG 5000 can easily be installed alongside existing equipment, saving downtime and reducing installation costs.
The system includes an ATG 5000 High Speed Internet LRU (shown), two belly-mounted blade antennas and an optional cabin telecommunications router. Wired or wireless (Wi-Fi) in-cabin connection options are available.

Novatel Wireless Achieves HSPA+ Dual-Carrier at 40 Mbps

Novatel Wireless announced its first data transmission over dual-carrier HSPA+ using Qualcomm's MDM8220 chipset. The companies said the data call achieved peak throughput of up to 40 Mbps.

Novatel Wireless plans to launch commercial data devices based on the MDM8220 in the second half of 2010.

Verizon Sees Growth in Wireless Data, But Posts Loss on Labor Costs

n the fourth quarter 2009, Verizon's revenues reached $27.1 billion, up 0.2% compared to a year earlier (without Alltel) and full-year 2009 revenues totaled $107.8 billion, an increase of 10.7 percent from 2008 on a reported basis and 1.5 percent on a pro forma basis. Verizon recorded a loss of 23 cents in diluted earnings per share (EPS), compared with EPS of 43 cents per share in the fourth quarter 2008. Contributing to the loss was a special item of $3.0 billion in pre-tax costs related to workforce reductions. On an adjusted basis (non-GAAP), fourth-quarter 2009 EPS was 54 cents, compared with 61 cents in the fourth quarter 2008.

In the fourth quarter, Verizon continued streamlining its wireline operations. During 2009, Verizon reduced its workforce by 13,000, including 5,000 who left the payroll in Q4. Verizon expects to reduce its headcount by a similar amount in 2010, including a planned cut of 10,000 employees in its wireline division.

"In last year's turbulent economy, we took significant steps to strengthen Verizon going forward," said Chairman and CEO Ivan Seidenberg. "We focused on expanding wireless data and set the stage to deploy a nationwide 4G network later this year. We also expanded the scale of FiOS and our global IP network. We saw growth in all these areas in 2009, and we expect continued growth in 2010 and beyond, with a goal of delivering long-term shareowner value."

2010 capital spending is targeted in the range of $16.8 billion to $17.2 billion.

Some highlights:


  • Wireless data revenues of $16.0 billion for the full year were up 31 percent over 2008 on a pro forma basis. In the fourth quarter, data revenues were 31.9 percent of all service revenues, up from 26.5 percent in the fourth quarter 2008 on a pro forma basis.

  • Verizon Wireless added 1.2 million retail net customers in the quarter (almost all postpaid) and 4.6 million retail net customers in the full year, both excluding acquisitions and adjustments.

  • Verizon Wireless had 87.5 million retail customers at the end of the fourth quarter, an increase of 25.0 percent year over year and 5.7 percent on a pro forma basis. The company also added 1.0 million reseller customers in the fourth quarter, bringing its total number of customers at the end of the quarter to 91.2 million, an increase of 26.6 percent year over year and 7.0 percent on a pro forma basis.

  • Retail postpaid churn and total retail churn were 1.06 percent and 1.44 percent, respectively. Total churn was 1.42 percent.

  • Retail service revenues in the quarter totaled $13.2 billion, up 22.5 percent year over year and 5.2 percent on a pro forma basis. Service revenues in the fourth quarter were $13.5 billion, up 22.5 percent and 5.0 percent on a pro forma basis. Total revenues were $15.7 billion, up 22.5 percent year over year and 3.1 percent on a pro forma basis. Full-year revenues were $62.1 billion, up 25.9 percent and 6.1 percent on a pro forma basis.

  • Retail service ARPU decreased 2.2 percent year over year and 0.6 percent on a pro forma basis to $50.75. Retail data ARPU increased to $16.24, up 16.1 percent year over year and 20.5 percent on a pro forma basis.


  • As of the end of 2009, the FiOS network passed 15.4 million premises, or approximately 48 percent of total households in areas currently covered by Verizon's wireline network.

  • Verizon added 153,000 net new FiOS Internet customers. The company served 3.4 million FiOS Internet customers by the end of the quarter, a 38.4 percent year-over-year increase.

  • FiOS Internet penetration (customers as a percentage of potential customers) was 28.1 percent by the end of the fourth quarter, with the product available for sale to 12.2 million premises. This compares with a 24.9 percent penetration and 10.0 million premises open for sale at the end of the fourth quarter 2008.

  • Verizon also added 153,000 net new FiOS TV customers and served 2.9 million FiOS TV customers by the end of the quarter, a 49.2 percent year-over-year increase.

  • FiOS TV penetration was 24.5 percent by the end of the fourth quarter, with the product available for sale to 11.7 million premises. This compares with a 20.8 percent penetration and 9.2 million premises open for sale at the end of the fourth quarter 2008.

  • Total broadband and video revenues were $1.7 billion, a 25.5 percent increase compared with the fourth quarter 2008. This contributed to an overall 1.2 percent revenue growth in consumer markets served by Verizon's wireline network.

  • Revenue growth from broadband and video services boosted consumer ARPU to $77.06 in the fourth quarter 2009, a 12.6 percent year-over-year increase. FiOS ARPU is more than $140, driven primarily by triple-play bundles of voice, Internet and TV services.

  • Triple-play customers increased from 1.6 million in fourth-quarter 2008 to 2.4 million in fourth-quarter 2009, a 47 percent increase.

  • Worldwide sales of strategic business services - such as IP, managed services, Ethernet and security solutions - generated $1.6 billion in revenue in the quarter, up 6.0 percent compared with the fourth quarter 2008. Revenue from IP data services alone increased 8.6 percent year over year.

Tellabs Posts Q4 Revenue of $389 Million, Profitability Rises, First Dividend

Tellabs reported Q4 2009 revenue of $389 million, compared with $408 million in the fourth quarter of 2008. Tellabs 2009 annual revenue was $1.5 billion, compared with $1.7 billion in 2008.

On a GAAP basis, Tellabs earned 16 cents per share in the fourth quarter of 2009, up from 3 cents per
share in the fourth quarter of 2008. Fourth-quarter 2009 GAAP earnings were $62 million, compared with
$13 million in the year-ago quarter. Fourth-quarter 2009 GAAP earnings include a tax benefit of $23.4
million or 6 cents per share.

"Tellabs' fourth-quarter operating margin of 9.0% was the highest since 2006," said Rob Pullen, Tellabs
president and chief executive officer. "To return capital to shareholders, today we're announcing the
company's first cash dividend. It's based on our confidence that Tellabs will continue to generate ample
cash from operations to invest in the growth of our business, repurchase shares and pay dividends."

Tellabs also announced a restructuring, in order to shift more investment from TDM
products to Ethernet and IP products; to improve Ethernet, IP and mobile packet core
skill sets worldwide; to move its supply chain closer to suppliers; and to reduce general and
administrative expenses. Although the company plans to reduce its workforce by about 200 people over
the next five quarters, Tellabs expects overall headcount to rise during 2010.

USDA Awards $313.5M for Middle Mile and Last Mile Projects

The USDA awarded $313.5 million to 14 recipients for middle mile and last mile projects aimed at extending broadband services to rural customers.

Funding of individual recipients is contingent upon their meeting the terms of the loan, grant or loan/grant agreement. Below is a complete list of recent Recovery Act Broadband award recipients by state:


Southwestern Alaska, United Utilities, $43,982,240 grant and $44,158,522 loan. The funding will provide middle mile connectivity to 65 communities.


Butler, Butler Telephone Co., Inc., $3,892,920 grant. The funding will provide high speed DSL broadband service to remote, unserved households within its rural service territory. The system is being built so that it can be easily upgraded to accommodate future services.


San Joaquin, Tranquillity, and Fresno, Audeamus, $2,741,505 grant and $2,741,505 loan. The proposed project is a fiber-based broadband infrastructure for the unserved and underserved communities in this service area. A last-mile project, it will provide access to approximately 1,500 households, local businesses and anchor institutions in the communities.


Meriden and Archer, C-M-L Telephone Cooperative Association, $1,519,225 grant and $1,519,225 loan, $1,525,315 in matching funds. Funding will provide services via a fiber optic network to rural communities with high speed internet exceeding 20 Mbps.

Bennett, Delmar, and Lowden, F & B Communications, Inc., $1,609,162 grant and
$1,628,588 loan. Funding will provide services via high speed fiber optic network with speeds exceeding 20Mbps. System will allow for expansion at a future date.

Springbrook, LaMotte Telephone Company, $187,815 grant, and $187,815 loan. The funding will provide services from a 300-foot tower and Wi-Max installation for wireless broadband service in the surrounding area.

Kansas (1% of the network is to be built in Nebraska)

Western Kansas, Rural Telephone Service Co., Inc., $49,588,807 grant and $51,612,842 loan. Funding will provide service in an area 99.5 percent unserved/underserved and provide a rural infrastructure required for economic stability, education and healthcare. The company is a cooperative and RUS partner on 32 other projects. It leads a team of seven companies with this shovel-ready project.

Tennessee (1% of the network is to be built in Kentucky)

Northern Tennessee, North Central Telephone Cooperative, Inc., $24,715,709 grant and $24,964,000 loan. The funding will provide the necessary infrastructure to provide advanced voice, video, and data services that exceed 20Mbps to remote and rural communities in the service area.


Morehouse Parish, Northeast Louisiana Telephone Company, Inc., $4,359,000 grant and $8,124,600 loan. Funding will provide an active Ethernet system with symmetrical speeds of 20 Mbps. The system will be using buried fiber to the premise.


Ralls County, Ralls County Electric Cooperative, $9,548,908 grant and $9,548,909 loan. Funding for this project will provide a fiber optic network to residential and commercial members and the underserved safety and anchor agencies in the service area. This is a State of Missouri demonstration project and non-proprietary data will be shared.

North Dakota

Burleigh County; BEK Communications Cooperative, $1,986,473 grant and $2,016,571 loan; $2,016,572 in leveraged funds. The funding will provide fiber-to-the-premises broadband service to underserved homes and anchor institutions. This will aid business growth and support public safety in rural areas highly dependent on Internet business income.

Traill County; Halstad Telephone Company, $2,027,600 grant and $2,027,600 loan; $10,000 in leveraged funds. The funding will provide fiber-to-the premises broadband service to unserved homes and businesses in Traill County.


Marion County, Gervais telephone Company, $314,430 grant and $314,430 loan. This project extends Gervais Telephone Company's existing fiber network by building out from the nearest fiber splice point through the funded service area. This project will provide broadband connectivity to residential and business end users, as well as to four anchor institutions.


Alleghany County, NTELOS Telephone Inc., $8,062,088 grant and $8,062,088 loan. The funds will provide broadband infrastructure to unserved and underserved homes, businesses and critical community institutions in this rural county. A fiber-based project, it will enable work-from-home jobs and foster economic development, and improve health, education and public safety services to the county citizens.