Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Verizon Wireless Enables VeriSign Identity Protection

Verizon Wireless has begun supporting VeriSign Identity Protection (VIP) Access for Mobile, a free application that provides authentication credentials to help customers protect their online data. VIP Access for Mobile displays a security code on a mobile phone that customers can use as a second factor of authentication in addition to usernames and passwords when accessing online accounts. The security code acts as a unique, one-time password that changes automatically every 30 seconds.

Provided as a cloud-based authentication service, the VIP Authentication Service -- also known as strong or two-factor authentication -- provides an additional layer of protection beyond standard username and password sign-on. Two-factor authentication works by requiring each user to provide not just a username and password but also a second factor, in this case, a unique one-time six-digit security code generated by a user's VIP authentication credential. Businesses can use the capabilities to provide secure remote log-in to corporate intranets, partner portals and virtual private networks (VPN).

VeriSign noted that its VIP Access for Mobile is the only two-factor authentication credential certified for BREW (Binary Runtime Environment for Wireless), which allows mobile users to reliably access trusted applications directly from their phones.

"Bringing VIP Access for Mobile to Verizon Wireless customers dramatically broadens the footprint of VIP authentication and puts a powerful tool against identity fraud into the hands of millions of mobile users," said Kerry Loftus, vice president of User Authentication at VeriSign.

Customers can get the application from their wireless phones by selecting the Business Tools/Information category in the Media Center/Get It Now, or by visiting the online media store at http://www.mediastore.verizonwireless.com.

Stoke Unleashes 3G Mobile Data Offload

Stoke launched a mobile broadband gateway solution that selectively diverts traffic streams off of the legacy mobile network -- bypassing the data core infrastructure -- and routing it directly to the Internet. Stoke Mobile Data Offload (SMDO) aims to change the economic landscape of 3G data delivery, in the process delivering many of the technical objectives of LTE, including reduced system latency, lower cost, and improved service delivery.

SMDO leverages the company's Session Exchange (SSX) mobile broadband gateway. The data offload function is performed without impacting untargeted traffic flows, without interfering with subscriber mobility, and without requiring any configuration changes to the mobile network elements. The result is a dramatic reduction in traffic loads for three costly network elements -- the SGSN, GGSN and service grooming servers.

Each SMDO Gateway can offload up to 8 Gbps of Internet traffic. Situated between the RAN and data core, the MDO Gateway can connect to multiple RNCs and multiple SGSNs -- without requiring any configuration changes to these mobile network elements. The MDO Gateway is transparent to all traffic except operator specified traffic, mobile devices, or sessions.

With the proliferation of social media apps and flat rate data plans, Stoke estimates 80% to more than 90% of mobile data traffic is headed for the Internet instead of operators' own applications. The network strain is manifest in the radio network, the traffic backhaul network, and the core network. SMDO promises savings of tens of millions of dollars of reduced network core capacity expansion and operational costs.

"The combination of the inherent rigidity in 3G network architecture standards and the massive uptake of smartphones and netbooks is the chief culprit in today's mobile data overload," said Vikash Varma. "The rigid, hierarchical structure of the infrastructure has left operators ill-prepared for the volume of data, and unable to escape from the economic disadvantages of flat rate data plans. Stoke Mobile Data Offload is standards-based, but breaks through current preconceptions about the infrastructure, offering a relief valve through which the increasing volumes of mobile data can be seamlessly channeled."

Stoke MDO will be available for trials in carrier networks in April of 2010.
  • Earlier this month, Stoke announced that NTT DOCOMO has selected its mobile broadband gateway for its upcoming LTE service. Specifically, DOCOMO will deploy the SSX-3000 in this LTE network to aggregate eNodeB radio transmission base stations that support various mobile data such as voice, data, and video.

  • Stokes' SSX-3000 is a high density gateway ATCA-based platform designed to provide stateful management of tens of thousands of secure subscriber sessions over multiple access types. It scales to deliver 16 Gbps throughput and up to 240k active IPSec sessions. It performs L4-L7 traffic classification, encryption & decryption, policy enforcement, QoS and accounting at line rates.

  • Stoke is based in Santa Clara, California.

ZTE Wins Huge GSM/UMTS Contract in South Africa

ZTE announced a significant contract to supply network equipment and managed services to Cell C, a mobile telecom operator in South Africa. ZTE valued the contract at US$378 million.

OpNext Delivers Multiplexer for 100G Coherent Transponders

Opnext introduced an ultra-high speed Surface Mount Technology (SMT) multiplexer Integrated Circuit (IC) for 100Gbps applications.

The SiGe (Silicon Germanium) 0.13nm chip was designed in-house to be used inside Opnext's coherent 40 Gbps and 100 Gbps transponder modules and subsystems.

Opnext said its 128 Gbps multiplexer IC transmits the data in 32 Gbps lanes suitable for transmission using the DP-QPSK modulation scheme, as documented in the OIF 100G Ultra Long Haul DWDM Framework, for 100GbE and OTU4 transmission in the Wide Area Network (WAN). The multiplexer IC employs Ball Grid Array (BGA) technology to allow standard SMT manufacturing processes. This enables higher density transponder designs with ICs mounted directly onto the Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs).

Romano Valussi Appointed GM of Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai Bell

Romano Valussi has been appointed general manager of Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai Bell, effective immediately. Romano will also join Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai Bell's board of directors. Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai Bell is Alcatel-Lucent's flagship company in China.

In addition to this new role, Romano will also be the head of Alcatel-Lucent's China regional business unit and will report jointly to the Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai Bell board of directors and Rajeev Singh-Molares, the incoming president of the Asia Pacific region for Alcatel-Lucent. Romano's positions were previously held by Olivia Qiu who has recently taken over leadership of worldwide sales for vertical markets within Alcatel-Lucent's Enterprise and Vertical Markets group.

Prior to his roles as president of the Optics division, Romano was chief operating officer and Product strategy director of the Alcatel Terrestrial networks division. Prior to that Romano was the senior vice-president of Product strategy and Development for the optical networks division and, earlier, the head of the division's R&D and Global marketing.

Kodak Alleges Patent Infringement by Apple and RIM

Eastman Kodak filed lawsuits against Apple Inc. and Research In Motion Limited (RIM) alleging the infringement of Kodak digital imaging technology. Kodak claims that Apple's iPhones and RIM's camera-enabled BlackBerry devices infringe a Kodak patent that covers technology related to a method for previewing images. Separately, Kodak filed two suits today against Apple in U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York that claim the infringement of patents related to digital cameras and certain computer processes.

Ixia and Agilent Offer HDMI Ethernet Channel Test

Ixia released an HDMI Ethernet Channel networking test. The solution combines Ixia's IxN2X traffic generator and Agilent's HDMI Ethernet Channel (HEC) and Audio Return Channel (ARC) physical layer test.

An estimated one billion HDMI-enabled devices expected to be in use by 2010. The latest version of the HDMI specification, version 1.4, adds high-speed Internet Protocol networking to the HDMI cable and connected devices over the HDMI Ethernet Channel. Compliance testing to the HDMI 1.4 specification will take place at Authorized Test Centers (ATCs) located worldwide.
http://www.agilent.comNew capabilities are being built into the High-Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) specification, including networking capabilities with Ethernet connectivity and an Audio Return Channel to enable upstream audio connections via the HDMI cable. Specifically, these enhancements will include:

HDMI Ethernet Channel -- the HDMI 1.4 specification will add a data channel to the HDMI cable and will enable high-speed bi-directional communication. Connected devices that include this feature will be able to send and receive data via 100 Mb/sec Ethernet, making them instantly ready for any IP-based application. The HDMI Ethernet Channel will allow an Internet-enabled HDMI device to share its Internet connection with other HDMI devices without the need for a separate Ethernet cable. The new feature will also provide the connection platform to allow HDMI-enabled devices to share content between devices.

Audio Return Channel -- the new specification will add an Audio Return Channel that will reduce the number of cables required to deliver audio upstream for processing and playback. In cases where HDTVs are directly receiving audio and video content, this new Audio Return Channel allows the HDTV to send the audio stream to the A/V receiver over the HDMI cable, eliminating the need for an extra cable.

3D Over HDMI The 1.4 version of the specification will define common 3D formats and resolutions for HDMI-enabled devices. The specification will standardize the input/output portion of the home 3D system and will specify up to dual-stream 1080p resolution.

4K x 2K Resolution Support: the new specification will enable HDMI devices to support high-definition (HD) resolutions four times beyond the resolution of 1080p. Support for 4K x 2K will allow the HDMI interface to transmit content at the same resolution as many digital theaters. Formats supported include 3840x2160 24Hz/25Hz/30Hz and 4096x2160 24Hz.

Expanded Support For Color Spaces -- HDMI technology now supports color spaces designed specifically for digital still cameras. By supporting sYCC601, Adobe RGB and AdobeYCC601, HDMI-enabled display devices will be capable of reproducing more accurate life-like colors when connected to a digital still camera.

Micro HDMI Connector -- the Micro HDMI Connector is a significantly smaller 19-pin connector that supports up to 1080p resolutions for portable devices. This new connector is approximately 50% smaller than the size of the existing HDMI Mini Connector.

Qualcomm Reports Revenues $2.7 Billion, Trims Outlook on 3G Chip Prices

Qualcomm reported quarterly revenue of $2.67 billion, up 6 percent year-over-year and down 1 percent sequentially. Net income was $841 million, up 147 percent year-over-year and 5 percent sequentially.

"As anticipated, we have seen a competitive pricing environment in the chipset market and are proactively managing within this dynamic to grow our market share. A subdued economic recovery in developed regions, including Europe and Japan, combined with relative strength at the lower end of the market, is changing our estimated 3G device average selling price and chipset mix for this fiscal year. Accordingly, we are modestly reducing our fiscal year revenue estimates to reflect this near-term market situation, but are maintaining our earnings per share guidance," stated Dr. Paul E. Jacobs, chairman and CEO of Qualcomm.

"The fundamental drivers of our business remain strong. We are confident that 3G will continue to develop as anticipated, and we continue to invest in innovative new products, such as Snapdragon, FLO TV(TM), mirasol and next-generation technologies, to enhance our leadership position and capitalize on this growth."http://www.qualcomm.com

ShoreTel Reports Sequential Revenue Growth

ShoreTel reported quarterly revenue of $35.5 million, up 5 percent sequentially and up slightly from the same period last year. GAAP net loss was $(2.5) million, or $(0.06) per share, compared to a GAAP net loss of $(2.3) million, or $(0.05) per share, reported in the same period last year. GAAP gross margins for the second quarter of fiscal year 2010 were a record 64.5 percent, compared with 63.1 percent during the same quarter last year.

"We are seeing solid growth and an improving market even before the benefits of our strategic investments in sales, R&D, and branding are realized. We are very pleased with our second quarter performance, having outperformed our revenue and earnings expectations, posted our all-time highest gross margins, and grown our cash and short-term investments by $3.5 million while making significant investments in our business," stated John W. Combs, chairman and chief executive officer of ShoreTel.

AT&T to Provide 7.2 Mbps 3G Service for Apple's iPad

AT&T will offer a prepaid 3G service supporting Apple's new iPad. Details include:

  • $14.99 per month for up to 250 MB of traffic

  • $29.99 for unlimited data usage

  • Free use of AT&T WiFi hotspots

  • Service may be activated at any time using the iPad

  • No contract -- may cancel at any time

AT&T's 3G HSPA network delivers up to 7.2 Mbps downstream.

All iPad 3G models are unlocked and will use GSM micro SIMs. Apple expects to announce similar deals with international carriers by June.

All iPads also include 802.11n and Bluetooth 2.1 radios.

Verizon Integrates International and U.S. Wholesale Teams

Verizon announced a reorganization that combines the former International Partner Services and Verizon Partner Solutions groups. Operating as Verizon Global Wholesale, the integrated unit is a $10 billion, full-service worldwide entity.

Verizon claims the industry's leading share in international voice volume. It has offices in 75 countries on six continents; touches 2,700 cities in 159 countries with its IP network; has business relationships with all the top world carriers; and a portfolio of solutions for wholesale customers. Primary among these offerings are a variety of Ethernet options, voice-over-IP services, value-added services and other preeminent data services carried on Verizon's secure, reliable network.

Haiti's Voila to Double International Capacity, 90% of Cell Sites Online

Haiti's Voila mobile network will double its international long distance (ILD) capacity over the coming days to handle unprecedented call volumes between Haiti and other countries.

Trilogy International Partners, which holds a controlling stake in Voila along with Viva, a sister network in the Dominican Republic, said round-the-clock effort have been underway to restore the network since the earthquake on January 12.

Voila and its sister companies' technical engineering teams have visited all of Voila's cell sites in Haiti and nearly 90 percent are operational. Technical engineers have determined that many of the remaining sites can be repaired. For those sites that were destroyed by the earthquake, Voila is shipping in "cells on wheels" (COWs) -- mobile cell towers. A number of COWs are already in use in Haiti, and Voila expects delivery this week of additional COWs and high-capacity generators donated to Voila by T-Mobile and Sprint.

The company said it is working closely with the government of the United States to maintain access to fuel, the government of Haiti to increase spectrum, and the United Nations to move supplies across the critical land corridor from the Dominican Republic to Port-au-Prince. Additionally, Trilogy has received support from the US Navy, which transported immediate critical pieces of the network infrastructure from Florida to Haiti on an emergency aid ship.
  • In September 1998, Communication Cellulaire d'Haiti ("ComCEL") was awarded a license to construct and operate a nationwide TDMA mobile communications network. ComCEL launched commercial service in Port-au-Prince, Haiti in September 1999. ComCEL was purchased by Trilogy in 2005. The following year was spent overlaying ComCEL's legacy TDMA network with GSM, expanding its coverage footprint and migrating its TDMA base to the new network. In mid-2006, the TDMA to GSM migration was complete and the TDMA network was retired.

Hughes Demos SPACEWAY 3 Capabilities for Coalition Warriors

Hughes Network Systems (HUGHES) showcased advanced capabilities of its SPACEWAY 3 system during the Coalition Warrior Interoperability Demonstration (CWID), an annual multi-national exercise designed to test new and emerging technologies against a backdrop of realistic, simulated operational scenarios. Participants included the military services, government agencies, first responders, coalition partners, and U.S. combatant commanders worldwide.

During the trials, the Hughes SPACEWAY 3 SATCOM terminal successfully demonstrated high-definition video teleconferencing (VTC) between the U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM), the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD), and the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center, San Diego (SSC Pacific). According to the CWID Final Report, the system established a highly reliable broadband satellite link maintaining 100% video connectivity and maximizing bandwidth for internet, data, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), VTC, and IP-based applications.

A report from the Coalition Warrior Interoperability Demonstration (CWID) is online.
  • Launched by Arianespace in August 2007, the geostationary SPACEWAY 3 satellite offer 10 Gbps of gross capacity. It was designed and developed as a next-generation, Ka-band broadband satellite system, and is the world's first commercial satellite to employ on-board traffic switching and routing. It also features dynamic beam forming, and direct small-dish-to- small-dish connectivity for subscribers.

  • Hughes has built a scalable Network Operations and Control Center (NOCC), installed at its Germantown Maryland headquarters, which anchors control functions for network addressing, registration, network security, admission control and multicasting. The NOCC also provides satellite payload management, capacity planning, terminal management, customer care and network management functions. The SPACEWAY architecture can scale up to two million terminals per satellite and will provide coverage with multiple spot beams across the U.S. including Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico, as well as in selected areas in Canada, Mexico, and major cities in South America.

  • SPACEWAY 3 was built by Boeing and is based on the company's 702 satellite platform.

XO Activates South Texas Gateway Serving Mexico

XO Communications is establishing a new gateway on the U.S.-Mexico border in McAllen, Texas. XO also is expanding its fiber network in Southern Texas by 800 miles, providing greater diverse long-haul routes to San Antonio and Houston through Laredo, McAllen, Harlingen, Corpus Christi and Victoria. The increased connectivity will expand domestic and international customer access to XO's Tier-1 IP backbone and 28,000 route-mile U.S. long-haul/metro network (1.2 million total-mile network).

XO operates several other international gateways to Latin America, including facilities in Miami, San Diego and Los Angeles.

The company noted that Mexico is the third-largest destination for telecom traffic from the U.S., with the U.S.-Mexico voice, private-line, and IP services market totaling nearly $1 billion annually (FCC International Report, 2009). In addition, the country's mobile subscriber base is growing 10 percent annually and its broadband subscriber base is expanding 35 percent annually, according to COFETEL, Mexico's federal government telecom regulator.