Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Vertical Systems: Global Provider Ethernet Leaderboard

Vertical Systems Group published its Mid-2011 Global Provider Ethernet Leaderboard, ranking service providers that hold a four percent (4%) or greater share of the total market for retail Ethernet ports installed outside of providers' respective home countries.

In rank order: Orange (France), Verizon (U.S.), Colt (U.K.), NTT (Japan), AT&T (U.S.) and Global Crossing (U.S.).

"Share trends for the first six months of 2011 show that global Ethernet providers are capitalizing on two essential assets," said Rick Malone, principal at Vertical Systems Group. "First and foremost, all of the companies on the Global Provider Leaderboard operate fiber infrastructures that enable delivery of Ethernet services in multiple countries. Additionally, they provide their customers with network solutions that integrate higher speed Ethernet access connectivity to IP/MPLS VPNs."

Some highlights:

  • Verizon had the largest share gain in the first six months of 2011, resulting in a jump up to second position on the Global Provider Leaderboard, surpassing Colt.

  • The top three companies on the Leaderboard - Orange, Verizon and Colt - are separated by a port share differential of less than 2%.

  • Ethernet providers not represented on the Leaderboard hold an aggregate 46% share of the defined market.

Detailed share results, plus in-depth Business Ethernet market statistics, are available exclusively through Vertical Systems Group's ENS (Emerging Networks Service) Research Programs.

Ofcom Gives Go Ahead for License Exempt White Space

Ofcom, the official telecom regulator for the UK, has decided to allow white space devices to access the TV white space providing that no harmful interference is caused to existing services, including: Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) services, Programme Making and Special Events (PMSE) users or other future licensed users. Ofcom has also decided to make White Space devices licence exempt, thereby opening the door to enhanced Wi-Fi and rural broadband applications.

Ofcom is requiring a geolocation database to prevent harmful interference.

White spaces trials are currently underway in the UK, in Bute and Cambridge.

Ofcom is the first regulator in Europe to give a go-ahead to white spaces technology.
  • In June 2011, the Cambridge TV White Spaces Consortium, a new group consisting of leading broadcasters in the UK along with technology providers, are planning a trial of TV White Spaces transmission. The test, which will be conducted in Cambridge, will explore how mobile devices can tap into unused television channels -TV white spaces - to supplement wireless broadband and cellular networks. The consortium includes the BBC, BSkyB, BT, Cambridge Consultants, Microsoft, Neul, Nokia, Samsung, Spectrum Bridge and TTP.

  • In July 2011, the IEEE published the 802.22 standard for Wireless Regional Area Networks (WRANs) using the favorable transmission characteristics of the VHF and UHF TV bands. 802.22 enables broadband wireless access over a large area up to 100 km from the transmitter. The standard specifies up to 22 Mbps per channel without interfering with reception of existing TV broadcast stations, using the so-called white spaces between the occupied TV channels.

    IEEE 802.22 incorporates advanced cognitive radio capabilities including dynamic spectrum access, incumbent database access, accurate geolocation techniques, spectrum sensing, regulatory domain dependent policies, spectrum etiquette, and coexistence for optimal use of the available spectrum. It operates generally in the 54-862 MHz range. For the United States, it specifies the following VHF / UHF Bands54 – 60, 76 – 88, 174 – 216, 470 - 608 and 614 –698 MHz => Total of 282 MHz or 47 Channels.

  • In September 2010, The FCC issued an order that opens up vacant airwaves between TV channels for new unlicensed applications such as "super Wi-Fi." Specifically, a Second Memorandum Opinion and Order (Second MO&O) resolves numerous legal and technical issues regarding unlicensed spectrum usage. Notably, the Order eliminates the requirement that TV bands devices that incorporate geo-location and database access must also include sensing technology to detect the signals of TV stations and low-power auxiliary service stations (wireless microphones). It also requires wireless microphone users who seek to register in the TV bands databases to certify that they will use all available channels from 7 through 51 prior to requesting registration. Requests to register in the database will be public.

Verizon Raises Dividend 2.6% to 50 Cents per Share

The Board of Directors of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ) today declared a quarterly dividend of 50 cents per outstanding share, an increase of 1.25 cents per share, or 2.6 percent, from the previous quarter. On an annual basis, this increases Verizon's dividend 5 cents per share, from $1.95 to $2.00 per share. This marks the 5th consecutive year that Verizon has increased its dividend.

Shaw Plans Wi-Fi Build-out Rather than LTE for Western Canada

Shaw Communications, which delivers cable television, High-Speed Internet, and home phone services to 3.4 million customers in Canada, will forgo the construction of an LTE network in favor of a carrier-class Wi-Fi network.

Shaw, which holds approximately 20 MHz of AWS spectrum across western Canada and had been targeting early 2012 for its wireless launch, decided against LTE because it believes it can build extensive Wi-Fi coverage across its territory at a substantially lower cost relative to a traditional wireless network and still provide customers with an excellent broadband wireless experience. The company estimates that it would cost at least $1 billion to build a competitive LTE network in western Canada.

Shaw said it finds the economics of a conventional wireless business as a new entrant are extremely challenging, whereas because Wi-Fi spectrum is free and there are no device subsidies, cable operators such as itself are uniquely positioned to take advantage of Wi-Fi.

"We have decided to focus on strengthening our core business and leveraging our media and programming assets to support our leadership position in broadband and video," said Brad Shaw, Chief Executive Officer of Shaw. "Our decision not to pursue a conventional wireless business is consistent with this strategic approach and our focus on shareholder value."

Shaw noted that Cablevision has implemented a successful Wi-Fi strategy that extends the value of its core cable services outside of the home. It also opens the possibility for Shaw to provide Wi-Fi offload services for other 3G/4G operators.

Shaw confirmed that it is negotiating with Cisco about the Wi-Fi build. Shaw did not rule out the possibility of bidding for 700 MHz spectrum in the next auction.
  • During its FY 10 and FY 11, Shaw has invested an estimated $180 million on its wireless network launch, including back office systems, towers, fibre and retail facilities.

  • In July 2008, Shaw acquired 20 MHz of spectrum across its cable operating footprint for a total of
    $190 million. This represents less than 5% of the total AWS auction proceeds.

Sprint: Study Shows T-Mobile Acquisition Would Eliminate Jobs

The proposed acquisition of T-Mobile USA by AT&T would lead to the elimination of thousands of American jobs as the company works to lower its capital expenditures by $10 billion, according to a newly released study commissioned by Sprint.

The study directly refutes claims made by AT&T, based on a memorandum by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), that the merger would be a net job creator. The EPI analysis, Neumark notes, is groundless.

"EPI's claim that the AT&T/T-Mobile merger would create jobs is completely unfounded. It ignores potential reductions in capital expenditures that T-Mobile would have undertaken. Indeed, AT&T has told the federal government and its investors that the merger would lead to reduced capital expenditures – which by EPI's own logic would lead to fewer jobs. And AT&T has acknowledged there would be other job reductions resulting from the merger," stated David Neumark, professor of Economics and director of the Center for Economics and Public Policy at the University of California at Irvine.

Assuming AT&T's net capital investment falls by $5 billion, it would result in job destruction of 34,000 to 60,000 using EPI's own analysis, Neumark concludes.

GSA: 93 LTE Networks Expected in Commercial Operation in 2012

There are 26 commercial LTE networks in operation 18 countries and at least 93 LTE networks are expected to be
in commercial service by end 2012, according to an updated Evolution to LTE report from GSA (Global mobile Suppliers Association). The GSA report covers both LTE FDD and LTE TDD system modes and confirms that 174 firm commercial LTE network deployments are in progress or planned in 64 countries, including 26 networks that have commercially launched.

GSA notes a strong momentum towards deploying LTE in re-farmed spectrum, particularly 1800 MHz, with five such networks now commercially launched, in Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Singapore.

In the US, LTE deployments are being made in 700 MHz spectrum and in existing AWS (1.7/2.1 GHz spectrum, while in Europe and parts of Asia there is demand for LTE in 800 MHz Digital Dividend spectrum.

The report also tracks the increasing momentum and acceptance of LTE TDD and an update on LTE-Advanced systems. It also overs a country-specific update on notable LTE activities.

Ciena Posts Revenue of $435.3 million

Ciena reported revenue of $435.3 million for its fiscal third quarter ended July 31, 2011. GAAP net loss was $(31.5) million, or $(0.33) per common share, which compares to a GAAP net loss of $(109.9) million, or $(1.18) per common share, for the fiscal third quarter 2010.

Non-U.S. customers contributed 48% of total revenue. One customer represented a total of 17% of revenue.

"Our third quarter results, which included a favorable product mix and reduced operating expense to achieve an as-adjusted operating profit, demonstrate our early progress in delivering additional operating leverage from the business," said Gary Smith, president and CEO of Ciena. "Despite current macroeconomic headwinds that could cause the rate of market growth to be moderated, we believe that we are well-positioned to capitalize on the continued modernization of today's networks and to grow faster than the market."

Verizon Cites Copper Cable Thefts in Southern California

Verizon announced a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and prosecution of the individuals responsible for a recent spate of copper cable thefts in southern California. The company reported the theft of thousands of feet of copper cable at nine locations, resulting in thousands of dollars in damages. http://www.verizon.comCopper has recently been trading between $4.50 and $5.00 per pound, up almost 60% since 2007, according to Fremont Insurance which has been fighting the problem in residential cases.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Some Industry Reaction

Sprint: "The DOJ today delivered a decisive victory for consumers, competition and our country. By filing suit to block AT&T's proposed takeover of T-Mobile, the DOJ has put consumers' interests first. Sprint applauds the DOJ for conducting a careful and thorough review and for reaching a just decision – one which will ensure that consumers continue to reap the benefits of a competitive U.S. wireless industry. Contrary to AT&T's assertions, today's action will preserve American jobs, strengthen the American economy, and encourage innovation." --

CWA Union: "-The decision by the U.S. Department of Justice to seek to block the merger of AT&T and T-Mobile USA is simply wrong. In today's sinking economy, where millions of Americans are looking for work, the DOJ has decided to oppose a merger that will create as many as 96,000 quality jobs. In the U.S., where too many Americans, especially in rural areas, don't have access to the tools of Internet technology, the DOJ has determined that a plan to build out high speed wireless access to 97 percent of the country should be opposed."

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski: "Competition is an essential component of the
FCC's statutory public interest analysis, and although our process is not complete, the record before
this agency also raises serious concerns about the impact of the proposed transaction on

FCC Commissioner Michael Copps: "Today's announcement shows a Department of Justice taking its pro-competitive responsibilities seriously. I share the concerns about competition and have numerous other
concerns about the public interest effects of the proposed transaction, including consumer choice
and innovation."

COMPTEL: ""COMPTEL is thankful the Department of Justice recognized the substantially negative impact this merger would have on competition and has taken the appropriate action of filing an antitrust lawsuit to block AT&T's acquisition of T-Mobile." Jerry James, CEO of COMPTEL.

Rural Telecommunications Group: "DOJ's pre-Labor Day decision (less than 4 months after AT&T filed to acquire T-Mobile) shows that there is no question that this merger would have been bad for rural America, rural consumers, and rural carriers. AT&T pulled out all of the stops to get this deal done and failed. RTG applauds the DOJ for allowing wireless competition to live to see another day and to allow T-Mobile to continue to innovate and be the low price alternative to AT&T and Verizon. The jobs that have been saved today and the competition that has been preserved across the United States will go a long way to help the U.S. economy." -- RTG's General Counsel, Carri Bennet.

Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.): "The Justice Department's decision to take action to block AT&T's purchase of T-Mobile is a victory for competition, consumers and choice. We should be protecting American consumers holding their cell phones, not just telecommunications titans holding stock in the companies."

DOCOMO and KT Share Android Content

NTT DOCOMO and KT agreed to share content for Android smartphones. DOCOMO has begun offering KT-provided content on its mobile Internet portal in Japan. The initial lineup comprises 30 titles of Android content now popular in South Korea, including action games and puzzles, utility apps for translation, travel etc., and live wallpapers featuring supercars in action. In South Korea, KT plans to offer about 20 titles of DOCOMO-provided content via its content and application store, "olleh market," by the end of 2011.

Ericsson expands Managed Services capabilities in China

Ericsson has opened a new global network operations center (GNOC) in China, adding to the three existing global network operations centers located in Romania, India and Mexico. Ericsson's Global Service Center (GSC) in India now employs more than 5,000 service professionals and houses the world's largest GNOC.

Ericsson noted that it is currently managing networks serving more than 800 million subscribers, and more than half of these subscribers are served through its global NOCs.

Chunghwa Telecom Selects Alcatel-Lucent's Packet Transport Switch

Taiwan's Chunghwa Telecom has selected Alcatel-Lucent's Packet Transport Network solution to upgrade the SDH infrastructure currently supporting its mobile network. The upgrade will use the Alcatel-Lucent 1850 Transport Service Switch. Alcatel-Lucent also noted it Chunghwa Telecom have already conducted a successful 4G LTE field trial.

AT&T to Challenge DOJ Decision in Court

AT&T expressed surprise and dismay at the U.S. Department of Justice lawsuit seeking to block its proposed acquisition of T-Mobile USA. AT&T is seeking an expedited court hearing.

Wayne Watts, AT&T Senior Executive Vice President and General Counsel, stated:

"At the end of the day, we believe facts will guide any final decision and the facts are clear. This merger will:

* Help solve our nation's spectrum exhaust situation and improve wireless service for millions.

* Allow AT&T to expand 4G LTE mobile broadband to another 55 million Americans, or 97% of the population;

* Result in billions of additional investment and tens of thousands of jobs, at a time when our nation needs them most."

Department of Justice Blocks AT&T + T-Mobile Merger

The U.S. Department of Justice filed an antitrust lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C. to block AT&T's acquisition of T-Mobile. The DOJ said it will block the deal because the merger would result in "tens of millions of consumers all across the United States facing higher prices, fewer choices and lower quality products for their mobile wireless services."

The acquisition, which was valued at US$39 in cash and stock when it was announced on March 20, 2011, reportedly carries a break-up fee of $6 billion in cash, spectrum and services that AT&T must pay to Deutsche Telekom if it is not completed.

In announcing its decision, the DOJ noted that AT&T's acquisition of T-Mobile would eliminate a company that has been a disruptive force through low pricing and innovation by competing aggressively as the "the No. 1 value challenger." The DOJ also expressed concern that further market concentration would make it even more difficult for regional providers who already face significant competitive limitations stemming from their lack of national networks.

AT&T is the second largest mobile operator in the U.S. with approximately 98.6 million connections to wireless devices. T-Mobile USA is the fourth-largest mobile operator in the U.S. with approximately 33.6 million wireless connections to wireless devices.

In conclusion, the DOJ said it was not convinced by AT&T's arguments that the proposed transaction would yield efficiencies benefiting consumers and outweighing adverse impacts on competition. The key finding was that AT&T could achieve the same network power and reach by deploying its own infrastructure rather than by eliminating a competitor.

"T-Mobile has been an important source of competition among the national carriers, including through innovation and quality enhancements such as the roll-out of the first nationwide high-speed data network," said Sharis A. Pozen, Acting Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Department of Justice's Antitrust Division. "Unless this merger is blocked, competition and innovation will be reduced, and consumers will suffer."

The 22-page complaint is online.

Dell'Oro: Microwave Radio Market Shows Rapid Growth in Q2

The number of point-to-point microwave radio transceiver shipments grew 30% year-over-year in the second quarter of 2011, and is projected to reach 1.6 million shipments for the full year, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group.

"Point-to-point microwave is in high demand," said Jimmy Yu, Vice President of Microwave Transmission research at Dell'Oro Group. "Demand for microwave has increased in all of the major regions, especially Europe where sales have increased 58 percent year-over-year. The equipment manufacturers that benefited the most from the surge in demand were Huawei, Ericsson, and NEC. All three vendors enjoyed shipment growth rates higher than 40 percent year-

AT&T Prices LTE Android Tablet at $700 with 2-year Plan

AT&T will begin selling the HTC Jetstream 4G LTE/HSPA+ tablet on September 4th for $699.99 with a new two-year contract. AT&T is offering 3GB per month for $35 with the two-year contract.

The HTC tablet features a 10.1" HD display, Snapdragon 1.5 GHz dual core processor and front and rear facing cameras. The Jetstream is HTC's first tablet running on the Android™ 3.1 (Honeycomb) operating system which was specifically built for tablets. http://

Ericsson Introduces Smart Services Routers Family

Ericsson formally announced its SSR 8000 family of Smart Services Routers (SSR )for both fixed and mobile networks.

The SSR, which the company highlighted at MWC earlier this year, is being developed by Ericsson Silicon Valley (formerly Redback) and runs the Ericsson IP Operating System. The Smart Services Router (SSR) is being positioned as a "multi-application" platform for advanced services on both fixed access and broadband wireless access. Specific blades will deliver processing power for applications, including: video (caching), mobility (mobile gateway), business and residential services with powerful DPI and policy enforcement.

The Ericsson SSR 8000 family of Smart Services Routers, includes:

  • Ericsson SSR 8020, Smart Services Router, 20 slots, 16 Tbps system with 400G full-duplex slots combined with leading density (e.g. up to 800x1G or 200x10G ports)

  • Ericsson SSR 8010, Smart Services Router, 10 slots

  • Ericsson SSR 8006, Smart Services Router, 6 slots

The Ericsson SSR 8020 will ship at the end of 2011. Other Smart Services Routers will be available next year.

"To enable a truly Networked Society, operators must effectively manage an ever-increasing traffic volume and a diverse pool of applications and end-user devices. The network must not only be able to handle a tremendous volume of data, it must also address an unprecedented level of signaling traffic," said Jan Häglund, Head of Product Area IP & Broadband, Ericsson.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Telecom New Zealand CEO to Stay till DeMerger Complete

Dr Paul Reynolds has committed to lead Telecom New Zealand through the process of demerging Chorus and the establishment of New Telecom as an independent company. The company's Board of Directors is expected begin a search process during 2012 to identify Paul Reynolds' replacement, who will lead the company during financial year 2012/13 and beyond.

Freescale Samples its OorIQ Qonverge for Femtos and Picocells

Freescale Semiconductor has begun sampling the first versions of its QorIQ Qonverge multimode platform for picocell and femtocell base stations.

Freescale's QorIQ Qonverge scalable line of processors is built on the same architecture that spans from small- to large-cell base stations. The first of these devices, the PSC9130/31 femtocell SoCs (for eight to 16 simultaneous users) and PSC9132 picocell/enterprise SoC devices (for up to 100 simultaneous users)support a range of air interfaces, including LTE (FDD/TDD), WCDMA (HSPA+), WiMAX, UMTS and CDMA. The devices also incorporate glueless RFIC communication and antennae interfaces, eliminating the need for additional chips (such as FPGAs) and ultimately reducing board space and cost. The ultra-integrated PSC913x family also provides support for GPS synchronization and 2G/3G sniffing in a single device.

The QorIQ Qonverge processors combine multiple Power Architecture cores and high-performance StarCore DSPs with a MAPLE multimode baseband accelerator, packet processing acceleration engines, interconnect fabric and next-node process technology. Freescale said one its QorIQ Qonverge advantages is the ability to offload offload Layer 2 processing and above to MPU cores instead of DSP cores, delivering significant efficiency advantages. Freescale plans to introduce portfolio members targeting larger cell (metro and macro) base stations built in 28-nm process technology later this year.

"Availability of the first QorIQ Qonverge products is a milestone for the wireless industry, which is in dire need of innovative new solutions to address challenging power requirements and exploding demand for additional bandwidth," said Scott Aylor, director and general manager of Freescale's Wireless Access Division. "Freescale's QorIQ Qonverge portfolio offers unprecedented scalability and software compatibility, giving customers flexibility, reduced cost and design-time savings as they move up to larger capacity systems."

Bytemobile Unveils Adaptive Traffic Management Platform

Bytemobile introduced its T3000 Adaptive Traffic Management System for ensuring quality of experience (QoE) in mobile networks.

The T3100 Adaptive Traffic Manager, which is the first product in a series, is an in-line platform designed to automatically adapt and manage all mobile IP traffic based on real-time network conditions. The NEBS Level 3-compliant platform integrates a combination of network elements for caching, load balancing, deep packet inspection (DPI), web and video optimization, policy control, and analytics. It is designed to be deployed in the core of mobile networks, between the RAN and the Internet.

Bytemobile said a key advantage of deploying its T3100 is that it creates a content-aware control point between the Internet and the mobile network, while eliminating the need for external DPI or dedicated load balancing traffic management solutions.

Key capabilities include:

  • Global Traffic Management -- includes deep packet inspection (DPI) at all layers of traffic (2-7), and load balancing and traffic steering for both upstream and downstream traffic.

  • Smart Caching improves the overall subscriber experience under network load by caching the most popular content in real time, closer to the edge of the access network. Smart caching also supports a distributed caching architecture that aligns with operators' evolving content delivery network (CDN) strategies.

  • Network and Application Intelligence> -- provides operators with QoE metrics based on subscriber intelligence, by offering insight into when and where a subscriber experiences service levels ranging from poor to excellent, based on cell, access or core network conditions. The T3000 system also gives operators a comprehensive view across geographies to compare and report different mobile data usage patterns for measurement, benchmarking and maximizing efficiency of network resources.

"We built the T3000 Series to solve a fundamental problem in mobile networks. The increasingly bandwidth-hungry video, applications and rich multimedia content traversing 3G and 4G radio access networks today have become too complex for existing traffic management solutions," said Chris Koopmans, vice president of products at Bytemobile. "While today's solutions are focused on three standard levels of traffic management, the T3100 – as the industry's first Adaptive Traffic Manager – can detect and react to network conditions in the cell, radio access network (RAN) and core in milliseconds. With intelligence that spans seven dimensions of traffic control and unparalleled control functions to inspect data traffic at all layers of the network, the T3100 measures each subscribers QoE in real time, enabling operators to dynamically adjust traffic flows to maximize the user experience."

VMware and Cisco Show VXLAN

Cisco and VMware demonstrated Virtual Extensible Local Area Network (VXLAN), a new technology which the companies are positioning as "the next major step in the path towards logical, virtual networks that can be created on-demand."

Cisco says VXLAN will scale to meet the millions of logical networks required to run applications in the cloud with efficient utilization of network resources. This compares with existing IEEE 802.1Q VLANs which use a 12-bit VLAN identifier, which hinders the scalability of cloud networks beyond 4K VLANs. VXLAN will offer a network encapsulation technique with segment identifiers for creating millions of logical networks. This is accomplished using a MAC in User Datagram Protocol (MAC-in-UDP) encapsulation technique.

VXLAN will also support applications running in hybrid clouds where compute capacity is delivered from pools of resources that may span across private and public clouds.

The demonstration occurred at this week's VMworld 2011 show in Las Vegas.

  • Multiple other vendors are also supporting VXLAN, which has been submitted for standardization at Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). A draft of the VXLAN specification is available on the IETF site.

Ericsson's North American Analyst Forum

by James E. Carroll
Ericsson hosted an all-day North American Analyst Forum in San Jose, California to discuss key industry trends and the company's strategic positioning. Speakers included Håkan Eriksson , Group Chief Technology Officer and President of Ericsson Silicon Valley; Martin Ljungberg, Jan Häglund, Jan Ögren, Stefan Hedelius, Todd Ashton, Björn Ekelund, and Mats Norin. The presentation materials are online.

Some highlights from the event:

  • About 85% of the world's population is covered by 2G networks and 35% covered by 3G networks.

  • GSM subscriptions will start to decline in 2013 as the number of HSPA and LTE subscribers accelerate.

  • LTE is expected to reach 35% of the global population in 2016, while HSPA reaches about 80%.

  • LTE-Advanced testing underway in Kista, Sweden is achieving 1 Gbps peaking rates using 8x8 MIMO with most locations in the town achieving 300 Mbps or more.

  • Ericsson expects operators will deploy heterogeneous networks with a mix or macro, pico, femto and Wi-Fi technologies.

  • In the home, Wi-Fi is better than femtos.

  • Picocells are better than Wi-Fi for local capacity coverage.

  • Ericsson sees the Cloud business as a major opportunity.

  • Software defined networking offers great potential to break up the old routing paradigm into a new, virtualized network built on standard components and interfaces. This could enable a decoupling of services from infrastructure.

  • Ericsson sees significant efficiency gains coming from Coordinated multipoint (CoMP) technologies, especially in the uplink.

  • Coverage and speed are clear differentiators for mobile operators.

  • Once subscription growth rate tapers off, service differentiation will be the key to success for mobile operators.

  • Ericsson confirms Smart Services Router (SSR) on track for delivery in Q4.

  • Ericsson plans to release smaller, 6-slot and 10-slot versions of Smart Services Router in 2012. The SSR will offer a capacity of 16 Tbps per system and feature 20 slots with 400 Gbps full-duplex capacity each. The Smart Services Router (SSR) is being positioned as a "multi-application" platform for advanced services on both fixed access and broadband wireless access. Specific blades will deliver processing power for applications, including: video (caching), mobility (mobile gateway), business and residential services with powerful DPI and policy enforcement.

  • Expect more innovation in MPLS-based mobile backhaul, packet+optical+microwave.

  • Some carriers in SE Asia already using advanced policy control for Facebook on a per minute basis.

  • Ericsson now ranks No.8 in IT services (IBM, HP, Fujitsu, CSC, Accenture, Capgemini, Hitachi, Ericsson...)

  • Ericsson is managing networks that serve 800 million subscribers worldwide.

  • Of the outsourced networks that Ericsson operates, 50% of nodes are non-Ericsson boxes.

  • Ericsson is looking forward to its pending acquisition of Telcordia.

  • By 2015, About 54% of total handsets will be smartphones.

  • ST-Ericsson's HSPA+ sales increased 20% sequentially in Q2.

  • ST-Ericsson is now sampling its M7400 modem chip, which support LTE FDD/TDD, HSPA+ and TD. It is an 8 band radio solution with VoLTE support.

  • Ericsson is holding to its forecast of 50 billion connected devices in 2020.

  • For M2M, HSPA modules are cheap compared to LTE module pricing. Also, LTE data plan pricing is much more than HSPA.

  • In addition, David Small, CTO of Verizon Wireless, presented at the event. Some highlights from his presentation:

  • The Verizon Wireless LTE footprint now covers 161 million people in its footprint. This will increase to 185 million by the end of the year.

  • The network uses a multivendor approach. For the RAN, Alcatel-Lucent and Ericsson are the key suppliers. For the Enhanced Packet core, vendors include Alcatel-Lucent, Cisco/Starent, and Ericsson. For IMS, key vendors include Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, NSN and Tekelec.

  • The LTE is delivering on all of the performance metrics it promised.

  • Verizon Wireless is committed to ecosystem innovation and now has Innovations Centers in San Francisco and Waltham, MA., along with a 4G Venture Forum in New Jersey to help fund new ideas.

Qualcomm Advances LTE TDD in India

Qualcomm, in collaboration with Huawei, ZTE, Quanta and BandRich, announced the launch of LTE TDD multi-mode devices based on its MDM9x00 chipsets. The partnerships are aimed at commercialization of LTE TDD in concert with 3G to enable seamless mobile broadband experience for Indian consumers.

"Qualcomm is pleased to collaborate with Huawei, ZTE, Quanta and BandRich for the launch of LTE TDD multimode devices based on our MDM9x00 chipsets in India," said Avneesh Agrawal, senior vice president of Qualcomm and president of Qualcomm India and South Asia. "The announcement of multi-mode LTE TDD devices today is a significant milestone for the commercialization and deployment of LTE in concert with 3G for Indian BWA operators."

Qualcomm Atheros Ships Bluetooth 4.0 + HS

Qualcomm Atheros introduced a Bluetooth 4.0 + HS chip for laptops and other computing devices and confirmed Acer as its first customer.

The new Qualcomm Atheros chip enables laptops to detect and connect wirelessly with Bluetooth low energy (LE) devices such as those for proximity detection and health monitoring.

The Bluetooth 4.0 + HS supports data transfer speeds of up to 24 Mbps, whereby the Bluetooth link is used for negotiation and pair establishment and the high data rate traffic is carried over a co-located 802.11g link (the "+HS" portion).

Qualcomm Atheros noted that Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) will lead to new applications beyond the typical point-to-point uses, such as phone-to-headset. For examples, laptop users might have a Bluetooth key-fob device that automatically logs-in to their notebook when they get near, and then logs them off when they walk away. A laptop might use Bluetooth to send time sync signals to alarm clocks inside the home. Or the laptop might use Bluetooth to command lost items inside the home to emit "find me" chimes. Bluetooth 4.0 laptops can also now be used to track battery power levels for a whole range of consumer electronic devices inside the home.

New Zealand Approves Telecom's Structural Separation Plan

The government of New Zealand approved Telecom New Zealand's plan to split its assets after structural separation. Telecom New Zealand's stock holders must vote on the plan.

Under the arrangement, Telecom's network arm (the New Chorus) will be the main provider of fixed-line telecommunications infrastructure and will be prohibited from offering retail services. The New Telecom will be a retail service provider and will compete on an even playing field with all other retailers.

"Should Telecom's shareholders vote in favour of the demerger, Telecom will be the first telecommunications company of its size to undergo voluntary structural separation," stated Steven Joyce, Minister for Communications and Information Technology.

  • Earlier this year, Telecom New Zealand submitted its offer to Crown Fibre Holdings (CFH) to participate in the nation's new, open-access, fibre-to-the-home network. Under the proposal, Telecom would structurally separate its access business and physical infrastructure.

  • The government of New Zealand has established Crown Fibre Holdings Limited (CFH) to manage its $1.5 billion investment in Ultra-Fast Broadband infrastructure with the goal of bringing Ultra-Fast Broadband to 75 percent of New Zealanders over ten years.

  • On 24 May 2011, the Government announced that Chorus was chosen as the Crown’s UFB partner in 24 out of the 33 regions, which represents around 70% of the UFB coverage area. The separation of Telecom’s retail business (New Telecom) from its wholesale / infrastructure business (New Chorus) is a prerequisite for Telecom to participate in the New Zealand Government’s UFB Initiative.

NEC and Cisco Partner on LTE

NEC and Cisco announced a strategic relationship focused on commercial LTE networks for service providers.

The partnership combines NEC's wireless network equipment (eNodeB), NEC's mobile backhaul solutions and Cisco's Mobile Internet network equipment ASR5000.

The companies have completed network verifications in a variety of environments.

"NEC offers a variety of wireless base stations that support cells ranging from macro cells to small cells," said Nobuyuki Yanaginuma, Associate Senior Vice President of NEC. "The company adopts new and advanced technologies, such as miniaturization using the world's highest level of amplifier efficiency, low power consumption developments, and Self-Organized Networks (SON), which enable base stations to be constructed and operated efficiently. The combination of Cisco and NEC's strengths will enable the provision of competitive LTE systems and contribute to the construction, service launch and expansion of commercial LTE networks for telecom operators."

  • NEC serves as the lead contractor for NTT DOCOMO's commercial LTE network. NEC has also shipped commercial wireless base stations for KDDI and announced LTE field trials with SingTel and Telefonica.

  • In December 2009, Cisco acquired Starent Networks, a supplier of IP based mobile infrastructure solutions targeting mobile and converged carriers.

  • Verizon Wireless is using the Cisco/Starent platform in the packet core of its LTE network.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Orange Business Boosts Capacity in Latin America

Orange Business Services will increase the capacity of its Latin American network to accommodate customers' needs for expanding high-speed broadband services, including MPLS (IP VPN and Business VPN), International Ethernet Link and video services, such as Telepresence.

The new network ring, which will offer 10X the capacity of the current one, will connect Latin America to the East Coast of the United States via Brazil and to the West Coast of the United States via Chile (through Peru and Panama). The upgrade will enhance quality of service for customers with improved latency to the West Coast, while also supporting the growing capacity requirements from Asia-Pacific.

Dell Launches VMware vCloud Datacenter Service

Dell entered the enterprise cloud market with the launch of a VMware vCloud Datacenter Service that provides a seamless multi-tenant environment for running virtual systems. Specifically, Dell and VMware will provide Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) choice for customer organizations, hosting and outsourcing firms, system integrators and service providers. The service is currently in beta testing.

This is the first public and hybrid cloud offering by Dell. The company will also offer consulting, application and infrastructure services to help companies migrate to the cloud. Dell noted that it has one of the largest install bases of VMware customers and data center customers, making its entrance into cloud services a natural fit.

Dell Cloud with VMware vCloud Datacenter Services includes several options for customers:

Public - Dell Cloud with VMware vCloud Datacenter Service is an enterprise-class, secure offer of Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IAAS) hosted in a secure Dell datacenter. This service provides access to vCPUs, memory, storage networks, IP addresses, firewalls, and catalog capabilities.

Private – Utilizing the same expertise, service and technology delivered in its own datacenters, Dell will build private clouds at either our customer's datacenter or Dell datacenters leveraging VMware offerings including VMware vSphere and VMware vCloud Director as well as Dell's vStart offering.

Hybrid - Dell and VMware provide a single source to substantially simplify the management of customers' physical and VMware vSphere-based virtual data center infrastructure adding flexibility to customer requirements. Utilizing VMware vCloud Connector, the hybrid cloud solution provides management of on- or off-premise private cloud and Dell's Public cloud offering.

MultiService Forum and GSMA Host VoLTE Testing

The MultiService Forum (MSF) is expecting a strong turn out of 25 leading companies for its upcoming Voice over LTE (VoLTE) Interoperability Testing Event, which will be held next month in Beijing and Dusseldorf. Acme Packet, Alcatel-Lucent, Codenomicon, D2 Technologies, EXFO, IPneo, Metaswitch, Samsung, Stoke, Traffix Systems and VSS Monitoring are participating in the event, joining event sponsors GENBAND, Huawei, ZTE, Alepo, Bridgewater Systems, Cisco and WiChorus, a Tellabs company.

Unlike other recent VoLTE events the MSF VoLTE interoperability event is not focused solely on UE interoperability, but in addition targets interoperability of EPC, PCC, and IMS core elements supplied by different vendors. Test scenarios include VoLTE basic interoperability, but also focus on global Roaming and Interconnection as specified by the GSMA.

NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) launched a new MSF initiative to develop conformance test cases for the LTE EPC interfaces. The goal of this initiative is to develop a suite of EPC test documents that can be utilized by third party labs or network operators to evaluate whether a given vendor's implementation of EPC interfaces conforms to the 3GPP specifications. NIST is looking to develop public safety conformance tests, as the basis for a future MSF IOT Event.

Also announced at the MSF Q3 Technical Committee Meeting in Denver was appointment of Jesus Trujillo Gomez, Technical Marketing Engineer of Cisco Systems to the Technical Committee Leadership Team.

"The success of VoLTE requires interoperability to simplify interconnect and roaming. The participants in the MSF's IOT event demonstrate the diverse nature of the players that will make up the VoLTE ecosystem, and represents a significant step towards practical, interoperable implementations of VoLTE," said Dan Warren, Senior Director of Technology, GSMA.

"The event will give operators the confidence that Voice over LTE is a foundation on which to build tomorrow's voice and rich communications services networks," said Kyu-Ouk Lee, Project Leader and Principal Researcher at Korea's Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI), and newly elected MSF President.
  • The MSF will host the VoLTE IOT 2011 Event in the Vodafone Centre for Test and Innovation in Dusseldorf and the China Mobile Research Institute Lab in Beijing in September 2011. The event is backed by the GSMA following the launch of its global VoLTE initiative in 2010, which is supported by more than 40 leading organisations in the mobile space.

Dell'Oro: Service Provider Market Up 26% in Q2

The worldwide service provider router market grew sharply by 26% in the second quarter of 2011 due to strong demand from the North American and Asia Pacific regions, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. The report points to mobile backhaul projects in the United States and fiber optic broadband initiatives in China as the underlying drivers of the market growth.

"Mobile backhaul has been a key market driver for several quarters, but this was the first quarter where we saw a substantial effect from the China broadband upgrade," said Shin Umeda, Vice President at Dell'Oro Group. "From a vendor perspective, Alcatel-Lucent jumped to an early lead in mobile backhaul, and Huawei is doing very well in its home China market, but we would expect Cisco and Juniper to pursue these opportunities as well," added Umeda.

Samsung Develops ChatON Communications Service

Samsung Electronics introduced a free mobile communication service that works across mobile platforms and allows users to communicate instantly with any mobile phone.

Samsung's ChatON mobile communication service lets all users join in, with text, images, hand-written notes and video shared instantly. Users can chat in groups, while a Web client will allow the easy sharing of content and conversations between mobile and PC. Samsung is releasing ChatON in more than 120 countries, supporting up to 62 languages. A basic functionality option is available for feature phone users who prefer simple and easy usage, allowing users to share text, pictures, calendar, contacts and emotions through an easy-to-access client.

Net Optics Introduces 10 Gbps Aggregation Switch

Net Optics introduced its Phantom HD high-throughput aggregation appliance for network monitoring. It supports 10 Gbps tunnel for aggregating traffic to monitoring tools.

The Phantom HD eliminates the need for a physical, wired connection between the monitoring and access layers and the instrumentation layer. This removes the physical proximity requirement for monitoring tools. Visibility into the virtual network allows raw network traffic to be transported from several remote locations to one central control site, then inspected and stored.

Net Optics said its Phantom HD can aggregate traffic of interest from multiple Phantom Virtual Taps (software Tap) at one location. Network managers can then view and inspect any traffic of interest (wired or virtual) from several remote offices in one central point.

Mellanox Debuts 64-port 10GbE Switch

Mellanox Technologies introduced a low-latency 64-port 10GbE switch delivered in a top-of-rack 1U form factor.

The SX1016, which is based on the company's SwitchX switch silicon ICs, delivers up to 1.28 Tbps of switching bandwidth, extreme port density and 1.8W per port power consumption.

It also features Data Center Bridging and management support of IPv6, with the ability to extend L2 and L3 features through future software upgrades.

The SX1016 supports reversed airflow adding flexibility for data centers with different thermal designs, and consists of redundant fans and PSUs for higher availability. The SX1016 is equipped with enhanced chassis management capabilities supporting Web UI, industry-standard CLI, and is supported by Mellanox Unified Fabric Manager (UFM), which provides extensive end-to-end fabric orchestration and monitoring capabilities for virtualizing and scaling out data centers.

Separately, Mellanox announced it has added Multiple Physical Function (MPF) capabilities to its ConnectX-3 10/40GbE adapters for VMware ESXi 5.0. MPF allows each port of the ConnectX-3 10/40GbE adapter to present itself as multiple, individual physical NICs and to assign different bandwidth and priority to each physical NIC for different traffic types or functionality such as management, storage, VMotion, networking, etc. Mellanox supports up to 4 virtual NICs per port.

Cisco Acquires Versly for MS Office Collaboration Plug-ins

Cisco has acquired privately-held Versly, a software developer based in San Francisco. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Versly integrates collaboration capabilities via a plug-in into Microsoft Office applications, simplifying the way people work by enabling more effective collaboration around content in documents, spreadsheets, presentations and email.

"Collaboration is a top priority at Cisco. With this acquisition we're enhancing our collaboration offerings and improving the user experience by integrating social technologies within the business applications individuals and teams use at work," said Murali Sitaram, vice president and general manager, Collaboration Software Group (CSG), Cisco. "Furthermore, the integration with Versly will drive productivity improvements for organizations and their knowledge workers, many of whom are among the 600 million Microsoft Office users."

  • Cisco's 2011 acquisitions include Axioss for service fulfillment software (August), newScale for Self-Service Portal Software (March), Inlet for Digital Media Processing (February 2011) and Pari Networks for Security Alert Compliance (January).

Juniper Adds Antivirus to Cloud Gateway

Juniper Networks has enhanced its vGW Virtual Gateway solution with virtualization-specific antivirus (AV) protections for continuous monitoring against malware and hackers. Added to vGW Virtual Gateway version 5.0 are increased protection, scalability and compliance features for virtualized workloads. vGW 5.0 integrates monitoring, firewall, intrusion detection and compliance capabilities with new layers of defenses including antivirus protection, hypervisor compliance monitoring, and large-scale virtualization security management capabilities, making it a universal threat management (UTM) solution for cloud computing.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Taiwan's Chunghwa Builds the "Digital Rainforest"

Taiwan's Chunghwa Telecom reported Q2 2011 revenue of NT$54.42 billions, up 9.6% year-over-year, of which 41.1% was from the mobile business, 11.5% was from the internet business, 36.3% was from the domestic fixed business, 7.1% was from the international fixed business, and the remainder was from other services. Total operating costs and expenses increased by 12.3% to NT$39.01 billion and net income totaled NT$13.30 billion, representing a 2.8% increase.

Dr. Shyue-Ching Lu, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Chunghwa Telecom, said "Our desire to build on this top-line growth and leverage our reputation for innovative offerings and premium customer service led to the launch of our "Digital Rainforest" initiative during the second quarter. This initiative builds on the significant traction we have already gained from our inroads into the digital business ecosystem, and represents a cohesive strategy for integrating and reinvigorating our activities within this space. Key elements of "Digital Rainforest" include a cloud computing initiative called hicloud PaaS, a cutting edge broadband service, integrated service platforms, and domestic and international collaboration on reducing carbon emissions to promote sustainability. We are also implementing our new channel strategy by transforming our service centers to convey our new image as we embrace the cloud computing era. I am confident that this "Digital Rainforest" initiative will provide additional momentum to our growth going forward."

Some highlights for the quarter:

Total revenue for the mobile business amounted to NT$22.35 billion for the second quarter 2011, representing a year-on-year increase of 1.1%, mainly due to growth in mobile VAS revenue and handset sales relating to smartphone promotions, which offset the decline in mobile voice revenue. The decline in mobile voice revenue resulted primarily from the shift in pricing right for fixed to mobile calls from mobile to fixed operators.

Chunghwa's Internet business revenue increased by 3.4% year-over-year to NT$6.25 billion in the second quarter of 2011, mainly attributable to growth in the number of broadband subscribers and the migration of ADSL subscribers to fiber solutions.

For the second quarter of 2011, domestic fixed revenue totaled NT$19.78 billion, representing an increase of 14.1% year-over-year. Local revenues increased by 33.6% year-over-year, mainly due to the shift in pricing right for fixed to mobile calls. The 13.9% decline in Domestic Long Distance ("DLD") revenues was due to mobile and Voice over Internet Protocol ("VOIP") substitution, as well as reflecting the mandated tariff reduction.

Broadband access revenue, including ADSL and Fiber to the x (FTTx), increased by 3% year-over-year to NT$5.14 billion. Although ADSL access revenue decreased as more ADSL subscribers migrated to fiber solutions and because of the mandated tariff reduction, the decrease was fully offset by growth in FTTx access revenue.

International fixed line revenue increased by 3.9% to NT$3.86 billion, primarily due to growth in international long distance service and international leased line revenue.

Other revenue grew by 369.3%, primarily due to the increase in construction revenue from the company's property development subsidiary.

CAPEX for Q2 amounted to NT$5.54 billion, a 7.6% year-over-year increase. Of the NT$5.54 billion CAPEX figure, 57.1% was used for the domestic fixed communications business, 21.0% was for the mobile business, 14.3% was for the Internet business, 5.9% was for the international fixed communications business, and the remainder was for other uses.

As of June 30, FTTx subscribers had reached 2.2 million, accounting for 49.7% of total broadband users. This year, the Company is continuing to execute on its strategy to encourage FTTx migration. On June 22, the Company further reduced its broadband service tariffs, especially for speeds of 20Mbps and 50Mbps to stimulate the momentum of migration and subscription. The initiative has been very well received.
HiNet broadband subscribers totaled 3.63 million at the end of June 2011, a year-over-year rise of 2.2%.

As of June 30, 2011, Chunghwa had 9.86 million mobile subscribers, an increase of 4.4% compared to 9.45 million at the end of June 2010.

As of June 30, 2011, the company had 1.15 million mobile internet subscribers, demonstrating strong growth momentum compared to 809 thousand subscribers as of December 2010. As a result, the Company has set a new year-end mobile internet subscriber target of1.4 million.

Chunghwa Telecom now has 17,000 WiFi APs providing 3G offload. The company expects to have 21,000 APs by year end.

Smartphones now represent 40% of handset sales in Taiwan by CHT, up from 25% last year.

Mobile VAS revenue for the second quarter of 2011 rose 42% year-over-year to NT$3.77 billion, with mobile Internet revenue increasing 87.2% year-over-year, making it the largest contributor to VAS revenue.

As of August 26, 2011, Chunghwa's Multimedia-on-demand (MOD) subscriber number reached over 930,000.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

IBM Offers Tools to Connect and Secure Public and Private Clouds

IBM introduced a hybrid cloud solution to help enterprise customers gain greater visibility, control and automation into their assets and computing environments, including public and private clouds. The new SmartCloud tools, which leverage technology from IBM's recent acquisition of Cast Iron, provide:

Control and Management Resources: The new capabilities will define policies, quotas, limits, monitoring and performance rules for the public cloud in the same way as on-premise resources. This allows users to access public cloud resources through a single-service catalog -- enabling IT staff to govern the access and the usage of this information in a simplified, efficient and secure way.

Security: IBM enables better control of users' access by synching the user directories of on-premise and cloud applications. The automated synchronization means users will be able to gain entry to the information they are authorized to access.

Application Integration: Using a simplified "configuration, not coding" approach to application integration, the software combines the power of native connectivity with industry leading applications to provide best-practices for rapid and repeatable project success.

Dynamic Provisioning: IBM's monitoring, provisioning and integration capabilities allow its hybrid cloud to support "cloud bursting," which is the dynamic relocation of workloads from private environments to public clouds during peak times. IBM's technical and business policies control this sophisticated data integration.

WP: Virginia Sees Continued Growth in Data Centers

New data centers continue to pop up in Loudoun County, Virginia, which now has about 40 data centers comprising roughly 4 million square feet of space -- equivalent to 22 Wal-Mart Supercenters -- according to The Washington Post. Equinix plans to build its 10th data center in the area.
Other big data center projects include Raging Wire, Sabey Data Center Properties, and Carpathia.

Huawei Promotes LTE TDD Router as Alternative to Fixed Broadband

Saudi Arabian operator Mobily will be the first carrier to offer Huawei's LTE TDD wireless broadband router beginning in October. The unit is designed to serve as a home media and information gateway offering bandwidth rates comparable to fixed broadband. The Huawei B593 supports LTE TDD and FDD, features a download speed of up to 100M and provides access to up to 32 WiFi devices as well as desktop computers through an Ethernet cable.

Hu Guangping, head of Mobile Broadband LTE division, Huawei Device, said, "The Huawei B593 provides bandwidth comparable with that of fixed broadband. In addition to the obvious benefits this brings consumers, operators now have the ability to provide superfast Internet access without the need for fixed network infrastructure. This enables operators to expand their subscriber base in a more flexible and cost-effective way.

PCCW (Hong Kong) and FPT (Vietnam) Interconnect Ethernet Networks

PCCW Global and FPT Telecom, Vietnam's leading telecommunications services provider, have interconnected their Ethernet networks for improved international network coverage and service availability. The carriers established MPLS interconnectivity in 2008. Enterprise customers can now get MPLS VPN and Switched Ethernet with different classes of service (CoS).

Pandora Delivers 1.8 Billion Hours of Streaming Music in Latest Quarter

In its newly released quarterly financial report, Pandora reported total listener hours of approximately 1.8 billion for the second quarter fiscal 2012, an increase of 125% compared to approximately 0.8 billion for the second quarter fiscal 2011. Estimated share of total U.S. radio listening at the end of the second fiscal quarter was 3.6%, up from 1.8% a year prior.

Politico: FCC to Investigate Earthquake Impact on Cell Network Performance

The FCC is likely to investigate the performance of mobile networks following this week's 5.9 magnitude earthquake in Virginia, according to Cell phone networks remained congested in the minutes and hours following the quake, with many people unable to reach 9-1-1 emergency services.

Big Switch Advances its OpenFlow Platform

Big Switch Networks, a start-up based in Palo Alto, California, reached a significant milestone in its bid to build an open, fully-programmable enterprise switching platform based on Open Flow. The Big Switch Controller has now moved into private beta testing.

OpenFlow, a new network protocol pioneered at Stanford University that enables the path of network packets through a series of switches to be determined by software running on a separate server. This network control plane would managed virtualized switching elements in the network. Virtualized programmable network could open the door to various high-performance applications in campus or enterprise networks. The goal of OpenFlow is to enable networks to evolve more rapidly by giving owners and operators better control over their networks and the ability to optimize network behavior.

Big Switch Networks' Controller is based on OpenFlow and virtualizes the network in the enterprise data center, making it possible for an enterprise to overlay virtual networks on top of their physical devices. The company said its three tier architecture comprises:

1. Big Switch Networks' Controller – a software platform that implements the server side of the OpenFlow protocol, virtualizes the physical resources in the network and provides common components used across OpenFlow Applications

2. OpenFlow Applications – network control applications built on an the Controller's open API that represent a tenant's software-defined devices and features, e.g. virtual switches, virtual firewalls or connectors to server virtualization software

3. Switch Vendors' OpenFlow-Enabled Switches – Ethernet switches, both physical and hypervisor-based, that represent the data plane of an OpenFlow architecture by implementing the client side of the OpenFlow protocol.

  • Big Switch is headed by Guido Appenzeller (Co-Founder and CEO), who previously was a Consulting Professor at Stanford University and Head of the Clean Slate Lab where he managed the OpenFlow standards effort and led the team that developed the OpenFlow reference implementation.

Alcatel-Lucent and China Mobile Complete Mobile Video Call

Alcatel-Lucent and China Mobile completed the first mobile broadband video call over a next-generation 4G LTE mobile network, connecting a fixed location and a car in Shanghai with Alcatel-Lucent offices in New Jersey.

The three-way, trans-Pacific call, which ran over Alcatel-Lucent's lightRadio equipment, linked Alcatel-Lucent's Bell Labs headquarters in Murray Hill, New Jersey, the Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai Bell demonstration center in Shanghai, and the "LTE Connected Car" demonstrator roaming in Shanghai and utilizing China Mobile's fourth-generation TD-LTE trial network.

The companies said the demonstration highlights the advances Alcatel-Lucent is making with lightRadio as well as the progress being made by China Mobile with its TD-LTE trial network.

"This call brings the global commercial reality of lightRadio even closer – and the ability to provide the increased performance and savings that can be made by implementing the technology within an operators' network," stated Wim Sweldens, President of Alcatel-Lucent's Wireless Division.

  • In June, Alcatel-Lucent completed the first long-distance, mobile video-call using its new lightRadio platform from the historic desk of Alexander Graham Bell. Chris Lewis, Group Vice President of industry analysts IDC, hosted the call from Bell Labs in Murray Hill, New Jersey, connecting with Ben Verwaayen, Chief Executive of Alcatel-Lucent in Paris, and delegates at a business conference in Miami.

  • Alcatel-Lucent's lightRadio represents a new architecture where the base station, typically located at the base of each cell site tower, is broken into its components elements and distributed through the antenna or the network for cloud-like processing. Additionally the various cell site tower antennas are combined and shrunk into a single small powerful, Bell Labs-pioneered multi frequency, multi standard (2G, 3G, LTE) device that can be mounted on poles, sides of buildings or anywhere else there is power and a broadband connection.

EXFO Enhances 10G and 40G Transport Test Modules

EXFO enhanced its Power Blazer Next-Generation Multiservice Test Modules and Transport Blazer 40/43 Gigabit SONET/SDH/OTN Test Modules with new multichannel testing capabilities that enable 10G/40G labs and network equipment manufacturers (NEMs) to speed up their verification processes. With these new test capabilities, it is now possible to simultaneously perform SDT measurements on multiple channels and to monitor in real time errors and alarms on all channels for SONET/SDH and OTN signals.

Verizon Acquires CloudSwitch

Verizon Communications has acquired CloudSwitch, a privately-held developer of tools for extending applications in a corporate data center into the public cloud. Financial terms were not disclosed.

CloudSwitch's software enables data loads to move into the cloud without changing the application or the infrastructure layer – eliminating a key barrier to widespread cloud adoption. CloudSwitch claims its solution also enables enterprise applications to remain tightly integrated and managed as if they are running locally.

Verizon plans to combine CloudSwitch with its Terremark IT services subsidiary, further accelerating the company's global cloud strategy by enhancing Verizon's hybrid-cloud and cloud-to-cloud capabilities.

"The cloud market is a rapidly growing opportunity, with very real benefits both for our business customers and the consumers they serve," said Bob Toohey, president of Verizon's global enterprise unit. "With the acquisition of CloudSwitch, Verizon has taken another step forward in defining the enterprise cloud."

John McEleney, CEO of CloudSwitch, said: "By joining Verizon, we will be able to deliver a solution that combines our software with the market-leading infrastructure cloud play. Our founding vision has always been to create a seamless and secure federation of cloud environments across enterprise data centers and global cloud services. Together, we will be able to provide enterprises with an unmatched level of flexibility, scalability and control in the cloud with point-and-click simplicity. This will go a long way in helping achieve widespread adoption of the cloud, especially when managing complex workloads."

CloudSwitch is based in Burlington, MA.

  • CloudSwitch was founded by Ellen Rubin and John Considine. Rubin previously was Vice President of Marketing at Netezza. Prior to Netezza, Ellen founded Manna, an Israeli and Boston-based developer of real-time personalization software. Considine previously was Director of the Platform Products Group at Sun Microsystems, where he was responsible for the 69xx virtualized block storage system, 53xx NAS products, the 5800 Object Archive system, as well as the next generation NAS portfolio.

  • Investors in CloudSwitch include Matrix Partners, Atlas Ventures and Commonwealth Capital Ventures.

  • Earlier this year, Verizon acquired Terremark, a global provider of managed IT infrastructure and cloud services, for $19.00 per share in cash, or a total equity value of $1.4 billion. At the time of the acquisition, Terremark, which is headquartered in Miami, operated 13 data centers in the U.S., Europe and Latin America (Miami, Dallas, Wash. D.C., Santa Clara, Bogota, Sao Paolo, Santo Domingo, Amsterdam, Brussels, Madrid and Istambul. It provides secure cloud computing, colocation, and managed hosting services. For its most recent quarter, Terremark reported revenue of $84.9 million, a 22% increase over the previous year.

    Prior to the deal, Verizon operated more than 220 data centers across 23 countries, including 19 premium centers and five smart centers.

Windstream Bumps SMB Access Service to 24 Mbps

Windstream has boosted Internet speeds for small and medium business customers. Customers can now get Internet speeds of 10 Mbps down/2 Mbps up, 24 Mbps down/2 Mbps up and 24 Mbps down/4 Mbps up. The carrier also provides a variety of voice, data and managed services, and offers broadband speeds of up to 1 Gbps to enterprise customers.

Russia's VimpelCom Deploys Alcatel-Lucent's FemtoCells

OJSC VimpelCom is using Alcatel-Lucent's femtocell technology to extend 3G coverage in buildings in the North-Western region of Russia. Alcatel-Lucent has provided VimpelCom with its end-to-end Femto-technology based 9360 Small Cell solution, including the 9361 Home Cell, the 9362 Enterprise Cell, the 9364 Metro Cell for outdoor environments and the 9366 Small Cell Gateway. The solution includes a network management system which combines Alcatel-Lucent's Wireless Management System, Wireless Provisioning System and the Home Device Manager from its Motive Product Division. Alcatel-Lucent is providing full deployment and integration services along with design, installation and commissioning, software integration and project management.

Aruba Posts Sales of $113.8 Million, up 47% YoY

Aruba Networks reported quarter sales of $113.8 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011, an increase of 47 percent from the $77.3 million reported in Q4'10. GAAP net income for Q4'11 was $68.2 million, or $0.57 per share, compared with net income of $0.4 million, or $0.00 per share, in Q4'10. GAAP net income for the fourth quarter included a one-time tax benefit of $72.8 million, equivalent to $0.61 per share, due to the release of the company's valuation allowances and the recording of the associated net deferred tax assets on its balance sheet. This one-time event is in conjunction with the establishment of Aruba's international operating entities to optimize Aruba's long term tax structure. Non-GAAP net income for Q4'11 was $20.2 million, or $0.17 per share. This compares with $11.1 million, or $0.10 per share, in Q4'10.

"Demand for our wireless LAN solutions continued to be strong throughout our fiscal fourth quarter, as revenue increased by 47 percent year-over-year and 8 percent sequentially," said Dominic Orr, President and Chief Executive Officer of Aruba. "Mobile device adoption continues to accelerate resulting in proliferating demand for Enterprise mobility solutions. Revenue from the existing customer base remains strong and we are especially encouraged by our rapid new customer acquisitions adding over 4,500 customers in the last twelve months. With robust Q4 bookings and a solid pipeline for our wireless LAN solutions, we enter our fiscal 2012 confident in our ability to grow faster than the market and increase our market share."

IDT Samples Low-Jitter VCSO for 40/100G Boards

Integrated Device Technology introduced a low-jitter Voltage Controlled Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) Oscillator (VCSO) for high-end optical networking and telecom applications. The device, which meets jitter requirements of 40G and 100G board designs, incorporates an analog frequency multiplier and single-ended RF output with jitter at less than 270 femtoseconds root mean square (rms) integrated across the 20kHz to 20MHz frequency band. It is available with an output frequency in the 1.5GHz to 2.1GHz range, providing customers a high frequency reference clock with low-jitter, low-noise performance.

AT&T's Green Fleet Deploys 4,000th Alternate Fuel Vehicle

AT&T has deployed the 4,000th alternative-fuel vehicle (AFV) in its corporate vehicle fleet – with more than 2,000 AFVs deployed in California alone. AT&T also announced that it has deployed its 3,000th compressed natural gas vehicle (CNG). All of the milestone vehicles are Ford E250 CNG vans. The deployments are the latest in AT&T's planned 10-year investment of up to $565 million to replace approximately 15,000 fleet vehicles with alternative-fuel models through 2018.

"As the economy rises and falls with fuel prices, we have a responsibility to look for smart ways to reduce our costs," said Jerome Webber, vice president, AT&T Global Fleet Operations. "Putting 4,000 alternative-fuel vehicles on the road – including 3,000 compressed natural gas vehicles – is a significant statement about the ability of fleet operators to not only reduce costs, but also to cut vehicle emissions. Every alternative fuel vehicle on the road brings us closer to energy independence, and that's good for our company and our country."

AT&T also noted that it has started deploying its first all-electric and extended range electric vehicles in its fleet. AT&T fleets in St. Louis, Dallas and Los Angeles received the first of these vehicles. AT&T expects to make additional deployments in 2011 and 2012.

Through 2013, AT&T anticipates it will have purchased approximately 8,000 CNG vehicles at an anticipated cost of $350 million. AT&T expects to invest an additional $215 million through 2018 to replace approximately 7,100 fleet passenger cars with alternative-fuel models.

Embrane Secures $18 Million for Virtual Network Services

Embrane, a start-up based in Santa Clara, California, raised $18 million in Series-B financing for its distributed software platform.

Embrane aims to accelerate the adoption of cloud computing and IT-as-a-service by delivering the most dynamic platform for virtual network services. The system is currently in beta testing.

The funding round was led by New Enterprise Associates (NEA). Lightspeed Venture Partners and North Bridge Ventures also participated in the round, following their initial lead investments in the company's $9 million Series-A funding.

  • Embrane is headed by Dante Malagrinò, who most recently led the worldwide marketing campaign for Cisco’s Data Center 3.0 strategy.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Dell'Oro: Wireless Packet Core Market Grew 33% in Q2

Wireless packet core (WPC) market revenues grew 33% over the last year during the second quarter of 2011, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. Ericsson maintained its market share lead in revenues, followed by Huawei.

The report shows that 2Q11 revenues reached over $630 million. Equipment types that are included in the WPC market include Gateway GPRS Support Node (GGSN), Serving GPRS Support Node (SGSN), Packet Data Serving Node (PDSN) and Access Service Network (ASN) devices.

"Surging smartphone and tablet adoption is driving service providers to add wireless data subscriber management equipment," said Chris DePuy, Analyst at Dell'Oro Group. "While demand remains robust, we expect a handful of new vendors to challenge incumbent equipment providers as the market begins its transition to the next generation of equipment called Evolved Packet Core. At least four new packet core devices are in trials with service providers, with launch dates expected in the next several quarters. We expect to see some interesting shifts in the market's landscape when these new products ramp."

Equipment types that fall under the Evolved Packet Core (EPC) category include Mobility Management Entity (MME), Packet Data Node Gateway (PGW), Serving Gateway (SGW) and Policy and Charging Rules Function (PCRF).

Apple Wins EU Injunction Against Sales of Samsung Galaxy Smartphones

A court in the Netherlands issued a injunction prohibiting the sale of Samsung Galaxy Smartphones in the EU beginning October 3. The preliminary ruling concerns three patent infringement claims brought by Apple. The merits of the case have not yet been decided.

Ericsson Acquires Telenor Connexion's M2M Platform

Ericsson has acquired Telenor Connexion's M2M (machine-to-machine) technology platform. The deal includes the transfer of ten employees who will continue to work with development of the service offering provided on Ericsson's Device Connection Platform. Telenor Connexion also becomes the first customer to Ericsson on the platform. No financial details about acquiring the assets have been announced.

Ericsson's M2M service, the Device Connection Platform, a service launched during the Mobile World Congress in February, offers telecom operators a way to set up tailored M2M services for enterprise customers and is brought to market with a 'software as a service' business model, providing a low initial investment in technology and a fast time to market.

China Unicom Sees Growth in 3G and Broadband Bundled Services

China Unicom experienced continued growth in 3G subscriptions and in fixed broadband access during the first half of 2011 as the number of fixed line and PHS customers continued to decline, leading the company to report revenue of RMB 101.385 b billion, up by 22% over the same period last year. Profits came in at RMB 2.637 billion, down by 5.5% compared with the same period last year.

In the first half of the year, operating cash flow was RMB 34.352 billion, an increase of 10.5% over last year, and capital expenditure (CAPEX) was RMB 25.968 billion, a decline of 22.1% compared to last year.

Some highlights from the company's financial report:

Mobile (as of 30-June-2011)

the total number of subscribers reached 181.61 million, up 15.7% over last year.

3G penetration was 13.2% of the customer base

Overall ARPU reached RMB 46.8, up 9.3% over last year.

3G ARPU was RMB 117.5, a decrease of 11.7% compared to last year.

3G service revenue now accounts for 26.9% of total mobile revenue.

The total number of 3G basestations was 203,000, up 32.8% over last year.

The HSPA+ network cover 56 cities. It has a top downlink rate of 21 Mbps.

The total number of GSM basestations is 348,000, up 13.7% over last year.

The total 3G voice usage for the first half of the year was 66.21 billion minutes.

The total GSM voice usage for the first half of the year was 242.48 billion, up 5.5% over last year.

The number of mobile TV subscribers, mobile reading subscribers and mobile mailbox subscribers was 8.511 million, 7.925 million and 17.528 million, respectively.

Fixed Line

Added 5.098 million broadband subscribers in the first half, yielding a total of 52.322 million current subscribers, up 19.6% compared to last year.

Subscribers with 4 Mbps and above accounted for 35% of all broadband subscribers.

The number of broadband content and application subscribers reached 19.396 million, accounting for 37% of all broadband subscribers.

Service revenue for fixed broadband was RMB 17.172 billion, up 18.7% compared to last year.

Monthly ARPU for broadband was RMB 57.6, down 1.5% from last year.

The number of "WO Family" subscribers increased by 3.309 million to 3.697 million.

The loss of traditional local telephone subscribers was 1.177 million, leaving the company with 95.458 million.

The local telephone business generated RMB 17.663 billion in revenue, down 15% compared to last year.

Altera Ships Fastest FPGAs with 28 Gbps Transceivers

Altera has begun sampling the first FPGA featuring 28-Gbps transceivers. The Stratix V GT devices, which are the highest bandwidth and highest performance FPGAs released to date, are optimized specifically for use in the latest generation of 40G/100G applications and beyond. The devices support backplane, optical module and chip-to-chip applications through four 28-Gbps transceivers, 32 full-duplex, 12.5-Gbps transceivers, and up to 4x72-bit DIMM DDR3 memory interfaces supporting 2133 Mbps.

The 28-Gbps transceivers featured in Stratix V GT FPGAs meet the CEI-28G specification while consuming only 200 mW per channel, dramatically reducing a system's power-per-bandwidth profile.

"By leveraging a tailored 28-nm technology approach that includes the highest performance process and most advanced transceiver technology, we enable customers like JDSU to deliver the breakthrough bandwidth they need to bring the most cutting-edge systems to market quickly and with greater confidence," said Patrick Dorsey, senior director of product marketing at Altera.

Optical Internetworking Forum Launches Next Gen Interconnect Project

The Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) members initiated a Next Generation Interconnect Framework project which explores various applications spaces for high speed optical and/or electrical interconnect and identifies the necessary elements for follow on implementation agreements (IA). Next gen interconnects are needed for very short reaches within the blade, longer reaches between blades (backplanes) and chassis-to-chassis. Implementations agreements interoperability between components from different vendors as well as significant investment across the ecosystem.

The OIF also started a new 100G project to address next generation integrated coherent receiver targeting lower cost, higher density applications. The Generation 2.0 Intradyne Coherence Receiver (Gen-2 ICR), will define a smaller 100G coherent receiver to satisfy the industry needs for size and cost reduction necessary to support the evolving 100G coherent DSP-based module standards. The project follows the OIF's Gen-1 ICR IA (OIF-DPC-RX-01.0 IA) that successfully enabled long haul applications using line card and large form factor transponder (e.g., MSA-100GLH) implementations.

In addition, the OIF has launched a third project addressing multi-link gearbox (MLG) for 100G client side signaling. The Multi-Link Gearbox (MLG), will enable a variety of applications where a group of 10GBASE-R virtual links are transported by a 4x25G physical link. It will define a 10:4 Mux MLG function to convert multiple (up to 10) independent 10Gb/s links into 4x25G lanes, and a 4:10 DeMux MLG function to convert the 4x25G lanes back to multiple (up to 10) independent 10Gb/s links. In addition, the MLG Project will define in-band coding that preserves 10GBASE-R physical lane-to-lane ordering and in-lane bit ordering to support synchronous and asynchronous 10G lanes.