Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Macheen Raises $10 Million for Mobile Cloud Services

Macheen, a start-up based in Austin, Texas and Düsseldorf, Germany, raised $10 million in series B financing for its cloud-based services platform for connected devices.

Macheen enables connected device makers and retailers to deliver products that are pre-connected to the Internet via mobile networks. Macheen's multi-tenant, cloud-based platform supports new business models for device makers, retailers, cloud service providers and network operators alike.

The funding round was led by North Bridge Venture Capital. Macheen's existing investors also participated in this new round of financing. Existing investors include DFJ Mercury, which led last year's Series A financing and is a partner in the DFJ Global Network of venture funds. Angel investors include Tom Meredith, Mike Maples Sr. and Yechiam Yemini.

Aylus Raises $16 Million for Mobile MRF Platform

Aylus Networks, a start-up based in Westford, MA, raised $16 million in venture funding for its infrastructure software for enabling video communication services over mobile networks.

The Aylus Media Platform is an integrated solution that includes media switching, signaling and processing, session management, content portal and storage management, and analytics. The company features a patented media switching and processing platform (also known as a Media Resource Function (MRF)) that performs real-time media transcoding, transizing, and transrating. It also provides rich session management tools.

"The dawn of video becoming the new voice is upon us," said Mark Edwards, CEO Aylus Networks. "The emergence of powerful video-ready smartphones and tablets, high-speed mobile networks, and consumers becoming accustomed to video calling on the desktop establishes the ideal conditions for the mass adoption of mobile video calling. For video calling to be a mass-market phenomenon it needs to be offered as a seamless add-on option to a voice call."

London UK-based m8 Capital led the financing, with existing backers, Matrix Partners and North Bridge Venture Partners, who fully participated their pro rata share.

  • Aylus was founded by Shamim Naqvi. Previously, he was co-founder and chairman of Winphoria Networks, a Cellular Push-to-Talk and wireless SoftSwitch company now part of Motorola Corporation. Previously, Shamim was Vice President of Software Research at Lucent Bell Labs and co-pioneer of the revolutionary SoftSwitch technology for wireline and wireless networks.

Ekinops Supplies Optical Transport for Bezeq

Bezeq, Israel's largest telecommunications service provider, will deploy the Ekinops 360 optical transport and DWDM platform to connect key Bezeq sites in the north and south of the country. The solution is being supplied in partnership with Rotal Networks. Financial terms were not disclosed.

"Half of the country is already connected to the new NGN and in 2011 we expect to reach 80 percent" said Mr. Itzik Cohen, director of transport and data engineering at Bezeq. "Every week thousands of new homes are being connected and we need to have the optical backbone to support this growth."

BroadLight Announces the Helios Access Processor

BroadLight release a new line of "Helios" embedded processor for the access customer premise equipment (CPE). The 40nm, multi-core processor can be used in Ethernet Access Gateways, VoIP-enabled access, business CPE, security appliances and integrated wireless business routers.

Calix Racks Up Another Broadband Stimulus Win

West Kentucky and Tennessee Telecommunications Cooperative (WK&T) has selected the Calix B6 Ethernet Service Access Nodes (ESANs) and the 700GE family of optical network terminals (ONTs) for its Fiber Forward initiative across western Kentucky and Tennessee.

This latest project means that Calix is now participating in over 55 Broadband Stimulus projects across the country with a cumulative value of over $1 billion in grants, loans and private investment. Network access equipment typically represents a small portion of the overall project budget.

The new project with WK&T will provide this rural region with infrastructure capable of delivering 1 Gbps service speeds to its subscribers. Upon completion, this deployment will be one of the nation's largest Active Ethernet deployments, bringing advanced IPTV services, extremely fast data services, and high-quality voice services to 21,000 homes and 99 critical community institutions such as schools, libraries and public buildings across a nine-county service area. The aggregate value of the award is $124 million, making it one of the largest "last mile" Broadband Stimulus awards and the largest single award focused on wireline services.

WK&T's award consists of a $62 million grant and a $62 million loan to be used for plant engineering, materials, labor, and other costs, including access equipment.

"Our rural region and its subscribers will now enjoy the benefits of a world class fiber network infrastructure," said Trevor Bonnstetter, CEO of WK&T. "We are looking at this project as a strategic investment in the future of our communities, stimulating economic development and providing the residents and businesses in our service area the foundation for long-term economic growth. The combination of Calix's broad residential and business ONT portfolio, our existing investment in the B6 ESANs, and comprehensive network management via the Calix Management System (CMS) provides us with an ideal solution, and gives us confidence that we will be delivering new opportunity to the deserving subscribers of our region."

LightSquared Evaluates Alternative Frequency to Avoid GPS Interference

The FCC granted a two week extension to LightSquared to comment on a study that found significant interference potential between its satellite+LTE network and existing GPS. The study report, which was originally due on June 15, is based on testing done last month at Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico. The two week extension allows LightSquared to analyze additional testing, beyond what had been planned initially. The new testing involved alternative frequency plans that might avoid the interference.

GPS Coalition Opposes LightSquared Extension

The "Coalition to Save our GPS", whose members include leading navigation companies, the Air Transport Association, Deere & Company and others, held a press conference to condemn the further extension granted to LightSquared. The Coalition argues that any threats to the reception of GPS signals will put lives in danger and could have catastrophic effects on systems already deployed. The group has the backing of 33 Senators, 66 Representatives and numerous political committees.

Qualcomm Atheros + Freescale Offer Wi-Fi Chip for M2M and SmartGrid

Qualcomm Atheros introduced a highly integrated Wi-Fi system-in-package (SIP) for microcontroller (MCU) based design. The new module is based on Qualcomm Atheros' 802.11b/g/n single-stream Qualcomm Atheros Align technology and is aimed at machine-to-machine (M2M) communications in the smart home/building/grid markets.

The AR4100 is the industry's smallest FCC-certified SIP package, integrating all Wi-Fi functionality into a low profile 8.3 mm by 9.2 mm LGA package that can be mounted via low-cost PCB manufacturing flows. It is optimized for client applications hosted by low-resource MCUs that send infrequent data packets over the network. MCUs interface to the AR4100 via a simple serial peripheral interface bus (SPI) and will be initially aimed at customers in the smart home, smart grid and smart building markets.

Qualcomm Atheros is collaborating with Freescale Semiconductor to bring the AR4100 to market. The two companies have worked together to develop an implementation for Freescale's Tower development System. The TWR-WIFI-AR4100 is a peripheral module for the Tower System that allows the AR4100 to be quickly added to tower designs based on select Kinetis and Coldfire processors.

Comcast Demos 1 Gbps, IP-enabled STBs, Cloud-based Program Guide

At The Cable Show in Chicago, Comcast CEO Brian L. Roberts showcased a 1 Gbps DOCSIS connection. During the demo, Roberts downloaded all 23 episodes of Season 5 of "30 Rock" – close to nine hours of content – in about 90 seconds.

The demo bonded 32 channels on the company's DOCSIS network in Chicago to deliver one billion bits per second over 11 miles of fiber and coax to the NCTA show floor at McCormick Place Convention Center.

"This demonstration of extreme 1 Gbps speed on our network is another leap forward in innovation, and we're excited to work with developers to see what amazing new applications could take advantage of the next evolution of broadband," Mr. Roberts said.

Roberts also unveiled the next generation Xfinity TV system featuring a new program guide and user interface designed to make the TV screen more interactive, personal and social. The interface will integrate with Facebook. The video content is delivered using the company's traditional MPEG platform. Trials are underway in Georgia.

Intel is supplying the CPU and graphics silicon for new IP set-top boxes required for the service's advanced user interface. The STB is being developed by Pace plc, and will integrate tru2way and IP capability. thePlatform, a video publishing company wholly owned by Comcast, is bringing its cloud-based video publishing system, mpx, as the content management infrastructure for the service.

Comcast has also formed a strategic partnership with Skype . This will enable Comcast customers to communicate through HD video calling on their television.

Aviat to Supply its Trunking Microwave Radio in Maldives

Aviat Networks will supply its recently introduced WTM 6000 trunking microwave radios to Wataniya Telecom Maldives. Since 2008, Aviat Networks has served as the sole microwave backhaul provider for Wataniya Telecom Maldives as it moved from 2G to 3G. The new WTM 6000 long-distance trunking radios will support its transition to Next Generation Networks and eventually to LTE, delivering up to 4Gbps aggregate IP-data throughput in the backhaul network.

Verizon's On-Demand Cloud Computing Solution Achieves PCI Compliance

Verizon's cloud-based Computing as a Service successfully completed a Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) audit for the second year running. The audit ensures that retailers and other organizations that process credit card transactions can move critical payment applications to the Verizon cloud.

To become PCI DSS-validated, Verizon CaaS' physical and virtual infrastructure underwent a comprehensive third-party examination of its policies, procedures and technical systems, as well as an on-site assessment and system wide vulnerability scan for storing, processing and transmitting credit card information.

Dell'Oro: Upgrades Expected for Service Provider Core Routers

The worldwide Service Provider Core Router market grew 11% year-over-year in the first quarter of 2011, its fifth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. In 1Q11, Cisco Systems maintained its dominant position in the core router market, followed by Juniper Networks and Huawei.

"We are on the verge of a major shift in core router technologies and increased market competition," said Shin Umeda, Vice President at Dell'Oro Group. "All of the major vendors have introduced new high capacity and scalable systems, and we believe that service providers will be evaluating, testing, and eventually buying these products in the near future," added Umeda.