Monday, July 4, 2011

comScore: 78 Million Americans Own Smartphones, Up 11% in Latest Quarter

For the three month average period ending in May, 234 million Americans ages 13 and older used mobile devices, according to new data released by comScore. 76.8 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones during the three months ending in May 2011, up 11 percent from the preceding three month period. Google Android ranked as the top operating system with 38.1 percent of U.S. smartphone subscribers, up 5.1 percentage points. Apple strengthened its #2 position with 26.6 percent of the smartphone market, up 1.4 percentage points. RIM ranked third with 24.7 percent share, followed by Microsoft (5.8 percent) and Palm (2.4 percent).

Netflix Charts Expansion in Latin America

Netflix disclosed plans to expand throughout Latin America and the Caribbean later this year with its unlimited movie and TV streaming service. The company plans to offer American, local and global TV shows and movies via a monthly plan. Pricing details have not yet been disclosed.

NSN to Supply GPON for Bulgaria's EVO

EVO Ltd, a leading regional Internet Service Provider in Bulgaria, has awarded a three year contract to Nokia Siemens Networks to supply GPON technology for a network upgrade. EVO has started offering higher bandwidth and new, high-quality data services such as IPTV, to its customers. Specifically, NSN is supplying the customer premise equipment (CPE), the Optical Line Termination (OLT) and services such as installation and maintenance.

"Our goal is to improve the individual experience and satisfaction of our subscribers by providing new high-quality services, and increasing network capacity," said Rosen Velikov, CEO of EVO Ltd. "Nokia Siemens Networks' solution will translate into a more cost-efficient network expansion and also guarantee extremely reliable and high-quality data services to our subscribers."

RADWIN Launches High Capacity 2.5 GHz Wireless for North America

RADWIN introduced its wireless point-to-point solution is ideal for 2.5 GHz license-holders in North America. The RADWIN 2000 2.5 GHz BRS/EBS solution is aimed at carriers, ISPs, public and private organizations such as educational institutions (e.g. colleges, universities and school boards), many of whom were granted 2.5 GHz band licenses and must demonstrate substantial use of this spectrum by November 1, 2011. Otherwise, the licenses could be reclaimed by the FCC.

The RADWIN 2000 Point-to-Point system delivers up to 200 Mbps and up to 16 E1s/T1s with carrier-grade reliability.

Mike Cook, General Manager North America, stated: "The RADWIN 2000 2.5 GHz new BRS/EBS offering enhances our presence in North America as a leading supplier of high performance yet cost-effective wireless communications solutions, while addressing the broadband demand from many different market segments. With RADWIN 2000 2.5 GHz, operators as well as private networks can leverage the 2.5 GHz band, one of the most sought-after spectrum currently available. Moreover, institutions with a scholastic mission can drive education and distance learning initiatives in urban, suburban as well as rural markets."

Verizon Wireless Moves to Tiered Data Plans

Beginning this week, Verizon Wireless will stop offering an unlimited data plan and instead implement usage-based pricing tiers. The company is expected to offer four monthly data tiers: $10 for 75 MB, $30 for 2 GB, $50 for 5 GB and $80 for 10 GB. Verizon Wireless is also planning to implement a monthly fee for Wi-Fi hotspot capability for LTE devices.

GCT Shows 4x4 MIMO WiMAX 2 Chip

GCT Semiconductor introduced a WiMAX 2 (IEEE 802.16m) single-chip solution that integrates RF, MAC and PHY. The monolithic WiMAX 2 single-chip offers a 4x4 Multiple Input Multiple Output (MIMO) system, enabling high-speed wireless broadband communications four to five times faster than existing WiMAX technology.

GCT said its new GDM7225 chip allows for higher data rates and provides backward compatibility with existing 16e mobile WiMAX (IEEE 802.16e) requirements. It features a complete transceiver that supports full coverage of the 2GHz WiMAX band in Japan and other countries, and offers the world's first 4x4 MIMO performance enabled by four independent RF receivers. With GCT's proprietary MIMO modem technology, GDM7225 enables performance at speeds of up to 150 Mbps downlink and 50 Mbps uplink, based on device specifications. In addition, GDM7225 supports multicarrier operation (10MHz + 10MHz) up to 20MHz bandwidth. With its advanced features and high data rate, GDM7225 is designed to serve the growing demands of the WiMAX broadband market.

"We believe WiMAX 2 is the natural next generation option for WiMAX operators to improve network performance cost-effectively and enhance the user-experience," said Dr. Kyeongho "KH" Lee, President and CEO of GCT Semiconductor, Inc. "Our new WiMAX 2 single-chip will power the terminal devices needed by operators that are upgrading their networks. The announcement of GDM7225 today demonstrates our continuing efforts to advance the 4G ecosystem and provide market-proven 4G SoC solutions to our WiMAX and LTE customers."

Taiwan's Chunghwa Telecom Pursues Wi-Fi Offload

In a press event marking its 15th anniversary, Chunghwa Telecom discussed plans to invest NT$200 billion (US$6.94 billion) by 2020 to boost is fiber broadband service, expand its island-wide 3G network, launch 4G services and enable extensive cloud-based offerings.

Some key items on the agenda include:

  • Investing NT$ 5 billion this year in the 3G network by adding 1,250 new 3G base stations to its existing 7,000 3G base stations.

  • Pursue a Wi-Fi mobile data offload strategy with the deployment of 20,000 WiFi hot spots by the end of this year and up to 30,000 in 2012.

  • Provide fiber-based backhaul for other broadband players in Taiwan.

KDDI Picks Ruckus for Extensive Wi-Fi Offload Strategy

KDDI Corporation has selected Ruckus Wireless to supply Wi-Fi products for what is described as "the world's first and largest "instant on" Wi-Fi access and mobile data offload service." The goal is to offload mobile data traffic from its cellular network while providing subscribers with seamless, high-speed wireless access throughout Japan.

Subscribers of KDDI's packet flat rate plans can now use the new KDDI "au Wi-Fi SPOT" service free of charge with their au Android smartphones in over 10,000 locations initially, scaling to 100,000 locations by March 2012.

KDDI subscribers are automatically authenticated to KDDI au Wi-Fi hotspots using credentials embedded within each phone over secure and encrypted connections.KDDI is introduceing bundled plans that include both 3G and Wi-Fi traffic in a variety of options. The charging is unified, and access to both 3G and Ruckus-driven Wi-Fi networks is a single seamless experience.

KDDI's new Wi-Fi overlay leverages its national WiMAX network to backhaul data traffic from each Wi-Fi hotspot to KDDI's mobile network core. Each Ruckus ZoneFlex Wi-Fi access point (AP) connects wirelessly to KDDI's WiMAX infrastructure. KDDI's initial focus is offloading data traffic indoors. For its first phase, KDDI is deploying more than 10,000 Ruckus ZoneFlex 7363 and 7341 dual-band 802.11 indoor access points in venues throughout Japan. A WiMAX router connected to each ZoneFlex 7300 via a USB port. KDDI is using Ruckus controller and network management systems to centrally manage ZoneFlex APs, and the Ruckus FlexMaster Wi-Fi system management platform to provide statistical traffic analysis, reporting and troubleshooting on a national scale.

"Dramatic changes in customer behavior and the related growth in mobile data traffic from the use of smartphones are having a profound impact on user expectations, service delivery and network infrastructure build-out," said Tadashi Egawa, head of KDDI's Service Development and Wi-Fi Business Strategy Department.

"We selected Ruckus products and technologies because they not only outperformed competitive alternatives but were specifically designed to be easily managed and scaled to support service provider infrastructures such as ours," said Egawa. "Ruckus Wi-Fi technology is delivering much better coverage, interference mitigation and deployment flexibility that we couldn't find in any other supplier and at a cost point that enables nationwide deployment. They meet our needs and specifications for carrier grade equipment."

Sprint Signs Sub-Tenant for Campus in Overland Park

FishNet Security, which provides IT services, signed a sublease agreement with Sprint and will move 175 employees and the company's headquarters to the Sprint World Headquarters Campus in Overland Park, Kansas, in early 2012.

Founded in Kansas City in 1996, FishNet Security reported $316 million in revenue in 2010 and is expected to surpass $400 million in revenue in 2011. The company currently has over 400 employees nationwide, with 175 employees located across three buildings in Kansas City's Crossroads district.