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.