Friday, August 31, 2012

T-Mobile Cranks LTE to 100 Mbps in Germany

Deutsche Telekom announced a new LTE performance tier that promises 100 Mbps downlinks to smarthphones in certain coverage areas in Germany.

The LTE Speed option can be purchased from September 4 for EUR 9.95/month with all Complete Mobile rates. The data volume included in the selected rate also doubles over the standard price.

The new tier is being launched at the same time as the first LTE-capable smartphones, such as the HTC One XL and Samsung Galaxy SIII LTE.

Without the LTE Speed option, customers can get downlinks of up tp 21.6 Mbps.

Telekom noted that by the end of this year, it plans to have activated its LTE network in 100 cities . Already more than 10 million customers in rural regions are covered by the LTE 800 network. In addition, Telekom offers download speeds of up to 42 Mbps in its entire UMTS network, reaching some 87 percent of Germany's population.

  • Earlier this year, Deutsche Telekom, in collaboration with Huawei, announced the  first LTE 4×4 MIMO field trial, achieving download data rates of up to 250 Mbps. The 4×4 MIMO field trial utilized Huawei's SingleRAN LTE solution.
  • Deutsche Telekom launched its LTE network in Cologne in June 2011 using the 1.8 GHz frequency band and Huawei's SingleRAN LTE as one solution. 

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Deutsche Telekom to Offer Unlimited Spotify - Exclusive Deal

Deutsche Telekom announced an exclusive deal to offer unlimited Spotify music streaming in Germany as an add-on option for its mobile and broadband customers.

Beginning in October 2012, customers will be able to listen to more than 18 million music titles via their mobile phone, tablet and PC - both online offline. Music streamed from Spotify will not count against any data volume caps.

The Spotify app is available for desktop, tablet PCs and a range of mobile platforms including iPhone, Android, Windows Phone or BlackBerry. Spotify also has a handy Offline mode, which means that you can sync up to 3,333 tracks to up to three devices, for you to enjoy wherever you are, with or without internet access, such as on a plane, train or on the beach.

The exclusive cooperation agreement will be valid for at least one year.

Deutsche Telekom said the deal represents another important step for its partnering strategy.

"Music streaming is the business model of the future, and we are proud to be the first German telecommunications provider to offer our customers the pleasure of unlimited music as part of our tariffs. Spotify is an outstanding partner for this endeavor," says Niek Jan van Damme, Management Board Member of Deutsche Telekom for Germany.

SingTel's ConnectPlus E-Line Service Rides Global ASON + MPLS-TP Backbone

Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel) launched its ConnectPlus suite of global connectivity services, linking key business hubs in Asia, Europe and USA at rates up to 10 Gbps.

SingTel’s ConnectPlus International Private Leased Circuit (IPLC) and Ethernet Line (E-Line) services are delivered over SingTel’s meshed network of extensive submarine cable assets using Automatically Switching Optical Network (ASON) and the Multi-Protocol Label Switching – Transport Profile (MPLS-TP).

The intelligent optical network is able to detect faults swiftly and automatically switch data traffic to backup routes within 50 milliseconds.

SingTel noted that it is the first service provider in Asia Pacific to deploy MPLS - TP globally. This allows enterprises to increase their bandwidth by increments of 1Mbps, thereby offering them more cost-effective connections. Next year, SingTel will leverage this platform to deliver dedicated point-to-multipoint and electronic Bandwidth-On-Demand (eBOD) for E-Line services.

Taiwan's Academia Sinica Deploys HPC Cluster with Extreme

Taiwan's Academia Sinica, an educational research institute, has selected Extreme Networks' scalable data center switches as part of a network upgrade to support the demands of its high performance computing (HPC) and cloud network.

At Academica Sinica, a team of physicists within the Academia Sinica Grids (ASG) research area are analyzing the particles created in collisions within the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world's largest and most powerful particle accelerator.   ASGC implemented more than 2,500 blade servers from Extreme Networks in its computer facility with 52 racks in 135m^2. With more than 5.4petabytes of storage capacity including disk and tape, it represents one of Taiwan's largest data centers.

ASGC is using Extreme Networks BlackDiamond 8900 series fabric switches, comprising a BlackDiamond 8810 chassis fully loaded with BlackDiamond 8900 module cards.

Kaspersky's Forensic Analysis Examines Destructive Wiper Virus

Kaspersky Lab released digital forensic analysis of  a destructive malware program, codenamed Wiper, which was discovered in Iran in May.

Although the malware code itself has note been identified, an analysis of the hard disks of machines destroyed by Wiper, including its unique data wiping pattern and destructive behavior, suggest that it may be related to Duqu and Stuxnet.  During an attack, Wiper destroys all traces of itself, wipes critical data from the disk, and corrupts the file system so thoroughly that the machine cannot be rebooted and no data can be recovered or restored.

Kaspersky Lab noted that no additional wiping incidents that followed the same pattern occurred, and no detections of the malware have appeared in Kaspersky Lab’s proactive protection.

Shamoon, another destrcutive malware which appeared in August 2012, is not believed to be related.  Further analysis is posted.

SAIC to Split in Two with One Focus on Cyber + Big Data

Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) announced plans to split into two stand alone businesses:

  • A technical services business focused on government technical services and enterprise IT businesses.  It will be one of the largest, pure-play government services companies.  The spin-off will make it independent of potential OCI restrictions caused by its current relationship with other SAIC business pursuits, specifically those involved in developing ISR solutions and products for the Department of Defense and Intelligence agencies.  Pro forma revenue for the fiscal year ending January 31, 2013 for the future technical services business is estimated at $4 billion.
  • A solutions-focused business delivering science and technology solutions in three high-growth markets that reflect high priority, long-term global needs – national security, engineering and health. These markets are experiencing a convergence of the physical and digital worlds. They operate in complex, data rich environments.  This business will offer mission-critical systems that leverage SAIC's rapidly emerging technologies in cyber defense and big data analytics.  Separation from SAIC's services business will allow this business to have unimpeded access to significant new business opportunities in both Major Defense Acquisition Programs (MDAP) and Programs of Record (POR) in multiple Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence (C4ISR) regimes.  Pro forma revenue for the fiscal year ending January 31, 2013 for the future solutions-focused business is estimated at $7 billion.

"In this next step of our strategic plan we configure ourselves for the future.  Our two new companies will be designed so that their businesses can be more differentiated and more competitive in their own space.  More importantly, that addressable space will expand for each as we eliminate the burden of organizational conflicts of interest (OCI)," said John Jumper, chairman and chief executive officer. "This affords both companies an excellent opportunity to combine optimized cost structures, unrestricted access to their respective markets, and the leveraging of decades of SAIC's scientific and engineering excellence to unleash the growth and value we can deliver to our customers, employees and shareholders."

  • In 2010, SAIC acquired CloudShield Technologies, a supplier of carrier-grade cybersecurity and management solutions. Financial terms were not disclosed.  CloudShield offers a CS-4000 next generation trusted network security platform for protecting critical carrier and enterprise infrastructure.  The CS-4000 deep packet inspection platform allows carriers and enterprise customers to integrate a variety of subscriber data privacy products. It also brings significant improvements to data rates and network security while reducing the total cost of ownership of the network architecture.

    The CS-4000's architecture combines the power of CloudShield's fourth-generation deep packet inspection (DPI) capabilities with the most advanced multi-core, general-purpose processing in a single converged platform for scalable, active network solutions. The system is hardened both at the operating system and with physical security countermeasures protecting the system itself. 

Hibernia Atlantic Offers Amazon Web Services Direct Connect

Hibernia Atlantic is now supporting Amazon Web Services' Direct Connect, which enables customers to establish private connectivity utilizing Hibernia’s network between AWS and his/her network presence.

Hibernia said AWS Direct Connect can often reduce network costs, increase bandwidth throughput, and provide a more consistent network experience than Internet-based connectivity.

“We are proud to join the AWS Partner Network and to support its efforts to increase network connectivity options,” states Eric Gutshall, President of Wholesale for Hibernia Atlantic. “Through this program, Hibernia can offer its services to those customers accessing the AWS Cloud and provide further network connectivity options on-demand to meet growing requirements for customers’ public and private needs.”

Hibernia Atlantic operates a global network connecting North America, Europe and Asia with its own submarine and terrestrial network between the United States, Canada and Europe. Hibernia offers over 120 redundant network PoPs on over 24,000 kilometers of fiber. Hibernia provides secure and diverse dedicated Ethernet, DTM and optical- level services, including GigE, 10G and LanPhy wavelengths and traditional SONET/SDH services.

  • AWS Direct Connect uses 802.1q VLANs. The dedicated connection can be partitioned into multiple virtual interfaces, enabling the same connection to access public resources such as objects stored in Amazon S3 using public IP address space, and private resources such as Amazon EC2 instances running within an Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) using private IP space, while maintaining network separation between the public and private environments. Virtual interfaces can be reconfigured at any time.

BT and Rostelecom Sign Interconnection Agreement

BT and Rostelecom, Russia’s national telecommunications operator, announced a new network interconnection agreement. The deal improves BT’s ability to serve its corporate customers across all regions of Russia with its BT Connect portfolio of intelligent network services.

BT already serves around 400 large organisations in Russia, including many of the world’s leading global multinational companies with operations in the country.

Rostelecom's national network consists of approximately 500,000 km of backbone infrastructure.

Ciena Revenue at $474 Million - Weak Spending in Europe

Ciena reported revenue of $474.1 million for its  fiscal third quarter ended July 31, 2012, up 8.9% from the same period last year and down 0.7% from the preceding quarter.  Ciena's net loss for the fiscal third quarter 2012 was $(29.8) million, or $(0.30) per common share, which compares to a GAAP net loss of $(31.5) million, or $(0.33) per common share, for the fiscal third quarter 2011.

On a conference call, Ciena executives said macro economics continued to impact its customers, as the market in Europe deterioted while North America remained steady.  The company said major players are making next gen architecture decisions and that it is winning strategic projects, although rollouts are slow. 

The outlook for Q4 is for revenue in the range of $455 to $480 million, lower than predicted earlier in the year, due in part to weakness in Europe.  

“We continue to win in the market and take share as demonstrated by a solid operating performance in the third quarter,” said Gary Smith, president and CEO of Ciena. “We are experiencing the effects of ongoing macroeconomic challenges and slower than expected roll-outs of new design wins. However, our approach to the market is working, our OPn architecture vision is gaining traction with customers globally, and our view of the long-term opportunity is unchanged.”

Some other notes:
  • Ciena ended the period with 4,463 employees.
  • There were no 10% customers in the period
  • Gross margin was 39.6%
  • There were 13 new 100G customers in the quarter, bringing the total to 44.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Video: 2013 State of the Enterprise Cloud Report

AT&T U-Verse TV Adds Facebook App

AT&T began offering a Facebbok on TV app to its U-Verse TV customers.

The Facebook on TV interactive app lets the user view news feeeds, post status updates, interact with friends and easily share info on the show they are watching.  U-verse TV customers can add up to ten different accounts on a single receiver.

"The TV experience is becoming more social, and we've always focused on delivering interactive TV apps that are more engaging and provide an overall better experience," said Maria Dillard, Vice President of U-verse and Video Products, AT&T Home Solutions. "This app gives U-verse TV and High Speed Internet customers the ability to share information about what they're watching on their TV with their remote, on any U-verse TV screen. It's another example of how we continue to enhance and bring more value to the U-verse experience."

Seeking a Better Paradigm for Global Standards

IEEE, Internet Architecture Board (IAB), Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), Internet Society and World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) reached agreement for establishing a modern paradigm for global, open standards.

The agreement is premised on the understanding that the economics of global markets - fueled by technological innovation - drive global deployment of standards, regardless of their formal status within traditional bodies of national representation.

The OpenStand principles demand:
  • cooperation among standards organizations;
  • adherence to due process, broad consensus, transparency, balance and openness in standards development;
  • commitment to technical merit, interoperability, competition, innovation and benefit to humanity;
  • availability of standards to all, and
  • voluntary adoption.
Standards developed and adopted via the OpenStand principles include IEEE standards for the Internet’s physical connectivity, IETF standards for end-to-end global Internet interoperability and the W3C standards for the World Wide Web.

“New dynamics and pressures on global industry have driven changes in the ways that standards are developed and adopted around the world,” said Steve Mills, president of the IEEE Standards Association. “Increasing globalization of markets, the rapid advancement of technology and intensifying time-to-market demands have forced industry to seek more efficient ways to define the global standards that help expand global markets. The OpenStand principles foster the more efficient international standardization paradigm that the world needs.”

“The Internet and World Wide Web have fueled an economic and social transformation, touching billions of lives. Efficient standardization of so many technologies has been key to the success of the global Internet,” said Russ Housley, IETF chair. “These global standards were developed with a focus toward technical excellence and deployed through collaboration of many participants from all around the world. The results have literally changed the world, surpassing anything that has ever been achieved through any other standards-development model.”

Teradek's Wi-Fi Hotspot Can Bond 6 3G/4G USB Modems

Teradek introduced a rugged, mobile bonded cellular hotspot that provides six USB ports for 3G/4G modems, dual Ethernet ports, and built-in dual band a/b/g/n MIMO WiFi. The aggregated uplink can be any combination of 3G/4G service, satellite, terrestrial microwave, etc.  The device is powered with the built in AC/DC adapter, or through a V-mount or Anton Bauer Gold-mount adapter for mobile power.  MIMO Wi-Fi enables the device to be placed in locations with optical signal reception.

The device is targeted at broadcast professionals, such as camera crews in the field that need video file upload capabilities.

CSA Big Data Working Group Looks at Security and Scalability

The Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) and Fujitsu Laboratories of America has set up a  Big Data Working Group to address the security and privacy issues magnified today by the velocity, volume, and variety of big data, such as large-scale cloud infrastructures, diversity of data sources and formats, streaming nature of data acquisition and high volume inter-cloud migration.

The group is chaired by Sreeranga Rajan of Fujitsu Laboratories of America with co-chairs Neel Sundaresan of eBay and Wilco Van Ginkel of Verizon.

Specifically, the CSA Big Data Working Group will be identifying scalable techniques for data-centric security and privacy problems. The group will look to provide research and guides on six specific themes:

  • Big data-Scale Crypto
  • Cloud Infrastructure
  • Data Analytics for Security
  • Framework and Taxonomy
  • Policy and Governance
  • Privacy

“Everyday 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are being created resulting in a myriad number of data security and cloud-computing security concerns,” said Sreeranga Rajan, Director of Software Systems Innovation at Fujitsu Laboratories of America. “By collaborating as a global community of thought leaders and researchers, we are not only looking to help the industry overcome these challenges but also to leverage new opportunities for the monitoring and detection of security threats enabled by big data.”

ADTRAN Enables Cloud-based WLAN Service with Bluesocket

ADTRAN upgraded its Bluesocket virtual Wireless LAN (vWLAN) solution to give service providers and value-added resellers (VARs) the ability to deliver cloud-based Wi-Fi service offerings.  The Bluesocket solution can now support hundreds of customer WLANs, offering a cloud-based WLAN service without the expense of placing a hardware controller on the customer’s site.

ADTRAN’s software-based vWLAN solution utilizes virtualization and allows the controller to be based at the service provider’s network operations center (NOC) while the data sessions remain at the end-user’s LAN, thus avoiding the need to backhaul user traffic. With the control and management based at the NOC rather than tied to the end-user’s LAN, unprecedented levels of on-demand scale can be achieved.

"ADTRAN’s vWLAN solution is optimal for service providers since it offers software-based, virtualized control and management that is centrally located at their network operations center," stated Mads Lillelund, general manager of ADTRAN’s Bluesocket Business Group. "Even better, service providers have the flexibility to sell the vWLAN solution as part of a resale, managed or cloud service. vWLAN as a cloud-based service opens up new opportunities for service providers in a highly competitive market.”

OIF to Demo Multi-Vendor 100G Interoperability

The Optical Internetworking Forum will host Europe's first demonstration of multi-vendor 100 Gbps channels at the upcoming ECOC 2012 in Amsterdam, Sept. 17-19, 2012.

The demo will show the issued CEI-25G-LR and the draft CEI-28G-VSR implementation agreements and includes seven component suppliers and two test equipment vendors. The OIF's Physical and Link Layer demonstrations will feature host ASICs with VSR SERDES, host PCB traces, optical module connectors, module retimers, active copper cable assemblies, optical transceivers, host ASICs with LR SERDES, backplane PCBs and backplane connectors.

“This demonstration of CEI-28G-VSR shows the ability to reach 100G for next-generation small form factor modules,” said Ed Frlan of Semtech and the OIF PLL Interoperability Working Group chair. “The CEI-25G-LR and CEI-28G-VSR electrical interface and signaling schemes being tested for interoperability support both electrical and optical 100G applications.”
The following companies are participating in the OIF Interoperability 2012; Applied Micro, Avago Technologies, Inphi, Luxtera, Molex, Semtech, and TE Connectivity.  Test equipment used in the demonstration is supplied by Agilent and Tektronix.

Sprint Activates 4 More LTE Markets

Sprint activated LTE service in Baltimore, Md., Gainesville, Ga., Manhattan/Junction City, Kan., and Sedalia, Mo. The carrier's Network Vision upgrade program also bring all-new 3G service to Baltimore, Boston and Washington, D.C.

Sprint 4G LTE made its debut in 15 cities on July 15, and the company plans to introduce more markets to the network in 2012. By the end of 2013, Sprint expects to have largely completed the build-out of its all-new 4G LTE and 3G nationwide network.

TeliaSonera IC and Hibernia Target Media Distribution

TeliaSonera International Carrier (TSIC) and Hibernia have formed a strategic partnership for global media distribution.

Under the deal, Hibernia Media will acquire TSIC's MediaConnect business, while TSIC's award-winning fiber backbone will form the core of the new network. Both companies's media networks are based on the NetInsight NIMBRA MSR platform, making for easier integration. TSIC owns and operates one of the world's largest fiber backbones.

"The mixture of our on-net media PoPs and venues in the US, with TeliaSonera International Carrier's added reach to a broad market in Europe, gives our customers extraordinary access to content origination, aggregation, and distribution channels over a robust fiber backbone," says Bjarni Thorvardarson, Chief Executive Officer for Hibernia Atlantic.

Spirent Offers Hybrid Wireless Location Testing

Spirent Communications introduced a Hybrid Location Technology Solution (HLTS) combining Wi-Fi, Assisted Global Navigation Satellite System (A-GNSS), Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) sensor and cellular positioning technologies.  The solution provides repeatable and reliable lab-based characterization of mobile devices supporting the hybrid location technologies being developed to provide accurate user location everywhere, including indoors – the most common usage scenario.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Brocade Shows VXLAN Gateway in Application Delivery Switch (ADX)

Brocade demonstrated the ability to connect VXLAN (Virtual eXtensible Local Area Network) environments to the traditional Internet as well as run applications that span VXLAN and existing non-VXLAN networks by using its ADX Series application delivery switches.

The VXLAN Gateway solution, which was developed in partnership with VMware, enables customers to virtualize their networks at enterprise and service provider scale, and with hardware-based performance.  Applications can span VXLAN and existing non-VXLAN networks.

Brocade said network virtualization is a core element of its SDN vision, and VXLAN enables cloud service providers to build virtual networks on top of their existing infrastructure. By leveraging Ethernet technology, VXLAN enables large numbers of virtual domains to be created above existing networks.

"By working closely with VMware, and leveraging the Brocade ADX application delivery switch, we are excited to be demonstrating VXLAN gateway functionality. This innovation will be essential to enabling real-world deployments of VXLAN and other overlay networking technologies," said Jason Nolet, vice president of data center networking, Brocade.

"Networking is a key resource of today's software-defined data center and its integration and alignment with other virtualized services is important. We are pleased Brocade is demonstrating the Brocade VXLAN gateway, which will enable customers to use VXLAN's scalability with applications and databases running in non-VXLAN networks," said Allwyn Sequeira, CTO & vice president, Networking and Security, VMware.

Ericsson Supplies Packet Optical for California's Digital 395 Project

Praxis Associates has selected Ericsson as the sole optical transport supplier for the California Broadband Cooperative’s (CBC) Digital 395 Broadband Project. 

Ericsson’s packet optical transport platform (POTP), the SPO 1400, will deliver broadband services to schools, hospitals, government agencies and other critical facilities along a 583-mile fiber route in the Eastern Sierra Mountains in California.  The project’s service area encompasses 36 communities, six Indian reservations, two military bases, 26,000 households and 2,500 businesses.

  • Ericsson’s SPO 1400 family, which leverages a Unified Packet/OTN Switch Fabric, integrates OTN, SONET/SDH and PDH support and performance, L2 connection oriented Ethernet switching and aggregation and WDM technology. The product family previously scaled from 2-service slots and 40G of capacity to a chassis-platform offering 16-service slots and 800G of capacity.  Its latest SPO 1480 scales the solution to 32/40 service slots and a switching fabric with 3.2 Tbps of capacity. It brings fully non-blocking ODU-0 granularity to the metro regional aggregation and it also introduces 100 Gbps Coherent DWDM interfaces.

    Ericsson said the value proposition of its SPO POTP family is the ability to deliver low and high order TDM and packet and wavelength services across the Metro Access and Regional network on a common set of platforms with a single multilayer IP Transport Network Management Systems (IPT NMS). The hybrid TDM-WDM-Packet architecture provides the flexibility to optimize node configurations for location and cost with the ability to scale optical capacity without sacrificing shelf switching capacity.

Xilinx Acquires PetaLogix for Embedded Linux Tools

Xilinx has acquired PetaLogix, a developer of embedded Linux tools, for an undisclosed sum.

PetaLogix was founded in 2005 by Dr. John Williams when he was a Research Fellow at the University of Queensland, before spinning out as a privately held company in 2007.

"PetaLogix has been a key player behind the growing adoption of Xilinx programmable technologies within the embedded market, first providing a Linux distribution for MicroBlaze and PowerPC processors, and now a Linux distribution and tool chain for the Zynq™-7000 All Programmable SoC," said Tomas Evensen, chief scientist for embedded software at Xilinx. "With their technology, tool set and expertise, the PetaLogix team is uniquely positioned to help Xilinx further shorten time-to-market and aggressively drive growth in the embedded space, and across all key vertical market segments we serve."

Telstra Intensifies LTE Rollout in Key Cities

Telstra will more than double its 4G coverage area in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth over the next 10 months. The network expansion will see more than 1,000 new 4G/LTE base stations installed by mid 2013. When all new sites are live, Telstra’s 4G service will reach approximately 66 per cent of the Australian population – up from 40 per cent today.

The first new 4G sites have just been launched in Bondi and in the North Shore rail tunnel in Sydney.

"Our 160,000 4G smartphone customers are already telling us that 4G is improving their mobile experience, with research showing they’re more likely to reach for their device over their PC to search the web, social network and bank online -- compared with 3G smartphone owners. Our network expansion kicks off in Sydney today where we’re introducing some of the world’s fastest mobile internet speeds to customers visiting iconic Bondi Beach and to underground rail passengers travelling on the North Shore line between Central and North Sydney stations, helping our customers stay connected and entertained on their commute," said Brendon Riley, Telstra’s Chief Operations Officer.

Some additional notes from Telstra:
  • Australians are now using more than 340,000 Telstra 4G mobile broadband devices and more than 160,000 4G smartphones.
  • Analysis of Telstra’s customer base shows men have been fastest to embrace 4G smartphones – accounting for 56 per cent of Telstra’s 4G smartphone base vs 44 per cent women.
  • Queenslanders lead the pack when it comes to 4G smartphone adoption accounting for 26 per cent of 4G smartphone subscribers, followed by Victorians (accounting for 22 per cent) and customers in NSW (21 per cent).
  • Aussies aged 18-29 years old are most enamoured with 4G smartphones representing 24 per cent of Telstra’s of subscribers. The 40-49 age group are the next biggest buyers (23.5 per cent), followed by 30-39 year olds (representing 22 per cent of Telstra’s 4G smartphone base).             
  • 4G smartphone owners spend on average 7 hours a week surfing the web on their mobiles.
  • Half of 4G smartphone owners surveyed say search the internet (e.g. Google) more on their 4G smartphones than they do on a PC.
  • Half say they use their 4G smartphone as the primary way to access social networking.
  • 28 per cent say they access online banking more on their 4G mobiles than their computer.

Cisco and EMC Offer "Three Paths to the Cloud"

Cisco and EMC jointly announced a "three paths to the cloud" strategy that combines custom-design infrastructure, validated reference architectures, and pre-integrated converged infrastructure.  The plan includes new joint reference architectures, aligned channel partner incentives, and integrated customer support to speed customers' path to the cloud.

The "three paths to the cloud" include:

  • Implement a custom-designed infrastructure with best-of-breed products
  • Install validated, easy-to-deploy reference architectures with Cisco solutions for EMC VSPEX Proven Infrastructure. The two new Cisco Validated Designs (CVD) are Cisco Solutions for EMC VSPEX for Microsoft Hyper-V Architectures and Cisco Solutions for EMC VSPEX for VMware vSphere 5.0 Architectures.
  • Purchase a pre-integrated converged infrastructure with VCE Vblock System.

Cisco and EMC have been strategic partners for a decade. More than 200 channel partners have been trained to resell and deploy EMC VSPEX with Cisco Unified Data Center.

T-Systems Launches vCloud Powered by VMware

T-Systems is an early partner for VMware vCloud Data Center Services, which is being integrated into the T-Systems' Dynamic cloud portfolio. The carrier is the first to offer this capability in Europe.

vCloud is an Infrastructure-as-a-Service solution that allows companies to expand their internal IT resources with the cloud capacities of T-Systems. AutoScouts24, an online car marketplace for Europe, is the first customer. Actum/G2, one of the leading digital marketing agencies in the Czech Republic, is another customer.

Deutsche Telekom is also transforming its own IT services towards the cloud while accelerating its innovation speed and time-to-market.

TI Extends its Keystone Multicore DSPs with OpenMP

Texas Instruments (TI) has added support for OpenMP Application Program Interface (API) to its KeyStone-based TMS320C66x multicore DSPs.

The OpenMP API is a portable, scalable model that provides a flexible interface for developing parallel applications in markets such as mission critical, industrial automation, embedded vision, medical imaging, video surveillance, audio and video infrastructure and high performance computing.

“With the industry’s first production release of OpenMP API support on their multicore DSPs, TI is truly making multicore programming easier for developers,” said Michael Wong, CEO of OpenMP. “TI’s support of the OpenMP API on its KeyStone-based C66x multicore DSPs allows developers to easily migrate their applications to take advantage of power and performance. This is an important milestone for all developers in the embedded processing space.”

Monday, August 27, 2012

VMware Builds its SDN Capabilities

At its VMworld event in San Francisco, VMware unveiled its new VMware vCloud Suite 5.1 for software-defined data centers.

The goal is to abstract all hardware resources and pool them into aggregate capacity, enabling tenants to have their own virtual datacenters with a logically isolated collection of all the virtual compute, storage, networking and security resources. VMware vCloud Suite 5.1 introduces a number of virtualization, software-defined data center services, policy-based provisioning, disaster recovery, and application and operations management capabilities.

 On the networking side, the vCloud Suite now enables the dynamic creation of virtual networks and services that are decoupled and independent from the physical network hardware. Specifically, the new vCloud Networking and Security allows for the creation of logical networks for each application or tenant. The system can isolate the network traffic between applications belonging to the same organization – regardless of physical network constraints or boundaries.

VMware said that by creating a pool of network capacity on top of any network hardware, its vCloud Networking and Security can support tens of thousands of isolated virtual networks with the same operational ease of creating and managing VMs.

VMware vCloud Networking and Security integrates the VXLAN protocol and VMware vShield Edge and application security service for virtualizing the network – from virtual switching to virtualized layer 4-7 services. It will also include an extensibility framework to support the integration of a wide range of third-party network and security solutions.

Juniper Expands its 10GbE Switching Line

Juniper Networks introduced the EX4550, the newest member of Juniper’s 10GbE switching line.

The EX 4550, which is available with both fiber and copper interfaces, includes Juniper’s unique Virtual Chassis technology, enabling multiple interconnected switches to operate as a single, logical device.

The EX4550 Ethernet Switch offers 32 wire-speed GbE or 10GbE pluggable ports in a compact one rack unit base platform. It includes two expansion slots, one in front and one in back, that accommodate optional expansion modules that can increase the EX4550’s density to 48 wire-speed GbE or 10GbE ports, delivering 480 Gbps of Layer 2 and Layer 3 connectivity.

The switch can participate in the same Virtual Chassis configuration with EX4200 Ethernet switches, making its suitable for customers migrating from 1GbE to 10GbE servers.

India Sets 800 & 1800 MHz Spectrum Auction for November

India's Department of Telecommunications will conduct an e-auction of spectrum in 1800MHz and 800MHz bands in November.  A document published by the regulator describes qualification criteria and timelines for companies planning to bid for the spectrum.

Holders of CMTS/ UAS licenses will be treated as ‘Existing Player’.  Companies seeking to enter the market (not an existing licensee) need to get a Unified License (UL), which can only be issued to an Indian company with a maximum foreign equity of 74% as per extant guidelines. Hence, foreign entities desirous to participate in the auction(s) will need to form an Indian company accordingly to obtain a Unified Licence (UL).

For the1800MHz band auction, the spectrum Block Size shall be 1.25MHz (Paired). A minimum of 8 blocks each of 1.25MHz (10MHz) will be put to auction in all service areas. In addition, a provision will be made for spectrum up to 3 blocks each of 1.25MHz (3.75 MHz), wherever available, after reserving spectrum for refarming against allocation in 900 MHz band for the licences expiring during 2014 to 2016 and also taking care of guard band requirements, for topping up the 8 blocks of spectrum put to auction i.e. up to a total of 11 blocks each of 1.25MHz to meet the requirement of new entrants, if such an exigency arises, and to ensure that the entire quantum of spectrum of 10MHz in each service area is allocated in the auction.  The existing operators will be allowed to take maximum two blocks of 1.25MHz each in each service area.

For the 800MHz band auction, the spectrum Block Size shall be 1.25MHz (Paired).  A minimum of 3 blocks each of 1.25MHz (3.75MHz), will be put to auction in all service areas. In addition, a provision will be made for spectrum of one block of 1.25MHz, wherever available, for topping up the 3 blocks of spectrum put to auction, to meet the requirement of new entrants, if such an exigency arises, and to ensure that the entire quantum of spectrum of 3.75MHz in each service area is allocated in the auction.

The existing operators will be allowed to bid for 1 block of 1.25MHz in each service area. New entrants will be required to bid for minimum of 2 blocks each of 1.25MHz in each service area.

Start of the e-auction of 1800MHz Band is slated for 12-November-2012.  The 800 MHz e-auction will start 2 days from the day of close of the e-auction of 1800MHz Band.

Cisco and VMware Tighten Strategic Partnership

Cisco and VMware are expanding their strategic partnership to include integrated products and solutions for software defined data centers.  The companies are building dedicated engineering teams to collaborate on deeper integration across the VMware cloud infrastructure and management stacks and Cisco's Data Center Networking and Fabric Computing platforms. 

The companies said their goal is to launch a new set of solutions designed to provide customers unprecedented levels of agile compute and network services, workload and workspace mobility, end-to-end visibility, and ease of troubleshooting across their physical and virtual infrastructures.

Some highlights of the announcement at VMworld:
  • VMware will integrate the Cisco Nexus 1000V Series Switches with the new VMware vCloud Suite 5.1 and other VMware products.
  • Cisco and VMware will develop Cisco Unified Computing Systems (UCS)-based cloud solutions, which will bundle Cisco virtual networking, virtual services and management such as the Nexus 1000V virtual switch, CSR 1000V cloud router, ASA 1000V cloud firewall, virtual WAAS for WAN optimization, and Intelligent Automation for Cloud with VMware vSphere 5.1, VMware vCloud Suite 5.1 and complementary management offerings.
  • Cisco will resell VMware vCloud Suite 5.1, which will feature enhanced interoperability with Cisco Nexus 1000V.
  • VMware and Cisco are expanding their joint solutions with Cisco VXI and VMware View to introduce new integrated solutions for SMB and ROBO customers featuring Cisco e-Series UCS servers and VMware View®.
  • Cisco and VMware will also provide Cisco Validated Designs and reference architectures to simplify and accelerate customer implementation of these joint solutions.
  • Cisco and VMware joint solutions will be made available for VCE, as well as ecosystem partners, to help drive customer adoption of its industry-leading converged infrastructure platforms. Cisco and VMware remain strongly committed, along with EMC, to the VCE partnership.
"The next-generation datacenter will enable customers to capture the value of VMware cloud infrastructure and management stacks along with the next wave of Cisco innovations in hardware, ASICs, systems and network programmability to deliver unprecedented scalability, security, diagnostics and policy management. As the leader in networking, Cisco looks forward to continuing to lead the industry in partnership with VMware," stated Rob Lloyd, Executive Vice President, Cisco.

In June 2012, Cisco outlined its vision for the Open Network Environment (ONE), promising multilayered "full-duplex" programmability across network hardware platforms and its operating systems based on application dynamics. The goal is to enable flexible, application-driven customization of network infrastructures through a rich set of platform APIs, agents and controllers, and overlay network technologies.

The ONE framework consists of three fundamental technology components: Platform Interfaces, Agents and Controllers , and Virtual Overlays. Initial deliverables of the Cisco Open Network Environment include:
  • a developer kit with platform APIs across Cisco IOS, IOS-XR, and NX-OS Software
  • Proof-of-concept controllers and SDN/OpenFlow agents allowing academic research partners to universities to partition or "slice" their campus network to enable academic research on SDN with consistent policy management.
  • Overlay network solutions that include the Cisco Nexus 1000V for scalable, multitenant cloud deployments.

Cisco said its open programmability architecture complements current approaches to software-defined networking while encompassing the entire solution stack from transport to management and orchestration. The new virtual overlay networks capability for multi-tenant cloud deployments with the Cisco Nexus 1000V virtual switch will feature OpenStack support, programmability, multi-hypervisor capability, and VXLAN gateway functionality. The company will also provide proof-of-concept OpenFlow v1.0 agents on the Cisco Catalyst 3750-X and 3560-X Series Switches.

In July 2012, VMware agreed to acquire Nicira, a start-up focused on software-defined networking (SDN) for approximately $1.05 billion in cash plus approximately $210 million of assumed unvested equity awards. The goal of SDN is to allow enterprises and service providers to create the most flexible network topologies that seamlessly span any cloud environment.

Nicira, which is based in Palo Alto, California, has developed a software-based Network Virtualization Platform (NVP) that creates a distributed virtual network infrastructure in cloud data centers that is completely decoupled and independent from physical network hardware. The company says its technology "decouples and isolates virtual networks from the underlying network hardware, like server virtualization decouples and isolates virtual machines from the underlying server hardware."

Nicira's NVP software is implemented at the network edge and managed by distributed clustered controller architecture. The system forms a thin software layer that treats the physical network as an IP backplane. This approach allows the creation of virtual networks that have the same properties and services as physical networks, such as security and QoS policies, L2 reachability, and higher-level service capabilities such as stateful firewalling.

Juniper Scales its Virtual Gateway Security

Juniper Networks is expanding the capabilities of its vGW Virtual Gateway solution to support hybrid private/public cloud security as well as Service Provider business models in cloud security.

Juniper's vGW Virtual Gateway is a hypervisor-based security solution for monitoring and protecting virtualized network environments. It delivers stateful firewall, integrated intrusion detection (IDS), and virtualization-specific antivirus (AV) protection for ensuring VM host capacity and performance.

These latest upgrades to vGW secure both IPv4 and IPv6. Juniper has also added new Cloud API and software developer’s kits (SDKs) to help Service Providers automate security configuration in virtual environments. New vGW management enhancements facilitate security for large-scale multi-tenant cloud deployments by offering more granular and customizable security segmentation.

Broadcom's StrataXGS Trident II Packs 100 10GbE Ports for Virtualized Data Centers

Broadcom unveiled its new StrataXGS Trident II Series Ethernet switching chip designed for extremely dense, cloud-scale data centers.  The design brings 2X greater forwarding density, a 4X increase in network virtualization scale, and the ability to deliver 100 10GbE ports for massive scale in top-of-rack or aggregation switches. Uplink capabilities in the flexibility to support up to 32 40GbE ports.

The performance boosts in this latest generation of StrataXGS silicon are matched by new "SmartSwitch" technologies, including

  • Smart-NV: Delivers up to 4X greater scale, enabling SDN virtualization across both virtual and physical workloads at wire-speed. Enables cloud-scale network infrastructure virtualization using advanced Layer 2 over Layer 3 (L2oL3) network virtualization technologies such as NVGRE and VXLAN.
  • Smart-Buffer: Delivers up to 5X higher packet buffer utilization and burst absorption performance using innovative traffic load-based intelligent and dynamic allocation schemes.
  • Smart-Table: Delivers highest Layer 2 and Layer 3 forwarding scale with network topology-based profiling for maximum deployment flexibility.
  • Smart-Hash: Eliminates polarization and load imbalances in fat-tree networks possessing heavy and diverse traffic patterns. Provides unprecedented network traffic visibility and diagnostics required by software defined networking. 
Sampling of the StrataXGS Trident II Series is expected this quarter with multiple device options.

Dell'Oro: Demand for 40G and 100G Wavelengths in Weak Optical Market for 1H2012

WDM equipment revenue rose five percent in first half 2012 compared to a year ago, according to a newly published report by Dell'Oro Group.  The growth is attributed to strong demand for 40/100 Gbps wavelengths.  However, the report finds that the overall optical transport equipment market declined approximately five percent in the first half of 2012 from year-ago levels to $6.1 billion.

"The optical market contracted in the first half of 2012 due to lower spending in the mature markets of North America and EMEA," said Jimmy Yu, Vice President of Optical Transport research at Dell'Oro Group.  "The emerging regions of Asia Pacific and Latin America, however, did grow as service providers in the regions continued to expand network capacity," added Mr. Yu.

Two other key findings:

  • Huawei captured approximately 20 percent share of the worldwide optical market in first half 2012.
  • Adoption of Optical Packet products continued to rise and contributed close to one-third of the optical market revenues in first half 2012.

New Cloud Advisory Council Gets Started

A new Cloud Advisory Council has been established to support the roll-out of next-generation cloud architecture.

The Cloud Advisory Council brings together original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), strategic technology suppliers, independent software vendors (ISVs), and end-users.

Founding members include: AMAX, AMD, Atlantic.Net, Check Point Software, Colfax, DDN, Eucalyptus, Mellanox Technologies, Nanjing Standard Communication, Nimbula, ProfitBricks, SGI, Sugon, Supermicro, and Xeround.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Hibernia Atlantic Links its Fiber Network to Chicago's CME

 Chicago's CME Group, the world's leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, is a new Point of Presence (PoP) on Hibernia Atlantic's Global Financial Network (GFN).

Specifically, Hibernia is now providing direct, low latency connectivity up to 10 Gigabit Ethernet into CME Group’s new data center located in Aurora, Illinois.

The facility, which encompasses more than 428,000 square feet houses CME's advanced trading match engines for its CME Globex platform, the fastest-global electronic trading systems for futures and options.

Violin Memory OEMs VMware’s Virtualization Technology

Violin Memory announced an OEM agreement with VMware, offering virtualization-in-a-box to enterprise customers. This enables companies to run business critical and big data applications at the speed of memory in virtualized and cloud environments.

The deal enables vSphere to run natively on Violin’s flash Memory Arrays, so that customers can put business critical applications directly on Violin’s system to get industry leading storage performance without worrying about the configuration or management of traditional storage networks.

“Violin has identified the virtualization challenges with disk-based storage infrastructures and set out to eliminate those barriers using flash,” said Narayan Venkat, vice president of products for Violin Memory. “By partnering with VMware, we enable our customers to achieve their goal of a fully virtualized data center. This is one of the many steps we’ve taken to apply the benefits of flash to virtualized environments, and create specialized application acceleration appliances like Virtual Database-in-a-box, Private Cloud-in-a-box and VDI-in-a-box.”

Violin Memory also confirmed its ability to deliver 1.35 million IOPS for virtualized mixed workloads on VMware vSphere.  This result has been validated by Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG).  The test also showed Violin Memory Arrays can scale up to 10,000 virtual desktops on Violin arrays using VMware View without restrictions.

Violin Memory said flash memory arrays are superior to legacy HDD-based storage systems, which cannot manage the performance and scalability required to virtualize business critical applications and desktops.   By supporting 10,000+ desktops through sustained low latency, even during load, the Violin Memory 6000 Series flash Memory Arrays 6000 system enables large enterprise-wide VDI with a small storage footprint in the data center.

Vyatta Launches Empowering SDN Initiative

Vyatta introduced its "Empowering SDN initiative" to help enterprises and service providers build an enduring software-defined networking (SDN) strategy.

Vyatta said the significance of its Empowering SDN program is the ability to take steps now, using established protocols like OSPF and BGP, to create agile, capacity-on-demand networks for the future.

In data centers, SDN could allow users to allocate groups of servers on-the-fly . Vyatta's software based routers, firewalls and VPNs enables enterprises to connect and securing these groups. Vyatta's code can be operated as virtual machines (VMs). This approach removes the constraints of a fixed device with a finite, predetermined amount of physical ports and other resources. The Vyatta VM can be replicated and positioned where needed, avoiding network congestion due to unneeded trips out to a central router. Additionally, software-based networks can provide significant savings over a large, proprietary router – leveraging the economies of the x86 architecture.

Vyatta also noted that its software-based networks are built on open source projects, resulting in code that has been downloaded more than a million times and tested extensively in production networks worldwide. Its code has demonstrated interoperability with a wide range of network gear and continues to extend its capabilities, adding to the management and API with a roadmap to include OpenStack, CloudStack and other emerging cloud provisioning tools.

AT&T to Host DevLab in Silicon Valley

AT&T has opened registration for DevLab, a one-day, hands-on programming workshop for developers, providing a technical deep dive into the latest services and tools for mobile app development. The event will take place September 25 at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California.

At DevLab, AT&T's new Speech API, part of the AT&T API Platform, and the AT&T Application Resource Optimizer (ARO) which analyzes mobile application efficiency, giving developers the ability to improve battery life and data usage.

Developers can learn more and register at

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Qualcomm Acquires DesignArt for Wireless Backhaul Chipsets

Qualcomm has acquired DesignArt Networks, a developer of small cell modem chipsets for cellular base stations and high-speed wireless backhaul infrastructure, for an undisclosed sum.

DesignArt, which is based in Ra’anana, Israel, supplies system-on-chip (SoC) and software for indoor and outdoor small cell base stations and remote radio heads.

The product set includes its DAN3000 SoC platform, which can supports various types of cell-site RF access equipment required for the emerging HetNet architecture - specifically all-in-one BTS and single-RAN radio head equipment. The DAN3000 baseband pipeline is designed to provide sufficient signal processing capacity to support the implementation of 4G LTE R10 baseband pooling and multi-GE unified mobile backhaul solutions. The company was founded in 2006.

Qualcomm said the acquisition allows its networking customers to benefit from the efficient integration of small cell and Wi-Fi technologies with various wireless and wireline backhaul options to support the proliferation of indoor and outdoor small cells that provide coverage and capacity exactly where it is needed.

"DesignArt and its products will both enhance and accelerate our initiatives to drive increased capacity and coverage in mobile networks,” said Craig Barratt, president of Qualcomm Atheros. “Operators can significantly improve user experience across residential, enterprise and outdoor networks given the greater network efficiencies derived by implementing small cells and heterogeneous networks."

Friday, August 24, 2012

Huawei Launches Blade Remote Radio Unit - Distributed Base Stations

Huawei introduced a new Blade Remote Radio Unit (RRU) as part of its distributed base station solution, which supports the assembly of different bands to meet operator multi-band, multi-technology network deployment requirements.

Huawei said its Blade RRU reduces the total volume of RRU equipment, enhances installation flexibility, simplifies operations and maintenance, and simultaneously supports multi-technology, multi-band networks with limited site resources and costs.

The volume of a single RRU is 12L, which is half the industry average. For flexible network deployment, multiple RRUs are seamlessly assembled as “one box” with independent installations and maintenance for each unit, meaning that this single entity of assembled RRUs supports multi-band, multi-mode GSM/UMTS/LTE, multi-sector, multi-carrier and multiple-input/multiple-output (MIMO) technology in accordance with evolving network development requirements.


Arista, F5, VMware and EMC Isilon Demo Multi-Vendor SDN

This week's VMworld 2012 in San Francisco will include a demo of multi-vendor programmatic automation with solutions from Arista, F5 Networks, VMware and EMC Isilon.

The joint demonstration of the Virtual Extensible LAN (VXLAN) specification shows a common network foundation that enables seamless interoperability across ecosystems.

Some key elements:

Arista EOS working in conjunction with VMware vSphere® to gather real time information about network segments created and specified using Virtual Extensible Local Area Networks – advancing network virtualization capabilities that enable end-to-end segmentation.

Arista EOS interacting with F5's BIG-IP iControl API to dynamically update the state of servers participating in a server load balancing pool during switch-level fault detections. This coordinated effort improves fault detection at multiple layers and ensures the highest levels of application availability and performance.

Arista EOS creating hardware Virtual Tunnel End Points to enable any device to be in any network addressing range - true separation of physical to virtual to cloud networks.

In addition, the Arista demonstration also leverages EMC Isilon storage working with Arista hardware Virtual Tunnel End points, providing scale-out storage to VMware virtual machines as they move across virtual, physical and cloud networks.

Google and Boingo Wi-Fi Expands Sponsored Hotspot Model

Boingo Wireless has expanded is partnership with Google to offer more free and discounted public Wi-Fi hotspots in shopping malls across the U.S.

This expansion takes Boingo Wi-Fi from six New York subway stations and more than 200 Manhattan hotzones, to 24 additional locations across the country.

Google Offers is also extending a discounted Boingo Wi-Fi access offer to travelers at 16 airports nationwide, including JFK, LaGuardia, O’Hare, Midway , Hobby and George Bush Intercontinental,  etc.

Earlier this month, Boingo acquired Cloud Nine Media, which provides Wi-Fi sponsorship and location-based advertising at more than 6,000 airports, hotels, bars and restaurants, and recreational areas in the U.S. and Canada. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The Cloud Nine technology platforms will allow Boingo to deliver 100% share-of-voice sponsored access that can be used across Boingo’s global portfolio of managed Wi-Fi hotspots, including airports, shopping malls, restaurants, stadiums, transportation hubs and metropolitan hotzones that reach more than 1.5 billion people each year. San Francisco-based Cloud Nine Media also brings a team of skilled technologists and ad sales executives to the table, as well as relationships with key venues and advertisers.

Samsung to Invest $4 Billion in U.S. Manufacturing

Samsung Austin Semiconductor announced plans to invest about $4 billion to renovate its existing fabrication operations in Texas to accommodate full System LSI production.
The remodeled fabrication line will mainly produce state-of-the-art mobile SoCs on 300mm wafers at the 28nm process node.

The company noted that its total investment in Samsung Austin Semiconductor since 1996 will exceed $13 billion.

Vertical Systems' Mid-2012 Global Provider Ethernet Leaderboard

Vertical Systems Group announces that the following companies have achieved a position on the Mid-2012 Global Provider Ethernet Leaderboard (in rank order based on port share): Orange Business (France), Verizon (U.S.), Colt (U.K.), BT Global Services (U.K.), AT&T (U.S.), NTT (Japan) and Level 3 (U.S.).

Vertical's Global Provider Leaderboard is the industry's foremost benchmark for measuring multi-national Ethernet market presence. All Global Providers ranked on the Leaderboard hold four percent (4%) or more of retail business Ethernet ports installed at sites outside of their respective home countries.

"Leaderboard competition tightened up in the first half of 2012. The share differential between a number of Global Providers is less than 1%, indicating that shifts in the Leaderboard rankings are likely by the end of the year," said Rick Malone, principal at Vertical Systems Group. "Global Providers that actively expanded their Ethernet service reach into Latin America, southern Asia and the Middle East were least impacted by the slowdown in Europe, and therefore fared better at retaining market share."

All other Global Providers offering Ethernet services outside of their home countries have port shares that are below the Leaderboard threshold. These companies are segmented by share into two tiers: the "Challenge" tier and the "Market Player" tier.

The Challenge tier expanded to five companies (in alphabetical order) with the addition of Cable & Wireless (U.K.) and Cogent (U.S.) to the previous roster of Reliance Globalcom (India), Tata Communications (India) and T-Systems (Germany).

The Market Player tier covers all other Global Providers as follows (in alphabetical order): Airtel (India), Bezeq (Israel), CAT Telecom (Thailand), Centurylink (U.S.), China Telecom (China), China Unicom (China), Easynet Global Services (U.K.), Embratel (Brazil), euNetworks (U.K.), Exponential-e (U.K.), Frontier (U.S.), GlobeNet (Brazil), GTS (Poland), GTT (U.S.), Interoute (U.K.), KDDI (Japan), Korea Telecom (Korea), KPN International (Netherlands), Masergy (U.S.), PCCW Global (Hong Kong), SingTel (Singapore), StarHub (Singapore), Swisscom (Switzerland),Telecom Italia International (Italy), Telefonica Worldwide (Spain), Telenor (Norway), TeliaSonera (Sweden), Telkom Indonesia (Indonesia), Telkom South Africa (South Africa), TelMex (Mexico), Telstra (Australia), Telus International (Canada), TM (Malaysia), Zayo Group [includes AboveNet] (U.S.), and others.

Market shares are calculated using the base of enterprise Ethernet services installations, plus input from Vertical's surveys of Ethernet providers throughout the world.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

FCC Approves Verizon Wireless-SpectrumCo Deal

The FCC approved the Verizon Wireless-SpectrumCo deal, subject to the following conditions:
  • the assignment of AWS-1 licenses held by Cox and SpectrumCo (a joint venture among subsidiaries of Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Bright House Networks) to Verizon Wireless;
  • a spectrum swap between Verizon Wireless and Leap;
  • and Verizon Wireless’s net assignment of AWS-1 licenses to T-Mobile.
The deal is also subject to the Consent Decree between DOJ and SpectrumCo and Cox, which was announced last week.

The FCC noted that to address staff concerns regarding spectrum concentration, Verizon Wireless undertook an unprecedented divestiture of spectrum to a competitor, T-Mobile. In addition, the Commission’s Order includes enforceable commitments from Verizon Wireless to accelerate buildout of its newly acquired spectrum, as well as to offer data roaming on commercially reasonable terms and conditions.

Regarding the buildout, within three years, Verizon Wireless will provide signal coverage and offer service to at least 30 percent of the total population in the Economic Areas or the portions of Economic Areas in which it is acquiring AWS-1 license authorizations (calculated by summing the population for each of these areas). Also, within seven years, Verizon Wireless will provide signal coverage and offer service to at least 70 percent of the population in each Economic Area in which it is acquiring AWS-1 license authorizations, or, where a portion of the Economic Area is acquired, to at least 70 percent of the population of the total acquired portion of the licensed Economic Area.

In addition, Verizon must provide on a semi-annual basis, subject to an appropriate protective order, reports concerning trends in DSL subscribership following the implementation of the commercial agreements.

To gain DOJ approval, the companies have agreed to a proposed settlement forbids Verizon Wireless from selling cable company products in FiOS areas and removes contractual restrictions on Verizon Wireless’s ability to sell FiOS, ensuring that Verizon’s incentives to compete aggressively against the cable companies remain unchanged.

In addition, under the proposed settlement, Verizon Wireless’s ability to resell the cable companies’ services to customers in areas where Verizon sells DSL Internet service ends in December of 2016 (subject to potential renewal at DOJ's sole discretion), thereby preserving Verizon’s incentives to reconsider its decision to stop building out its FiOS network and otherwise innovate in its DSL territory.

The DOJ is limiting the duration of a technology joint venture that the companies had planned to set-up to develop wireless + wireline solutions. In addition, the companies are limited in the exchange of competitively sensitive information.

"This purchase represents a milestone in the industry and we appreciate the FCC's diligent work to review and approve the transaction," said Dan Mead, president and chief executive officer of Verizon Wireless. "We will work aggressively to ensure that we put this previously unused spectrum to use quickly to benefit customers."
  • In December 2011, Verizon Wireless announced a deal to acquire 122 Advanced Wireless Services spectrum licenses from SpectrumCo, a joint venture between Comcast Corporation, Time Warner Cable, and Bright House Networks, for $3.6 billion. The transfer of licenses will require approval from the FCC and review from the Department of Justice. The companies also announced several agreements to resell each others' services. The cable companies will have the option of selling Verizon Wireless' service on a wholesale basis. Furthermore, the companies will form an innovation technology joint venture to develop technology that better integrates wireline and wireless products and services.
  • In June 2012, T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless announced a sale and exchange deal covering certain Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) spectrum licenses in 218 markets across the U.S. Some of the spectrum contemplated in this transaction included licenses that Verizon is purchasing from SpectrumCo, Cox and Leap, and the agreement is contingent on the closing of those transactions and is subject to regulatory approval by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Department of Justice.

Saudi Aramco Suffers Shamoon Attack and New Threat

Saudi Aramco, the world's largest oil company, is believed to have suffered damage to three-quarters of its computers when it was hit by the Shamoon virus earlier this month, according to The New York Times and other sources. The attackers are believed to be a group called "Cutting Sword of Justice", possibly linked to Iran, making the attack a political statement against the oil policies of the Saudi government. The group is threatening further attacks on the firm.

China Telecom Sees Growth from 3G Mobile

China Telecom's revenues rose 14.8% in the first half of 2012 to RMB 138.0 billion (US$21.7 billion), up by 14.8%. Excluding the mobile terminalssales, operating revenues reached RMB 126,580 million, up by 11.2%. Profits beat expectations, coming in at RMB 8.8 billion with EPS of RMB 0.11.

Some company highlights from the first half of 2012:
  • Total number of mobile subscribers reached 144 million, representing a net addition of 17.71 million from the end of last year, up by 14.0%, of which 3G mobile subscribers was 50.96 million, representing a net increase of 14.67 million from the end of last year, up by 40.4%
  • Total number of wireline broadband subscribers reached 83.70 million, representing a net addition of 6.89 million from the end of last year, up by 9.0%
  • Total number of access lines in service was 167 million, representing a net decrease of 2.10 million from the end of last year, down by 1.2%
  • Wireline voice revenue as a proportion to total revenues decreased to 16.1%.
  • 3G handset data traffic increased rapidly with average monthly data usage per user reaching 111MB.
  • FTTH covered approximately 40 million households, which manifested the superior quality of China Telecom’s fibre broadband network.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Shenick Launches Cloud-based Test System

Shenick Network Systems introduced a cloud-based test system that scales to four terabits of real, stateful service and application traffic while providing the ability to pinpoint issues right down to each individual application flow.

The company said such capacity is needed because next-generation switching, routing, firewall, packet inspection, WAN optimization and other massive data handling systems are heading towards terabit levels of packet handling. This will require tests at huge scale to understand performance limits.

Shenick's TeraVM provides the ability to emulate and test cloud infrastructure on any hypervisor including ESXi, Xen, KVM and Hyper-V, in one test system, with test analysis right down to each application flow.

Some highlights of TeraVM:
  • It is not restricted in the amount of core processing power it can access compared to other solutions in the market.

  • Testing can be conducted in both functional and highly scaled, virtualized test beds for all hypervisors including ESXi, Xen, KVM and Hyper-V.

  • TeraVM is one of the first products to have been completely and successfully ported to an all-virtual, massively scaled IP performance tester.

  • Shenick addresses next-generation virtualized and physical converged IP network application performance issues for 4G, VoLTE, OTT Video, IPTV, VoD, Multi Play (VoIP video, data), telepresence, multivendor IPsec/SSL secure VPN, Security Attack Mitigation, Deep Packet Inspection (DPI), Traffic Shaping, Peer to Peer (P2P), Application Server Test, Metro Ethernet and IPv4/IPv6 hybrid network deployments.

  • TeraVM also covers security testing including secure VPN and security attack mitigation testing by generating emulated DDoS attack traffic for testing virtual and highly scaled firewalls.

"TeraVM takes the uncertainty out of testing cloud and physical networks by giving organizations the tools to understand the behaviour of mixed Internet application traffic types and prove that extreme performance levels can be maintained while guaranteeing QoE for end users," said Robert Winters, CMO, Shenick Network Systems. "As more and more organizations move data to the cloud, testing security of virtualized networks becomes paramount especially as corporate information needs to be accessed by personal devices remotely."