Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Free Press Launches Petition to Block AT&T's FaceTime Policy


Free Press, a public advocacy group working for Net Neutrality (wired and wireless), launched an online petition seeking to change or block AT&T's policy on using Apple's FaceTime application over its wireless networks.

FaceTime on iPhones is currently limited to Wi-Fi connections. With the coming iOS 6.0 update, FaceTime is supposed to be enabled from use over cellular data connections as well.

Specifically, Free Press is concerned that AT&T will block the iPhone from using FaceTime over cellular connections unless customers subscribe to the carrier's new "Mobile Share" service plans.

Free Press argues that AT&T's plan to block mobile access to FaceTime for all other customers would violate the Federal Communications Commission’s Open Internet rules.

In response, AT&T argues that Net Neutrality rules do not apply in this case because (1) FaceTime is preloaded on every iPhone on the AT&T network and (2) AT&T does not have a similar preloaded video chat app that competes with FaceTime.  In a posting on its public policy blog, AT&T's Bob Quinn writes:

"The FCC’s net neutrality rules do not regulate the availability to customers of applications that are preloaded on phones.  Indeed, the rules do not require that providers make available any preloaded apps.  Rather, they address whether customers are able to download apps that compete with our voice or video telephony services.   AT&T does not restrict customers from downloading any such lawful applications, and there are several video chat apps available in the various app stores serving particular operating systems."

However, Free Press rejected that argument.  In a follow-up blog posting, Free Press Research Director S. Derek Turner made the following statement:

"AT&T is inventing words that are not in the FCC's rules in a weak attempt to justify its blocking of FaceTime. The FCC's rules are crystal clear: AT&T is not permitted to block voice or video telephony applications that compete with its own services. There is simply nothing in the rules that distinguishes 'preloaded' applications from 'downloaded' applications. It is interesting to see AT&T try this line of defense, as it is tacitly admitting that it is both blocking FaceTime and that the app does in fact compete with its own offerings."

Free Press also runs the SavetheInternet.com coalition.


http://www.freepress.net
http://attpublicpolicy.com/

Everything Everywhere Gets Permission to Roll with 1800 MHz LTE

Ofcom, the official telecoms regulator for the UK, has granted permission to Everything Everywhere (EE) to use its existing 1800 MHz spectrum to deliver 4G services after 11-September-2012.

The decision follows a consultation as to whether an earlier start in LTE by EE ahead of other networks would distort competition. The decision takes account of the forthcoming release of additional spectrum in the 800 MHz and 2.6 GHz bands, in an auction process set to begin later this year, which will enable other operators to launch competing 4G services from next year.

Everything Everywhere provides mobile and fixed-broadband communications services to more than 27 million customers through the Orange and T-Mobile brands. "Ofcom’s decision to make 4G available this year is great news for the UK. Consumers will soon be able to benefit from the much greater mobile speeds that 4G will deliver. 4G will drive investment, employment and innovation and we look forward to making it available later this year, delivering superfast mobile broadband to the UK."

http://everythingeverywhere.com



  • In July 2012, Ofcom, the telecoms regulator for the UK, announced its largest ever auction of spectrum for mobile services-- the equivalent of three quarters of the mobile spectrum in use today – some 80% more than released in the 3G auction which took place in 2000. The auction of spectrum for LTE is set to get underway before the end of the year.

    Key details of the auction have now been confirmed, including plans to reserve some of the available spectrum for a fourth national wholesaler other than the three largest mobile operators.

    The 4G auction will offer at least two spectrum bands – 800 MHz and 2.6 GHz. The lower frequency 800 MHz band is part of the 'digital dividend', which is ideal for widespread mobile coverage. The higher frequency 2.6 GHz band is ideal for delivering the capacity needed to deliver faster speeds. These two bands add up to 250 MHz of additional mobile spectrum, compared to 333 MHz in use today.

    The spectrum bands will be auctioned to bidders as a series of lots. One of the 800 MHz lots of spectrum will carry an obligation to provide a mobile broadband service for indoor reception to at least 98% of the UK population by the end of 2017 at the latest.

    Mobile operators are expected to start rolling out 4G networks using the auctioned spectrum from the middle of 2013, and to start offering 4G services to consumers later that year.

NTT Com's Asia-Oceania Backbone Hits 500 Gbps

NTT Communications has expanded the data-transmission capacity of its Global IP Network between Asia and Oceania to 500 Gbps. Capacity has increased nearly tenfold in five years, from 53 Gbps in 2007.

NTT Com's largest cable network offers 630 Gbps between Japan and the United States. It uses a dual-stack (IPv4 and IPv6) configuration as one of NTT Com's core IPv6 networks.

NTT Com has implemented a number of initiatives to boost its network, including launching the Asia Submarine-cable Express, a low-latency, highly reliable undersea cable connecting major cities in Asia, and offering strengthened security to prevent DDoS attacks.
http://www.ntt.co.jp

Spirent Expands Testing for Network Virtualization

Spirent Communications is now supporting the ability to validate at scale the performance and security of advanced network virtualization and virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) deployments.


The virtualization test capbilities are enabled by Spirent TestCenter, Spirent Avalanche and Spirent Studio. Specifically, Spirent TestCenter Virtual and Spirent Avalanche Virtual now offer expanded support for any type of hypervisor beyond VMware, including KVM, XEN and Hyper-V, to test network virtualization capabilities of cloud platforms such as OpenStack. Spirent Studio Security offers firewall application awareness and vulnerability detection test capabilities for BYOD deployments. And Spirent has partnered with Login VSI B.V. for VDI testing, adding realistic user emulation to determine optimal performance of private or public cloud-based VDI deployments. In addition, Spirent TestCenter OpenFlow tests performance and scale of virtual and physical devices in cloud networks based on Software Defined Networking (SDN).

Spirent said key issued for testing network virtualization cloud platforms include:
  • Determining the best performing cloud and VDI platform for different applications and services

  • Assessing the availability of end-to-end network, computing and storage resources during peak times

  • Ensuring readiness of next generation network security with profiles to detect undesirable applications and block them from being accessed

  • Validating the optimal scalability of cloud and VDI platforms as additional users and virtual machines are added.
http://www.spirent.com

Lantiq Targets VoLTE Enabled Home Gateways

Lantiq is collaborating with D2 Technologies and Ecrio Inc. to enable rich, native communications services for 4G LTE clients. Specifically, Lantiq will offer integration and test support for each company's Voice over LTE software with the Lantiq XWAY GRX Gateway Platform, providing networking OEMs and carriers with a path to faster deployment of wireless broadband enabled home gateways. Reference designs are expected in early 2013.


D2 Technologies is the developer of mCUE 4G and vPort, advanced IMS VoLTE and RCS software solutions that offer IMS IP communications services such as HD voice, real time video call, instant message, presence, SMS and VCC on 4G mobile networks.

Ecrio offers its commercially deployed Mobile Communications Client Suite (MCCS) powered by FlexIMS Architecture, which supports such 4G/LTE services as Voice, Video, SMS and other Rich Communication Suite Services.

The Lantiq XWAY GRX Gateway Platform includes a powerful multi-core network processor and proven Universal Gateway software stack for core networking functions and support for Lantiq�s broad connectivity and voice product portfolio, including Fast/Gigabit-Ethernet, WLAN, and DECT/CAT-iq solutions.

Lantiq has previously announced collaboration with LTE-chipset supplier Altair Semiconductor.

"These cooperations mark the next step in our LTE Gateway strategy. Last year saw a significant increase of LTE CPE deployments by major carriers and now we expect VoLTE to enter the mass market. As we develop an ecosystem of solution providers specifically for this new segment of the home broadband market, we add valuable services to our portfolio," said Dirk Wieberneit, Head of the Customer Premises Equipment Business Unit of Lantiq.
http://www.lantiq.com

AT&T Faces FaceTime Net Neutrality Issue

AT&T has confirmed plans to make FaceTime available over its mobile broadband network only for customers who also subscribe to its Mobile Share data plan.


In response to criticism that this violates Net Neutrality rules because consumers should be able to use any app they choose on their data subscription, AT&T argues that Net Neutrality rules do not apply in this case because (1) FaceTime is preloaded on every iPhone on the AT&T network and (2) AT&T does not have a similar preloaded video chat app that competes with FaceTime. In a posting on its public policy blog, AT&T's Bob Quinn writes:

"The FCC's net neutrality rules do not regulate the availability to customers of applications that are preloaded on phones. Indeed, the rules do not require that providers make available any preloaded apps. Rather, they address whether customers are able to download apps that compete with our voice or video telephony services. AT&T does not restrict customers from downloading any such lawful applications, and there are several video chat apps available in the various app stores serving particular operating systems."

Earlier this week, Free Press, a public advocacy group working for Net Neutrality (wired and wireless), launched an online petition seeking to change or block AT&T policy on using Apple's FaceTime application over its wireless networks.

FaceTime on iPhones is currently limited to Wi-Fi connections. With the coming iOS 6.0 update, FaceTime is supposed to be enabled from use over cellular data connections as well.

Specifically, Free Press is concerned that AT&T will block the iPhone from using FaceTime over cellular connections unless customers subscribe to the carrier's new "Mobile Share" service plans.

Free Press argues that AT&T's plan to block mobile access to FaceTime for all other customers would violate the Federal Communications Commission�s Open Internet rules.

In a follow-up blog posting, Free Press Research Director S. Derek Turner made the following statement:

"AT&T is inventing words that are not in the FCC's rules in a weak attempt to justify its blocking of FaceTime. The FCC's rules are crystal clear: AT&T is not permitted to block voice or video telephony applications that compete with its own services. There is simply nothing in the rules that distinguishes 'preloaded' applications from 'downloaded' applications. It is interesting to see AT&T try this line of defense, as it is tacitly admitting that it is both blocking FaceTime and that the app does in fact compete with its own offerings."

Free Press also runs the SavetheInternet.com coalition.http://attpublicpolicy.com/http://www.freepress.net

Infonetics: Carrier Routing/Switching Sales Rise in Q2

The global service provider router and switch market, including carrier Ethernet switches and IP edge and core routers, grew 4% in 2Q12 from the previous quarter, to $3.5 billion, according to a newly released Service Provider Routers and Switches report from Infonetics.

Some highlights of the report:
  • From the year-ago 2nd quarter, the overall carrier router and switch market is down 9%, as service providers generally remain cautious, particularly in North America and Europe
  • Latin America is the only major world region posting an increase in carrier router and switch revenue on a year-over-year basis (up 57% in 2Q12 over 2Q11)
  • ZTE posted especially strong gains in carrier Ethernet switches (CES) in 2Q12, particularly in China where CESs are being used in major mobile backhaul deployments.
"A nearly 50% increase in revenue in China propped up the global service provider router and switch market in the 2nd quarter," notes Michael Howard, Infonetics Research’s co-founder and principal analyst for carrier networks.  While Cisco has long led the global IP edge and core router market by very comfortable margins (and whose share is steady from this time last year), Alcatel-Lucent, Juniper and Huawei have been fighting it out every quarter for the past year-and-a-half for the next 3 leadership positions. The race tightened considerably in the 1st half of 2012, with Huawei taking the #2 spot in the 2nd quarter."




Amazon's Glacier Archive - One Penny Per GB Per Month

Amazon Web Services introduced a new "Glacier" archival service priced at $0.01 per GB per month.

Unlike Amazon's S3 cloud storage service, which is optimized for rapid access, Glacier is designed for long-term, high-durability archiving with infrequent access. Each archive can contain up to 40 Terabytes of data and is encrypted with AES-256, Amazon will store the archive durably in an immutable form in multiple facilities. Retrieval requests are queued up and honored "at a somewhat leisurely pace" -- within 3 to 5 hours. Up to 5% of the archive can be retrieved for free and there is a $0.01 per GB retrieval fee for the rest of the archive.

http://bit.ly/SOcunX




FCC Releases Broadband Progress Report

The United States is leading in LTE deployment and DOCSIS 3.0 has now been rolled out extensively across the country, but approximately 19 million Americans -- 6 percent of the population -- still lack access to fixed broadband service at threshold speeds (4 Mbps/1 Mbps), according to the FCC’s Eighth Broadband Progress Report.

Some highlights of the 181-page report:
  • In rural areas, nearly one-fourth of the population -- 14.5 million people -- lack access to this service.
  • In tribal areas, nearly one-third of the population lacks access.
  • Even in areas where broadband is available, approximately 100 million Americans still do not subscribe.
  • Broadband satellite is not included in this report but the FCC notes that ViaSat (formerly WildBlue) and HughesNet's newly launched ECHOSTAR XVII are entering the market with services above the threshold rate.
  • Service Providers are boosting their speeds. Verizon is offering up to 300 Mbps/65 Mbps for FiOS,23 while CenturyLink is offering up to 40 Mbps/5 Mbps.

http://www.fcc.gov/reports/eighth-broadband-progress-report


See also