Thursday, September 6, 2012

CommScope Updates its PON Portfolio

CommScope is introducing a new PON capable of accommodating both EPON and GPON.  The complete PON portfolio includes optical line terminals (OLTs), optical network units (ONUs), system-management software and installation components.

“Technology is continuing to progress at a rapid pace and operators must keep up with their customers’ increasing demand for bandwidth,” said Ric Johnsen, senior vice president, Broadband, CommScope. “Our new PON solution provides an alternative technology for operators to deploy competitive Ethernet services to small- and medium-sized business and improved bandwidth to rural areas. This launch demonstrates how CommScope continues to expand it ability to deliver more end-to-end, scalable access networks to the industry.”

Spirent to Acquire Metrico for Cloud Testing

Spirent Communications agreed to acquire Metrico Wireless, which provides cloud-based Testing-as-a-Service, for $52.0 million in cash.  Metrico is privately held by Dimitrios Topaltzas and others.

Metrico’s solution delivers end-to-end testing under real-world conditions on live networks with comprehensive reporting and analysis, measuring QoE of devices and services with respect to voice, data, video, battery, location and application performance. These solutions can be delivered anywhere and managed centrally, through the use of cloud-based test infrastructure located in 25 countries around the world. In addition to its service offerings, Metrico supplies innovative Measurement Systems to carriers and device manufacturers.

“Innovation and competition in the wireless industry is driving aggressive release cycles of sophisticated devices and services,” said Bill Burns, CEO of Spirent. “As carriers and device vendors strive to minimise time to market, improve subscriber quality of experience and reduce device return rates, they must also contend with disruptive technologies including 4G data, VoIP and the cloud. In line with our strategy of investing in growing and emerging technology markets, Spirent is responding to these needs by bringing together our device performance test strength in the lab with Metrico’s field-based, subscriber-level focus.”

  • Earlier this year, Spirent Communications acquired Mu Dynamics, which offers a network security and application performance testing tools, for $40.0 million in cash.
  • Mu Studio, the company's flag ship product line, enables performance and security testing of cloud infrastructure, including network security systems, deep packet inspection (DPI) solutions, and LTE networks. Its Blitz is a self-service load and performance testing solution for cloud applications. Mu TestCloud compiles thousands of ready-to-runs tests, covering hundreds of applications.

Amazon's Kindle Fire HD Tablet Resets the LTE Market

Amazon set a new pricing model for mobile broadband with the introduction of its Kindle Fire HD tablet, which offers LTE connectivity for $50 per year with a monthly cap of 250 MB.  Jeff Bezos, Founder and CEO, said the company aims to make money by selling content and products rather than in selling devices and distribution.

Amazon did not name an LTE partner for its new service, but it is using AT&T's blue/orange 4G/LTE flame logo on its promotional material in the U.S.  The custom modem supports ten different LTE bands, perhaps giving Amazon the flexibility to support multiple LTE partners internationally with the same unit.

Networking capabilities of the Kindle Fire HD:

  • Dual-band, dual-antenna Wi-Fi (MIMO) 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, or 802.11n standard with support for WEP, WPA and WPA2. Does not support peer-to-peer connections.

  • 4G LTE 10 band wireless modem with HSPA+, HSDPA, and EDGE/GPRS fallback
  • Amazon is using a custom-designed 4G wireless modem that it claims is only 2.2mm thin
  • Amazon's 12 month 4G data package includes 250 MB a month of 4G data, 20 GB of additional Cloud Drive storage, and $10 Amazon Appstore promotional credit, for a one-time payment of $49.99
  • Amazon will offer optional 3GB and 5GB LTE data packages. (pricing not disclosed)
  • Unlimited cloud storage for Amazon content Kindle Fire HD includes the Skype app pre-installed
  • Kindle Fire HD will feature a new version of the Amazon Silk cloud-accelerated browser, which the company says will provide a better than 30% reduction in page load times over the previous version. The new browser leverages an updated core rendering engine and a reengineered transport layer, along with the power of Amazon Web Services
  • Integrated Bluetooth
  • One-click shopping tied into Amazon's billing systems
  • Integrated support for Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo! and more, as well as Exchange calendar, contacts, and email

Alcatel-Lucent's Open Source "apiGrove" Manages APIs

Alcatel-Lucent introduced "apiGrove", an open source software engine to help companies more effectively manage the application programming interfaces (APIs) they use to expose the capabilities of their cloud platforms, telecommunications networks or enterprise infrastructure.

The apiGrove installation package, source code, and documentation are available effective immediately on the open-source repository and collaboration tool GitHub under the business-friendly Apache 2.0 license. The apiGrove software is based on Alcatel-Lucent’s Open API Platform.

"We’ve reached a point where basic API exposure and management is 'table stakes' for doing business in today’s economy. Network exposure, through APIs, is becoming a commodity. The future of the API ecosystem lies in building on an open industry foundation and a holistic approach that spans the network, cloud and enterprise/IT spaces. We believe apiGrove gives our customers and the community the foundation they need to make this a reality," said Laura Merling, Senior Vice President, Application Enablement, at Alcatel-Lucent.

Accedian Networks Rebrands and Focuses on

Accedian Networks announced a new corporate identity designed to refelect its mission to "fulfill the performance assurance and SLA needs of global mobile operators and service providers."
The new logo features three rings representing Accedian’s 3 pillars – Service Assurance, Service Creation and SLA Assurance & Reporting. 
Some company milestones over the last 5 years:
  • Shipped over 120,000 systems worldwide, and counting
  • First to include unique uses of Y.1564 in its MetroNID and MetroNODE 10GE solutions
  • Secured over 250 mobile operator and service provider customers globally

"We have created new businesses, expanded into new markets and developed new technologies – all to ensure we make it easier, faster and less costly for our mobile operator and service provider customers to optimize, improve and manage their networks," stated Patrick Ostiguy, President and CEO of Accedian Networks.

Mindspeed Collaborates with China Mobile Research Institute on Small Cells

Mindspeed Technologies and China Mobile Research Institute, the research institution of China’s largest mobile operator, signed a Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate on Nanocell research in China.

Nanocell is defined as radio access equipment that integrates cellular small cell and carrier grade WLAN access points.

Mindspeeed said this is an important milestone for the continued rapid build-out of China Mobile’s heterogeneous network (HetNet) and Mindspeed’s small cell base station platform based on its Picochip TD-SCDMA and Transcede LTE system on a chip (SoC) solutions. Mindspeed was selected to participate in this pioneering program based on its current leadership in small cells and its future product roadmap.

Mindspeed has demonstrated dual-mode support for both HSPA and LTE in its small cell SoCs, and the only one to have shown both frequency-division duplexing (FDD) LTE and time-division LTE (TD-LTE) solutions.

Janet6 picks Ciena for 100G

Janet6, the next generation of the national Research and Education (R&E) network in the United Kingdom, has selected Ciena's 6500 packet-optical platform, equipped with WaveLogic™ Coherent Optical Processors, for its optical backbone. The platform, which scale to 400G and up, will enable Janet to rapidly set-up services for strategic research campuses. Financial terms were not disclosed.

  • In July 2007, Janet confirmed deployed 40 Gbps links using Ciena's CoreStream Agility Optical Transport System.