Wednesday, July 17, 2013

SoftBank Takes Bloom Energy Fuel Cells to Japan

SoftBank and Bloom Energy are forming 50/50 Joint Venture to bring Bloom's fuel cell technology to Japan.

Bloom Energy's fuel cells are currently deployed in the United States by clients including AT&T, Google, eBay, The Coca Cola Company, Walmart and others.

  • In June 2013, Verizon announced plans to install Bloom Energy fuel cell systems at three of its California-based locations: two call-switching centers in Los Angeles and San Francisco and a data center in San Jose.  The solid oxide fuel cells are expected to generate more than 16 million kilowatt hours of clean electricity for Verizon in California each year.
  • NTT America is also using Bloom Energy servers in California.

RiverMeadow Releases Cloud Migration SaaS Version 2.0

RiverMeadow Software, a start-up based in San Jose, California and Westford, Massachusetts, has updated its automated server migration solution developed specifically for carrier and service provider clouds.

RiverMeadow Cloud Migration SaaS version 2.0 automates the migration process for moving both Linux and Windows servers into public, private or hybrid clouds. Unlike other solutions that migrate at the application level and have to account for shared libraries, registry entries and other complex interoperability issues, the RiverMeadow Cloud Migration SaaS migrates whole servers and disk volumes at the OS level.

RiverMeadow currently supports AWS and OpenStack.  Support for Microsoft Azure (Hyper-V) is on the roadmap for later this year.

With AWS, Most of the workloads are spun up as  greenfield (new workloads).   RiverMeadow's goal is to make the difficult process of moving out of AWS fairly into a simpler and automated process.  RiverMeadow also aims to simplify migration into and between the various OpenStack clouds and other cloud OS's.

"The cost and complexity of migrating virtual, physical or cloud-based servers into the cloud can be overwhelming — averaging thousands of dollars per server and man-months’ worth of operational effort,” said Mark Shirman, CEO, RiverMeadow. “With the enhancements delivered in RiverMeadow Cloud Migration SaaS 2.0, we continue to remove the barriers of entry for just a fraction of the cost and without the operational headaches, so organizations can immediately gain the economic and practical benefits of cloud computing.”

Nissan USA Picks AT&T + SiriusXM for Telematics

Nissan has selected  AT&T and Sirius XM Radio to provide mobile connectivity to support a suite of security and services for Nissan automobiles in North America.

SiriusXM's in-vehicle telematics solution will provide Nissan vehicle owners 24/7 emergency support for accidents, stolen vehicle tracking and roadside assistance by using a combination of satellite and cellular networks. The architecture will allow SiriusXM to take advantage of both one-to-many and one-to-one network connectivity.

"Your future car is going to be a smartphone with four wheels with powerful capabilities specifically built for a safe and enhanced customer experience," said Glenn Lurie, president of AT&T Emerging Enterprises and Partnerships Organization. "By adding fast, reliable and built-in mobile internet for SiriusXM's forthcoming in-car experience, we are powering a connected experience inside Nissan automobiles for both drivers and passengers."

Telefónica Leverages ASSIA's DSL Expresse for Real-time Copper Line Optimization

Telefónica will expand its usage of ASSIA's DSL network management technology to cover more than eight million customer lines globally, and will initially focus on South American countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and Peru. ASSIA is also a portfolio company of Telefónica. An initial contract was signed in 2010.

Telefónica plans to deploy ASSIA's DSL Expresse real-time line optimization module for proactive line repair, and ClearView, a customer-care recommendation engine that presents comprehensive customer line and service information to customer-care professionals through an easy-to-use interface, enabling them to provide the fastest-possible responses and resolutions to customer calls.

“We are pleased to incorporate the latest DSL Expresse features, which reinforce the value of our operations and technical assistance tools in improving service performance and customer care, as well as reducing our maintenance costs,” said Enrique Blanco, global CTO of Telefónica. “The improvements that we have realized with ASSIA for the past three years since we first invested in them clearly justified the expansion of our relationship as we continue to focus on delivering the highest speeds and latest services to our customers.”

Under the deal, ASSIA will provide Telefónica with the following advanced features of DSL Expresse and services for deployment, training, support, assessment and maintenance:

  • ClearView, a state-of-the-art expert system that tracks problems to their exact source and provides clear and concise recommendations to a contact center agent or field technician to resolve a customer DSL issue immediately.
  • Real-time line optimization, which significantly improves customer satisfaction and reduces service calls and repair costs.
  • Support for single-ended loop test (SELT) for enhanced diagnostics, cost savings, and service delivery, such as the ability to pinpoint faults and direct dispatches to the appropriate location.
  • Advanced micro-filter detection, which enables call-center agents to see missing micro filters on customer lines and guide the customer to easily and quickly install them. This can rapidly help solve performance problems, avoiding the need for costly, time-consuming field-technician dispatches.
  • Power management, which reduces power consumption and costs, and can help Telefónica attain its green initiative goals.
  • Advanced ADSL2 diagnostics that enable service personnel to address physical impairments efficiently in the copper plant.

Puppet Labs Acquires Cloudsmith for IT Test Automation

Puppet Labs, which develops IT automation software for system administrators, has acquired Cloudsmith, a developer of tools for rapidly building and testing infrastructure automation. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Puppet Labs’ software is used by enterprises to configure and manage their IT infrastructure.

Cloudsmith is the developer of Geppetto, an integrated development environment (IDE) for building and publishing Puppet modules. The company also developed Stack Hammer, a service for integrating, testing, and deploying collections of Puppet modules as complete “stacks” through integrations with GitHub and Amazon EC2. Following the acquisition, both Geppetto and Stack Hammer will continue to be developed and supported, and all Cloudsmith employees will be retained and integrated into Puppet Labs.

"We have been working with the Puppet Labs team and community for years and find we have a shared vision, culture, and passion around helping IT teams improve their lives through automation,” said Mitch Sonies, CEO and founder of Cloudsmith. “And while the Cloudsmith Geppetto community has grown to more than 10,000 users in a short period of time, together with Puppet Labs we’re looking forward to bringing Geppetto’s ease-of-automation benefits to many, many more.”

Open Networking Foundation Continues Adding Members

Membership in the Open Networking Foundation (ONF) has now surpassed 100 companies. The newest additions are TorreyPoint, Coriant, and Virtela.

The ONF was created in 2011 as a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting Software-Defined Networking (SDN).

"Our vision to bring software programmability to networks worldwide is becoming a reality with more companies joining our movement and implementing and deploying this innovative technology that is changing the future of networking,” said Dan Pitt, executive director of the Open Networking Foundation. “In the past two years since our public launch, we have seen a significant increase in OpenFlow-based switches, controllers, and applications, and real-world deployments of the technology. Our growing member community underscores that we are meeting our goals of expanding SDN awareness and driving commercialization, and we are ever more motivated by their continuing support of our efforts to accelerate the global commercialization of open, standards-based SDN for the benefit of users.”

CommScope Packages Fiber-to-the-Antenna Solution for RRUs

CommScope introduced a bundled solution for fiber-to-the-antenna (FTTA) site deployments where where remote radio units (RRUs) are installed at the top of cellular towers closer to the antennas, reducing loss and improving system performance.

The company says its FTTA Turnkey Solution, which part of the Andrew portfolio of wireless solutions, standardizes RRU installation while bringing simplicity, consistency and performance assurance to a technologically and logistically complex application.

The FTTA Turnkey Solution includes:

  • Argus UltraBand multiport antennas
  • HELIAX FiberFeed hybrid fiber and power trunk cable and tails
  • HELIAX SureFlex RF cable assemblies
  • Cabinets, structural supports, connectors and assemblies
  • Optional Andrew SiteRise pre-assembled tower solution

"The top of an antenna tower is one of the more challenging places to work, especially when you are adding active components while protecting existing systems,” said Stan Catey, senior vice president and general manager, Cable Products, CommScope. “With the FTTA Turnkey Solution, CommScope will supply decades of wireless network expertise, extensive partner relationships and unique tower equipment solutions that seamlessly integrate with RRU technology.”

ADVA's Q2 Financial Results Top Guidance

ADVA Optical Networking announced Q2 2013 revenues of EUR 78.4 million in Q2 2013  -- slightly above guidance of between EUR 73 million and EUR 78 million.  This is down 8.7% vs. Q2 2012 at EUR 85.9 million and up 1.7% vs. EUR 77.0 million in Q1 2013.

IFRS pro forma operating income, excluding stock-based compensation and amortization & impairment of goodwill & acquisition-related intangible assets, amounted to EUR 1.5 million or 2.0% of revenues in Q2 2013, at the upper end of guidance of between -2% and +2% of revenues. This compares to EUR 6.8 million or 8.0% of revenues in Q2 2012 and EUR 0.8 million or 1.0% of revenues in Q1 2013.

"We are pleased with our Q2 2013 results which were achieved in a volatile macro-economic environment. At EUR 78.4 million, our Q2 2013 revenues are above guidance and are up 1.7% vs. the previous quarter. Our pro forma gross margin strengthened from 38.6% in Q1 2013 to 39.9% in Q2 2013. This improvement is due to changes in product and customer mix and also demonstrates our focus on managing operational costs, " commented Jaswir Singh, chief financial officer & chief operating officer of ADVA Optical Networking.

ARRIS Releases E6000 Converged Edge Router

ARRIS announced the commercial release of its new E6000 Converged Edge Router (CER), which continues the legacy of the company's widely deployed C4® Cable Modem Termination System (CMTS).

The ARRIS E6000 CER delivers new levels of density with the an integrated architecture that has the capability to realize the vision of CCAP — the convergence of high-speed data, voice, and MPEG video service delivery from a single F connector.

"We're excited to declare the General Availability of the E6000 CER," said Bruce McClelland, President, Network & Cloud Global Services, ARRIS. "Operators today are benefitting from the unrivaled efficiencies of the E6000 CER – in rack space, power consumption, cooling, advanced services and new applications."

"The E6000 CER software is based on that of the C4 CMTS, which enables seamless deployments," said McClelland, "Cable operators who deploy IPv6 with the E6000 will benefit from years of operational IPv6 experience gained with the C4 CMTS and from an unprecedented level of service group and channel density, both upstream and downstream."

Lenovo Enters Strategic Global Reseller Alliance with Extreme Networks

Extreme Networks announced a strategic global reseller alliance with Lenovo, the world's #1 PC maker.

Lenovo will provide its campus, data center and cloud customers with open, high performance, and reliable converged infrastructure addressing data center and cloud initiatives.

"Addressing customer needs for cloud and data center today hinges on integrating the network stack with proven solutions for computing, storage and networking," said Darrel Ward, Vice President of Marketing, Lenovo Enterprise Products Group. "With Extreme Networks, we have found an excellent partner that will enable Lenovo to deliver a complete, open standards-based solution that will play a central role in allowing our customers to meet their goal of establishing cost-effective and scalable architectures."

"The Extreme Networks and Lenovo partnership for converged infrastructure demonstrates our commitment to open networking innovations addressing the Cloud-ready data center," said Eileen Brooker, vice president of strategic alliances for Extreme Networks. "This global go-to-market partnership for servers, storage and switching helps customers to deploy high performance systems that are reliable, fast and scalable."

Defense Information Systems Agency Approves Brocade's 100 GbE

The Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) has approved the Brocade MLX and MLXe 100 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) networking solutions to be added to the Unified Capabilities - Approved Products List (UC-APL), which tracks products that have completed Interoperability (IO) and Information Assurance (IA) certification.  The newly certified Brocade networking solutions can be deployed by Department of Defense (DoD) agencies.

"With one of the largest and most complex network environments in the world, the Department of Defense required access to the most robust and flexible network solutions available. DoD network capabilities must meet the challenges posed by the massive influx of data, devices and applications that defense organizations are supporting today," said Anthony Robbins, vice president of federal, Brocade. "Brocade realizes that maintaining uninterrupted network connectivity is essential to meeting DoD mission priorities, and we are proud to be included as part of the DoD UC-APL."