Sunday, November 24, 2013

Intel: From Silicon to Platforms

"If it computes, it does it best with Intel" -- this statement underscores Intel's mission, said company CEO Brian Krzanich, speaking at the Intel Investor's Day conference in Santa Clara, California. Intel is dedicated to "a new pragmatism" that will make the company much more market driven, said Krzanich, with a the goal of capturing significant inroads in the data center and mobile computing. Among the changes to the way the company does business is that decision to open its foundry to any company able to utilize its silicon and the decision to create platforms for the data center, not just server and switching silicon.

Some highlights taken from half-dozen executive presentations (now available on the company's website).

Data Center

  • Intel sees a 15% CAGR for data center products through 2016.
  • Intel's data center business spans Enterprise, Telco, HPC, Work stations and Cloud.  The company will move from delivering just silicon to complete solutions for each of these segments.
  • Intel believes the Telco market will transition to common server platforms for many workloads, including signal processing at the edge, control plane processing, application processing and data plane processing.  This is a major transition and will help offset Service Provider CAPEX/OPEX.
  • AT&T's Supplier Domain 2.0 program is an example of the move to open software and hardware solutions.
  • The move to SDN and NFV will also drive the move to Intel architectures. Over 15 major telcos worldwide are in the process of qualifying new systems based on Intel systems.
  • Proprietary network appliances are being virtualized and migrated on open servers based on Intel.
  • Intel currently estimates that it has about 5% of the overall network equipment compute market, compared with 94% of the enterprise server compute market.  The company believes the performance gains of its Xeon processors will enable it to challenge the ASIC-based systems currently used in many networking platforms.
  • Intel estimates that every 400 new Connected Devices sold leads to the sale of 1 new server. Every new 20 Digital Signs leads to 1 new server.
  • Internet of Things will drive faster change: a metro area smart traffic deployment will require 30K cameras, 10K gates, 2.5K servers, 650 network switches, 250 storage systems -- based on a real project in China.
  • 6 of 7 top data center customers bought “higher bin” CPUs vs. prior year.
  • Intel delivers unique server processors for eBay (liquid cooled), Facebook (cold storage server), and Nuance (optimized for voice processing)
  • Intel is delivering its new open rack-scale architecture to the Open Compute project and a similar "Scorpion" initiative in China.
  • In terms of connecting systems in a rack, copper will be challenged >25Gbps.
  • Current optical interconnect products are challenged >100m, >25Gbps.
  • Intel's Silicon Photonics has demonstrated 800m reach at 25Gbps.  This will enter production in Q1 2014.
  • Intel currently holds No.1 market share in enterprise SSDs.  Upcoming technologies will redefine the boundary between memory and storage.
Mobility and PC

  • About 1.5 billion smartphones and tablets will ship in 2014 (overall market).
  • Intel believes the PC market is stabilizing, although still declining at single digit rates.
  • In 2014 aims for 40 million tablets sold -- a 4X gain over expected 2013 Intel tablet shipments.
  • Intel seeks to change the "PC experience" by pushing 2-in-1 convertible and detachable PC/Tablet devices, with prices under $300.
  • Look for Intel-powered tablets on the market for under $100.
  • The first LTE chipset (XMM7160) is shipping and the LTE-Advanced chipset (XMM7260) will be out next year.
  • The forthcoming Broxton chip (next gen Atom) will offer a unique design that will allow it to be quickly adapted for specialized devices. Target date is mid-2015.
  • A new SoFIA chipset will provide integrated global LTE multi-comm connectivity with Intel Atom inside.  Initially it will be built in an external foundry for market pragmatics, but brought back inside with a move to 14nm.
  • Intel believes "perceptual computing" will be a big trend - using voice and motion sensors to make computing a 3D experience.
  • Intel's 10nm process technology will be ready in 2015.
  • Opening the foundry means focusing on a much wider range of customers.
  • Initial foundry customers include achronix, Altera, Microsemi, Netronome and Tabula.

Archived materials are here:

NTT DATA to Acquire Optimal Solutions Integration for SAP Consulting

NTT DATA will acquire Optimal Solutions Integration, a consulting company based in Irving, Texas that specializes in SAP services.  Financial terms were not disclosed.

Optimal offers a broad range of planning, implementation, and maintenance services for the SAP product suite.

NTT DATA said its SAP-related revenues already exceed $1 billion annually and the acquisition will expand this business. Optimal’s 2012 fiscal year revenue was $153 million.  With the acquisition expected to close in early 2014, NTT DATA will have approximately 7,500 SAP professionals, including more than 950 from Optimal.

“Optimal complements and brings further innovation to support the growing market demand for emerging technologies in the SAP space such as HANA, big data, analytics, mobility, and cloud, areas where NTT DATA is heavily focused today,” stated Robb Rasmussen, President of NTT DATA’s Enterprise Services.  “Optimal is well-respected in the SAP ecosystem and brings business process expertise in industries such as Consumer, Retail, Wholesale and Distribution, Mining, Public Sector, and Manufacturing.”

"This combination is all about growth,” said Gurvendra Suri, CEO of Optimal. "We are very excited to bring our SAP expertise to NTT DATA to strengthen its leadership position in the market. This combination strengthens an already robust SAP services portfolio, providing more options for our clients and opening up new opportunities to expand and innovate in ways others cannot.”

More recent acquisitions from NTT

NTT Com Expands Global Cloud Vision with 2 Investments: Virtela and RagingWire

NTT Communications announced two major international investments:  the acquisition of Virtela for US$525 million in cash, and the acquisition of an 80% stake in RagingWire for US$350 million. Virtela Technology Services (Virtela), which is based in Denver, is a leading global managed and cloud network services provider serving over 500 multinational companies.

NTT Comm to Acquire Arkadin for Cloud Collaboration

NTT Communications will acquire a maximum 91.2% equity stake in Arkadin, which delivers SaaS conference-related solutions covering audio, web, video conferencing and unified communications services. Arkadin, which was launched in 2001 by CEO, Olivier de Puymorin, serves approximately 37,000 customers in 32 countries, including France, Germany, the UK, USA, Australia, China, Singapore and Japan. The company is based in Paris.

NTT to Acquire Solutionary for Managed Security Services

NTT agreed to acquire Solutionary, a privately held company based in Omaha, Nebraska that specializes in managed security in an all-cash transaction. Financial terms were not disclosed. Solutionary is a pure-play managed security service provider (MSSP) that helps enterprises fulfill the requirements of major compliance frameworks (such as PCI DSS, GLBA, FFIEC, HIPAA, HITECH and SOX). Solutionary's cloud-based ActiveGuard security services and analytics.

NTT to Acquire Centerstance for Cloud Integration Expertise

NTT will acquire Centerstance, a U.S.-based consulting company specializing in cloud integration projects, for an undisclosed sum. Centerstance is a platinum cloud alliance partner for  The company is based in Portland, Oregon.  The company helps clients to identify and move key business processes to the cloud leveraging the platform.

NTT DOCOMO Updated Indoor Base Station + Antenna for LTE-A

NTT DOCOMO has developed an indoor multi-band base station and antenna that are newly compatible with the 1.5 and 1.7 GHz frequency bands for LTE-Advanced in addition to the conventionally supported 2 GHz band.  Maximum downlink is rated at 150 Mbps currently and up to 225 Mbps when DOCOMO launches its LTE-Advanced service.  Installations of the new base station and antenna are beginning immediately in parts of Tokyo, Kanagawa, Aichi, Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo prefectures.

DOCOMO said its new multi-band base station fits into limited spaces in indoor locations and the new multi-band antenna, which is about the same size as the current single-band antenna, can replace existing antennas using the same space.

Facebook Backs RocksDB Open Database in Flash

At last week's Data@Scale event, Facebook announced support for RocksDB, a high-performance, embedded key-value store database optimized for flash storage.

Facebook said RocksDB builds on LevelDB to be scalable to run on servers with many CPU cores, to efficiently use fast storage, to support IO-bound, in-memory and write-once workloads, and to be flexible to allow for innovation.

A video by Dhruba Borthakur, software engineer at Facebook, presents Rocksdb.

Twitter Implements Forward Secrecy

Twitter announced the implementation of Forward Secrecy for traffic on,, and  The new security seeks to defend against an adversary that may be recording all of Twitter's encrypted HTTPS traffic.

On a blog post, Twitter's engineering team said that unlike traditional HTTPS, Forward Security enables the EC Diffie-Hellman cipher suites, which lets the client and server share a random session key without ever sending the key across the network, even under encryption.

Twitter is encouraging other websites to adopt Forward Secrecy as "the new normal" in web traffic, saying this type of protection is increasing important on today's Internet.

NYT: N.S.A. Report Outlined Goals for More Power

The New York Times reported on a top secret, 2012 N.S.A. document leaked by Edward Snowden that outlines the agency's ambition to expand its surveillance powers through new access channels, by integrating its technical tools and by leveraging global business trends in data and communications services.