Monday, October 27, 2014

BT Brings Ethernet to Major UK Data Centers

BT announced high-capacity Ethernet connectivity to three leading co-location data centers in the UK: TelecityGroup in Joule House, Manchester,and Equinix (LDN5) in Slough and a further one in Leeds. BT Wholesale’s data center PoP rollout began earlier this year and already included  Telehouse Europe North and the Global Switch1 data center in London, as well as one of the UK’s largest data centers in Newport, South Wales.

The new data center PoPs provide BT’s wholesale customers with Ethernet connections into BT’s core network.  BT said the investing in the new Ethernet equipment inside leading data centers enables it to substantially reduce the connection and rental costs for customers, as well as speeding up the time it takes to interconnect with its network.

Paul Beacham, General Manager, TDM Data, Ethernet & Optical Product Management at BT Wholesale said: “This is part of a wide investment in BT’s Ethernet footprint across the UK, and it comes at a time when the cloud and hosted communications services market continues to grow rapidly.  We believe the huge benefits of the cloud can only be achieved if hosted services are run over reliable, high capacity fibre network connectivity, which is delivered flawlessly. These services are being adopted in increasing numbers by businesses of all sizes, so BT is investing in more network options to support that growth in demand. We want to be in the right locations and at the right price for our customers in order to support, satisfy and stimulate the growth of UK plc.”

BT cited the following advantages for its Ethernet POPs:

  • Resilience.  BT’s Ethernet backhaul network provides fully resilient fiber routes and automatic traffic switching. 
  • Speed of provision. The standard provision lead times for 1G ports in these locations are just 10 working days. This can offer significant reductions in lead times, some five or six times quicker than buying standard direct access products 
  • Lower costs. Up to 75% cheaper than traditional access using direct network access products. 

BT also outlined plans to launch further data center PoP locations during 2014 as well as supporting higher bandwidths with 10 Gbps ports available in key locations. In 2015, the company plans to extend its next generation optical network into a number of data center locations supporting national connectivity at 10 Gbps, 40 Gbps and 100 Gbps. 

http://www.btplc.com/News/Articles/ShowArticle.cfm?ArticleID=96EB447B-B1BA-4F78-ACFD-794871361D57

TierPoint Builds its Data Center Fleet with Acquisition of Xand

TierPoint, which operates 141,000 square feet of raised-floor data center space across 7 U.S. cities, announced its acquisition of Xand, a privately-held provider of colocation, cloud, disaster recovery and managed services with six data centers located in New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. Xand was owned by ABRY Partners.  Financial terms were not disclosed.

The combined company will operate 13 highly-redundant, Tier III plus data centers in 10 markets with almost 300,000 square feet of raised floor, serving approximately 3,700 customers.

TierPoint and Xand share a common cloud infrastructure supported by Cisco, NetApp, and Fortinet.

The acquisition is being funded through a combination of incremental equity from TierPoint's existing investors as well as a new investor, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan (Teachers'), Canada's largest single-profession pension plan with more than $140 billion in net assets. Its investment was led by Teachers' Private Capital, which manages a global private equity portfolio valued at approximately $14 billion. TierPoint's current investment group includes Cequel III management led by Chairman Jerry Kent, RedBird Capital Partners, The Stephens Group, Jordan/Zalaznick Advisers, Inc., and Thompson Street Capital Partners.

http://www.tierpoint.com/company/news/tierpoint-agrees-acquire-xand/

IBM Intros Cloud-based Data Services

IBM announced a new set of data services for the IBM Cloud:

  • IBM DataWorks – a set of cloud-based data refinery services that shape, cleanse, match and secure data. The new services enable business users to find, use and contribute data for analysis; application developers to embed data services into new applications; and IT and data professionals to enable self-service data access and instill confidence to act on the data.
  • IBM dashDB – a cloud-based data warehousing and analytics service with in-memory technology built-in to deliver answers faster. A new integration of dashDB with Cloudant, IBM’s NoSQL database as a service (DBaaS), allows Cloudant clients to embed analytics in their applications with a few clicks.
  • IBM Cloudant local - an on-premise edition of the fully managed cloud database-as-a-service that enables a fluid hybrid cloud data layer that spans private data centers, mobile devices and third-party cloud providers. This ensures customers can easily reconfigure their cloud data platforms over time to optimize the cost, security, reach and performance.
  • Watson Curator, a software-as-a-service (SaaS) offering that increases confidence in the delivery of quality content collections and governance for IBM Watson Solutions. For example, an individual insurance risk analyst can quickly review and add context to documents so that many underwriters across the enterprise can get higher quality responses on risk assessments from Watson Engagement Advisor. IBM Watson Curator actively guides subject matter experts -- in this case the risk expert -- through the entire curation process in order to minimize the time and effort required. This capability improves the relevance and quality of the information used for analytics. 

IBM also announced that its broad portfolio of analytics capabilities --  including Cognos business intelligence and SPSS predictive analytics platforms – is planned to be available via the IBM Cloud marketplace.

“All the data in the world is useless if you can’t put it to work. The new cloud-born services from IBM provide data professionals the ability to deliver data with speed and confidence as the fuel for applications and analytics,” said Beth Smith, general manager, Big Data, IBM. “The ability to source and manage the right data will help organizations keep data management streamlined, while adhering to increasingly stringent regulatory demands, and produce results and analysis of real value to the business.”

http://www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/pressrelease/45211.wss

SwiftStack Raises $16 Million for OpenStack Swift Storage Controller

SwiftStack, a start-up based in San Francisco, raised $16 million in Series B venture funding to support its vision of software­ defined storage for the cloud.

SwiftStack leverages OpenStack's Swift storage project for massive storage scalability in enterprise networks. SwiftStack's software-defined storage controller orchestrates all aspects of the storage environment. SwiftStack Node installs on commodity storage hardware and connects back to the SwiftStack Controller.

The new Series B round was led with a substantial investment from OpenView Venture Partners as well as existing investors Mayfield Fund, Storm Ventures and UMC Capital. The round brings total investment in the company to $23.6 million.

“There’s been a sea change in the adoption of enterprise storage solutions, and object storage is a front ­seat technology poised to be general purpose storage likely to supplant today’s use of expensive SAN and NAS devices,” said Joe Arnold, CEO of SwiftStack. “Our disruptive technology and engagement model will leapfrog traditional enterprise storage software vendors in the race to deliver the storage scalability customers want, the way they want to buy it. With this new infusion of resources we’ll be able to significantly scale on our vision to give customers an affordable, scalable, manageable and simple storage solution.”

https://www.swiftstack.com/

Microsoft Removes Storage Limits for Office 365 Users

Microsoft will begin offering unlimited OneDrive cloud storage at no additional cost to all Office 365 paid subscribers. The offer is being rolled out incrementally starting with Office 365 Home, Personal, and University customers.

In a blog posting, Microsoft's Chris Jones said that while the move to unlimited storage is an important milestone for cloud services,  he believes "the true value of cloud storage is only realized when it is tightly integrated with the tools people use to communicate, create, and collaborate, both personally and professionally."

https://blog.onedrive.com/office-365-onedrive-unlimited-storage/

T-Mobile US Posts Biggest Quarter So Far

T-Mobile US reported its biggest growth quarter to date -- 2.3 million total net customer additions with 1.8 million total branded net customer additions for the quarter, including branded postpaid net additions of 1.4 million and branded prepaid net additions of 411,000. The strong branded postpaid net addition performance resulted from continued momentum in phone gross additions, which were up 46% year-over-year.

“Despite our competitors’ best efforts, the Un-carrier revolution made huge advances in the third quarter with record net new customers,” said John Legere, President and CEO of T-Mobile. “More proof of the resurgent strength of our brand and the massive momentum behind the Un-carrier consumer movement.”

Some additional highlights:

  • 52.9 million total customers
  • 10 million total customers added over the last 6 quarters – 2.3 million in the third quarter alone
  • Service revenues grew 10.6% year-over-year to $5.7 billion
  • Best ever Average Billings Per User (ABPU) of $61.59, up 4.2% year-over-year
  • In the third quarter of 2014, cash capital expenditures were $1.1 billion, up from $0.9 billion in the second quarter of 2014 and up from $1.0 billion in the third quarter of 2013.


http://investor.t-mobile.com/CorporateProfile.aspx?iid=4091145

T-Mobile Continues Wideband LTE Rollout

T-Mobile activated its Wideband LTE spectrum throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, bringing up to a 50% increase in speed to customers.  The carrier said its customers in the region are now averaging 21 Mbps, with observed peak rates of up to 90 Mbps. Customers are using about 2.5 GB of data per month.

“We know Bay Area T-Mobile customers are going to notice and take advantage of the faster LTE speeds Wideband LTE provides,” said Neville Ray, Chief Technology Officer, T-Mobile. “Just because we’ve made an upgrade to the network in these areas, don’t think we are done yet. We are continually working to enhance and expand LTE coverage for our customers every day.”

http://www.t-mobile.com


  • T-Mobile has defined Wideband LTE as at least 15+15MHz.  The carrier has deployed Wideband LTE in over 17 metro areas already and expects at least 26 total metro areas will be up with Wideband LTE by the end of the year. The carrier is also starting to roll out its new low-band 700 MHz A-Block spectrum. 



Sweden's Chalmers University Develops 140 GHz Transmitter at 40G

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden have developed a 140 GHz transmitter chip capable of a transmission rate of 40 Gbps.

The transmitter device is implemented in indium phosphide and contains an I-Q modulator, a 3-stage amplifier, and a x3 frequency multiplier for the local oscillator.

“We have designed circuits for signals at 140 Gigahertz, where we have a large bandwidth. In laboratory testing, we have achieved a transmission rate of 40 Gigabit data per second, which is twice as fast as the previous world record at a comparable frequency,” says Herbert Zirath, who is a professor in high speed electronics at Chalmers. He is also employed by Ericsson Research on a part-time basis.

http://www.chalmers.se/en/departments/mc2/news/Pages/World-record-in-data-transmission-with-smart-circuits.aspx

PMC Posts Q3 Revenue of $135.5M, up 7%

PMC-Sierra reported net revenues in the third quarter of 2014 of $135.5 million, an increase of 7 percent from $126.8 million in the second quarter of 2014 and an increase of 6 percent, compared to $128.4 million in the third quarter of 2013. GAAP net income in the third quarter of 2014 totaled $5.5 million or $0.03 per diluted share, compared to a GAAP net loss in the second quarter of 2014 of $3.5 million or a $0.02 loss per share.

“Our Storage business performed exceedingly well this past quarter with double-digit growth across all of its product lines,” said PMC president and chief executive officer, Greg Lang. “PMC remains well-positioned for continued growth into FY2015, as we expect to see increasing demand for our 12Gb/s SAS I/O controllers and expanders, advanced DIGI OTN processors, Flashtec™ NVMe controllers and our new RF Remote Radio Head products.”

http://investor.pmcs.com

Mavenir Posts Q3 Sales of $34M Up 31% YoY

Mavenir Systems reported Q3 revenues of $34.1 million, an increase of 31% year-over-year and 2% quarter-over-quarter. GAAP net loss for the third quarter of 2014 was $5.8 million, compared to $4.5 million in the third quarter of 2013 and $3.9 million for the second quarter of 2014.


“We are pleased with our achievement of continued growth and that we exceeded key financial milestones this quarter. The company is well positioned to take advantage of the dynamic mobile service provider market,” said Pardeep Kohli, president and chief executive officer, Mavenir Systems. “With Apple's announcement in June that iOS 8 supports Wi-Fi calling using the operator's voice and text messaging services, we believe Apple will serve as a catalyst for mobile operators to accelerate their IMS vendor selection decisions and/or deployment plans; coupled with the transition to NFV, we are seeing greater opportunities for our software-based IMS and EPC solution.”

“Although we saw some launches in the U.S. along with capacity expansions in the U.S. and EMEA, the majority of our worldwide customers continue to be in the network build-out phase as they work towards VoLTE and RCS launches, and we anticipate several more launches planned for late 2014 and/or early 2015,” said Terry Hungle, chief financial officer, Mavenir Systems.

http://investor.mavenir.com

See also