Thursday, July 23, 2015

Intel's ‘Cloud for All’ Initiative Targets New Investments

Intel is rolling out a new "Cloud for All" initiative to accelerate cloud adoption by making public, private and hybrid cloud solutions easier to deploy. The plan calls for a series of investments and collaborations in the cloud software ecosystem, which the company expects will lead to tens of thousands of new cloud deployments.

“The cloud has been critical to the digital services economy and has enabled tremendous innovation and business growth, but broad enterprise adoption is not happening fast enough,” said Diane Bryant, senior vice president and general manager of Intel’s Data Center Group. “We believe that through this initiative we will enable our customers to realize the benefits and innovations gained from the latest cloud computing technologies.”

The Intel Cloud for All initiative will focus on three primary areas:

  • Investing in the ecosystem to accelerate enterprise-ready, easy-to-deploy software defined infrastructure (SDI) solutions;
  • Optimizing SDI solutions to deliver highly efficient clouds across a range of workloads by taking full advantage of Intel platform capabilities; 
  • Aligning the industry and engaging the community through open industry standards, solutions and routes to market to accelerate cloud deployment.

As a key part of this initiative, Intel announced a new collaboration with Rackspace to establish an OpenStack Innovation Center to drive enterprise features and scale optimizations into the OpenStack source code. The OpenStack Innovation Center will include the world’s largest OpenStack developer cloud consisting of two 1,000-node clusters that will be available to the OpenStack community-at-large to support advanced, large-scale testing of OpenStack performance, code and new features. These testing clusters are expected to be available within the next six months.

The companies will also focus on the delivery of new enterprise features and optimizations that are aligned with the OpenStack Enterprise Working Group and community priorities. New modules of courseware will also be offered to onboard and increase the number of open source developers actively contributing to the success of the community.

Amazon Web Services Hits $1.82 Billion in Q2, up 81% YoT

In its quarterly financial update, announced that revenues at AWS reached $1.824 billion for the second quarter of 2015, up 81% over the $1.055 billion for Q2 2014.

Some other AWS highlights for Q2:

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS) announced that it will open a new region in India in 2016, which will enable customers to run workloads in India and serve Indian end-users with even better latency.
  • AWS announced that the EU (Frankfurt) region, which opened in October 2014, is AWS’ fastest growing international region to date.
  • AWS announced AWS Educate, a free program that helps educators and students use real-world cloud technology in the classroom to prepare students for the cloud workforce.
  • AWS entered into separate agreements to support the construction and operation of Amazon Solar Farm U.S. East and Amazon Wind Farm U.S. East. These are expected to generate approximately 170,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of solar power and 670,000 MWh of wind energy on an annual basis. The energy generated from these facilities will be delivered into the electrical grids that power both current and future AWS data centers.
  • AWS announced Amazon API Gateway, a new fully managed service that makes it easy for AWS customers to create, publish, maintain, monitor, and secure APIs at any scale.
  • AWS Device Farm is a new service that helps mobile app developers quickly and securely test their apps on smartphones, tablets, and other devices to improve the quality of their Android and Fire OS apps.

IBM Acquires Compose for Cloud Database Services

IBM has acquired Compose, a start-up offering MongoDB, Redis, Elasticsearch, PostgreSQL, and other database as a service (DBaaS) offerings targeted at web and mobile app developers. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Compose, which was founded in 2010 and is based in San Mateo, California, offers auto-scaling, production-ready databases including MongoDB, Redis, Elasticsearch, PostgreSQL and RethinkDB. The services includes 24x7 monitoring and management by DBaaS DevOps experts. Compose features:

  • "Containerized" DBaaS platform technology – enabling fast deployment and scaling of popular open source DBaaS services for customers;
  • Auto-scaling with predictable performance;
  • Built-in redundancy, backup, failover for uninterrupted DBaaS service & application uptime;
  • Valuable add-ons including Compose Transporter, which helps developers move data between services like MongoDB and Elasticsearch for easier application development and to provide a better end-user experience.

IBM said its acquisition of Compose continues IBM's commitment to open source technology and communities across the entire cloud stack. In addition to this latest announcement, and the announcement to make the company's container technology available through Docker last month, IBM serves as a founding member of The Cloud Foundry and OpenStack Foundations, a platinum sponsor of the Node.js Foundation and a sponsor of the Open Container Project.

"Compose's breadth of database offerings will expand IBM's Bluemix platform for the many app developers seeking production-ready databases built on open source," said Derek Schoettle, General Manager, IBM Cloud Data Services. "Compose furthers IBM's commitment to ensuring developers have access to the right tools for the job by offering the broadest set of DBaaS service and the flexibility of hybrid cloud deployment."

Telx Joins FASTER Transpacific Cable Project

Telx is joining the FASTER transpacific cable system project, which will offer an initial capacity of 60 Tbps when it enters service next year. It will connect the west coast of the U.S. to major Asian cities including Chikura and Shima in Japan.

The FASTER cable system will land in Oregon and can be accessed via a distribution Point of Presence (PoP) in Telx's PRT1 (Hillsboro, Oregon) data center, just outside of Portland. Telx's PRT1 Hillsboro data center is a carrier neutral hub for transpacific and terrestrial cable systems in the Pacific Northwest. Upon completion, FASTER will have an initial capacity of 60 Tb per second and will address the unique traffic demands for broadband and mobile content between Asia and the United States.

"We are excited to develop our relationship with the FASTER consortium through the support of this cable system. Users will be able to easily and securely interconnect their traffic at our data center in Hillsboro," said Tony Rossabi, Executive Vice President of Marketing, Strategy, and Sales, Telx. "This network infrastructure represents our commitment to the Pacific Northwest, and we look forward to persistent growth in the region."

The PRT1 data center has achieved significant growth in terms of carrier interconnectivity. Additionally, Telx has a growing presence on the west coast, with data centers located in California (LOS1, SCL1, SCL2 and SFR1) Oregon (PRT1) and Washington (SEA1).

The FASTER consortium is comprised of six parties, including China Mobile International, China Telecom Global, Global Transit, Google, KDDI and Singtel. The system is expected to begin operating during the second quarter of 2016.

Initial Capacity of FASTER Trans-Pacific Cable: 100G x 100 Wavelengths x 6 Fiber Pairs

NEC has been selected as the systems supplier for a new Trans-Pacific cable that will boast an initial design capacity of 60 Tbps: 100G x 100 wavelengths x 6 fiber pairs. It is believed to be the largest design capacity on this route.

The FASTER cable will connect the west coast of the United States with two landing stations in Japan.  The US$300 million cable is targeted to enter service in Q2 2016.

The project is backed by a consortium of six companies: China Mobile International, China Telecom Global, Global Transit, Google, KDDI and SingTel.

Digital Realty to Acquire Telx for Data Centers and Internet Exchanges

Digital Realty Trust agreed to acquire Telx, a national provider of data center colocation, interconnection and cloud enablement solutions, for $1.886 billion from private equity firms ABRY Partners and Berkshire Partners.

The combination is expected to double Digital Realty's footprint in the rapidly-growing colocation business, as well as provide Digital Realty customers access to a leading interconnection platform.

As of March 31, 2015, Telx managed 1.3 million square feet of data center space operating out of 20 facilities across the country, of which two are Telx-owned, 11 are leased from Digital Realty, one is partially sub-leased from Digital Realty and an unrelated third party, and six are leased from third parties. Telx's flagship facilities include its NYC1 data center at 60 Hudson Street in Manhattan, which serves as a nerve center for international communications and offers access to physical connection points to the world’s telecommunications networks and Internet backbones. Telx occupies multiple floors at 60 Hudson with interconnectivity to more than 400 carriers, financial exchanges and application, media, content, and software-as-a-service providers with just a single connection. Telx operates other NYC data centers at 111 8th Ave. and 32 Avenue of the Americas (6th Ave).

As of March 31, 2015, Digital Realty's portfolio consisted of 130 properties, including 14 properties held as investments in unconsolidated joint ventures, comprised of approximately 22.1 million square feet, excluding approximately 1.2 million square feet of space under active development and 1.3 million square feet of space held for future development, located throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.

AT&T Adds One Million Connected Cars in Q2

AT&T report consolidated revenues for the second quarter of $33.0 billion, up 1.4 percent versus the year-earlier period. When excluding the divested Connecticut wireline property, revenues were up 2.2 percent. Compared with results for the second quarter of 2014, operating expenses were $27.3 billion versus $27.0 billion; operating income was $5.7 billion versus $5.6 billion in the second quarter a year ago, and operating income margin was 17.3 percent, up slightly from 17.2 percent in the year-ago quarter. Second-quarter 2015 net income attributable to AT&T totaled $3.0 billion, or $0.58 per diluted share, compared to net income of $3.5 billion, or $0.68 per diluted share in the year-ago quarter.

“These results reaffirm our transformation strategy,” said Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and CEO. “We grew revenues, expanded margins and delivered double-digit adjusted EPS and cash flow growth. We added more than 2 million new wireless subscribers as the repositioning of our smartphone base nears completion. We also began expanding high-quality, high-speed wireless service to Mexican consumers and businesses. This is a pivotal time for us. We look forward to closing DIRECTV and building on this momentum by delivering a new TV everywhere experience integrated with mobile and high-speed Internet service.”

Wireless Highlights:

  • 2.1 million net adds including 410,000 postpaid, 331,000 prepaid and 1 million connected cars
  • About 1.2 million branded (postpaid and prepaid) smartphones added to base
  • Positive branded phone net adds
  • Strong churn levels with continued low wireless postpaid churn of 1.01 percent and total churn of 1.31 percent
  • At the end of the quarter, 85 percent, or 57.5 million, of AT&T’s postpaid phone subscribers had smartphones. 
  • Smartphones accounted for about 94 percent of phone sales during the quarter. 
  • AT&T’s ARPU for smartphones is about twice that of non-smartphone subscribers. 
  • At the end of the second quarter, 83 percent of AT&T’s postpaid smartphone customers had an LTE capable device.

Wireline Highlights:

  • Strategic business services revenues of $2.7 billion, up 13.0 percent and up 13.6 percent when adjusted for the Connecticut wireline sale; now one-third of total wireline business revenues
  • U-verse consumer revenues of $4.1 billion with adjusted growth of 19.2 percent year over year
  • Advanced business solutions — including VPNs, Ethernet, cloud, hosting, IP conferencing, voice over IP, MIS over Ethernet, U-verse and security services — represent an annualized revenue stream of nearly $11 billion and were one-third of wireline business revenues in the second quarter

International Highlights

  • Completion of Nextel Mexico acquisition
  • Integration with Iusacell underway
  • Established plans to own and operate 4G LTE network in Mexico with plans to cover 100 million POPs with a calling plan footprint of 400 million POPs across North America

Juniper's Revenues Rise to $1.2 Billion

Juniper Networks reported Q2 2015 revenue of $1,222 million, a decrease of 1% year-over-year and an increase of 15% sequentially. Juniper posted GAAP net income of $158.0 million, or $0.40 per diluted share for the second quarter of 2015, a decrease of 29% year-over-year and an increase of 97% sequentially.

“We are pleased to report strong sequential revenue growth from the first quarter across all technologies, which reflects the strength of our innovative product portfolio as well as our continued focus on execution,” said Rami Rahim, chief executive officer of Juniper Networks. “Overall, this quarter is a good proof point that Juniper’s strategy is winning and the investments we have made are producing positive results. Our results reflect the diversity of our customer base and we believe this positions us well to capitalize on the market opportunity throughout 2015 and beyond.”

“We exceeded both our revenue and earnings expectations for the quarter, a reflection of the strength in our underlying business and the focused execution of our strategy,” said Robyn Denholm, chief financial and operations officer of Juniper Networks. “We remain committed to our strong focus on operational fundamentals and the effective management of our cost structure. I want to commend our team for remaining laser focused on driving revenue growth and operating efficiency.”

PMC Trims Back Following Weaker Than Expected Carrier & Storage Markets

PMC-Sierra reported revenue of $124.8 million for Q2 2015, a decrease of 1.6 percent, compared to $126.8 million in the second quarter of 2014, and a decrease of 6.2 percent from $133.1 million in the first quarter of 2015. GAAP net loss in the second quarter of 2015 totaled $8.6 million or $0.04 per share, compared to GAAP net loss in the second quarter of 2014 of $3.5 million or $0.02 per share, and GAAP net income in the first quarter of 2015 of $4.7 million or $0.02 per diluted share.

The company also today initiated steps to reduce spending across the organization by approximately 14%, including a reduction in force of approximately 200 employees worldwide and other reductions that are together expected to result in approximately $40 million per year in savings.

“2015 has started weaker than expected in the carrier and storage end markets,” said PMC President and Chief Executive Officer, Greg Lang. “Given the tepid growth environment, we are taking immediate action to reduce spending and accelerate our return to target model profitability.”

Altera Cites Slowdown in Wireless Infrastructure

Altera reported second quarter sales of $414.2 million, down 5 percent from the first quarter of 2015 and down 16 percent from the second quarter of 2014. Second quarter net income was $70.3 million, $0.23 per diluted share, compared with net income of $94.9 million, $0.31 per diluted share, in the first quarter of 2015 and $127.0 million, $0.41 per diluted share, in the second quarter of 2014.

Altera said sales declined sequentially with Telecom and Wireless sales down sharply, attributable in large measure to the company's wireless business. With a few exceptions, there was broad growth across the remainder of the company. Gross margin was 69.4%, significantly improved from first quarter levels, as a result of favorable vertical market mix.

"Our wireless customers reduced demand on us this quarter, as expected, in reaction to continuing adverse market conditions. This pause in wireless spend more than offset growth across many of our vertical markets," said John Daane, president, chief executive officer, and chairman of the board. "The most important news for the second quarter was the June 1st announcement of an agreement for Intel to acquire Altera. Over the past several years we have worked closely with Intel, the world's largest semiconductor company and a proven technology leader. Through that interaction, we understand well the benefits this transaction will bring to our customers through development of innovative market-leading FPGAs and SoCs that will be enabled by Intel and Altera joining forces."

Gigamon Posts Q2 Sales of $51 Million, up 48% YoY

Gigamon reported Q2 revenue of $51.4 million, up 48% year-over-year. GAAP net income was $38,000, or $0.00 per basic and diluted share, compared to GAAP net loss of $32.5 million, or $1.01 per basic and diluted share, in the second quarter of fiscal 2014.

"Our record performance in the quarter was driven by continued traction of our security and GigaSMART portfolios, and strong results in our Federal and Service Provider businesses in the quarter," said Paul Hooper, chief executive officer of Gigamon.  "Reflecting our continued focus and investment in the security market, earlier this week we announced our GigaSECURE Security Delivery Platform - an industry-first.  Our new Platform establishes a powerful architecture to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of both defense and detection security systems and solutions connected to the Gigamon Visibility Fabric."

A List of Cisco's Recent Acquisitions

Cisco to Acquire MaintenanceNet for $139 Million

Cisco will pay $139 million in cash and retention incentives to acquire MaintenanceNet, a privately held company providing a cloud-based software platform that uses data analytics and automation to manage and scale attach and renewals of recurring customer contracts. MaintenanceNet, which is based in Carlsbad, California, operates a ServiceExchange cloud platform that helps manufacturers improve service renewals and identify uncovered product...

Cisco to acquire OpenDNS for $635 Million

Cisco agreed to acquire OpenDNS, a privately held security company based in San Francisco, for approximately $635 million in cash and assumed equity awards. OpenDNS provides a secure DNS offering with advanced threat protection for "any device, across any port, protocol or app." Its predictive security model is designed to anticipate malicious activity, including botnets and phishing. Its DNSCrypt technology converts regular DNS traffic into encrypted...

Cisco to Acquire Piston Cloud for OpenStack

Cisco agreed to acquire Piston Cloud Computing, a start-up based in San Francisco, for its enterprise OpenStack solutions. Financial terms were not disclosed. Piston Enterprise OpenStack is designed for building, scaling and managing a private Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) cloud on bare-metal, converged commodity hardware.  Piston Cloud enables Cloud Foundry's Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) offering to run on OpenStack. It also supports...

Cisco to Acquire Tropo for Phone/SMS APIs

Cisco agreed to acquire Tropo, a start-up offering real-time communications APIs. Financial terms were not disclosed. Cisco and Tropo will provide a collaboration platform-as-a-service, which allows customers and developers to create and sell new communications services with minimal development effort. Tropo makes it simple to build phone and SMS applications. The company says its APIs have attracted a network of 200K+ developers. The Tropo team...

Cisco to Acquire Embrane for its ACI Software

Cisco announced its intention to acquire Embrane, a start-up offering a lifecycle management platform for application-centric network services. Embrane, which is based in Santa Clara, California, offers a software platform for powering application-centric network services, including firewalls, VPN termination, server load balancers and SSL offload. Cisco said the deal would enhance its ACI vision. The Embrane team will be joining the Insieme Business...

Cisco to Acquire Neohapsis for Security AdvisoryService

Cisco agreed to acquire Neohapsis, a privately-held provider of mobile and cloud security advisory services. Financial terms were not disclosed. Neohapsis provides risk management, compliance, cloud, application, mobile, and infrastructure security solutions to Fortune 500 customers. The company is based in Chicago. The Neohapsis team will join the Cisco Security Services organization under the leadership of Senior Vice President and General Manager...

Cisco to Acquire Memoir Systems for ASIC Design Expertise

Cisco agreed to acquire Memoir Systems, a start-up developing semiconductor memory intellectual property (IP) and tools that enable ASIC vendors to build programmable network switches with increasing speeds.  Financial terms were not disclosed. Memoir Systems, which is based in Santa Clara, California with offices in Armenia and India, pioneered a new approach to develop new memories for switching ASICs.  The company claims its Algorithmic...

Cisco to Acquire Metacloud for OpenStack-as-a-Service

Cisco plans to acquire Metacloud, a start-up with a unique OpenStack-as-a-Service model that delivers and remotely operates production-ready private clouds in a customer’s data center. Financial terms were not disclosed. Metacloud, which is based in Pasadena, California, uses its software management platform to deploy and operate private clouds for global organizations. Metacloud OpenStack delivers a full public cloud experience, but in a private...

Cisco to Acquire Tail-f for Network Mgt and Service Orchestration

Cisco agreed to acquire privately held Tail-f Systems, a leader in multi-vendor network service orchestration solutions for traditional and virtualized networks, for approximately $175 million in cash and retention-based incentives. Tail-f, which is based in Stockholm, Sweden, is known for its multi-vendor configuration management and network automation software.  The Tail-f Network Control System (NCS) provides a single network-wide interface...

Cisco to Acquire ThreatGRID for Dynamic Malware Intelligence

Cisco  intent to acquire ThreatGRID, which offers a crowdsourced, unified malware analysis and threat intelligence solution. ThreatGRID, which is based in New York City, securely crowdsources large volumes of malware and performs advanced analysis in the cloud, to identify key behavioral indicators enabling near real-time remediation. This allows customers to correlate a single malware sample’s characteristics against millions of other samples....