Wednesday, July 11, 2018

IEEE 5G World Forum: China Mobile sees Deep Rethinking with 5G

5G gives us the opportunity to rethink the fundamentals of cellular communications, said Dr. Chih-Lin I of China Mobile, speaking at the 2018 IEEE 1st 5G World Forum (5GWF’18) in Santa Clara, California this week. The deep rethinking refers to a reevaluation of basic cell infrastructure, including the base station, the fronthaul, the protocol stack, the air interface and even signalling and control systems. The core idea is to make everything software-defined everything. Keywords for this rethinking are open and smart. Rather than rely on one or two strategic vendors, China Mobile runs its own R&D programs.

Dr. Chih-Lin I said China Mobile is actively engaged with multiple vendors, academia, and the open source community, especially The Linux Foundation, with the goal of making its future network more agile and more energy efficient. For instance, China Mobile is one of the 5 founders of the O-RAN Alliance, which aims to open up the radio access network.


She said China Mobile is also especially interested in white box hardware in the RAN. Field trials are planned for later this year in Guangdong, Jiangsu, and Anhui. As a cost savings mechanism, China Mobile would like to see new suppliers in its networks.

China Mobile is also experimenting with various materials to help dissipate heat in base stations. This may also be included in future reference designs.

China Mobile, Huawei and Alibaba have established a Wireless AI Alliance (WAIA) to coordinate industry and academic research efforts in China for intelligent networking. Five working groups have been set up. Two whitepapers have been published.

Some additional highlights of the presentation

  • China Mobile is the world's largest mobile operator with 902 million subscribers, of which 73% are now on 4G
  • China Mobile's 4G network footprint covers 99% of China's population
  • China Mobile has nearly 2 million base stations in operation, of which 63% are 4G LTE
  • China Mobile has over 200 million VoLTE users
  • 5G testing kicks off this year in 5 cities (Hangzhou, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Wuhan and Suzhou, with service demos planned for Beijing, Chengdu, and Shenzhen). Pre-commerical trials will be extended next year. China Mobile is targetting 2020 for 5G commercialization.


Video of Dr. Chih-Lin I's presentation 
http://ieeetv.ieee.org/conference-highlights/ieee-5g-world-forum-keynotes-full-stream-day-2-2018

Broadcom to acquire CA Technologies for $18.9 billion

Broadcom agreed to acquire CA Technologies (NASDAQ: CA) for $44.50 per share in cash, representing an enterprise value of $18.9 billion -- a premium of approximately 20% to the closing price of CA common stock on July 11, 2018.

CA, which was founded by Charles Wang and Russell Artzt in 1976 and formerly known as Computer Associates,  is one of the world's leading providers of information technology (IT) management software and solutions. The company is based in New York City and is primarily known for its B2B mainframe, distributed computing, and enterprise software.

Broadcom notes that CA benefits from predictable and recurring revenues with the average duration of bookings exceeding three years.

Hock Tan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Broadcom, said, "This transaction represents an important building block as we create one of the world's leading infrastructure technology companies. With its sizeable installed base of customers, CA is uniquely positioned across the growing and fragmented infrastructure software market, and its mainframe and enterprise software franchises will add to our portfolio of mission critical technology businesses. We intend to continue to strengthen these franchises to meet the growing demand for infrastructure software solutions."

"We are excited to have reached this definitive agreement with Broadcom," said Mike Gregoire, CA Technologies Chief Executive Officer. "This combination aligns our expertise in software with Broadcom's leadership in the semiconductor industry. The benefits of this agreement extend to our shareholders who will receive a significant and immediate premium for their shares, as well as our employees who will join an organization that shares our values of innovation, collaboration and engineering excellence. We look forward to completing the transaction and ensuring a smooth transition."




Trump blocks Broadcom's proposed takeover of Qualcomm

President Trump signed an executive order prohibiting Broadcom from acquiring Qualcomm or proceeding with any substantially equivalent merger, acquisition, or takeover of the firm whether effected directly or indirectly.

The order cited "credible evidence" that Broadcom, along with its partners, subsidiaries, or affiliates, impairs the national security of the United States.

Trump said he was taking this action upon review of a recommendation from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States.

Broadcom issued a statement saying it was reviewing the order.

Qualcomm issued a statement saying all of Broadcom’s director nominees are also disqualified from standing for election as directors of Qualcomm. 'the company will reconvene its 2018 Annual Meeting of Stockholders on the earliest possible date. Stockholders of record on January 8, 2018 will be entitled to vote at the meetin

Telstra activates LTE-Broadcast nationally

Telstra activated LTE-Broadcast (LTE-B) technology nationally in its mobile network.

Customers using Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S9 devices can now view HD streaming using the AFL Live Official app.

Telstra is conducting a live demo in Sydney featuring over 100 Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S9 devices running the app and using LTE-B.

“With the success of our AFL, NRL and Netball apps, we are now streaming live sports content to a massive base of around 1.2 million devices and sports fans consume 37 million minutes of live content over our apps on any given weekend.  This season we’ve seen an overall 58 per cent increase in customers streaming games. In some instances, more than twice the number of customers have streamed, compared to the same clash last year,” said Mr Wright, Group Managing Director Networks.

“We have invested in network capacity and continue to optimise our network to meet the demand for video sporting content for subscribers of the AFL, NRL and Netball Live Passes. Last year we announced 1.5 million subscribers and this year we are on track to see a significant increase.  Most recently, we have integrated LTE-B technology into the AFL Live Official app, which is delivering better quality video and audio experience for broadcast content, even in high traffic areas,” said Mr Wright.

NEC to build subsea cable to India's Andaman & Nicobar islands

India's Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has selected NEC to design, engineer, supply, install, test and implement an optical submarine cable system connecting Chennai and the Andaman & Nicobar Islands (A&N Islands).

NEC said the new contract is for a system that includes a segment with repeaters from Chennai to Port Blair and seven segments without repeaters between the islands of Havelock, Little Andaman (Hutbay), Car Nicobar, Kamorta, the Great Nicobar Islands, Long Island and Rangat. The cable will span approximately 2,300km and will carry 100G wavelengths.

"BSNL is pleased to select NEC for implementing this prestigious project. We trust NEC for the technological edge they hold in the domain and their commitment to adherence of timelines to ensure successful completion of the project. This project will enable much needed high capacity connectivity with the Andaman Islands and usher a new era of development for the region," said Mr. Anupam Shrivastava, Chairman and Managing Director BSNL.

"Connecting the A&N Islands to the Indian subcontinent with an optical submarine cable has been a long-time aspiration. NEC is extremely proud of being chosen by BSNL to serve these islands with its cutting edge submarine cable solution, which promises to bring the A&N Islands much closer to the world," said Toru Kawauchi, General Manager, Submarine Network Division in NEC. "Together with NECTI, our local Indian affiliate, we intend to fully capitalize on our regional expertise and to ensure the successful completion of this project.

Oclaro shareholders approve acquisition by Lumentum

Oclaro's stockholders voted to approve the merger agreement under which Lumentum will acquire Oclaro.  Approximately 96.2% of voting Oclaro stockholders cast their votes in favor of the proposal to approve the merger agreement, representing approximately 65.6% of Oclaro's outstanding common stock as of the record date for the Special Meeting of Stockholders.

Greg Dougherty, Oclaro CEO, commented, "Today our stockholders voted overwhelmingly to approve the combination of Oclaro and Lumentum.  Together, we will be an even stronger player in fiber optic components and modules for high-speed communications and a market leader in 3D sensing. We are excited and optimistic about the opportunities this creates for all of our stakeholders, including stockholders, employees, customers and partners."

Lumentum to acquire Oclaro for $1.8 billion

Lumentum agreed to acquire Oclaro for approximately $1.8 billion in cash and stock.

Under the deal, Oclaro stockholders will be entitled to receive $5.60 in cash and 0.0636 of a share of Lumentum common stock for each share of Oclaro stock, representing a premium of 27% to Oclaro's closing price on March 9, 2018 and a premium of 40% to Oclaro's 30 day average closing price.  Oclaro stockholders are expected to own approximately 16% of the combined company at closing.

The combined company is expected to have annual revenue of $1.733 billion and an operating margin of 19%, prior to synergies from the combination.

Lumentum, which is based in Milpitas, California, supplies a range of optical components and subsystems for telecom, enterprise, and data center networking equipment. The company was created in 2015 as a split off from JDSU.

Oclaro supplies optical components and modules for the long-haul, metro and data center markets. The company is based in San Jose, California.

AT&T takes equity stake in Magic Leap

AT&T has made an equity investment in Magic Leap. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Magic Leap is the high-profile start-up developing an enhanced reality computing and visualization platform. The company is based in Plantation, Florida with offices in Silicon Valley, Seattle, Austin, Dallas, the UK, New Zealand and Israel.

Equinix to build data center in Oman

Equinix and Oman Telecommunications Company (Omantel) announced a joint venture to deliver data center and interconnection services to customers in the Middle East through the development of a new network-dense data center that will be located in Barka, near Muscat, the capital of Oman. Equinix and Omantel will both fund equity contributions in an amount of US$10 million for the joint venture representing a 50% shareholding each, and additional funds will be raised through debt financing assumed by the joint venture company.

Equinix said its planned IBX data center in Oman will benefit from connectivity to strategic cable landing stations (CLS) and subsea cable systems that terminate directly inside the facility.

Equinix will operate the new IBX data center, which will include 18,600 square feet of colocation space and approximately 750 cabinets at full build. The first phase of the three-phase build will include 250 cabinets and is expected to be completed and open for business by Q2 2019.

Cable ONE Selects Telia Carrier to Enhance IP Service Delivery

Cable ONE, a top 10 cable company based in Phoenix, Arizona, has selected Telia Carrier's IP Transit and backbone services to support growing customer demand across the 21 states they serve. Cable ONE has approximately 800,000 customers.

Cable ONE is laying the foundation for increased access to fiber capacity with the addition of 100G wavelength services on Telia Carrier’s global fiber backbone. The optical wavelengths will provide dedicated, high-bandwidth network capacity and low latency. Combined with enhanced geographic diversity, resilient infrastructure and closer proximity to the edge, Cable ONE is well placed to support the increasing needs of its customers in the markets they serve.

“Businesses today demand the highest-quality online experience to best serve their customers. Cable ONE understands this and is committed to providing those consumers with the highest-speed, most-resilient, dedicated bandwidth,” said Rob Pulkownik, director of market development, Telia Carrier, Inc. “The fact that Cable ONE chose Telia Carrier to deliver our services to meet these demands highlights our ability to turn up capacity quickly, while also providing a global backbone capable of meeting their demands now and in the future. We’re committed to partnering with Cable ONE to help them better serve their customers.”

ECI selected for Lithuanian National Research and Education Network

Kaunas University of Technology has selected ECI to upgrade and modernize the current national optical backbone network of LITNET, the Lithuanian national research and education network (NREN).

ECI will provide a full turnkey solution which includes design, installation and migration of legacy services. The advanced network will feature ECI’s Apollo 96XX family of high speed optical transport solutions.

“Research and education is the foundation of any country’s economy. Just a few months ago, we announced the establishment of the CERN Baltic Group to promote our cooperation and collaboration in CERN experiments and initiatives. Our research and education network makes this type of networking and collaboration possible,” said Raimundas Tuminauskas, head of computer network center at KTU. “Our networks serve a wide variety of constituencies, each with their own needs and requirements. As a result, they are designed to support a broad range of applications – like ultra-fast, high-performance computing, classroom teleconferencing and more. We’ve known ECI for quite some time. Of special importance was ECI’s experience in our sector, and the recommendations of our counterparts.”

“We are delighted to partner with LITNET to provide this new, next-generation network. The Apollo 96XX family affords a winning combination of 1G/10G/100G/200G/400G rates, Alien lambda support and flex-grid ROADMs. This future-proof set of deliverables are all part of ECI’s ELASTIC Network solution, chosen time and again by the NREN community worldwide,” said Christian Erbe, VP Sales EMEA at ECI.

Gigamon appoints Buckley as COO and Arkley as CFO

Gigamon announced the appointment of Dave Arkley as its Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Shane Buckley as its new President and Chief Operating Officer (COO).

Arkley most recently served as CFO of International Decision Systems, and previously was with Vertafore, Edifecs, Parallels and Itron.

Buckley is joining from Xirrus where he was CEO prior to their 2017 acquisition by Riverbed. Before joining Xirrus, Buckley served as a general manager and senior vice president at NETGEAR and held various executive leadership positions at Rohati Systems, Nevis Networks, Juniper Networks, Peribit and 3Com,

"Dave and Shane bring a wealth of knowledge to our exceptional leadership team and their proven business acumen in high growth, global markets will be a tremendous asset as we navigate the rapidly evolving cybersecurity space," said Paul Hooper, CEO of Gigamon. "We look forward to leveraging their business, financial and strategy skills as we continue to execute our next phase of growth plans."

Gigamon's $1.6B privatization deal has been completed

Gigamon confirmed the completion of its acquisition by Elliott Management, a leading multi-strategy private investment firm, and the Qatar Investment Authority.

The acquisition, valued at approximately $1.6 billion, was approved by Gigamon shareholders on December 22, 2017. As a result of the completion of the transaction, shareholders will receive $38.50 per share in cash and Gigamon common stock will no longer be listed for trading on the NYSE.

"This is a pivotal day for Gigamon employees, customers and partners around the world. With the acquisition complete, our team will continue to execute strategic initiatives that will both empower our customers with new, rich functionality and drive Gigamon to the next level of growth," said Paul Hooper, Chief Executive Officer of Gigamon. "As a private company, we will continue to build upon our leading technology foundation and transform the market we created and lead. With our Security Delivery Platform, we are in a unique position to enable NetOps and SecOps teams to work together addressing the common goal of securing their enterprise while containing costs and minimizing complexity. Working closely with Evergreen, we are entering a new and exciting era."

Elliott Management to privatize Gigamon in $1.6 billion deal

Elliott Management, a private investment firm known for shareholder activism, will acquire Gigamon for $38.50 per share in cash, for a total value of approximately $1.6 billion, making Gigamon a privately-held company. Elliott Management and its affiliates currently hold a 7.0% equity voting stake in Gigamon.

Gigamon's recent revenue trends
         2017                        2016
Q3    $79.2 million          $83.5 million
Q2    $69.1 million          $75.1 million
Q1    $69.6 million          $66.9 million

Radisys launches Channel Partner Program

Radisys launched a new channel partner program targeted at go-to-market solution partners.

The new Radisys Open Business Accelerator aims to accelerate and expand the sales of disruptive open telecom solutions to service providers. Radisys will work with partners to develop joint sales and marketing campaigns, deliver extensive training workshops, and share product roadmaps. A dedicated Partner Experience Manager will ensure that customized co-marketing campaigns best suit the needs of each partner, while facilitating an environment for open communication and accelerated sales growth. Target areas include 4G and 5G Network Evolution; Media Intelligence; and SDN & NFV Cloud Networking.

“Radisys is excited to build on our previously successful channel partnerships with the new Open Business Accelerator,” said Natasha Tamaskar, Vice President, Global Marketing, Channels and Sales Strategy, Radisys. “By building new partnerships with like-minded companies that are committed to co-developing and co-marketing joint solutions, we will be able to reach and support new large service provider customers at scale, while extending our global reach. These mutually beneficial relationships with our channel partners will produce go-to-market products and solutions that will not only disrupt the telecoms industry, but help lead service providers into the future.”

See also