Friday, August 16, 2019

Expanding Lifecycle Service Orchestration Globally



MEF Annual Meeting – July/Aug 2019, Jeremy Wubs, SVP, Marketing for Bell Business Markets, Bell Canada, highlights the importance of MEF LSO (Lifecycle Service Orchestration) Sonata APIs for enabling service providers to extend their service reach outside their own network footprints in partnership with other service providers.

“We have, over the last year, launched a new service – Bell Virtual Network Services (VNS)…In order to that, we had to make some pretty significant investments in orchestration. Now, as we look to evolve that, how do we go and take some of the orchestration capabilities outside the country, how do we expand that on a global basis? Without there being a set of clear, well-proven standards, there actually is no way to do that. So, the LSO work and the evolution of the MEF work that’s happening around LSO is a really great opportunity and model for us to do that.”

“What really excites me about MEF and how it’s transforming and changing is the focus on IP, SD-WAN, security, and applications. We look at where the industry is going. Our services are changing and transforming. They need to be more flexible. And MEF is really paving the way for a set of frameworks and foundations that are going to help us not just do it in Canada but actually to scale it globally…The ability to be part of an organization that is thinking how do we not just transform our networks but scale them and evolve them on a global basis is one of the really valuable benefits of being part of MEF.”

Explore MEF 3.0 inter-provider LSO Sonata API innovations and engage with industry-leading service and technology experts such as Jeremy Wubs, attend MEF19 (http://www.MEF19.com), held 18-22 November 2019 in Los Angeles, California.

Learn more about standardized MEF 3.0 LSO Sonata APIs at https://www.mef.net/introducing-lso-sonata


Thursday, August 15, 2019

SD-WAN: Linking Policy to Carrier Networks for Improved Customer Experience



MEF Annual Meeting – July 2019, Shawn Hakl, Senior Vice President Business Products, Verizon, highlights the importance of the industry’s new SD-WAN services standard published by MEF. Among other things, standardization will help link policy to carrier networks to deliver a greater customer experience.

“SD-WAN is really the control plane for which virtualized functions will be implemented. As we see more capabilities built into the intelligent network – the Software-Defined Network – at the core of carriers, SD-WAN will really be the way that you interface policy with the carrier network.” This will be expressed in ways like enabling users to select slices in a 5G network.

“The work that the MEF is doing around standardization of the SD-WAN spec just makes it easier for that integration to work across multiple types of underlying transport. And what that means to the end user is that it lets them get an overall experience from the network relative to their apps. So you can support a broader range of use cases with specialized needs coming across the network. You can build a better end-to-end application experience, meaning you’ll hit price points more effectively and, more importantly, your guaranteed service resiliency and service capability in an always-on connected world.”

To explore the latest on SD-WAN innovations and engage with industry-leading service and technology experts like Shawn Hakl, attend MEF19 (http://www.MEF19.com), held 18-22 November 2019 in Los Angeles, California.


AT&T partners with Dell on Open Source Edge software -- Project Airship

Dell Technologies and AT&T agreed to deepen their collaboration on open source edge architecture. Specifically, the companies will collaborate in the open-source community to:

  • Align on an overall vision of network disaggregation and accelerate the deployment of open infrastructure and AT&T Network Cloud utilizing Airship - a collection of loosely coupled, but interoperable, open-source tools that declaratively automate cloud provisioning and life-cycle management utilizing containers as the unit of software delivery.
  • Catalyze the broader Airship community to accelerate Airship toward a 2.0 release, delivering a streamlined aggregator of best-of-breed open technologies for declaratively deploying and managing Kubernetes environments and cloud software.
  • Jointly develop and enhance additional open-source efforts, including Metal3-io and OpenStack Ironic, and integrate the Kubernetes Cluster API.
  • Deliver open-source automation capabilities across the stack - from bare metal to network to storage - on Dell Technologies infrastructure.

"Dell Technologies' addition to the Airship community reaffirms the industry's growing trust and investment in the open infrastructure model," said Amy Wheelus, vice president, AT&T Network Cloud. "This collaboration will not only enable us to accelerate the AT&T Network Cloud on the Dell Technologies infrastructure, but also further the broader community goal of making it as simple as possible for operators to deploy and manage open infrastructure in support of SDN and other workloads."

"Dell Technologies is working closely with AT&T to combine our joint telco industry best practices with decades of data center transformation experience to help service providers quickly roll out new breeds of experiential Edge and 5G services," said Kevin Shatzkamer, vice president, Dell EMC Service Provider Solutions. "As the world leader in servers, storage and personal computers, Dell's world class supply chain is best positioned to deliver the cost structure, predictability and access to emerging infrastructure technologies required to enable the transition to a more open, disaggregated mobile network."

Project Airship aims for fully containerized clouds - OpenStack on Kubernetes

AT&T is working with SKT, Intel and the OpenStack Foundation to launch Project Airship, a new open infrastructure project that will offer a unified, declarative, fully containerized, and cloud-native platform. The idea is to let cloud operators manage sites at every stage from creation through minor and major updates, including configuration changes and OpenStack upgrades.

AT&T said the project builds on the foundation laid by the OpenStack-Helm project launched in 2017. In a blog posting, Amy Wheelus, vice president of Cloud and Domain 2.0 Platform Integration, says the initial focus is "to introduce OpenStack on Kubernetes (OOK) and the lifecycle management of the resulting cloud, with the scale, speed, resiliency, flexibility, and operational predictability demanded of network clouds."

She states that AT&T will use Airship as the foundation of its network cloud running over its 5G core, which will support the launch of 5G services in 12 cities later this year.  Airship will also be used by Akraino Edge Stack, which is a new Linux Foundation project for creating an open source software stack supporting high-availability cloud services optimized for edge computing systems and applications.

"We are pleased to bring continued innovation with Airship, extending the work we started in 2016 with the OpenStack and Kubernetes communities to create a continuum for modern and open infrastructure. Airship will bring new network edge capabilities to these stacks and Intel is committed to working with this project and the many other upstream projects to continue our focus of upstream first development and accelerating the industry," stated Imad Sousou, corporate vice president and general manager of the Open Source Technology Center at Intel.

http://airshipit.org

Mirantis to power AT&T’s Airship for Kubernetes infrastructure


AT&T has selected Mirantis to play a key role in its implementation Airship, Kubernetes and OpenStack based Network Cloud infrastructure. Airship is the project originally founded by AT&T, SKT and Intel under the OpenStack Foundation for enabling telcos to take advantage of on-premises Kubernetes infrastructure to support their SDN infrastructure builds. "Replacing VM-based infrastructure with cloud-native, open technologies based on containers...


Alibaba's cloud revenue up 66% yoy to US$1.134 billion

Alibaba's cloud computing revenue grew 66% year-over-year to RMB7,787 million (US$1,134 million) during the June 2019 quarter, primarily driven by an increase in average revenue per customer.

Cloud services represented 7% of Alibaba Group's overall quarterly revenue.



During the June 2019 quarter, Alibaba Cloud launched over 300 new products and features, including those related to core cloud offerings, security, data intelligence and AI applications.

Alibaba said it is focusing on high value-added services while rationalizing offerings of commodity products and services.

In particular, Alibaba Cloud plans to expand SaaS offerings by working with SaaS partners to build an ecosystem to better serve enterprise customers.

During the June 2019 quarter, the company announced the Alibaba Cloud SaaS Accelerator, a solution that helps SaaS partners to build, launch and commercialize their offerings at scale
within the Alibaba Cloud SaaS marketplace. Alibaba Cloud offers these partners proprietary technologies such as AI applications, data analytics and software and development operations tools in order for them to deploy solutions for enterprise customers in various industries.


In May 2019, Alibaba Group reported that its cloud computing division generated revenue of RMB 7.726 billion (US$1.151 billion) during the March quarter, up 76% over the same period last year. Adjusted EBITA margin for the division was (2%).

In July 2019, Amazon reported Q2 2019 revenue of $8.381 billion for AWS, up 37% over the same period last year. Operating income for quarter was $2.121 billion. Operating margin was 26.2%. AWS is now on a $33 billion run rate.

Historical growth rate for AWS

2019 Q1 - 41%
2018 Q4 - 45%
2018 Q3 - 46%
2018 Q2 - 49%
2018 Q1 - 49%
2017 Q4 - 45%

FirstNet delivers fleet management for public safety agencies

FirstNet is now offering a fully-integrated solution that provides public safety agencies with near real-time insights into critical fleet and in-field first responder activities. The capabity enables increased situational awareness, efficiency and safety for first responders and public safety fleets.

"Fleet Complete for FirstNet" consists of a FirstNet Ready Cradlepoint device that can take advantage of Band 14 and two FirstNet Certified apps now in the FirstNet App Catalog: Fleet Complete Mobile and Fleet Complete Dispatch. The solution provides post-install support, maintenance and fault code modules, as well as detailed reporting for historical data records. Once installed, public safety agency administrators can remotely track vehicles in the field, run engine diagnostics, get crash notifications, and check sensors to monitor maintenance needs, fuel consumption and more.

"The FirstNet platform has an incredible capacity to get help to people who need it when they need it," said Chris Penrose, President, Internet of Things Solutions, AT&T.  "Think of the ability to quickly dispatch police cars and ambulances to the scene or get nearly instantaneous insight if a school bus breaks down. With this collaboration, first responders get a holistic solution that helps them stay better connected to their workers and vehicles while keeping us all safer."

"We are proud to work with FirstNet to provide industry-leading tools like in-vehicle fleet solutions, which allow public safety to capture critical information," says Tony Lourakis, founder and CEO of Fleet Complete. "Our first responder customers will get a holistic telematics platform that operates on FirstNet and helps ensure a robust GPS-reporting system for operations that could ultimately save lives."

OneWeb completes Ku- and Ka-band spectrum requirement

OneWeb’s satellites have been transmitting at the designated frequencies in the Ku- and Ka-band spectrum in the correct orbit for more than 90 days. This achievement means that OneWeb has met the requirements to secure spectrum bands over which it has priority rights under ITU rules and regulations.

OneWeb said it is well on its way to securing spectrum rights to high priority Ku-band spectrum for service links, and Ka-band for its global gateways. It will now have access to over 6 GHz of spectrum that will enable it to deliver its high-speed, low latency connectivity.

“Spectrum is a scarce resource and the ITU plays a vital role in the global management for access. The harsh reality for anyone trying to make a real impact on global connectivity is that no matter how good your network is, success is not possible without the right spectrum. With our spectrum now in use, OneWeb has proved it can bring together all the elements required – in space, on the ground, and in between – to change the face of connectivity everywhere”, said Ruth Pritchard-Kelly, Vice President of Regulatory for OneWeb.

This achievement is the latest in a string of major milestones charting OneWeb’s progress towards commercial service and full global coverage by 2021, including the successful launch of its first 6 satellites in February, the opening of its state-of-the-art Florida manufacturing facility earlier this month, and proving its ability to deliver low latency, high-speed services through its recent full HD streaming tests.

During the remainder of 2019, OneWeb will focus on commencing its monthly launch programme of more than 30 satellites per month, building an initial constellation of 650 satellites on its way to 1,980 satellites. The first phase of the constellation will provide global coverage; and further additions to the network will be focused on adding capacity to meet growing customer demands.

https://www.oneweb.world/

Extreme sees SD-WAN opportunities with Aerohive acquisition

Last week, Extreme Networks completed its previously-announced acquisition of Aerohive Networks.

The acquisition of Aerohive adds cloud management and edge capabilities to Extreme's portfolio of end-to-end, edge to cloud software-driven networking solutions.

Aerohive also expands Extreme's position in Wi-Fi and NAC, adding cloud-managed Wi-Fi and NAC solutions to complement its on-premises Wi-Fi and NAC technology, driving Extreme deeper into key verticals and presenting numerous opportunities for cross-sell and up-sell within the combined portfolios.

Extreme said the deal also brings new SD-WAN capabilities to its portfolio.

Ed Meyercord, President and CEO, Extreme Networks, states "Closing our acquisition of Aerohive in just 45 days from initial announcement eliminates many execution risks and better positions us to transition customers smoothly. We are excited to bring Aerohive's market leading cloud management, AI and ML, and SD-WAN capabilities to our customers and partners. We're equally excited to introduce our extensive portfolio of edge-to-cloud solutions to the Aerohive customer and partner base. From a financial perspective, Aerohive's platform is a critical component in our strategy to add subscription-oriented SaaS and cloud-based solutions that will enable us to drive recurring revenue and improved cash flow generation."



Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Blueprint: Turn Your Data Center into an Elastic Bare-Metal Cloud

by Denise Shiffman is Chief Product Officer for DriveScale.

What if you could create an automated, elastic, cloud-like experience in your own data center for a fraction of the cost of the public cloud? Today, high performance, data-oriented and containerized applications are commonly deployed on bare-metal which is keeping them on premises. But the hardware deployed is static, costing IT in overprovisioned, underutilized, siloed clusters.

Throughout the evolution of data center IT infrastructure, one thing has remained constant. Once deployed, compute, storage and networking systems remain fixed and inflexible. The move to virtual machines better utilized the resources on the host system they were tied to, but virtual machines didn’t make data center hardware more dynamic or adaptable.

In the era of advanced analytics, machine learning and cloud-native applications, IT needs to find ways to quickly adapt to new workloads and ever-growing data. This has many people talking about software-defined solutions. When software is pulled out of proprietary hardware, whether it’s compute, storage or networking hardware, then flexibility is increased, and costs are reduced. With next-generation, composable infrastructure, software-defined takes on new meaning. For the first time, IT can create and recreate logical hardware through software, making the hardware infrastructure fully programmable. And the benefits are enormous.

Composable Infrastructure can also support the move to more flexible and speedy deployments through DevOps with an automated and dynamic solution integrated with Kubernetes and containers. When deploying data-intensive, scale-out workloads, IT now has the opportunity to shift compute and storage infrastructures away from static, fixed resources. Modern database and application deployments require modern infrastructure driving the emergence of Composable Infrastructure – and it promises to address the exact problems that traditional data centers cannot. In fact, for the first time, using Composable Infrastructure, any data center can become an elastic bare-metal cloud. But what exactly is Composable Infrastructure and how do you implement it?

Elastic and Fully-Automated Infrastructure

Composable Infrastructure begins with disaggregating compute nodes from storage, essentially moving the drives to simple storage systems on a standard Ethernet network. Through a REST API, GUI or template, users choose the instances of compute and the instances of storage required by an application or workload and the cluster of resources is created on the fly ready for application deployment. Similar to the way users chooses instances in the public cloud and the cloud provider stitches that solution together, composable provides the ability to flexibly create, adapt, deploy and redeploy compute and storage resources instantly using pools of heterogeneous, commodity compute, storage and network fabric.

Composable gives you cloud agility and scale, and fundamentally different economics.
  • Eliminate Wasted Spend: With local storage inside the server, fixed configurations of compute and storage resources end up trapped inside the box and left unused. Composable Infrastructure enables the ability to independently scale processing and storage and make adjustments to deployments on the fly. Composable eliminates overprovisioning and stranded resources and enables the acquisition of lower cost hardware.
  • Low Cost, Automated Infrastructure: Providing automated infrastructure on premises, composable enables the flexibility and agility of cloud architectures, and creates independent lifecycles for compute and storage lowering costs and eliminating the noisy neighbors problem in the cloud.
  • Performance and Scale: With today’s high-speed standard Ethernet networks, Composable provides equivalent performance to local drives, while eliminating the need for specialized storage networks. Critical too, composable solutions can scale seamlessly to thousands of nodes while maintaining high performance and high availability.

The Local Storage Conundrum

Drive technology continues to advance with larger drives and with NVMe™ flash. Trapping these drives inside a server limits the ability to gain full utilization of these valuable resources. With machine learning and advanced analytics, storage needs to be shared with an ever-larger number of servers and users need to be able to expand and contract capacity on demand. Composable NVMe puts NVMe on a fabric whether that’s a TCP, RDMA or iSCSI fabric (often referred to as NVMe over fabrics), and user’s gain significant advantages:

  • Elastic storage: By disaggregating compute and storage, NVMe drives or slices of drives can be attached to almost any number of servers. The amount of storage can be expanded or reduced on demand. And a single building block vendor SKU can be used across a wide variety of configurations and use cases eliminating operational complexity. 
  • Increased storage utilization:  Historically, flash utilization has been a significant concern. Composable NVMe over fabrics enables the ability to gain full utilization of the drives and the storage system. Resources from storage systems are allocated to servers in a simple and fully-automated way – and very high IOPS and low-latency comparable to local drives is maintained. 

The Elastic Bare Metal Cloud Data Center

Deploying Kubernetes containerized applications bare metal with Composable Infrastructure enables optimized resource utilization and application, data and hardware availability. The combination of Kubernetes with programmable bare-metal resources turns any data center into a cloud.

Composable data centers eradicate static infrastructure and impose a model where hardware is redefined as a flexible, adaptable set of resources composed and re-composed at will as applications require – making infrastructure as code a reality. Hardware elasticity and cost-efficiencies can be achieved by using disaggregated, heterogeneous building blocks, requiring just a single diskless server SKU and a single eBOD (Ethernet-attached Box of Drives) SKU or JBOD (Just a Box of Drives) SKU to create an enormous array of logical server designs. Failed drives or compute nodes can be replaced through software, and compute and storage are scaled or upgraded independently. And with the ability to quickly and easily determine optimal resource requirements and adapt ratios of resources for deployed applications, composable data centers won’t leave resources stranded or underutilized.

Getting Started with Composable Infrastructure

Composable Infrastructure is built to meet the scale, performance and high availability demands of data-intensive and cloud-native applications while dramatically lowering the cost of deployment. Moving from static to fluid infrastructure may sound like a big jump, but composable doesn’t require a forklift upgrade. Composable Infrastructure can be easily added to a current cluster and used for the expansion of that cluster. It’s a seamless way to get started and to see cost-savings on day one.

Deploying applications in a composable data center will make it easier for IT to meet the needs of the business, while increasing speed to deployment and lowering infrastructure costs. Once you experience the power and control provided by Composable Infrastructure, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.

About DriveScale  
DriveScale instantly turns any data center into an elastic bare-metal cloud with on-demand instances of compute, GPU and storage, including native NVMe over Fabrics, to deliver the exact resources a workload needs, and to expand, reduce or replace resources on the fly. With DriveScale, high-performance bare-metal or Kubernetes clusters deploy in seconds for machine learning, advanced analytics and cloud-native applications at a fraction of the cost of the public cloud. www.drivescale.com

Cisco posts Q4 revenue of $13.4 billion, up 6%

Cisco reported fourth-quarter revenue of $13.4 billion, up 6% over the same period last year. Net income (GAAP) amounted to $2.2 billion or $0.51 per share. Non-GAAP net income was $3.6 billion or $0.83 per share.

For full FY19, Cisco reported total revenue of $51.7 billion, an increase of 7%. Net Income and EPS -- On a GAAP basis, net income was $11.6 billion and EPS was $2.61. On a non-GAAP basis, net income was $13.8 billion, up 9% compared to fiscal 2018, and EPS was $3.10, an increase of 20%

"Our Q4 results marked a strong end to a great year. We are executing well in a dynamic environment, delivering tremendous innovation across our portfolio and extending our market leadership," said Chuck Robbins, chairman and CEO of Cisco. "We are committed to providing our customers ongoing value through differentiated solutions, and we are well positioned to take advantage of
the long-term growth opportunities ahead.

Some highlights:

  • Product revenue was up 7% and service revenue up 4%. 
  • Revenue by geographic segment was: Americas up 9%, EMEA up 7%, and APJC down 4%. 
  • Product revenue performance was broad based with growth in
  • Security, up 14%, Applications, up 11%, and Infrastructure Platforms, up 6%.
  • Gross Margin -- On a GAAP basis, total gross margin, product gross margin, and service gross margin were 63.9%, 62.9%, and 66.8%, respectively, as compared with 61.7%, 60.2%, and 66.0%, respectively, in the fourth quarter of 2018.


OIF launches higher baud rate coherent driver modulator project

The OIF has begun a new project to develop a higher baud rate coherent driver modulator.

The “Higher Baud Rate Coherent Driver Modulator” project will define a new version of the Coherent Driver Modulator supporting at least 96 Gbaud for the low modem implementation penalty segment of the coherent market for single optical carrier line rates beyond 400 Gbit/s. Designed for higher data rates and longer reach and optimized for performance, this project is the next generation of the High Bandwidth Coherent Driver Modulator (HB-CDM) Implementation Agreement (IA) published last year.

Following this year’s OIF Q319 Technical and MA&E Committees Meeting in Montreal, OIF also launched work on a white paper detailing low-rate service multiplexing using FlexE and 400ZR. The whitepaper seeks to eliminate ambiguity and provide clarification on how 400ZR should be leveraged in multiplexing applications. Various network operators are looking for a multiplexing scheme to support lower-rate Ethernet clients (e.g. 4x100GE) into a 400ZR coherent line. This technical white paper will educate the market on how FlexE can be used to aggregate low-rate Ethernet services (e.g. 4x100GE) into 400ZR interfaces.

Andrew Schmitt, founder and directing analyst, Cignal AI gave member attendees a brief overview of emerging pluggable coherent technologies and the opportunity this new market presents and had the opportunity to speak with members about current and upcoming OIF work.

“It’s clear that OIF is not resting after a successful effort to standardize 400ZR, proven by the launch of two new projects at the recent Q3 meeting,” said Schmitt. “Also, as interest in pluggable coherent solutions grows, it is good to see OIF soliciting feedback from additional network operators in order to shape requirements for next generation standards.”

https://www.oiforum.com/

ThousandEyes adds support for Alibaba Cloud to its global monitoring

ThousandEyes is boosting its Asia-Pacific monitoring capabilities with support for Alibaba Cloud. Specifically, ThousandEyes added 19 Alibaba Cloud regions worldwide, plus 13 new Cloud Agent locations across Asia-Pacific, including four new locations in India, bringing ThousandEyes Asia-Pacific vantage points to a total of 53 cities and global vantage points to a total of more than 180 cities. This latest expansion adds to ThousandEyes' existing Cloud Agent locations in IaaS providers, which currently includes 15 AWS regions, 15 GCP regions and 25 Azure regions.

"Global organizations today run on the Internet, connecting applications and services to end-users everywhere, and making deep Internet visibility non-negotiable, which is especially relevant for companies operating in Asia-Pacific where heavy sovereign controls impact Internet performance and digital experience," said ThousandEyes vice president of product Joe Vaccaro."

https://www.thousandeyes.com/press-releases/expanding-global-multi-cloud-monitoring-alibaba-cloud

China Unicom's revenue dips as it prepares for 5G rollout

China Unicom reported service revenue of RMB 132.957 billion for the first half of 2019, down 1.1% from RMB 134,423 million for the same period in 2018. Net profits increased by 16.3% to RMB 6.88 billion. Operating revenue amounted to RMB 144.954 billion, down -2.8% yoy.

Mobile service revenue dipped 6.6% compared to last year, despite the company adding 9.32 million subscribers during the first half of the year.

Industry Internet Revenue for 1H19 amounted to RMB 16.72 billion, up by 43% compared to the first half of 2018.

Regarding its upcoming 5G rollout, China Unicom said it is pursuing a “co-build co-share" strategy to lower CAPEX requirements, tower usage fees, network maintenance expenses & power charges.

https://www.chinaunicom.com.hk/en/ir/presentations.php






Ethernet Alliance Plugfest achieves pass rates > 97% on #25G

A plugfest conducted by the Ethernet Alliance achieved pass rates of > 97% for 25G connectivity.

The third in its ongoing series, the Ethernet Alliance HSN Plugfest drew participation from 13 diverse member companies representing all aspects of the Ethernet ecosystem. Addressing the need for enabling emerging technologies, products and solutions spanning speeds of 25 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) up to 400GbE were tested in various form factors such as OSFP, QSFP, and QSFP-DD. Equipment undergoing testing included both electrical and optical interconnects; new signaling and modulation technologies; switches and NICs; cabling; and test and measurement solutions and methodologies.

The High Speed Networking (HSN) Plugfest, which was conducted in late April at the University of New Hampshire InterOperability Laboratory (UNH-IOL) showed consistent improvement over previous events, with Frame Error Rate (FER) tests producing a remarkable 100 percent pass rate, and functional interoperability tests achieving an aggregated 97.5 percent pass rate.

“This latest Ethernet Alliance plugfest was a valuable opportunity for testing of both pre-release and market-ready products and solutions against IEEE standards in a confidential, non-competitive environment. The substantial turnout among member companies and high volume of successful tests speaks to Ethernet’s enduring legacy of continuous improvement,” said Dave Chalupsky, plugfest chair and Board of Directors member, Ethernet Alliance; and network product architect, Intel Corporation. “Ethernet’s hallmark multivendor interoperability makes it ideal for addressing global demand for higher-speed connectivity. Test events like this are the key to unleashing that interoperability, so we’re definitely looking forward to our next HSN Plugfest in October 2019.”

Among companies taking part were Amphenol, Anritsu, Arista Networks, Credo Semiconductor, EXFO, Fluke, HG Genuine Co., Intel, The Siemon Company, Spirent, Tektronix, Teledyne LeCroy, and Wilder Technologies.

The next HSN Plugfest, open exclusively to Ethernet Alliance members, is scheduled for October 2019 at UNH-IOL.

FCC Chairman urges approval of T-Mobile + Sprint

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai circulated a draft order with his fellow commissioners urging approval of the T-Mobile + Sprint deal subject to conditions imposed by the Department of Justice.

“After one of the most exhaustive merger reviews in Commission history, the evidence conclusively demonstrates that this transaction will bring fast 5G wireless service to many more Americans and help close the digital divide in rural areas. Moreover, with the conditions included in this draft Order, the merger will promote robust competition in mobile broadband, put critical mid-band spectrum to use, and bring new competition to the fixed broadband market.” said Chairman Pai. “I thank our transaction team for the thorough and careful analysis reflected in this draft Order and hope that my colleagues will vote to approve it.”

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

ADTRAN adds ONTs to 10G PON Portfolio

ADTRAN introduced its new 600-Series of 10G PON ONTs, which serve all business and residential broadband applications. The line-up now includes the:

SDX 602x 10G SME ONU

  • Delivers high-bandwidth SLA-based, enterprise-grade services by integrating Carrier Ethernet network interface device functionality.

The SDX 620s & 640s XGS-PON and 10G EPON SFP+ ONUs

  • Simplifies service delivery and enables flexible WAN technology options for SFP-based residential gateways.

The SDX 620 series of XGS-PON ONTs

  • Provides a variety of 1G and 10G Ethernet port options with integrated carrier class VoIP and built-in optics for residential applications.

“The fiber broadband access network needs to support the onslaught of extreme-bandwidth applications to preserve a network operator’s ability to monetize smart home and business opportunities,” ADTRAN Product Line Management Director Jeremy Harris said. “Making one piece of the network go faster, without addressing the other elements in the service delivery chain, can actually compound customers’ problems. Taking an end-to-end portfolio approach is the best way to ensure a best-in-industry customer experience.”

https://www.adtran.com/index.php/adtran-expands-fiber-broadband-portfolio-with-innovative-new-onts

ADTRAN's SmartRG intros home Wi-Fi mesh products

SmartRG, an ADTRAN company, introduced its "Intellifi" whole-home, turn-key mesh Wi-Fi solution tailored for service providers.

The new SE80ac is a compact, wall-pluggable, mesh access point designed to support seamless roaming throughout the home. Up to five SE80ac satellites can be added for full home coverage. The network automatically creates a mesh system for optimal performance.

“There are a myriad of consumer Wi-Fi Mesh solutions on the market today. But service providers have higher expectations when it comes to customer experience and reliability. We believe these advanced requirements will make the difference in any subscriber’s home,” SmartRG Chief Technology Officer David La Cagnina said. “Intellifi was designed to deliver more than great Wi-Fi. It also seamlessly integrates with the subscriber's entire broadband experience. With it, any service provider can offer their own fully-managed whole-home Wi-Fi service, ready for stellar remote support, troubleshooting and customer care.”

Intellifi SE80ac mesh kits are in customer trials today and will be generally available in Q4 2019. Additional mesh kits featuring tri-band capability, as well as Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) are planned for availability in 2020. Through SmartRG’s established participation within the prpl Foundation’s prplMesh project, the Intellifi roadmap includes Wi-Fi Alliance EasyMesh™ R3 compliance and certification, occurring in 2020.

https://www.adtran.com/index.php/smartrg-upgrades-wi-fi-mess-to-mesh-with-intellifi-carrier-grade-whole-home-wi-fi-solution

Clumio raises $51 million for enterprise backup SaaS

Clumio, a start-up based in Santa Clara, California, announced $51 million in venture funding for its SaaS for enterprise backup.

Clumio's newly launched service helps enterprises eliminate hardware and software for on-premise backup and avoid the complexity and cost of running 3rd party backup software in the cloud. The solution protects on-premise, VMware Cloud for AWS, and native AWS service workloads.

Clumio was founded in 2017 by serial entrepreneur Poojan Kumar, co-founder and former CEO of PernixData (acquired by Nutanix, alongside Woon Ho Jung and Kaustubh Patil.

The $51 million in funding was received over two rounds: A Sutter Hill Ventures-led Series A round and a Series B round driven by Index Ventures with significant participation from Sutter Hill Ventures. Several individuals experienced at investing in disruptive technologies also participated including, Mark Leslie, founder of Veritas Technologies, and John Thompson, chairman of the board at Microsoft.

“Enterprise workloads are being ‘SaaS-ified’ because IT can no longer afford the time, complexity and expense of building and managing heavy on-prem hardware and software solutions if they are to successfully deliver against their digital transformation initiatives,” said Poojan Kumar, Clumio co-founder and CEO. “Unlike legacy backup vendors, Clumio SaaS is born in the cloud. We have and can leverage the most secure and innovative cloud services available, now and in the future, within our service to ensure that we can meet customer requirements for backup, regardless of where the data is.”

http://www.clumio.com

Avaya reports rise in revenue, a huge impairment loss, and upcoming strategic move

Avaya reported GAAP revenue was $717 million for its third fiscal quarter of 2019, $8 million higher than the second quarter of fiscal 2019, and $25 million higher than the third quarter of fiscal 2018 ended June 30, 2018. Non-GAAP revenue(1) was $720 million, $6 million higher than the second quarter of fiscal 2019, and $35 million lower than the third quarter of fiscal 2018. GAAP gross margin was 54.4%, compared to 54.4% for the second quarter of fiscal 2019 and 50.9% for the third quarter of fiscal 2018.

During the quarter, Avaya recorded a non-cash goodwill impairment charge of $657 million related to the company’s Products & Solutions segment. The charge was taken after an interim assessment prompted by a sustained decline in the company’s stock price during the period, which the company believes was due to year-todate financial results and revision of fiscal 2019 guidance. The company’s long-term forecast provided at its December 2018 investor day should no longer be relied upon. Management expects to provide an updated longterm outlook upon completion of the company’s review of its strategic alternatives.

Avaya also noted that it expects to provide an update on a potential strategic transaction within the next 30 days to maximize shareholder value. The company has retained J.P. Morgan to advise on a potential sale of the company.

Vodafone launches commercial 5G in Ireland

Ericsson and Vodafone Ireland have launched the first commercial 5G network in Ireland. The 5G service is now live across locations in Cork, Limerick, Dublin, Galway and Waterford.

Vodafone Ireland has deployed Baseband 6630 and AIR 6488 products from the Ericsson Radio System portfolio, Vodafone Ireland has activated the network over their recently acquired 5G spectrum.

At the launch, John Griffin, Managing Director of Ericsson Ireland said: “We work closely with our customers to be at the forefront of technology and we were the first to support the launch every generation of mobile technology in Ireland. We are therefore proud to support the first 5G launch, too.

“Ericsson has been investing in Ireland for 60 years. Our Research and Development centre in Athlone is still one of the biggest in the country, where they’re currently developing key components of 5G networks and firmly putting Ireland on the map of 5G innovation.

Pavilion Data raises $25 million for NVMe-over-Fabrics

Pavilion Data Systems, a start-up based in San Jose, California, announced $25 million in Series C funding for its NVMe-over-Fabrics (NVMe-oF) storage technologies.

Pavilion's rack-scale NVMe-over-Fabric Storage Platform ingests, processes, stores and serves an order of magnitude more data for massively-parallel modern applications. Pavilion's OPENCHOICE Storage business model provides flexibility to reuse existing standard 2.5" NVMe SSDs or purchase the latest SSDs directly from drive makers.

The new funding round included participation from all existing investors: Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Korea Investment Partners, DAG Ventures, Artiman Ventures, SK Telecom, and Tyche Partners. This brings total funding to $58 million.

"The adoption of NVMe-oF is increasing, and Pavilion provides differentiated technology in this market. Repeat sales and strong customer demand prove that its NVMe-oF platform can bring competitive advantages to large organizations, especially those that rely on analytics and machine learning," said Huang Lee, managing partner at Taiwania. "We are pleased to lead this round and look forward to bringing Pavilion to new markets such as Asia where the cloud-scale deployments require an NVMe-oF solution without the complexities and limitations of traditional storage."

Monday, August 12, 2019

Microsoft enters 10-year alliance with Reliance Jio

Reliance Jio Infocomm Limited (Jio) and Microsoft announced a strategic alliance aimed at accelerating the digital transformation of the Indian economy and society.

The agreement calls for a 10-year that combines capabilities of both companies to offer a detailed set of solutions comprising connectivity, computing, storage solutions, and other technology services and applications.

Highlights of the agreement:

  • Jio will provide its internal workforce with cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools available with Microsoft 365 and will migrate its non-network applications to the Microsoft Azure cloud platform.
  • Jio’s connectivity infrastructure that aims to connect everyone, everything, everywhere will promote the adoption of the Microsoft Azure cloud platform within its growing ecosystem of startups, as part of Jio’s cloud-first strategy.
  • Jio will set up data centers in locations across India, consisting of next-generation compute, storage and networking capabilities, and Microsoft will deploy its Azure platform in these data centers to support Jio’s offerings. The initial two data centers, which can house IT equipment consuming up to 7.5 MW of power, are being set up in the states of Gujarat and Maharashtra. These are targeted to be fully operational in calendar year 2020.
  • Jio will leverage the Microsoft Azure cloud platform to develop innovative cloud solutions focused on the needs of Indian businesses. 

“Jio is delighted to partner with Microsoft in our efforts to further deepen the use of technology on scale to all Indians,” said Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries. “This is a unique and first-of-its-kind partnership that brings the capabilities of two large companies focused on creating significant value to Indian enterprises — small and large. By working together to develop innovative and affordable cloud-enabled digital solutions built around Jio’s world-class digital infrastructure and Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform, we will accelerate the digitization of the Indian economy and make Indian businesses globally competitive."

"We have an incredible opportunity to apply advances in technology to help organizations across India innovate and grow,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. “The combination of Jio’s leading connectivity and digital solutions with Azure, Azure AI and Office 365 will bring powerful tools and platforms for compute, storage, productivity and more to millions of businesses in the country.”

CenturyLink targets Edge Compute Services

CenturyLink announced a several hundred-million-dollar investment to build out and support edge compute services.

The initiative calls for more than 100 initial edge compute locations across the U.S., and providing a range of hybrid cloud solutions and managed services. Edge locations are designed for high performance, low-latency networking with leading cloud service provider platforms in customized configurations. CenturyLink said its global fiber network with edge facilities will enable businesses and government agencies to serve their local locations within 5 milliseconds of latency.

"Customers are increasingly coming to us for help with applications where latency, bandwidth and geography are critical considerations," said Paul Savill, senior vice president, product management, CenturyLink. "This investment creates the platform for CenturyLink to enable enterprises, hyperscalers, wireless carriers, and system integrators with the technology elements to drive years of innovation where workloads get placed closer to customers' digital interactions."

Highlights from CenturyLink

  • CenturyLink currently connects to over 2,200 public and private datacenters and over 150,000 on-net, fiber-fed enterprise buildings.
  • CenturyLink's robust fiber network is one of the most deeply peered and well-connected in the world, with over 450,000 route-miles of coverage.
  • CenturyLink is expanding access to its services by expanding network colocation services in many key markets to enable customers and partners to run distributed IT workloads close to the edge of the network.

Tele2 deploys Russia’s first 5G zone in Moscow

Tele2 launched Russia's first commercial 5G zone in central Moscow using equipment from Ericsson.

The 5G coverage is live in Tverskaya Street in the heart of the Russian capital, stretching between Red Square to Sadovoe Ring.

The 5G pilot zone is deployed in the 28 GHz band in non-Standalone (NSA) mode, the frequency band for anchor LTE band is Band 7 (2600MHz), and the 5G pocket routers supporting 28 GHz are used as end-user devices for mobile broadband services with ultra-high speeds.

Sebastian Tolstoy, Head of Ericsson in Russia, says: “As a recognized leader in 5G, we are launching Russia’s first 5G zone in Moscow jointly with Tele2. We have a history of working in close partnership with Tele2 and now we’re pioneering 5G in Moscow. With many live commercial 5G networks with named service provider customers in four continents – more than any of our competitors – we are looking forward to continue leading and driving innovation to ensure the digitalization of Russia.”

Sergey Emdin, Tele2 Russia CEO, says: “Despite fierce competition in the development of new technology, jointly with Ericsson we are the first in the Russian market to launch a 5G zone on our infrastructure. From the very beginning of its work in Moscow, the Tele2 network has been technologically ready for the future implementation of the fifth-generation communication standard. Today’s event means that the 5G era in Russia has already come – from tests and laboratory trials, we are moving to operating the technology on a commercial network. In the near future, Muscovites will be able to see for themselves what 5G will bring to the daily life, entertainment and development of smart city.”

Faraday develops 28G Programmable SerDes at 28nm

Taiwan-based Faraday Technology Corporation announced the availability of its 28Gbps programmable SerDes PHY IP on UMC 28HPC process technology. The device is targeted at 100G Ethernet and most xPON applications.

By adopting the programmable architecture that covers data transfer rates up to 28Gbps, this SerDes IP can readily support the optimization of SoC chip designs from 100Gbps of throughput. On top of that, the IP supports multiple interface standard protocols, such as OIF-CEI, JESD, PCIe Gen1-4, and Ethernet.

“28G SerDes PHY technology has become a crucial building block in addressing a broad range of wired and wireless communication applications,” said Flash Lin, Chief Operating Officer of Faraday. “Faraday's latest 28nm SerDes solution can meet 25/28G SerDes requirements with lower NRE (non-recurring engineering) expense and lower cost compared with other FinFET-based 28G SerDes solutions. By leveraging this solution, we are ready to engage with ASIC customers to reach their potential needs in high-growth networking markets.”

Technical features:

  • Supports OIF-CEI-28G VSR/SR and OIF-CEI-25G LR
  • Supports PCIe G1 to G4 with PCS soft-macro supporting PIPE 4.4.1
  • Supports 25Gb to 100Gb Ethernet: 25G/50G/100G-KR4&CR4
  • Supports JESD204B/C for high-speed ADC/DAC and FPGA interface
  • Supports xPON applications: Sym/Asym GPON, Sym/Asym 10GPON, Sym EPON, Sym 10GEPON


http://www.faraday-tech.com

Cloudleaf raises $26 million for supply chain visibility

Cloudleaf, a start-up offering digital supply chain solutions, announced $26 million in Series B funding.

The round was led by Intel Capital and WRVI Capital. Also participating were existing and incoming investors BluePointe Ventures, Bold Capital Partners, Mahindra Partners and Tandem Capital. The financing brings Cloudleaf’s total institutional funding to $39 million.

Cloudleaf’s mission is to create significant value across the end-to-end supply chain network with its Supply Chain Digital Visibility Platform.

Cloudleaf creates a digital twin of the supply chain and processes billions of events per second to deliver diagnostic and predictive insights in real-time for location, condition, utilization and anomaly detection.

“We are extremely gratified that some of the industry’s most esteemed investors are helping Cloudleaf convert our technology leadership into market leadership,” said Cloudleaf Chief Executive Officer Mahesh Veerina. “Cloudleaf’s goal is to establish nothing less than a new industry standard for actionable visibility in a broad spectrum of enterprise supply chains.”

“Cloudleaf’s Digital Visibility Platform targets an extreme pain point for thousands of enterprises challenged by the need to manage significant asset and product flows. We are excited to partner with such a high-impact innovator of enterprise digitization,” said Sriram Viswanathan, Managing Partner of WRVI Capital. “Katerra, one of WRVI Capital’s portfolio investments and a highly disruptive technology company for the construction market segment, has selected Cloudleaf to provide end-to-end visibility across its supply chain.”

“Cloudleaf means actionable visibility,” said Dave Flanagan, vice president of Intel Corp. and senior managing director of Intel Capital. “The world’s supply chains are undergoing a multi-trillion-dollar shift to digital, and Cloudleaf is in the vanguard. We’re pleased to welcome them to Intel Capital’s portfolio of leaders in cloud, edge intelligence and vision technologies.”

InfiniteIO partners with Cloudian to optimize private cloud storage

InfiniteIO, which specializes in hybrid cloud storage, and Cloudian, which offers enterprise object storage systems, introduced a joint solution that optimizes storage cost and performance with no changes to users, applications or systems.

The companies said their solution helps ensure data is properly placed across primary and secondary storage as well as public cloud, potentially saving millions of dollars in primary and backup storage costs. Organizations can install InfiniteIO like a network switch to offload file metadata operations and intelligently migrate hundreds of petabytes of inactive data from on-premises NAS systems to the exabyte scalable Cloudian object storage system, with no downtime or disruption to existing IT environments. The companies claim their solution can attain highly available enterprise-class storage with the performance of all-flash NAS in all storage tiers.

“Cloudian’s focus on delivering limitlessly scalable, highly cost-effective storage is the foundation enterprises need to manage and protect increasing data volumes across on-premises, hybrid cloud and multi-cloud environments,” said Liem Nguyen, vice president of marketing at InfiniteIO. “The simplicity, performance and scale that InfiniteIO and Cloudian are bringing together will help organizations extend their existing IT investments to save money yet uniquely avoid disruption to their business.”

DataLocker updates SafeCrypt Encrypted Virtual Drive with AES 256-bit

DataLocker launched a new version of its encrypted storage solution that provides a layer of military grade, AES 256-bit encryption.

DataLocker's new SafeCrypt is a file encryption application that ensures data is secured and encrypted. By creating a virtual drive using SafeCrypt, files stored on the encrypted virtual drive are encrypted at the desktop level and stored on the user’s preferred storage location fully secured.

“SafeCrypt is an encrypted virtual drive where for the first time, users are in control of their own encryption. Encrypting your data is as easy as entering your password and reading and writing to the virtual drive letter,” said Jay Kim, CEO, DataLocker. “SafeCrypt is seamlessly integrated with DataLocker’s SafeConsole central management platform. SafeConsole allows administrators to inventory, audit, and control all SafeCrypt endpoints remotely.”

SafeCrypt Features:

  • Utilizes AES 256-bit Encryption
  • FIPS 140-2 Validated 
  • Data is encrypted locally by the user and can be stored on a local drive, external drive, or in the cloud
  • Encryption keys are kept by the user to limit unwarranted access

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Dell'Oro: 5-year telecom equipment/services to grow at 1% CAGR

Dell'Oro is predicting the overall telecom equipment and services market to grow at a 1% CAGR through 2023, growing from $121 billion in 2018 to $129 billion by 2023.

Some highlights from Dell'Oro:

  • In order to cope with mobile data traffic that continues to grow at an unabated pace and flattish revenue trends, operators are balancing their investments carefully between the supply side related challenges and the opportunities from a demand perspective. The need to reduce TCO has been a catalyst for the overall 4G to 5G migration acceleration, benefitting not only RAN equipment but also the demand for core, transport, and services.
  • Total Transport Market – including Microwave and Optical – is projected to grow at a 3% CAGR. 
  • The demand for Mobile Backhaul is projected to grow at a 3% CAGR while the overall RAN market is projected to grow at a 2% CAGR, over the forecast period.
  • Overall 5G infrastructure projections – including 5G RAN and 5G Core – were revised upward, reflecting a more optimistic view about the 5G Core market.
  • The adoption of 400 GE will help to advance the SP Router market and offset flat growth expectations for Broadband Access.
  • Following five years of contractions, Network Equipment Services revenue growth is expected to improve, buoyed by improving market sentiment for telecom equipment. 
  • Total Network Equipment Services revenue – including Managed Service, Network Rollout Service, and Consulting Service – is projected to grow at a low-single digit growth rate over the forecast period.

https://www.delloro.com


Huawei offers optimistic view on top tech trends for 2025

Huawei published a whitepaper identifying top trends up until 2025, including 5G coverage, AI deployment, home robot adoption, and smart assistant use rates.

The 10 trends and examples of GIV’s key predictions for 2025 are as follows:

1. Living with Bots: Advances in material science, perceptual AI, and network technologies are powering the uptake of robotics in a variety of home and personal scenarios. GIV predicts a 14% global penetration rate of home robots.

2. Super Sight: The convergence of 5G, VR/AR, machine learning, and other emerging technologies will let us see beyond distance, distortion, surface, and history, opening up new vistas for people, business, and culture. GIV predicts that the percentage of companies using AR/VR will increase to 10%.

3. Zero Search: As data-driven and sensor-equipped appliances and devices begin anticipating our needs, information will find us. Future searches will be button-free, personal social networks will be created effortlessly, and industry will benefit from “zero-search maintenance”. GIV predicts that 90% of smart device owners will use intelligent personal assistants.

4. Tailored Streets: Intelligent transport systems will connect people, vehicles, and infrastructure, creating zero congestion, rapid emergency response, and other functions that will make life smoother. GIV predicts that 15% of vehicles will have Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything technology.

5. Working with Bots: Already transforming many industries, smart automation will take on more hazardous, repetitive, and high-precision tasks – a boon for safety and productivity. GIV predicts that there will be 103 robots in industry for every 10,000 employees.

6. Augmented Creativity: Cloud AI will cut the cost and barrier of entry to scientific experimentation, innovation, and art, opening up a goldmine of creative potential that’s available to all. GIV predicts that 97% of large companies will have deployed AI.

7. Frictionless Communication: AI and big data analytics will create seamless communication between companies and customers and break down language barriers. Accuracy, understanding, and trust will underpin tomorrow’s communications. GIV predicts that enterprises will fully use of 86% of the data that they produce.

8. Symbiotic Economy: Companies across the planet are adopting digital tech and smart applications on unified access platforms – that means greater collaboration, resource-sharing, stronger global ecosystems, and higher productivity. GIV predicts that every company everywhere will be using cloud technology and 85% of business applications will be cloud-based.

9. 5G’s rapid rollout: 5G is here and it’s landing far faster than any previous wireless generation – the potential for individuals, businesses, and society is enormous. GIV predicts that 58% of the world's population will have access to 5G.

10. Global Digital Governance: Advancements in digital tech must be balanced by shared data standards and principles for data use. GIV predicts that the annual volume of global data will reach 180 ZB (1 ZB = 1 trillion GB).

The full paper is here:

https://www.huawei.com/minisite/giv/Files/whitepaper_en_2019.pdf

Singtel revenue stable despite lower ARPU and impact of Airtel India

Singtel posted revenue of S$4.11 billion for the quarter ended 30-June-2019, up 2% in constant currency, on growth in Consumer Australia and the Group’s digital businesses which continued to scale. Net profit was S$541 million for the first quarter, down 35% largely due to Airtel’s losses and higher depreciation and amortisation costs in network and spectrum across the Group. Excluding Airtel, however, net profit was down 3%.

Ms Chua Sock Koong, Singtel Group CEO said, “The Airtel impact aside, business is stable as we continued to execute to strategy in the first quarter. We added postpaid mobile customers in Singapore and Australia and grew our digital businesses Amobee and Trustwave. This was achieved against a backdrop of heightened competition, sustained industry headwinds and subdued economic growth. We are focused on the digitalization of our core communications business where innovations in digital products and services are proving to be key differentiators, leveraging our network superiority. We are also driving productivity gains and cost savings through digitalisation.”

Some highlights:


  • Overall pre-tax earnings contributions fell 14% due to Airtel in India as higher network costs, depreciation and finance charges from its 4G network expansion affected financial performance. This quarter, Airtel India saw improved ARPU which drove growth in its mobile revenue. E
  • Telkomsel Indonesia posted an 18% increase in earnings on robust growth in data and digital services. 
  • In Thailand, AIS and Intouch’s earnings were mainly impacted by an additional provision for statutory payments under revised labour legislation. 
  • In the Philippines, Globe saw strong data revenue growth from its mobile and broadband businesses.
  • In Australia, Optus is rolling out its 5G fixed wireless service which is targeted to reach 1,200 sites by March 2020. Revenue increased 8% led by growth in NBN migration revenue, equipment sales and handset leasing. EBITDA rose 9% primarily from higher NBN migration revenue. Optus continued to drive customer growth, adding 50,000 postpaid handset customers. Mobile service revenue declined 7% from lower ARPU due to an increased mix of SIM-only customers and heightened data price competition. Optus Sport now reaches over 700,000 customers with compelling content on the Premier League, Champions League Final and the FIFA Women’s World Cup. Optus also launched Apple Music to further boost its content suite.
  • In Singapore, mobile revenue was stable. Higher equipment sales offset the decline in local and roaming voice services. Postpaid customers grew 35,000 this quarter with strong demand for its all-digital, no-contract GOMO plans. Revenue from fixed services was down 3%, excluding contributions from the 2018 FIFA World Cup broadcast in the prior period. Pay-TV customers increased by 1,100 on a sequential quarter basis. Operating expenses fell 6% from strong cost management mainly through digitalisation. However, lower voice revenue resulted in a 4% decline in EBITDA.
  • Group Enterprise revenue slid 5% due to lower Optus Business volumes and the continued pressure on carriage services amid a more cautious business environment. Optus Business in Australia was impacted by weak demand from the government and financial sectors, and a large ICT contract in the same quarter last year. Excluding Optus Business, revenue would have been stable. 
  • Group Digital Life’s revenue rose 17%, driven by the continued growth in Amobee’s programmatic advertising business and contributions from Videology. Mobile video streaming service HOOQ saw healthy revenue growth from a higher base of paying subscribers in Southeast Asia and India. Amobee continues to deliver positive EBITDA.


Global Cloud Xchange negotiates with bondholders

Global Cloud Xchange (GCX), a subsidiary of Reliance Communications and owner/operator of a global, undersea cable system, announced a two-week forbearance agreement with 87% of its bondholders.

GCX said the bondholders have committed not to take action for a minimum period of two weeks with the possibility of extending the agreement for an additional two weeks, assuming GCX continues to progress in its negotiations.  The forbearance agreement provides for, among other things, a two per cent consent fee payable to forbearing noteholders and payment of accrued interest to all noteholders (in each case with such amounts being added to the principal amount of the notes rather than being paid in cash); a fee equal to five percent of the outstanding principal amount of the bonds payable to forbearing noteholders if the notes are subsequently refinanced in full; the appointment of a Senior Managing Director of FTI Consulting as a Chief Restructuring Officer; and certain requirements that need to be fulfilled to maintain the forbearance agreement.

 “We appreciate our lenders continued support as we take these next steps and look forward to using the additional time the forbearance agreement provides to pursue the desired refinancing transaction under the best possible terms,” said Bill Barney, Chairman and CEO, GCX. “Meanwhile, we continue to operate as usual as a fundamentally strong company that is uniquely positioned to capture opportunities in our fast-growing markets.”

  • In March 2019, Global Cloud Xchange (GCX) announced that its financial performance was on track per guidance for Financial Year 2018-19 (FY19), however, the company confirmed that it had retained Lazard as financial adviser "to evaluate refinancing options for the company and ensure that the upcoming maturity is addressed on competitive terms as soon as possible."

AOI sees early signs of recovery from hyperscale operators

On August 7, Applied Optoelectronics reported Q2 2019 revenue of $43.4 million, compared with $87.8 million in the second quarter of 2018 and $52.7 million in the first quarter of 2019. There was a GAAP net loss of $11.4 million, or $0.57 per basic share, compared with net income of $8.0 million, or $0.40 per diluted share in the second quarter of 2018, and a net loss of $10.5 million, or $0.53 per basic share in the first quarter of 2019. Non-GAAP net loss was $5.2 million, or $0.26 per basic share, compared with non-GAAP net income of $12.9 million, or $0.64 per diluted share in the second quarter of 2018, and a non-GAAP net loss of $5.4 million, or $0.27 per basic share in the first quarter of 2019.

“We are pleased with our execution in the quarter as we delivered revenue within our guidance range and achieved better than expected bottom-line results,” said Dr. Thompson Lin, Applied Optoelectronics Inc. founder and CEO. “The datacenter demand environment remained consistent with our expectations and we secured five new datacenter design wins. We continue to have good technical engagement with both existing and new customers and are encouraged by the positive response to our innovations.”

Some notes from the Q2 investor conference call:

  • 73% of revenue was for data center products, 23% for CATV products, and 4% for FTTH, telecom and other.
  • 72% of data-center revenue was from 40G and 23% was from 100G.
  • Telecom products revenue was $1.6 million compared with $4.2 million in Q2 2018 due to lower sales in China given geopolitical trade tensions.
  • There were three customers who constituted 10% or more of overall revenue. Two of these customers are hyperscale data center companies and they represented 30% and 29% of overall revenue. The third customer is in the CATV business and represented 14% of revenue.
  • During the quarter, AOI secured a total of five new design wins among two US-based data-center customers.
  • AOI said it is starting to see early signs of recovery among two of its hyperscale data-center customers. 
  • AOI recently showcased the ability of its 400G QSFP transceivers to break out into four individual 100G FR transceivers and interoperate with a leading 12.8 Tbps switch fabric ASIC.
  • Revenue from CATV products decreased 31% year-over-year to $9.8 million compared with $14.2 million in Q2 of last year due to weaker demand from North American MSOs and in China.
  • Regarding tariffs and global trade tensions, AOI execs said the company is able to adjust some of its manufacturing operations between its Taiwan and China factories

FCC Chairman Pai: Current RF exposure limits are good

FCC chairman Ajit Pai is proposing to maintain current RF exposure safety limits, saying the United States’ RF exposure limits for handheld devices are already among the most stringent in the world.

Pai's proposal would also establish a uniform set of guidelines for ensuring compliance with the limits regardless of the service or technology, replacing the Commission’s current inconsistent
patchwork of service-specific rules.

“The FCC sets radiofrequency limits in close consultation with the FDA and other health agencies. After a thorough review of the record and consultation with these agencies, we find
it appropriate to maintain the existing radiofrequency limits, which are among the most stringent in the world for cell phones,” said Julius Knapp, chief of the FCC’s Office of Engineering and Technology. As Jeffrey Shuren, Director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health, wrote to the FCC, “[t]he available scientific evidence to date does not support adverse health effects in humans due to exposures at or under the current limits…” and “[n]o changes to the current standards are warranted at this time.”

https://www.fcc.gov/rfsafety

DOCOMO invests in WSC Sports for AI-powered analytics

NTT DOCOMO Ventures has made an equity investment in W.S.C. Sports Technologies Ltd., a startup based in Israel that provides a platform capable of automatically creating sports video highlights in near real-time by utilizing AI and machine learning technologies to distribute to all sorts of digital media. Financial terms were not disclosed.
WSC Sports’ AI platform analyzes audio, video and data in a live broadcast and not only identifies each and every event that occurs in the game but also creates and distributes short-form videos by any parameter, such as players and scenes selected, to any digital destination.

In 2018, WSC Sports analyzed more than 17,000 sporting events and produced more than 850,000 videos.

Dell'Oro: 100 Gbps port shipments to peak in 2020

400 Gbps shipments are forecast to surpass 15 M switch ports by 2023, according to a recently published report by Dell’Oro Group. 100 Gbps port shipments are expected to peak in 2020, but still comprise more than 30 percent of data center switch ports during the next five years.

“The first wave of 400 Gbps switch systems based on 12.8 Tbps chips were introduced in the market in the second half of 2018,”said Sameh Boujelbene, Senior Director at Dell’Oro Group. “However, we do not expect material adoption of 400 Gbps until 2020 due to the lack of high volume, low cost 400 Gbps optics. The only Cloud Service Provider that started deploying 400 Gbps was Google, opting for 2×200 Gbps optics with an earlier time-to-market. Meanwhile, we expect other Cloud Service Providers, for instance Amazon, Facebook and Microsoft, to keep deploying 100 Gbps, and to probably use higher density 100 Gbps switch systems based on the 12.8 Tbps chips to lower costs,” added Boujelbene.

The Ethernet Switch – Data Center 5-Year Forecast Report provides more details about the timing of 100/200/400/800 Gbps and how the use cases may vary depending on the SerDes lane and market segment driving the speed.

https://www.delloro.com/news/400-gbps-shipments-to-surpass-15-m-switch-ports-by-2023/

See also