Monday, February 25, 2019

Telefónica and Microsoft envision telco of the future

Telefónica and Microsoft outlined a strategic partnership to leverage the Microsoft Azure AI platform alongside the Telefónica global network to design services telcos will offer in the future.

Specifically, Telefónica and Microsoft will expand the use of Azure Cognitive Services for customer engagement and business processes, create new AI-powered, in-home experiences for customers and explore the use of intelligent technologies to transform the network.

“Telefónica has been a leader in using AI to transform customer engagement, and the strategic partnership we announced today builds on this history of innovation,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. “Together, we will apply the power of Azure and Azure AI to create new, innovative experiences for millions of Telefónica customers around the world and shape the future of Telefónica’s network.”

José María Álvarez-Pallete, chairman and CEO of Telefónica, said “Telefónica is applying cutting-edge technology to its ongoing transformation, pioneering virtualization and softwarization to develop smart, liquid networks ready to be powered by AI. Specifically, we are already using AI to enhance our customer relationships and are really excited to work with Microsoft to further harness the power of Azure AI. This agreement strengthens our relationship and our common belief that AI technology and the use of data should be based on solid ethical principles and empower people to control their digital lives.”

Ericsson to acquire Kathrein's antenna business

Ericsson agreed to acquire Kathrein’s antenna and filters business. The purchase price was not disclosed. Preliminary and unaudited revenues from the acquired part of Kathrein were approximately EUR 270 million in 2018, excluding sales to Ericsson.

Kathrein, with headquarters in Rosenheim, Germany, founded in 1919, specializes in antenna and filter technologies and is an existing Ericsson supplier. The antenna and filters business has a strong R&D organization with extensive experience in antenna design and research, coupled with a strong IPR portfolio. In addition to broadening Ericsson’s portfolio of antenna and filter products, the acquisition will bring vital competence for the evolution of advanced radio network products. The acquisition will add around 4,000 highly-skilled professionals in R&D, production, and sales based in more than 20 locations, including Germany, Romania, the U.S., Mexico and China.

Fredrik Jejdling, Executive Vice President and Head of Business Area Networks, Ericsson, says: “Strengthening our in-house antenna competence is another important step in our Networks portfolio strategy. The acquisition of Kathrein’s antenna and filters business will expand our capabilities and competences in the advanced active and passive antenna domain further. With the additional focus on the antenna and filter business led by Kathrein professionals, we will broaden our offering to further optimize site space, which is vital for the introduction of 5G.”

Qualcomm intros 5G gateway for sub-6GHz and mmWave fixed

Qualcomm introduced its first 5G customer premise equipment (CPE) reference design for sub-6 GHz and millimeter wave (mmWave) 5G fixed wireless broadband (FWB) products.

The reference design features the newly announced second generation Qualcomm Snapdragon X55 5G modem and next-generation Qualcomm RF  front-end (RFFE) components and modules for sub-6GHzand mmWave deployments, providing a  5G modem-to-antenna solution.

"Qualcomm Technologies is committed to enabling our customers to develop the next-generation of 5G products and services and this reference design will allow manufacturers and ISPs to accelerate the deployment of fixed wireless broadband services using 5G,” said Durga Malladi, senior vice president and general manager, 4G/5G, Qualcomm.

“With support for both mmWave and sub-6GHzspectrum bands manufacturers can address multiple operators needs as they look to improve network performance, increase range, provide an unsurpassed user experience, and expand fixed broadband coverage by taking advantage of 5G infrastructure.”

Qualcomm builds its Snapdragon automotive 4G, 5G solutions

Qualcomm is introducing new wireless solutions for next-generation connected vehicles.

The Snapdragon Automotive 4G and 5G Platforms feature integrated C-V2Xdirect communications, high-precision multi-frequency global navigation satellite system (HP-GNSS) and RF Front-End (RFFE)functionalities to support major operators across key spectrum bands globally.

These capabilities enable rich in-vehicle experiences, including dual SIM dual active(DSDA)(included on the Snapdragon Automotive 5G Platform), precise positioning for lane level navigation accuracy, multi-gigabit cloud connectivity, vehicle-to-vehicle(V2V) and vehicle-to-roadside infrastructure (V2I) communications.

The new SnapdragonAutomotive 4G and 5G platforms are expected to sample later this year and are planned for production vehicles in 2021.

Rakuten will use Small Cells powered by Qualcomm

Rakuten upcoming next-generation end-to-end cloud-native mobile network across Japan will use small cells based on Qualcomm FSM Small Cell Platforms.

Rakuten plans to utilize small cells to reduce site acquisition and deployment cost and to provide indoor capacity. Rakuten will leverage network virtualization and small cells from the start and thereby create a network that can be scaled easily and deliver on the promise of 5G experiences to subscribers.

Qualcomm's solution offers advanced LTE features and a roadmap towards 5G-NR via the FSM Small Cell 5G Platform.

“We are very excited to work with leading technology leaders such as Qualcomm Technologies as we advance towards realizing our vision of creating the world’s first end-to-end cloud-native mobile network,” said Tareq Amin, chief technology officer of Rakuten Mobile Network, Inc.

“By designing a new mobile network with small cells as a key component, and with 5G-readiness in mind, Rakuten can intelligently deliver 4G LTE and 5G performance where it is needed to bring enhanced experiences for their subscribers,” said Rahul Patel, senior vice president and general manager, connectivity and networking, Qualcomm Technologies.

MAREA transatlantic cable sets record: 26.2 Tbps over 6,000 km

A team of researchers from Infinera has achieved new benchmarks for efficiency for transatlantic fiber optic cables. By employing 16QAM modulation on the MAREA transatlantic cable, the researchers generated signal speeds topping out at 26.2 terabits per second, a 20 percent increase over what the cable designers originally thought feasible. By comparison, the most common way signals are modulated for MAREA today only reaches 9.5 terabits per second. The test marked the first time PM-16QAM signals were sent such distances.

The 6,605-km MAREA cable came online last year and is made of eight pairs of optic fibers, with each pair designed to carry 20 Tbps.

The paper will be presented at the upcoming Optical Fiber Conference and Exposition, held 3-7 March in San Diego, Calif., U.S.A.

“In an optical fiber, it’s desirable to carry more data per second, which we call the fiber capacity, and also to be able to send the signal over longer distances, which we call the optical reach,” said Dr. Pierre Mertz, an author on the study. “In simple terms, if you try to push the limits of fiber capacity you will reduce the reach. The biggest challenge is that the system was operating very close to the Shannon Limit, or the theoretical maximum information transfer rate for a communications channel, according to Mertz. "That means that every gain we make becomes harder and harder,” he said.

Authors: Stephen Grubb, Pierre Mertz, Ales Kumpera, Lee Dardis, Jeffrey Rahn, James O’Connor, Matthew Mitchell


BT to deploy Ciena’s Waveserver stackable DCI platform

BT will deploy Ciena’s Waveserver stackable data center interconnect (DCI) platform to increase the capacity connecting its data centers to the UK’s main Internet peering nodes.

Ciena said its Waveserver enables BT to quickly, reliably, and more economically turn up larger and multiple low-latency connections to its data centers. Waveserver supports high-speed data transfer, virtual machine migration, disaster recovery and backup between data centers.

To support its network automation and orchestration goals, BT will also deploy Ciena’s new domain controller: Blue Planet Manage, Control and Plan which will enable BT to introduce the Waveserver quickly and easily.

“This deployment marks a significant step forward for UK telecoms. Today’s service providers are turning to tailor-made solutions that add capacity and programmability features with greater power and efficiency, enabling reduced cost per bit. With Ciena’s Waveserver platform, BT is creating a more adaptive network that can adjust as needed to meet changing subscriber demands," stated Jamie Jefferies, Vice President & General Manager, EMEA, Ciena

Anritsu and Samsung Verify First 5G NR in Sub-6 GHz

Anritsu submitted the industry's first Protocol Conformance test in the Sub-6 GHz Frequency Range 1 (FR1) to 3GPP RAN5 working group for approval.

The test defined by 3GPP TS38.523 has been verified with the Exynos Modem 5100 5G New Radio (NR) modem developed by Samsung's System LSI Business on the Anritsu ME7834NR Protocol Conformance test system.

Anritsu offers a test platform for 3GPP-based Protocol Conformance Test (PCT) and Carrier Acceptance Testing (CAT) of mobile devices incorporating Multiple Radio Access Technologies (RAT). It supports 5G NR in both Standalone (SA) and Non-Standalone (NSA) mode, in addition to LTE, LTE-Advanced (LTE-A), LTE-A Pro, and W-CDMA. When combined with Anritsu's new OTA chamber MA8171A and RF converters, the ME7834NR covers the sub-6 GHz and millimeter wave (mmWave) 5G frequency bands.

"Anritsu continues to support our leading-edge technology development by providing quick access to the latest features on their test solutions," said Woonhaing Hur, Vice President of System LSI Protocol Development at Samsung Electronics. "5G is evolving at a much faster pace than previous technologies, and I am pleased to see that Anritsu is keeping ahead of the evolution as they did during LTE-Advanced and LTE-Advanced Pro."

"We are proud that Samsung continues to rely on our test solutions," said Mr. Tsutomu Tokuke, General Manager of Anritsu's Mobile Solutions Division. "Our collaboration with Samsung has helped us achieve yet another important industry milestone in the journey towards 5G NR commercialization."

Dell'Oro: Worldwide mobile infrastructure market better than expected

The worldwide Mobile Infrastructure Radio Access Network (RAN) market surprised on the upside and performed better than expected for the full-year 2018, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group.

Huawei, Ericsson and Nokia were the top three vendors for 4Q18 and 2018.

Some highlights from the report:
  • The year 2018 also turned out to be a pivotal one for Massive MIMO as demand increased at a significantly faster pace than expected, adding confidence the technology will play a fundamental role going forward.
  • 5G steps into a tangible commercial cycle – NR revenues expected to accelerate rapidly in 2019.
  • The short-term outlook is now more favorable – projections have been adjusted upward for 2019.

“The global upswing that began in the second half of 2018 was broader and deeper than previously expected, validating the message we have communicated for some time; namely, there are reasons to be optimistic about the RAN market,” said Stefan Pongratz, senior director at Dell’Oro Group. “In addition to the strong focus on LTE and LTE-Advanced, the shift toward 5G NR continued to accelerate throughout the year. And while the 5G narrative has morphed somewhat over the past couple of years as expectations gradually shift from the long-term vision to what will drive the business case today, the reality is that the technology is now ready for the first phase of the 5G NR launch supporting the eMBB and FWA use cases,” continued Pongratz.

http://www.delloro.com

Zayo announces big wavelength contract with webscale client

Zayo confirmed that it has been selected by a webscale customer for multiple 100G wavelengths along Zayo’s Dallas to Los Angeles 2,000-mile fiber route that was completed in August 2018.

The company described the deal as one of its largest recent waves deals in terms of capacity.

Zayo also noted that the deal is another follow-on sale on this high fiber-count route, which enables unique options between Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, Tucson, El Paso, Ft. Worth and Dallas.

“This is one of our largest recent waves deals in terms of capacity,” said Jack Waters, president of Zayo Networks and COO. “The unique route and our ability to mobilize to install the solution to meet the customer’s stringent deadlines were key factors in winning this business.”

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