Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Apple and Qualcomm reach global settlement

Apple and Qualcomm agreed to settle all pending litigation worldwide and announced a multiyear chipset supply deal.

Under the agreement, Apple will pay royalties to Qualcomm for six years, including a two-year option to extend. Apple will also make a one-time payment to Qualcomm. Financial terms were not specified.

Shares of Qualcomm surged 23% on news of the settlement.

Intel abandons 5G smartphone modem business

Intel will exit the 5G smartphone modem business. The company said it will continue to meet current customer commitments for its existing 4G smartphone modem product line, but does not expect to launch 5G modem products in the smartphone space, including those originally planned for launches in 2020.

“We are very excited about the opportunity in 5G and the ‘cloudification’ of the network, but in the smartphone modem business it has become apparent that there is no clear path to profitability and positive returns,” said Intel CEO Bob Swan. “5G continues to be a strategic priority across Intel, and our team has developed a valuable portfolio of wireless products and intellectual property. We are assessing our options to realize the value we have created, including the opportunities in a wide variety of data-centric platforms and devices in a 5G world.”


Intel outlines its 5G radio modem portfolio

Intel outlined its product roadmap for 5G silicon. First up is Intel XMM 8000 series, a family of 5G new radio (5G NR) multi-mode commercial modems, and the Intel XMM 7660 LTE modem.

Highlights of Intel’s wireless roadmap:

  • Intel XMM 8000 series: will operate in both sub-6 GHz and millimeter wave global spectrum bands. Intel is aiming to enable a range of devices to connect to 5G, including PC, phones, fixed wireless consumer premise equipment (CPE) and vehicles.
  • Intel XMM 8060: will offer multi-mode support for the full 5G non-standalone and standalone NR, as well as various 2G, 3G (including CDMA) and 4G legacy modes. It is expected to ship in commercial customer devices in mid-2019. Intel is targetting broad deployment of 5G networks in 2020.
  • Intel XMM 7660: Intel’s latest LTE modem delivers Cat-19 capabilities, supports speeds up to 1.6 Gbps, and features advanced multiple-input and multiple-output (MIMO), carrier aggregation and a broad range of band support. It will ship in commercial devices in 2019.

Intel also announced it has successfully completed a full end-to-end 5G call based on its early 5G silicon over the 28GHz band. Intel says it is participating in dozens of 5G trials around the world.

Equinix expands its SDN-powered Cloud Exchange Fabric

The Equinix Cloud Exchange Fabric (ECX Fabric) is now providing connections between 37 markets across five continents.

ECX Fabric is an on-demand, SDN-enabled interconnection service that enables customers to privately interconnect clouds, networks and services to global data centers at their digital edge. The expanded connectivity allows customers to connect to clouds in other regions, between the Americas, Europe and Asia-Pacific.

Additionally, customers can use the expanded ECX Fabric service as a primary connection between Equinix International Business Exchange (IBX®) data centers or as a complement to their existing networks. ECX Fabric also enables customers to streamline their access to the world's largest cloud providers such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure and Google Cloud on Platform Equinix.

Equinix said that more than 1,400 customers are currently using ECX Fabric and have established more than 14,900 active virtual connections to ECX Fabric.

ECX Fabric is currently available in 37 metros globally, including Amsterdam, Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Culpeper, Dallas, Denver, Dublin, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Geneva, Helsinki, Hong Kong, Houston, London, Los Angeles, Madrid, Manchester, Melbourne, Miami, Milan, Munich, New York, Osaka, Paris, Perth, São Paulo, Seattle, Silicon Valley, Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney, Tokyo, Toronto, Warsaw, Washington, D.C. and Zurich.

Intel acquires Omnitek for FPGA expertise

Intel has acquired Omnitek, a provider of optimized video and vision FPGA IP solutions based in Basingstoke, England. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Omnitek was founded in 1998 and has developed over 220 FPGA IP cores and accompanying software including performance-leading solutions for WARP, ISP processing and video connectivity. Omnitek enables customized high-performance vision and artificial intelligence (AI) inferencing capabilities on FPGAs for customers across a range of end markets.

“Omnitek’s technology is a great complement to our FPGA business. Their deep, system-level FPGA expertise and high-performance video and vision-related technology have made them a trusted partner for many of our most important customers. Together, we will deliver leading FPGA solutions for video, vision and AI inferencing applications on Intel FPGAs and speed time-to-market for our existing customers while winning new ones,” Dan McNamara, Intel senior vice president and general manager of the Programmable Solutions Group.

“From data centers to devices, compute-intensive applications like 8K video and artificial intelligence require a multitude of innovative compute engines. FPGA devices play an increasingly critical role, often complementing other processing architectures, and Intel is at the center of this revolution,” said Roger Fawcett, CEO of Omnitek. “Omnitek is excited and extremely proud to bring our intellectual property and engineers to join the talented team in Intel’s Programmable Solutions Group.”

Orange deploys Infinera for Kanawa subsea cable in Caribbean

Kanawa, a new subsea cable owned and operated by Orange in the Caribbean, is powered by Infinera’s fourth-generation Infinite Capacity Engine (ICE4)-based XTS 3600 platform and Infinera Instant Bandwidth.

Kanawa, which spans 1,746-kilometers between French Guiana and Martinique, consists of two pairs of subsea fibers. It delivers 100 Gbps services and offers up to 10 Tbps of capacity.

Orange deployed Infinera’s ICE4-based platform and Instant Bandwidth on the Martinique-Guadeloupe segment. With Infinera’s solutions, Orange can increase capacity as needed within minutes, without requiring any additional work on its subsea network, a distinct advantage it can pass along to its customers.

“French Guiana is experiencing rapid growth in digital technology,” said Jean-Luc Vuillemin, Executive Vice President, Orange International Networks Infrastructure and Services. “We needed to ensure the region keeps pace with the rest of the world, and Kanawa was our solution. Infinera’s cutting-edge technology enables Orange to increase capacity on demand and delivers the high performance we expected. Choosing to deploy Infinera’s technology is a significant benefit to us and our customers, providing us with an agile, scalable network.”

“Orange’s selection of Infinera’s ICE4-based platform and Instant Bandwidth underscores the significant benefits of operating a cognitive network,” said Bob Jandro, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Sales at Infinera. “We are delighted to work with Orange on this major deployment and look forward to enabling the Caribbean to connect globally.”

Rambus' 7nm 112G Long Reach SerDes PHY reaches tapeout

Rambus announced tapeout and availability of its new 112G Long Reach (LR) SerDes PHY on a 7nm process node. The 112G design is aimed at next-generation terabit switches, routers, optical transport networks (OTNs), and high-performance networking equipment.

Rambus said its high-speed PHY provides the optimal combination of power efficiency, performance and area.

“By leveraging leading 7nm process technology, Rambus is enabling the next generation of Communications and Data Center applications,” said Hemant Dhulla, VP and GM of IP Cores, Rambus. “We’re excited to continue to expand our IP portfolio and deliver our customers top-of-the-line performance and flexibility for today’s most challenging systems, including solutions like our 112G LR SerDes PHY.”

Technical Details

  • Scalable ADC-based (analog-to-digital converter) architecture with support for PAM-4 and NRZ signaling
  • DSP-based architecture for improved signal to noise ratio (SNR) and extended reach
  • Configurable to provide power, performance and area (PPA) optimization for medium reach (MR) and long reach (LR) applications.


The Rambus 112G LR SerDes PHY is currently available for licensing.

Windstream selects Ciena’s 5170 Service Aggregation Platform

Windstream has selected Ciena’s 5170 Service Aggregation Platform to support its launch of 100 GbE services and improved network capabilities for 10 GbE aggregation.

“We’re pleased to be working with Ciena to address customers’ increasing need for high-bandwidth services with improved performance,” said Buddy Bayer, chief network officer for Windstream. “Moreover, the smaller footprint and power efficiency of the 5170 means network operators can add capacity and elevate customers to the next increments of Ethernet service bandwidth up to 100GbE, while keeping the footprint and costs in check.”

“Ciena recognizes that today’s network operators face substantial challenges to deliver increased capacity, keep CAPEX costs down and accelerate the deployment of new services to keep up with demand,” said Steve Alexander, senior vice president and chief technology officer for Ciena. “Windstream’s selection recognizes that solutions like the 5170 Service Aggregation Platform are designed to support their advanced Carrier Ethernet feature sets, automation, advanced SLA monitoring and big data needs to enable their near- and long-term success.”

Mellanox delivered record $305 million in revenue in Q1

Mellanox Technologies reported record revenue of $305.2 million in the first quarter, an increase of 21.6 percent, compared to $251.0 million in the first quarter of 2018. GAAP gross margins of 64.6 percent in the first quarter, compared to 64.5 percent in the first quarter of 2018.

“Mellanox delivered record revenue in Q1, achieving 5 percent sequential growth and 22 percent year-over-year growth. All of our product lines grew sequentially, showing the benefits of our diversified data center strategy,” said Eyal Waldman, president and CEO of Mellanox Technologies. “Our R&D execution has resulted in differentiated products, while at the same time we have generated operating margin of 14.6% on a GAAP basis and 28.3% on a non-GAAP basis. Additionally, we increased cash and short-term investments by $114 million during the quarter.”

“Across InfiniBand and Ethernet product lines, our innovations are driving continued market leadership. Our 200 gigabit HDR InfiniBand solutions are enabling the world’s fastest supercomputers and driving our overall InfiniBand growth. During Q1, HDR InfiniBand connected tens-of-thousands of compute and storage end-points across supercomputing, hyperscale, and cloud data centers around the globe to achieve breakthrough performance. Our Ethernet solutions continue to penetrate the market for both adapters and switches. Our market leadership in 25 gigabit per second Ethernet solutions is well established, and our 100 gigabit per second solutions are the fastest growing portion of our Ethernet adapter product line. We are also encouraged by the adoption of our BlueField System-on-a-Chip and SmartNIC technology. With further innovations to come, Mellanox is well-positioned to continue its growth trajectory,” Mr. Waldman concluded.

Highlights

  • Non-GAAP gross margins of 68.0 percent in the first quarter, compared to 69.0 percent in the first quarter of 2018.
  • GAAP operating income of $44.7 million in the first quarter, compared to $12.0 million in the first quarter of 2018.
  • Non-GAAP operating income of $86.3 million in the first quarter, or 28.3 percent of revenue, compared to $52.1 million, or 20.8 percent of revenue in the first quarter of 2018.
  • GAAP net income of $48.6 million in the first quarter, compared to $37.8 million in the first quarter of 2018.
  • Non-GAAP net income of $86.5 million in the first quarter, compared to $51.4 million in the first quarter of 2018.
  • GAAP net income per diluted share of $0.87 in the first quarter, compared to $0.71 in the first quarter of 2018.
  • Non-GAAP net income per diluted share of $1.59 in the first quarter, compared to $0.98 in the first quarter of 2018.

With Mellanox, NVIDIA targets full compute/network/storage stack

NVIDIA agreed to acquire Mellanox in a deal valued at approximately $6.9 billion.

The merger targets data centers in general and the high-performance computing (HPC) market in particular. Together, NVIDIA’s computing platform and Mellanox’s interconnects power over 250 of the world’s TOP500 supercomputers and have as customers every major cloud service provider and computer maker. Mellanox pioneered the InfiniBand interconnect technology, which along with its high-speed Ethernet products is now used in over half of the world’s fastest supercomputers and in many leading hyperscale datacenters.

NVIDIA said the acquired assets enables it to data center-scale workloads across the entire computing, networking and storage stack to achieve higher performance, greater utilization and lower operating cost for customers.

“The emergence of AI and data science, as well as billions of simultaneous computer users, is fueling skyrocketing demand on the world’s datacenters,” said Jensen Huang, founder and CEO of NVIDIA. “Addressing this demand will require holistic architectures that connect vast numbers of fast computing nodes over intelligent networking fabrics to form a giant datacenter-scale compute engine.

NVIDIA also promised to continue investing in Israel, where Mellanox is based.

The companies expect to close the deal by the end of 2019.

See also