Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Huawei reports robust 2019, revenue up 19.1%, profit up 5.6%

Despite pressure from the U.S. government and growing international restrictions, Huawei reported very robust financial performance for 2019:  global sales revenue in 2019 lept to CNY858.8 billion, up 19.1% year-on-year; net profit reached CNY62.7 billion; and cash flow from operating activities topped CNY91.4 billion, up 22.4% year-on-year.

"2019 was an extraordinary year for Huawei," said Eric Xu, Huawei's Rotating Chairman. "Despite enormous outside pressure, our team forged ahead with a singular focus on creating value for our customers. We worked hard to earn their respect and trust, as well as that of our partners around the globe. Business remains solid."

Some highlights from Huawei's 2019 annual report:
  • Carrier business revenue reached CNY296.7 billion, up 3.8% year-on-year.
  • Enterprise business revenue reached CNY89.7 billion, up 8.6% year-on-year.
  • Consumer business revenue reached CNY467.3 billion, up 34% year-on-year.
  • Overall revenue in China was CNY506.7 billion, up 36.2%
  • Overall revenue in EMEA was CNY206 billion, up 0.7%
  • Overall revenue in Asia PAC was CNY70.5 billion, down 13.9%
  • Overall revenue in the Americas was CNY52.5 billion, up 9.6%
  • R&D expenditures amounted to CNY131.7 billion
  • In 2019, Huawei shipped 240 million smartphones
"The external environment will only get more complicated going forward," Xu cautioned. "We need to keep enhancing the competitiveness of our products and services, promoting open innovation, and creating greater value for our customers and society at large. This is the only way we can seize the historic opportunities presented by the digital and intelligent transformation of industries, and maintain robust growth in the long run."

At the press conference, in response to a question regarding a possible tightening of restrictions of U.S.-based technology used by TSMC to produce 5G chipsets, Xu was quoted as saying "

"The Chinese government will not just stand by and watch Huawei be slaughtered on the chopping board... Why wouldn't the Chinese government ban the use of 5G chips or 5G chip-powered base stations, smartphones and other smart devices provided by American companies, for cybersecurity reasons?"

Palo Alto Networks to acquire CloudGenix for $420M

Palo Alto Networks agreed to acquire CloudGenix, an SD-WAN start-up based in San Jose, California, for approximately $420 million in cash.

CloudGenix is known for its AppFabric SD-WAN technology, which ensures application-specific, service-level agreements (SLAs). The CloudGenix SD-WAN platform serves approximately 250 customers, many of which are in the Fortune 1000 and include companies in healthcare, retail, manufacturing, finance, banking, tech and hospitality. CloudGenix co-founders, Kumar Ramachandran, Mani Ramasamy and Venkataraman Anand, have agreed to join Palo Alto Networks.

Palo Alto Networks offers its own Prisma secure access service edge (SASE) platform, delivering a global cloud network with cloud-delivered security for users. The company plans to integrate CloudGenix's cloud-managed SD-WAN products to accelerate the intelligent onboarding of remote branches and retail stores into Prisma Access.  This combination will extend the breadth of the Prisma Access SASE platform, address network and security transformation requirements, and accelerate the shift from SD-WAN to SASE.

"As the enterprise becomes more distributed, customers want agile solutions that just work, and that applies to both security and networking. Upon the close of the transaction, the combined platform will provide customers with a complete SASE offering that is best-in-class, easy to deploy, cloud-managed, and delivered as a service," states Nikesh Arora, chairman and CEO, Palo Alto Networks.

"CloudGenix's vision has been to revolutionize branch offices through cloud-delivered Autonomous WANs. With CloudGenix, enterprises gain cloud-scale economics for the branch office with the freedom to use any WAN, any cloud, and best-of-breed infrastructure services. We thank our customers for making us an industry leader in enterprise SD-WAN. By joining forces with Palo Alto Networks, we will accelerate our ability to serve customers and partners in their network and security transformation," said Kumar Ramachandran, co-founder and CEO, CloudGenix

  • CloudGenix raised over $100 million in funding. Investors included Bain Capital Ventures, Charles River Ventures, Mayfield Fund, Intel Capital, and ClearSky. 

CloudGenix enhances SD-WAN with CloudBlades software


CloudGenix announced a major upgrade to its SD-WAN platform with the launch of new "CloudBlade" cloud-delivered software.

CloudBlades enable additional SD-WAN capabilities, such as security, voice, multi-cloud access, and operational tools, to be delivered to a branch office without additional hardware or software.

CloudGenix said its approach differs from traditional enterprise branch office routers which require the installation of additional hardware blades or software. The cloud-delivered software approach brings cloud-scale economics and agility.  CloudBlades enables one-click, high-performance delivery of the above infrastructure services from the cloud, using best-of-breed providers in each category.

“As businesses take advantage of the tremendous opportunity at the branch, they need a new model for the delivery of infrastructure services,” said Kumar Ramachandran, founder and CEO at CloudGenix. “Our CloudBlades platform allows enterprises to reimagine what’s possible. Not only do customers get the agility and freedom to choose best-of-breed, they also get to take advantage of cloud-scale economics. The days of the multi-function hardware router are officially at an end.”

CloudBlades includes the following components:

  • The CloudGenix Instant-On-Network (ION) is Intel x86-based, lightweight CPE at the branch, this serves as the branch enforcement point for CloudBlades, and can simultaneously host CloudGenix’s SD-WAN products.
  • The CloudBlades Platform enables API based integration of the branch CPE directly with various cloud infrastructure services. It provides secure, authenticated API access to CloudGenix CPE and systems; a centralized API for programming the app-flow engine at the CPE; integration with the CloudGenix UI without any code; access to CloudGenix telemetry; and the hosting of approved CloudBlades.
  • Individual CloudBlades are created by CloudGenix as well as by partners, customers and other developers. The company is currently supporting more than twenty CloudBlades across various infrastructure services, including with Palo Alto Networks, Zscaler, CheckPoint, Symantec, Microsoft, Google, Equinix, Amazon, RingCentral, ServiceNow, PagerDuty, Slack, Fuse, Zoom etc. 
  • To enable proactive IT, CloudGenix is supporting CloudBlade solutions with ServiceNow, PagerDuty, CloudGenix Clarity and Slack.

Ericsson: So far, no material impact from COVID-19

So far, Ericsson has not seen a material impact to its business from the COVID-19 pandemic, according to company CEO Börje Ekholm.

Speaking to Ericsson shareholders via webcast ahead of the Annual General meeting,  Ekholm stated “Last year we talked about switching on 5G globally. Today, we can say that we have succeeded. The world’s first 5G network was launched with Ericsson’s technology and the same was true for the first network in Europe.”

He continues: “Right now we have 86 commercial 5G agreements and 27 live networks in 4 continents. Ericsson is leading the 5G development. I see no one in front of us.”

Some additional key points:

  • Ericsson believes the 5G market is growing faster than most analysts have expected and that the company is well positioned to capture this growth.
  • Ericsson’s financial position is strong, with a robust balance sheet with net cash of SEK 34 billion at the end of last year. 


https://www.ericsson.com/en/about-us/corporate-governance/shareholder-meetings/annual-general-meeting-2020

Comcast sees a 32% spike in peak traffic loads

Compared with March 1, Comcast is experiencing up to 32% increase in peak traffic loads. Some areas are experiencing a 60% spike in peak traffic.

Comcast, which operates the largest residential internet network in the U.S., said the unprecedented shift in network usage remains within the capability of its infrastructure.

“Primetime” on the Comcast network (the busiest time of day) looks dramatically different today as the nation settles into new patterns. Downstream peak appears to be moving from 9 PM to between 7 PM – 8 PM, while upstream peak is moving from 9 PM to between 8 AM and 6 PM in most cities.

Significantly, Comcast said network traffic is beginning to plateau in early COVID-19 markets, such as Seattle and San Francisco.

Some additional notes from Comcast's COVID-19 update:

  • Weekday usage is up, driven primarily by VoIP, Video Conferencing, and VPN.
  • VoIP and Video Conferencing is up 212%
  • VPN traffic is up 40%
  • Gaming downloads are up 50% generally and 80% during new releases
  • There is a 38% increase in streaming and web video consumption
  • Linear video consumption increased 4 hours to 64 hours per week
  • Video OnDemand hitting record highs, up 25% YOY
  • There has been a nearly 50% increase in Voice Remote requests for “Free Movies”
  • We have seen Voice Remote queries top 50 million some days
  • On Xfinity Mobile, there has been a 10% decline in LTE Data usage and a 24% increase in mobile data usage over WiFi

AWS introduces Amazon Detective workload security service

Amazon Web Services released a new "Amazon Detective" security service that helps users to conduct investigations into security issues across their AWS workloads.

Amazon Detective automatically collects log data from a customer’s resources and uses machine learning, statistical analysis, and graph theory to build interactive visualizations that help customers analyze, investigate, and quickly identify the root cause of potential security issues or suspicious activities. There are no additional charges or upfront commitments required to use Amazon Detective, and customers pay only for data ingested from AWS CloudTrail, Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) Flow Logs, and Amazon GuardDuty findings. To get started with Amazon Detective, visit https://aws.amazon.com/detective/.

“Even when customers tell us their security teams have the tools and information to confidently detect and remediate issues, they often say they need help when it comes to understanding what caused the issues in the first place,” said Dan Plastina, Vice President for Security Services at AWS. “Gathering the information necessary to conduct effective security investigations has traditionally been a burdensome process, which can put crucial in-depth analysis out of reach for smaller organizations and strain resources for larger teams. Amazon Detective takes all of that extra work off of the customer’s plate, allowing them to focus on finding the root cause of an issue and ensuring it doesn’t happen again.”

Amazon Detective is available today in the US East (N. Virginia), US East (Ohio), US West (Oregon), Europe (Frankfurt), Europe (Ireland), Europe (London), Europe (Paris), Europe (Stockholm), Asia Pacific (Mumbai), Asia Pacific (Seoul), Asia Pacific (Singapore), Asia Pacific (Sydney), Asia Pacific (Tokyo), and South America (Sao Paulo) regions, with more regions coming soon.

Nokia introduces “AI-as-a-service” for telcos

Nokia introduced a set of AI capabilities for helping service providers to automate their network with cloud scalability. This framework provides an end-to-end service view with near real-time impact correlation for better visibility and control, supported by Nokia’s extensive library of AI use cases.

The new Nokia AVA 5G Cognitive Operations offering anticipates network and service failures with a high level of precision and accuracy up to seven days in advance. If failures arise, Nokia 5G Cognitive Operations can solve them up to 50 percent faster and accurately assess the impact on customers and services. The insights provided will help support CSPs with their slice creation, with an intelligent provisioning system identifying network resources, what SLAs can be committed and where new revenue opportunities can be found. Future capability will also enable CSPs to customize slice creation, providing different SLA levels based on unique user requirements.

Nokia is currently hosting the new capabilities in Microsoft Azure but says other public and private cloud options are possible.

“Operators face a perfect storm of rising traffic and consumer expectations, so it is crucial to be able to predict and prevent service degradations at an earlier stage, while solving issues that arise significantly faster. Nokia AVA 5G Cognitive Operations enables CSPs to operate and assure latency for 5G use cases through AI, ultimately delivering an enhanced customer experience for consumers and enterprises,” states Dennis Lorenzin, Head of Network Cognitive Service unit at Nokia.

Nokia claims that CSPs trialing the service have seen a 20 percent reduction in customer complaints and a 10 percent reduction in costly site visits.


https://www.nokia.com/networks/solutions/nokia-ava-telco-ai-ecosystem/

IP Infusion and Okinawa Open Laboratory test disaggregated networking

IP Infusion has joined Okinawa Open Laboratory (OOL) to help further the adoption of disaggregated networking.

IP Infusion will be working with OOL to verify white box solutions through field trials with various vendors and follow market trends.

The Okinawa Open Laboratory partners with both industry and academia in research and development to promote the practical application and dissemination of next-generation information and communication platform technologies (ICT), including software-defined networking (SDN), network function virtualization (NFV) and cloud computing using open-source software (OSS).

“Our participation with OOL is significant since it will help more companies to take advantage of the benefits of disaggregated networking, such as faster deployments, lower costs and the opportunity to offer more services,” said Atsushi Ogata, CEO and president of IP Infusion. “IP Infusion has a deep understanding in the features and quality required for the industry to develop a standard disaggregated networking platform, which are present in our line of network operating system products.”

“We look forward to working with IP Infusion to field test their disaggregated NOS with our other industry vendors,” said Yukio Ito, chairman, Okinawa Open Laboratory. “Their 20 years of experience in the NOS industry will be of tremendous value to the OOL community.”

Monday, March 30, 2020

NTT develops quantum light source for optical quantum computer chip

Researchers at NTT have developed a wide-band, high-performance quantum light source (squeezed light source) that could be used for optical quantum computer chips operating at room temperature.

The breakthrough finds that squeezed light has compressed quantum noise that can be used to create quantum entanglement. The light source can output continuous-wave wide-bandwidth high-level squeezed light. The light source can also increase the clock frequency of the quantum computer itself, setting a course for high-speed quantum computation.

NTT said the reserachers succeeded in compressing more than 75% of the quantum noise by using a high-performance nonlinear optical waveguide fabricated by NTT and a high-quality optical control and measurement technology of the University of Tokyo.

Looking ahead, the researchers aim to demonstrate the generation of large-scale entanglement states and various optical quantum operations for the realization of universal quantum computers using this wideband squeezed light.

A paper on this research will be published in “APL Photonics” on March 30, 2020.

https://www.ntt.co.jp/news2020/2003e/200330b.html



SK Telecom's 5G network carries 62,000TB per month

SK Telecom has enrolled around 2.22 million 5G subscribers since launching its service nearly one year ago (03-April-2019).

SK Telecom currently holds 44% of Korea's 5G market.

Some other key highlights from SK Telecom:

  • People in their 30s and 40s are taking up 53% of the company’s total 5G subscriber base, which is significantly higher than the proportion of people in their 30s and 40s in total LTE subscriber base, which currently stands at 32%.
  • The total amount of data consumption of SK Telecom’s 5G subscribers combined reached 62,000 TB on average per month over the past three months (Dec. 2019 ~ Feb. 2020). 
  • During the same period, the average monthly data usage of subscribers who switched devices from LTE to 5G has increased about twofold from 14.5 GB (LTE) to 28.5 GB (5G) per person.
  • As of February 2020, 5G subscribers are using 7 times more VR services, 3.6 times more video steaming services and 2.7 times more game apps than LTE subscribers.
  • SK Telecom and Microsoft are currently providing 92 different games through Project xCloud.
  • SK Telecom plans to build 5G MEC (Mobile Edge Computing) Centers in 12 different locations across Korea.
  • SK Telecom plans to deploy a private 5G network at SK Hynix’s semiconductor manufacturing facility.
  • SK Telecom will bring the total number of its 5G Clusters to 240 and expand 5G coverage to neighborhoods (‘dong’) of 85 cities nationwide.


Windstream: Voice traffic up 50%, Data traffic up 30% in past 2 weeks

Windstream reported an approximately 50 percent increase in voice traffic and an approximately 30 percent increase in data traffic since mid-March.

Windstream said these increases are well within the company’s defined network operational tolerances.

“Our network is well equipped to handle the higher usage given our past modernization efforts that migrated Windstream to scalable, robust equipment and IP/Ethernet services,” said Tony Thomas, president and CEO of Windstream. “We fully understand how critical our role as a communications provider is during the coronavirus health crisis, and I’m proud of all that our team members, especially our front-line technicians, are doing to keep our customers connected.”

Windstream uses a highly resilient network architecture to provide reliable services to customers. Services are delivered over multiple platforms, including a nationwide IP network, proprietary cloud core architecture and a local and long-haul fiber network spanning approximately 150,000 route miles.

https://investor.windstream.com/news/news-details/2020/Windstreams-Network-Performs-Well-as-Usage-Climbs/default.aspx

Comcast Business wins $9.3m Ethernet Gateway contract from DISA

The United States’ Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) awarded a 10-year, $9.3 million to Comcast Business to establish Commercial Ethernet Gateways to provide Ethernet connections to its Defense Information Systems Network (DISN) in the Northeastern United States.

Under the contract, Comcast Business will deliver its Ethernet Virtual Private Line (EVPL) service, which helps improve application performance across a network with a private, point-to-multipoint network design between multiple locations. EVPL offers the potential for performance improvements and managed cost as compared to legacy Wide Area Network (WAN) technologies such as T1 lines, Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), Frame Relay, Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM), and private lines.

“This award lets us do our part to support the nation. Transforming DISA’s network to an Ethernet-based solution will deliver a performance-based network to DISA and its mission partners,” said Ken Folderauer, Vice President, Federal Government Sales, Comcast Business. “The US Government is one of the largest IT buyers in the world. Only the very best earn their trust and Comcast Business is honored to be on that short list. We look forward to continuing to build out this incredible partnership with DISA.”

Oracle Cloud region launches in Montreal

Oracle activated a new Gen 2 Cloud region in Montreal.

The announcement follows the launch of its Toronto Cloud region last year, making Canada Oracle’s latest country offering dual cloud regions

In addition to the Montreal cloud region, Oracle recently announced the opening of four Gen 2 Cloud Regions in Melbourne (Australia), Jeddah (Saudi Arabia), Osaka (Japan) and Amsterdam (the Netherlands). Oracle has now opened 17 Gen 2 Cloud regions in the past year and currently operates 21 regions globally—16 commercial and five government—the fastest expansion by any major cloud provider. By the end of this year, the company plans to open additional new cloud regions in the US (San Jose, CA), Brazil (Vinhedo), the UK (Newport, Wales), India (Hyderabad), South Korea (Chuncheon), Singapore, Israel, South Africa, Chile (Santiago), Saudi Arabia and two in the United Arab Emirates.

Oracle Gen 2 Cloud regions include:
Asia Pacific: Tokyo, Osaka, Seoul, Mumbai, Sydney, Melbourne
Americas: Phoenix, Ashburn, Toronto, Sao Paolo, Montreal
Europe: Frankfurt, London, Zurich, Amsterdam
Middle East: Jeddah
Government: two general U.S. Government regions, three U.S. Department of Defense specific Government regions

IDC: COVID-19 impacts Server and Storage sales

The COVID-19 pandemic will impact spending on IT infrastructure.

According to the IDC Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker and Worldwide Quarterly Enterprise Storage Systems Tracker, under the current probable scenario server market revenues will decline 3.4% year over year to $88.6 billion and external enterprise storage systems (ESS) revenues will decline 5.5% to $28.7 billion in 2020.

The server market is expected to decline 11.0% in Q1 and 8.9% in Q2 and then return to growth in the second half of the year. The external ESS market is forecast to decline 7.3% in Q1 and 12.4% in Q2 before returning to slight growth by the end of 2020 with further recovery expected in 2021.

"The impact of COVID-19 will certainly dampen overall spending on IT infrastructure as companies temporarily shut down and employees are laid off or furloughed," said Kuba Stolarski, research director, IT Infrastructure at IDC. "While IDC believes that the short-term impact will be significant, unless the crisis spirals further out of control, it is likely that this will not impact the markets past 2021, at which point we will see a robust recovery with cloud platforms very much leading the way."

In the longer term both markets will return to growth. The server market is expected to deliver a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.9% over the 2019-2024 forecast period with revenues reaching $116.6 billion in 2024. Meanwhile the external ESS market will see a five-year CAGR of 1.3% growing to $32.4 billion in 2024.

"The IT infrastructure markets are already going though a transformation and shifts in end user spending will bring an even faster changing IT buyer landscape," said Natalya Yezhkova, research vice president, IT Infrastructure. "While the current crisis brings tensions and uncertainty to the market, it also will push organizations to expedite adoption of technologies and IT delivery models that help with optimization of IT infrastructure resources."




Keysight announces oscilloscope for mmWave

Keysight Technologies introduced a single channel instrument specifically designed to accelerate development of next generation mmWave communications, satellite communications, and radar applications.

Keysight’s latest edition to the company’s UXR-Series of oscilloscopes, the UXR0051AP Infiniium UXR-Series Oscilloscope, offers a frequency range of 110 GHz and 5 GHz of standard analysis bandwidth, and provides fast, affordable and flexible analysis of wideband measurements. Keysight’s UXR-Series oscilloscopes, with optional mmWave Wideband Analysis functionality, deliver the signal integrity, versatility, affordability, and performance needed to bring signal, spectrum, and digital capabilities together, within a single instrument.

Key features:

  • Superior -158 dBm/Hz displayed average noise level (DANL) from 28 GHz to 85 GHz which enables golden receiver quality error vector magnitude (EVM) measurements on low power wideband signals.
  • Directly measures wideband signals with up to 10 GHz bandwidth and fundamental frequencies as high as 110 GHz, without the need for external downconverters, for high quality wideband analysis.
  • Instant upgradability to two independently configurable phase coherent channels for easy multiple input multiple output (MIMO) measurement support.
  • High-definition, 10-bit analog-to-digital converter (ADC) with 16-bit Digital Down Conversion (DDC) I/Q data output to ensure high mmWave measurement accuracy.
  • 256 GSa/s real-time or 3,200 MSa/s complex sample rates delivers the industry’s widest 110 GHz frequency range and 2.16 GHz DDC analysis bandwidth.
  • Flexible mmWave extension and DDC bandwidth license options enable performance and affordability for oscilloscope based mmWave wideband analysis.
  • “To satisfy the demand for faster speeds and increased bandwidth, mmWave technologies are evolving with techniques such as MIMO and phased array antennas,” said Brad Doerr, vice president and general manager of digital and photonics R&D for Keysight's Communications Solutions Group. “Keysight recognized the need for a cost-effective one channel oscilloscope with dynamically configurable bandwidth to support today’s single-channel mmWave wideband measurement requirements. The new oscilloscope can instantly expand to two phase coherent channels, enabling customers to easily support this emerging multi-channel evolution."

Keysight’s UXR0051AP Infiniium UXR-Series Oscilloscope is available now with a base price of US$195,000.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Fujitsu launches first private 5G network in Japan

Fujitsu today was granted Japan's first commercial Private 5G radio station license from the Kanto Bureau of Telecommunications and will begin operating a Private 5G network at its Shin-Kawasaki Technology Square office.

Fujitsu will use its private 5G network to support an AI-enhanced video security surveillance system that can identify suspicious behavior through motion analysis. The network will also be used for a 5G co-creation and collaboration lab where Fujitsu customers and partners can test various use cases.

Fujitsu has also applied for a private 5G license for its Oyama plant in Tochigi Prefecture, which serves as a manufacturing base for network equipment. Together with Fujitsu Telecom Networks Limited, which manufactures network equipment at this plant, Fujitsu will continue to verify the utility and possible applications for its private 5G technologies.
Successful Verification Under Provisional License Opens Path to Commercial Launch for Private 5G Networks.

OneWeb files for Chapter 11

OneWeb filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in a federal court in New York. The company said uncertainty due to the COVID-19 crisis derailed advanced negotiations might have fully funded the company through its deployment and commercial launch.

OneWeb said it intends to use these proceedings to pursue a sale of its business in order to maximize the value of the company.

So far, OneWeb has launched 74 satellites as part of its constellation, secured valuable global spectrum, begun development on a range of user terminals for a variety of customer markets, has half of its 44 ground stations completed or in development, and performed successful demonstrations of its system with broadband speeds in excess of 400 Mbps and latency of 32 ms. In addition, OneWeb’s commercial team has seen significant early global demand for OneWeb’s high-speed, low-latency connectivity services from governments and leaders in the automotive, maritime, enterprise, and aviation industries.

Adrian Steckel, Chief Executive Officer of OneWeb, stated, “OneWeb has been building a truly global communications network to provide high-speed low latency broadband everywhere. Our current situation is a consequence of the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis. We remain convinced of the social and economic value of our mission to connect everyone everywhere. Today is a difficult day for us at OneWeb. So many people have dedicated so much energy, effort, and passion to this company and our mission. Our hope is that this process will allow us to carve a path forward that leads to the completion of our mission, building on the years of effort and the billions of invested capital. It is with a very heavy heart that we have been forced to reduce our workforce and enter the Chapter 11 process while the Company’s remaining employees are focused on responsibly managing our nascent constellation and working with the Court and investors.”

http://www.omniagentsolutions.com/onewebglobal

OneWeb prepares to launch its LEO constellation

OneWeb, which is planning to deploy a constellation of Low Earth Orbit satellites, secured $1.25 billion in new capital, enabling it to start mass production of satellites through its joint venture with Airbus. This round was led by SoftBank, Grupo Salinas, Qualcomm, and the Government of Rwanda. OneWeb has now raised to $3.4 billion to date.

OneWeb said it will now "embark on the largest satellite launch campaign in history." Satellites will be built at its new, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Exploration Park, Florida. The first launch occured on February 27th.  Starting in Q4, OneWeb will begin monthly launches of more than 30 satellites at a time, creating an initial constellation of 650 satellites to enable full global coverage. Further phases are planned.

"This latest funding round, our largest to date, makes OneWeb’s service inevitable and is a vote of confidence from our core investor base in our business model and the OneWeb value proposition," said Adrian Steckel, CEO of OneWeb. "With the recent successful launch of our first six satellites, near-completion of our innovative satellite manufacturing facility with our partner Airbus, progress towards fully securing our ITU priority spectrum position, and the signing of our first customer contracts, OneWeb is moving from the planning and development stage to deployment of our full constellation. Our success is made possible thanks to the backing of our investors and the cooperation of our world class commercial partners including Arianespace, Airbus, Qualcomm Technologies Inc., Virgin, and Hughes.”

On the additional investment, Marcelo Claure, COO of SoftBank Group Corp. and CEO of SoftBank Group International said: “OneWeb has extended its first-mover advantage and is on track to become the world’s largest and first truly global communications network. At SoftBank, our aim is to invest in transformative companies at the leading edge of technology disruption. OneWeb’s potential is undeniable as the growth in data from 5G, IoT, autonomous driving and other new technologies drives demand for capacity above and beyond the limits of the existing infrastructure.”

OneWeb’s priority rights to a large block of globally harmonized spectrum and its Low Earth Orbit (LEO) constellation design will enable a unique combination of high speed, low latency, and truly global service. OneWeb’s network will go beyond the limits of existing infrastructure, enabling connectivity for rural communities and schools as well as for business and industries that demand seamless global connectivity solutions such as Aviation, Maritime, Backhaul, and Land Mobility. OneWeb’s customers will be able to develop and support a wide range of emerging applications that require real-time communication and collaboration.

ZTE's 2019 revenue rose 6% to RMB 90 billion, profits up 174%

ZTE reported 2019 annual operating revenue of RMB 90.74 billion (approximately $12.79 billion), representing a year-on-year increase of 6.1%, of which operating revenue from operators' networks reached RMB66.58 billion, a year-on-year increase of 16.7%.

Net profit attributable to holders of ordinary shares of the listed company amounted to RMB5.15 billion, a year-on-year growth of 173.7%. Basic earnings per share was RMB1.22.

Some highlights:

  • Net cash flows from operating activities for 2019 amounted to RMB7.45 billion, a year-on-year increase of 180.8%. The company has been continuously enhancing its investment on 5G research and development. For the twelve months ended 31 December 2019, ZTE’s research and development costs amounted to RMB12.55 billion, which was 13.8% as a percentage of operating revenue, increased by 1 percentage point compared to 12.8% in 2018. 
  • ZTE has submitted over 7,000 5GNR/5GC proposals to international standardization organizations.
  • ZTE has declared 2,561 families of 5G Standard-Essential Patents(SEP) to ETSI.
  • ZTE has completed the mass production of the 7nm chipsets and put them into commercial use on a global scale. M
  • ZTE has obtained 46 5G commercial contracts globally, and established cooperation with over 70 operators worldwide. 
  • ZTE’s cloud core network has been deployed in over 550 NFV commercial/PoC projects worldwide.
  • ZTE’s end-to-end 5G transport products are used in more than 40 5G commercial transport networks.
  • ZTE’s core routers were employed at China’s national core nodes in 2019 and have been commercially used in 19 provinces. 
  • ZTE’s 5G Live TV solution has been employed by the three major operators in China for multiple sporting events.
  • ZTE will unveil nearly 10 5G smartphones worldwide, and a total of over 15 5G terminal devices in 2020, covering smartphones, mobile broadband products, and IoT terminal products. Moreover, the company has maintained a global leading position in the home network terminal industry for a long time, with the world's largest market share of CPE.
  • ZTE has partnered with operators to build 4G/5G networks for 210 hospitals in 82 cities of 26 provinces in China. 
  • In Wuhan, ZTE deployed is video conferencing in 20 mobile hospitals within only 24 hours.


MobiledgeX teams with Savari on Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything

MobiledgeX has formed a strategic partnership with Savari, a Silicon Valley-based auto tech company developing Vehicle-to-Everything (V2X) communications technology for smart infrastructure.

The companies are collaborating on Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (C-V2X) use cases for automotive OEMs, their fleet management, and mobility-as-a-service partners.

The companies said they can address the V2X and V2G market needs in the European Union (EU) in 2020. Savari platforms powered by the Qualcomm 9150 C-V2X chipset have recently achieved RED certification. Savari is proud to have reached this significant milestone to advance the EU authority C-V2X objectives while accelerating the market for automotive OEMs and their telecom operator partners.

“Over the years, Savari has made significant advancements in V2X technology delivering value for our automotive OEM customers, the GSMA Association, and the 5GAA Automotive Association,” said Ravi Puvvala, chief executive officer of Savari. “MobiledgeX’s collaboration with GSMA, brings us one step closer to our core 5GAA mission of making roads safer and smarter in a cost-effective manner. We aim to do that by deploying edge and targeted AI applications for our customers that leverage conventional V2X data as well as data from other onboard perception systems.”

Eric Braun, chief commercial officer of MobiledgeX stated, “With Savari, we can now begin to address several of the fundamental edge orchestration challenges facing automotive OEMs as the industry introduces C-V2X and C-V2G solutions which accelerate the adoption of semi-autonomous and autonomous platooning transportation fleets.”

UK's CityFibre acquire FibreNation

CityFibre, the UK’s third national digital infrastructure platform, has acquired FibreNation from TalkTalk Group.

The acquired full fibre network builder allows CityFibre to increase its rollout ambition from 5 million to up to 8 million premises, supporting an investment programme of up to £4 billion. It will also help to accelerate the availability of full fibre across the UK, a platform critical to social and economic recovery in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic. The completion also triggers TalkTalk’s onboarding as CityFibre’s latest major customer, making long-term commitments of both residential and business customers.

FibreNation was founded in 2018, four years after a joint venture between TalkTalk, Sky and CityFibre was launched to deploy full fibre infrastructure and services across the City of York. The FibreNation brand will remain in market and the company will continue to operate and expand its networks where nearly 60,000 premises can gain access to gigabit speed broadband services from TalkTalk. FibreNation has network construction projects underway in Harrogate and Dewsbury and has most recently announced Bolton as the next town to benefit from full fibre. The company is currently mobilising in both Knaresborough and Ripon, with plans to make full fibre available to up to 3 million homes and businesses.

CityFibre’s increased rollout plan to reach up to 8 million premises is expected to span more than 100 towns and cities, and is estimated to create up to 7,000 construction jobs outside London. To date, CityFibre has identified 62 towns and cities to benefit from its rollout and CityFibre has connected thousands of public sector sites including hospitals, GPs, schools and community venues.

Greg Mesch, Chief Executive at CityFibre, said: “In the face of the rapid spread of the Coronavirus and its unprecedented impact on the UK’s society and economy, we believe that the need for world-class digital infrastructure has never been greater.

https://www.cityfibre.com/network/

Nokia tops 3,000 5G patent declarations

Nokia has declared more than 3,000 patent families to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) as essential for the 5G standard.

Marcus Weldon, Nokia Chief Technology Officer and President of Nokia Bell Labs, said: “Nokia has defined many of the fundamental technologies used in virtually all mobile devices and digital systems and networks, and these inventions are critical to the new Industrial Internet of Things era. We standardize these inventions to allow widespread utilization and adoption. The benefits of 5G are initially in massive amounts of new capacity for consumers, but as the new technology and network architecture develops, it will enable new applications for enterprises and industrial businesses, with end-to-end 5G networks forming the critical fabric for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, with Nokia Bell Labs once again at the heart of this revolution.”

Jenni Lukander, President of Nokia Technologies, said: “I am thrilled that our R&D efforts are creating new opportunities for the consumer and industrial technology ecosystem, as the 5G era gathers momentum. As an inventor for the long-term, Nokia is able to innovate for a 5G future because of the fair reward we earn through licensing the standardized technologies created from our extensive R&D investments. This virtuous cycle creates vast new potential in 5G technologies, and I am excited for the possibilities ahead.”

Ericsson and Telstra achieve 200km reach on an LTE connection

Telstra has achieved a 200km cell range capability on its mobile network using equipment from Ericsson. The 3GPP specification targets a reach of up to 100km.

The first extended reach call was completed earlier this year using a Telstra site at Mount Dowe in the Australian state of New South Wales and demonstrates that this new capability can deliver up to double the 4G cell range.

The extended reach was enabled via a software upgrade to the Ericsson Radio System deployed by Telstra.

Head of Ericsson Australia and New Zealand, Emilio Romeo, said, “We’re delighted to partner with Telstra as we continue to pursue mobile network innovations. This breakthrough means that with an Ericsson-developed software upgrade, we will be able to extend the current LTE call range from 100km up to 200km, catering to the unique needs of Australia, given its land mass and geographical size.”

Telstra Network Engineering Executive Channa Seneviratne said, “Effectively doubling the current 4G coverage range of a mobile base station is a huge win for regional and remote Australia. We live in a vast nation and fast data in more places is critical in ensuring that we are providing the best coverage for our customers, whether they're in the city or the country.

Amdocs launches doxi HomeOS

Amdocs introduced a cloud-native home operating system (OS) to help service providers expand their home broadband beyond basic connectivity.

Amdocs' new doxi HomeOS uses AI capabilities to deliver key insights, simple voice commands and “touch free” care capabilities to consumers.

“The home broadband experience has become increasingly complex, fragmented and stymied by cybersecurity unknowns,” said Emma Mohr-McClune, GlobalData’s Service Director for Consumer Services, Platforms and Devices. “The average household simply isn’t up to the integration challenge, and to date service providers have been limited in their ability to help consumers address the many experience pain-points within the connected home.  A solution like Amdocs doxi HomeOS could allow service providers the opportunity to carve out a new position for themselves in the smart home value chain, with a simple but smarter router solution that can act as both the experience guarantor and data caretaker for the home.”

“Amdocs doxi HomeOS is the missing piece in the connected home ecosystem and the first in the industry to add an AI-powered management layer over home broadband services,” said Gil Rosen, general manager of amdocs:next. “doxi HomeOS can create new revenue opportunities and significantly lower the care costs that have risen due to the growing complexity of more connected devices in consumers’ homes. doxi HomeOS is relevant for all broadband providers ranging from incumbents looking to differentiate and grow services to CSPs rolling out 5G fixed wireless access to enhance home broadband connectivity. By enabling an end-to-end intelligent home service that meets customers’ expectations for an enhanced connected experience, doxi HomeOS is an important asset and differentiator for any and all service providers.”

Thursday, March 26, 2020

CableLabs releases DOCSIS 4.0 spec for 10G downlinks

CableLabs released the DOCSIS 4.0 specification, which incorporates both full-duplex and extended spectrum capabilities enabling a downstream speed of up to 10 Gbps (doubling the maximum download speed available with DOCSIS 3.1 technology) and an upstream speed of up to 6 Gbps - quadrupling what DOCSIS 3.1

Work on DOCSIS 4.0 has been underway since August 2016.

In a blog post, Doug Jones, Principal Architect, says the DOCSIS 4.0 specification reflects the four pillars of the 10G platform initiative: speed, lower latency, increased security, and higher reliability.

https://www.cablelabs.com/on-the-path-to-10g-cablelabs-publishes-docsis-4-0-specification

Microsoft to acquire Affirmed Networks for telco cloud vEPC

Microsoft agreed to acquire Affirmed Networks. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Affirmed Networks, which is based in Acton, Massachusetts, supplies virtualized Evolved Packet Core (vEPC) solutions for mobile operators. Affirmed’s virtualized evolved packet solution capabilities include CUPS, 5G NSA, network slicing, integrated virtual probe, virtualized DPI, GiLAN, analytics and security services, virtualized Wi-Fi, and service automation platform. The company claims 76 deployments, including announced projects with AT&T, Etisalat, and Vodafone.

Microsoft said the acquisition will boost its efforts "to work with the telecommunications industry, building on our secure and trusted cloud platform for operators. With Affirmed Networks, we will be able to offer new and innovative solutions tailored to the unique needs of operators, including managing their network workloads in the cloud."

https://www.affirmednetworks.com/





Affirmed Networks unveils cloud-native UnityCloud

Affirmed Networks introduced a cloud-native 5G solution that allows mobile operators to seamlessly converge multiple networks, including 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, and wireline core, on to one unified core.

The Affirmed UnityCloud, which is an evolution of Affirmed’s Mobile Content Cloud (MCC), is built on four key pillars:

  • Innovation platform that enables operators to easily create and deploy new services with fine-grained network slicing for customized enterprise services
  • Automatic networks that instantiate, orchestrate and scale the network up or down with no human involvement, including closed-loop automation
  • Self-assured networks with observability to ensure minimal latency and maximum performance so Service Level Agreements are met
  • Non-stop networks that provide 6-nines of availability with no service interruptions, even when adding new features or performing software upgrades

Affirmed said its UnityCloud embraces open source technologies including Kubernetes, Istio, Envoy, Jaeger and others. The company has several trials underway with tier one operators globally that are building 5G Standalone (SA) networks.

Affirmed UnityCloud significantly improves network economics by converging ‘Any G’,   This eliminates the need for operators to maintain parallel legacy networks dedicated to just one service.

“A telecom transformation is underway. A new generation of networks is being built to connect 50+ billion devices, creating a multi-trillion dollar market opportunity,” said Hassan Ahmed, Chairman, and CEO, Affirmed Networks.

https://www.affirmednetworks.com/products-solutions/5g-core-unitycloud/

Russia's MTS extends contract with Ericsson

MTS, Russia’s largest communications service provider, has extended its long-standing partnership with Ericsson to include a large-scale network modernization of its 2G/3G/4G infrastructure over large parts of central Russia. Specifically, Ericsson will supply MTS with Ericsson Radio System products and solutions for modernization of several thousand sites across 16 districts in central Russia. The project will continue until 2026.

Ericsson is now the single largest supplier of mobile network infrastructure to MTS.

Viktor Belov, Chief Technology Officer, MTS, states: "The new agreement on the supply of equipment is another important step in the cooperation of both companies aimed at building the physical infrastructure of the digital economy in Russia.  With the signing of the contract MTS accelerates the modernization of the radio network in the regions of the Central Federal District to meet the growing needs of our subscribers in IoT services, speed and amount of data traffic. The implementation of this major project will also give us the opportunity in the future in a relatively short time and due to balanced investments to provide 5G coverage on the existing LTE network."

Slack's latest collaboration metrics

Slack shared the following metrics for its enterprise collaboration platform:

  • Simultaneously connected users increased from 10 million on March 10, 2020 to 12.5 million on March 25, 2020 
  • Returning teams, an internal metric that measures the growth and progression of newly-created work teams, had, by around March 10, 2020, increased by more than 120% in Italy, 34% in Japan, and 33% in Korea 
  • The creation rate of new Slack workspaces (which the company believed to be created by businesses) increased by hundreds of percent from March 12, 2020 to March 25, 2020 
  • From February 1, 2020 to March 25, 2020 (approximately 60% of the way through the first fiscal quarter1), Slack added 9,000 new paid customers, an 80% increase over the full quarterly total for the preceding two quarters. 
  • Over the same period the number of messages sent per user per day increased approximately 20%. 
  • During weekdays, the cumulative number of minutes of active use of Slack by all users globally now exceeds one billion.

https://slackhq.com/march-2020-update

Telia expects negative financial impact from COVID-19

Telia expects the COVID-19 pandemic will have a negative financial impact on its TV & Media unit due to declining advertising revenue.

The company states that at present the effects on the rest of Telia Company’s business are limited but the impact on TV & Media means that the 2020 outlook for the Group on EBITDA and operational free cash flow will not be reached.

”The effects from the pandemic will have a material negative financial impact primarily on the TV & Media unit. Despite an increased TV consumption, which has resulted in an increase in the reach for our already popular TV channels, Telia Company has witnessed a rapid decline in the advertising revenues. In addition, the global cancellation of sporting events has had a negative impact on our pay-TV revenues. Given the present circumstances the full impact for 2020 is difficult to estimate but our current assumptions suggests an EBITDA for the TV & Media unit in the range SEK 0-0.5 billion (2019 SEK 1.5 billion). This implies that the ambition of an operational free cash flow of around SEK 0.5 billion from TV & Media in 2020 will not be met but we cannot give a new level at this point,” says Christian Luiga, acting President and CEO of Telia Company.

FCC grants AWS-4 spectrum access to AT&T in Puerto Rico

The FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau granted Special Temporary Authority to AT&T to use AWS-4 spectrum, currently licensed to DISH, for 60 days to expand its network capacity in Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands during the coronavirus pandemic. 

“Staying connected while staying apart is the reality right now across America during this pandemic, and that is no less true for those living in Puerto Rico and U.S Virgin Islands,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai.  “We have put a special emphasis on helping those on the islands stay connected following the terrible storms that hit them in recent years.  And we continue that work today in a new kind of emergency.  I thank DISH for consenting to this use of its spectrum and to the U.S. Department of Justice for its cooperation.  I’m grateful to AT&T for requesting this STA and I’m pleased we can grant it.”

A10 reaffirms Q1 guidance

A10 Networks reaffirmed its financial guidance for Q1:

  • Revenue in the range of $51 million to $53 million
  • Non-GAAP gross margin in the range of 76% to 78%
  • Non-GAAP operating expenses in the range of $37.5 million to $38.5 million
  • Adjusted EBITDA in the range of $3.7 million to $5 million
  • Non-GAAP earnings per share in the range of $0.01 to $0.03 using approximately 81 million diluted shares


Dhrupad Trivedi, President and Chief Executive Officer of A10 Networks, commented, “As an organization, protecting the health and safety of our employees and our global community is our top priority, and we are committed to take the necessary actions to do our part to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Thankfully, to date, we have not experienced any meaningful negative impact to our business or our supply chain, and we anticipate our first quarter financial results to be in line with the guidance provided in our fourth quarter earnings release. Our team is productively working, with the vast majority of employees doing so remotely. Amidst the global quarantine and shelter in place orders, networks across the globe are being stressed with unprecedented usage and increasing demand for bandwidth, underscoring the need for the critical communications infrastructure solutions we provide. We are taking the necessary steps to mitigate any potential disruption given the macro uncertainty and unprecedented nature of the current environment, while remaining focused on the significant opportunity in front of us.”

“We are reaffirming our first quarter outlook and remaining focused on internal initiatives to improve operational efficiency while executing on our key objectives,” Trivedi added.

Keysight and NVIDIA partner on virtualized RAN

Keysight Technologies and NVIDIA are collaborating on the development of dynamic virtualized radio access network (vRAN) architecture and open RAN (O-RAN) technology.

Keysight offers solutions that enable mobile operators and network equipment manufacturers (NEMs) to validate 5G and legacy radio access networks as well as core networks that are critical to ensuring the end-user experience of applications using vRAN architecture. Keysight’s suite of UE emulation (UEE) solutions address specifications set by both 3GPP and O-RAN standards organizations, enabling NVIDIA to test the NVIDIA Aerial software development kit (SDK) via enhanced Common Public Radio Interfaces (eCPRI). The Aerial SDK enables telcos to build and deploy the most programmable and scalable software-defined 5G virtual radio access networks (RANs) to deliver new AI and IoT services at the edge.

“Our collaboration with NVIDIA, using Keysight’s automated and scalable 5G UE emulation solutions, helps the mobile industry create and deliver high-value 5G use cases,” said Giampaolo Tardioli, vice president and general manager of Keysight's network access group. “Keysight’s 5G solutions enable an ecosystem of network infrastructure providers and mobile operators to thoroughly validate the performance of virtualized 5G radio access and core network functionalities across different radio and optical interfaces.”

Keysight's UEE solutions enable users to accelerate the verification of a RAN, both over the air and via O-RAN interfaces. Integrated sophisticated channel emulation capabilities allow users to verify the performance of a RAN deployed in a complex radio environment. Users can access a comprehensive range of real-world scenarios in any 3GPP-specified frequency band for both protocol and load testing.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

3GPP delays 5G standardization work due to COVID-19

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, 3GPP announced  the following important changes to its work schedule.


  • Rel-16 Stage 3 freeze now June 2020 (shifted by 3 months)
  • Rel-16 ASN.1 and OpenAPI specification freeze will also be complete in June 2020 (stays as planned)
  • The Rel-17 timeline is shifted by 3 months:  Rel-17 Stage 3 freeze September 2021; Rel-17 ASN.1 and OpenAPI specification freeze: December 2021.
In addition, the 3GPP leadership announced that the next Plenary meetings (TSG#88), scheduled for June 15-19, will be e-meetings. The three 3GPP Technical Specification Group (TSG) Chairs also confirmed that all meetings for May have been canceled. 

Nokia delivers big capacity boost for 5G with 16-layer MU-MIMO

Nokia has significantly boosted the 5G capacity of its commercial AirScale solution via a software upgrade.

The new software release leverages Massive MIMO to achieve 16 layers of MU-MIMO to deliver up to four times the total downlink cell throughput. Typically MIMO consists of 2 layers of network capacity. Massive MIMO, which was invented by Nokia Bell Labs, considerably multiplies the capacity of a wireless connection without requiring additional spectrum.

Sprint has conducted a lab test of the new software that delivered approximately 3Gbps total downlink cell throughout and. The test was performed using Sprint 5G with a software upgrade of E-UTRAN New Radio - Dual Connectivity (EN-DC) and Multi-User-Multiple Input Multiple Output (MU-MIMO) – the first time this has been achieved. The test utilized Sprint’s 2.5 GHz spectrum as well as commercial devices such as hotspots.

When the service is made commercially available, it will allow operators to vastly increase their network capacity via a software update without having to invest in additional spectrum.

EN-DC allows devices to add throughput to LTE and 5G networks – resulting in higher user throughput. Typically, operators use two radios for LTE and 5G, however, for this test Nokia used a single AirScale unit. Nokia and Sprint have launched 5G service in areas of four cities in the U.S, which are New York, Los Angeles, Washington DC and Phoenix.

Tommi Uitto, President of Mobile Networks, Nokia, commented: “This is the latest achievement from our long-standing relationship with Sprint. The demand for 4G and 5G mobile data continues to rise exponentially and this impacts network capacity. This test is an important milestone as it will help operators to vastly increase capacity now and in the future, helping to deliver excellent customer experiences while keeping costs to a minimum.”


NTT Research and Stanford collaborate on Coherent Ising Machines

NTT Research is collaborating with Stanford University on a National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded initiative into Coherent Ising Machines (CIMs), which exploit unique combinations of optical and electronic components for connectivity, speed, scale and memory.

The NSF has granted a $10 million Expeditions in Computing (Expeditions) award to Stanford’s Department of Applied Physics for research into the use of CIMs for optimization, machine learning and neuromorphic computing.

NTT Research confirmed that its PHI Lab is already conducting related joint research with Stanford, and PHI Lab Director Yoshihisa Yamamoto will serve as an external unfunded collaborator to the Stanford-led NSF Expeditions CIMs team.

“I am excited that the NSF has deemed this project worthy of significant support and look forward to collaborating with the Expeditions team in whatever way can best add value to this important undertaking,” said NTT Research PHI Lab Director Yamamoto. “Stanford is a key research collaborator in our consortium of institutions exploring this new computing paradigm that draws upon quantum physics, neuroscience and optical technology, and we strongly believe that continued collaboration in basic research is key to driving further advances in this field.”

The principal investigator for this five-year project is Hideo Mabuchi, professor and former chair of Stanford University’s department of applied physics in the School of Humanities and Sciences. The rest of the team includes three from Stanford and three from other universities. The Stanford co-investigators are Marty Fejer, professor of applied physics; Surya Ganguli, associate professor of applied physics; and Marco Pavone, assistant professor of aeronautics and astronautics and director of the Autonomous Systems Laboratory. The other co-investigators are Peter McMahon, assistant professor, applied and engineering physics, Cornell University; Alireza Marandi, assistant professor of electrical engineering and applied physics, Caltech; and Davide Venturelli, quantum computing team lead and science operations manager of the Research Institute of Advanced Computer Science (RIACS) at USRA. In addition to PHI Lab Director Yamamoto, the three external collaborators are Eleanor Rieffel, senior research scientist and lead, Quantum AI Lab (QuAIL) NASA Ames Research Center; Helmut Katzgraber, principal research manager, Microsoft; and Ken-ichi Kawarabayashi, professor and Deputy Director, National Institute of Informatics (Tokyo).

NTT Research PHI Lab launched its own CIM-based initiative last fall, when it announced five-year joint research agreements with six universities (CalTech, Cornell, Michigan, MIT, Stanford and Swinburne), one US Federal Agency (NASA Ames Research Center) and one private quantum computing software company (1QBit). “The significant investment by NSF into this Stanford-led initiative complements our own efforts,” said Kazuhiro Gomi, NTT Research President and CEO. “In effect, taken together, they represent an important private-public strategy for supporting this critical area of research.”

Dell'Oro: Tier 1 Cloud Service Providers to resume spending

Cloud data center CAPEX is forecasted for higher growth despite market challenges, according to a recently published report from Dell’Oro Group. The trend is driven by Tier 1 Cloud service providers resuming spending on servers following a pause in 2019.

“Despite recent market uncertainties, we anticipate the Tier 1 Cloud service providers to increase data center capex as planned, primarily on servers, as the sector seeks to resume capacity expansion,” said Baron Fung, Research Director at Dell’Oro Group. “We project a steep decline in enterprise IT spending due to severe near-term supply and demand disruptions from COVID-19. Enterprises will seek to conserve capital during these uncertain times and resort to the Cloud to satisfy near-term demand for digital services. We expect that the Cloud service providers will need to expand their infrastructure at a measured pace to capture this incremental demand,” explained Fung.

Following are additional highlights from the 4Q 2019 Cloud Data Center Capex Quarterly Report:

  • The Top 10 Cloud service providers spent $66 billion, in aggregate in 2019, a 3 percent annual increase.
  • Amazon Web Services maintained a 50 percent Cloud revenue share in 2019, although Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform gained share.
  • Spending on servers projected to compose of 47 percent of data center capex in 2020.

Nokia completes acquisition of Elenion Technologies

Nokia completed its previously announced acquisition of   Elenion Technologies, a U.S.-based company focusing on silicon photonics technology. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Elenion, which was founded in 2014 and is based in New York City, develops highly integrated, low-cost silicon photonics technologies for short-reach and high-performance optical interfaces and has pioneered a design toolset which enables a greatly simplified, low cost, scalable manufacturing process. The Elenion platform simplifies integration with optical chipsets, lowers power consumption, improves port density and helps to lower the overall cost per bit for network operators.

Nokia said Elenion's state-of-the-art silicon photonics design platform improves product costs by bringing simplification and scale to the optical supply chain. It is expected to bring time-to-market and cost advantages to Nokia’s broad portfolio of networking solutions.

COSMOTE Greece picks Ericsson for 5G

COSMOTE, Greece’s largest mobile communications service provider and part of the Deutsche Telekom Group, selected Ericsson as its sole 5G Radio Access Network (RAN) vendor under a major network modernization deal.

COSMOTE is targeting 2021 for the commercial launch of 5G services. That will follow the expected auction of 5G spectrum by Greece’s National Telecommunications and Post Commission (EETT) in the fourth quarter of 2020.

Michael Tsamaz, OTE Group Chairman and CEO, says: “5G is the future of telecommunications and a necessary precondition for the Gigabit Society. It is the underlying technology which will be used by all the innovative applications that will change our lives in the near future. OTE Group creates the state-of-the-art infrastructure that our country and society need in the new digital era. We invest heavily to enable our customers to enjoy the innovative services and products brought by 5G. With technology and innovation, we create a better world for all."

Arun Bansal, President of Europe and Latin America, Ericsson, says: “5G is a platform that will change lives, business and society in Greece for the better. It will create opportunities for COSMOTE in industry and digital partnerships that will allow Greece to compete in technology innovation. We’re leading the way in 5G in Europe and the world and we will work closely with COSMOTE to ensure that they, and their customers, benefit from this network modernization.”

Ericsson currently has 86 commercial 5G agreements and contracts with unique operators, of which 39 are publicly announced 5G deals, including 27 live 5G networks on four continents.