Monday, April 18, 2005

Yahoo! Study Sees Convergence of Old/New Media

A new study commissioned by Yahoo! and Mediaedge:cia finds that consumers are increasingly growing closer to multiple media, and are turning to the Web for deeper content, entertainment and communication capabilities without forsaking other media. Some key findings include:

  • Broadband users view twice as many pages per month as their dial-up counterparts.

  • The Internet is intersecting with all aspects of people's lives in dramatically new ways. The study showed that over half of broadband users say they are using online and offline media simultaneously, turning to the Internet to supplement other traditional media such as radio, newspapers and television. Broadband capabilities -- speed plus "always on" -- sparked this new "media meshing" trend, by allowing users to easily supplement one medium with another.

  • Broadband consumers are two to three times more likely to download video than dial-up consumers -- including movie clips, trailers, news video, short movies, sports events and cartoons.

  • Though wireless Internet access within the home is in its early stages, with eight percent of Internet households currently using wireless broadband, the new technology is allowing users to choose where and how they access the Web. Eighty percent of wireless broadband users sometimes or frequently access the Internet from their bedrooms, while a surprising 21 percent use their wireless access in the bathroom. No matter the location, study participants agree that this freedom of choice is resulting in even more integrated experiences.

The study was conducted by Forrester Research and Headlight Vision.

Data Connection Partners with QNX on Protocol Stacks

Data Connection Ltd. (DCL) announced a strategic partnership with QNX Software Systems, a supplier of realtime operating systems (RTOS), to deliver complete, pre-integrated software solutions for manufacturers of networking and telecommunications equipment.

All of Data Connection's networking protocols now available for the QNX Neutrino RTOS. The suite includes support for IP routing such as DC-OSPF, DC-ISIS, DC-RIP, and DC-BGP, as well as multicast, VoIP, MPLS, VPNs, GMPLS, and ATM. In addition, the companies have created a "Router-in-a-Box" CD that lets customers quickly evaluate the rich capabilities of the joint solution.

The offering from Data Connection complements QNX's existing suite of pre-integrated protocol stacks, which includes IPv4 and IPv6, as well as IPsec, IKE, NAT, IP filtering, and a number of other protocols.

Juniper Reports Revenue of $449.1 million

Juniper Networks reported quarterly net revenues of $449.1 million, compared to $224.1 million for the same period last year, an increase of 100%. GAAP net income for the quarter was $75.4 million or $0.13 per share, compared to a GAAP net income of $33.5 million or $0.08 per share in the first quarter of 2004.

"We are once again pleased with the results behind a solid quarter of growth in both our financial metrics as well as our marketplace progress," said Scott Kriens, chairman and CEO of Juniper Networks.

Samsung Develops 4 GB Flash Memory for Mobile Phones

Samsung Electronics has developed a 4Gb "OneNAND" Flash memory device for use in next-gen multimedia phones. The new OneNAND memory device operates on 1.8V, reducing power consumption to nearly half of the existing 3.3V level for other types of mobile memory. It also features a micro-compact size (11x13x1.4mm), considerably smaller than mobile memory of the same capacity. It provides a sustained data read speed of 108 MByte/s, four times faster than conventional NAND Flash memory, and a write speed of 10 MByte/s, more than 60 times faster than NOR flash memory. It can store 250 sequential photographs from a 5-megapixel camera phone, or up to 120 music files.

Microsoft Extends Live Communications Server to Mobile Devices

Microsoft is extending its Live Communications Server 2005 capabilities to mobile devices, enabling enterprises to deploy trusted instant messaging (IM) and presence-enabled solutions that provide a consistent experience across PCs and smart mobile devices.

As an initial step, Microsoft will deliver a new mobile Live Communications Server 2005 client, for Windows Mobile-based devices. Beta availability is expected in the second half of 2005.

Lucent Reports Revenue of $2.34 Billion

Lucent Technologies reported revenue of $2.34 billion for its second quarter of fiscal 2005, flat sequentially and an increase of 6 percent from the year-ago quarter. Net income was $282 million or 6 cents per diluted share. These results compare with net income of $174 million, or 4 cents per diluted share, in the first quarter of fiscal 2005 and net income of $68 million, or 2 cents per diluted share, in the year- ago quarter. The second quarter's earnings per share included a positive impact of about 2 cents per diluted share for the favorable resolution of certain income tax matters.

"This quarter, we continued to achieve profitable results and further demonstrated our strength in mobility, posting our highest quarterly revenues for wireless since fiscal 2002," said Lucent Technologies Chairman and CEO Patricia Russo. "We also continued to show strength in our services business, with close to half a billion dollars in revenues."

Some highlights for the quarter:

  • Gross margin for the second quarter of fiscal 2005 was 42 percent of revenues as compared with 42 percent in the first quarter of fiscal 2005 and 43 percent in the year-ago quarter.

  • Operating expenses for the second quarter of fiscal 2005 were $700 million as compared with $665 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2005 and $623 million for the year-ago quarter.

  • As of March 31, 2005, Lucent had about $4.1 billion in cash and marketable securities, which represents a decrease of $458 million from the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2004. The decrease included the payment of the remaining $215 million to the shareowner settlement fund and $80 million for the repurchase of certain debt obligations.

  • On a sequential basis, revenues in the United States and outside the United States were both essentially flat at $1.45 billion, and $886 million, respectively. Compared with the year-ago quarter, revenues in the United States increased 10 percent and revenues outside the United States increased 1 percent.

  • Mobility revenues for the second quarter of fiscal 2005 were $1.20 billion, an increase of 4 percent sequentially and an increase of 24 percent compared with the year-ago quarter.

  • Lucent Worldwide Services (LWS) revenues for the second quarter of fiscal 2005 were $499 million, a decrease of 4 percent sequentially and an increase of 4 percent compared with the year-ago quarter.

Lucent Announces Reorganization, Shuffles Management

Lucent Technologies announced a corporate reorganization and the appointment of a new head at Bell Labs. Key changes include:

  • Lucent's mobility and wireline businesses are being combined into a single Network Solutions Group. Cindy Christy, formerly president of Lucent's Mobility Solutions business, will head the combined business group.

  • Lucent Worldwide Services (LWS) will remain as a separate group, with John Meyer as its head.

  • Jeong Kim, the former chief executive and founder of Yurie Systems, which Lucent acquired in 1998, will rejoin Lucent as president of Bell Labs. He will succeed Bill O'Shea, who is retiring after 33 years of service to the company. Kim originally joined Lucent Technologies in May 1998 when Lucent acquired Yurie Systems. Before leaving Lucent in 2001 to pursue other business, entrepreneurial and academic interests, Kim was head of the company's Optical Networking Group. He holds a Ph.D. in Reliability Engineering from the University of Maryland, a master's degree in Technical Management and bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Johns Hopkins.

  • Janet Davidson, formerly president of Lucent's wireline business known as Integrated Network Solutions, takes the role as head of Corporate Strategy and Business Development. She also will lead the company's intellectual property and network operations software businesses.

Broadcom Partners with Nintendo on Wireless Gaming Consoles

Broadcom will provide wireless technology for Nintendo's next generation gaming systems. Nintendo's next generation console (codenamed "Revolution") will feature an advanced wireless platform that integrates multiple technologies for a high-performance gaming and connectivity experience. Product details have not been disclosed.

MCI Launches Digital Media Technologies Group

MCI announced the formation of its new Digital Media Technologies group, dedicated to developing and distributing end-to-end, digital media solutions for content creators, producers and distribution outlets for media, entertainment and gaming organizations.

As a first step, MCI will acquire the assets of ICF (Interactive Content Factory), which specializes in IP-based media and entertainment services. Financial terms were not disclosed.

ICF offers IP-based remote editing platforms targeted toward consolidating the work processes of media rich industries including broadcast, iTV, broadband, Web and mobile outlets, such as cell phones and media players.

MCI plans to offer a hosted version of ICF Media Platform which will digitally capture content, store and manage rich media and manage media distribution and syndication, including copyright and music rights management. MCI will also host software, editing tools and enable customers to access, rough edit and distribute digital content in final form from any web- enabled device. ICF Media Platform and ICF NetEdit will continue to be supported as a software product for local installations.

Sprint Adds Fox News to Mobile Phone TV Service

Sprint began carrying the FOX News Channel Live programming nationwide via its PCS Vision Multimedia Phones. FOX News Channel Live has been added into Sprint TV at no extra charge and marks FNC's first foray into providing wireless content. Sprint TV (channel 1), including FOX News Channel Live, is available on the Sprint Nationwide PCS Network for $9.99 per month. Sprint TV is powered by Idetic.

UTStarcom Announes Expansion Contracts with Japan Telecom

Japan Telecom, a wholly owned subsidiary of SOFTBANK, awarded a contract to UTStarcom covering its NetRing 10000 STM-64 multiservice optical transport solution. The equipment will be used in the construction of a new fixed-line network to deliver high-speed broadband, voice and video services to its subscribers. The network ultimately will serve all of Japan, from Hokkaido in the north to Kyushu in the south.

UTStarcom's NetRing product family combines Add-Drop Multiplexing (ADM), Digital Cross-Connect System (DCS), Ethernet switching, ATM multiplexing and RPR functionality into an integrated, "pay-as-you-grow" multi-service system. NetRing products are designed to perform aggregation, grooming, cross-connect, and transport functions to deliver high-density STM-1 to STM-64, PDH (E1/DS1, E3/DS3), Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet, and ATM services in SDH-based carrier networks.

Separately, UTStarcom announced an expansion contract with Japan Telecom for deployment of several million lines of UTStarcom's iAN-8000 Multi-Service Access Node (MSAN) solution. The iAN-8000 is designed to combine the functionalities of UTStarcom's AN-2000 IP-DSLAM, the iAN-2000 VoIP Media Gateway, and a traditional Digital Loop Carrier (DLC). The iAN-8000 will enable the operator to offer its subscribers voice, high-speed data, and eventually Television over IP (TVoIP) and streaming video services over a single platform.

UTStarcom Supplies Optical Gear to Japan Telecom

Japan Telecom, a wholly owned subsidiary of SOFTBANK, awarded a contract to UTStarcom covering its NetRing 10000 STM-64 multiservice optical transport solution. The equipment will be used in the construction of a new fixed-line network to deliver high-speed broadband, voice and video services to its subscribers. The network ultimately will serve all of Japan, from Hokkaido in the north to Kyushu in the south.

UTStarcom's NetRing product family combines Add-Drop Multiplexing (ADM), Digital Cross-Connect System (DCS), Ethernet switching, ATM multiplexing and RPR functionality into an integrated, "pay-as-you-grow" multi-service system. NetRing products are designed to perform aggregation, grooming, cross-connect, and transport functions to deliver high-density STM-1 to STM-64, PDH (E1/DS1, E3/DS3), Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet, and ATM services in SDH-based carrier networks.

Verizon Wireless Offers Unlimited TXT, PIX and FLIX Messages to On-Net Customers

Verizon Wireless will offer free unlimited mobile-to-mobile TXT, PIX and FLIX Messages between its more than 43 million customers. Customers with Verizon Wireless IN Calling plans receive unlimited free mobile-to-mobile voice calls to other customers on the Verizon Wireless national network.

Alcatel Appoints Mike Quigley as President, COO

Mike Quigley was appointed President and COO of Alcatel, replacing Philippe Germond, who had resigned. Reporting to Serge Tchuruk, Mike Quigley will supervise particularly the Group's telecoms activities dedicated to carrier and enterprise markets.

Quigley has most recently served as President of Alcatel North America. Previously, he was General Manager for all of Alcatel's activities in Australia and New Zealand. Quigley started his career in 1971 in Alcatel Australia, ITT Australia at that time, as part of his scholarship. He first spent ten years in R&D. In the 80's, he moved into senior positions in Manufacturing and Quality and then into senior roles in Marketing and Sales. During this period, Mike was involved in almost every product area of Alcatel, from customer terminals and Enterprise solutions to submarine optical systems and network switching.

Accton, Greenfield and IP Infusion Partner on Metro Ethernet Switch

Accton Technology Corporation, Greenfield Networks, and IP Infusion released an ODM system for metro Ethernet switching applications. The Accton ES4825 supports 24 ports of Gigabit Ethernet and a modular slot for 10-Gigabit uplinks in a compact 1RU form factor.

The switch is based on Greenfield's Packetry switching silicon architecture and IP Infusion's ZebOS Advanced Routing Suite and Advanced Integration Suite (ARS & AIS). It delivers full Layer 2 and Layer 3 metro Ethernet services, including IPv6, MPLS, VPLS, stacked VLANs, and VLAN translation, across all ports at wire speed.

The switch is targeted for high density copper installations. A second version is available for high density fiber-based applications.

Accton is a leading ODM supplier based in Taiwan.

Scientific-Atlanta to Resell Tropic's Next-Gen Optical Add/Drop Mux

Scientific-Atlanta will resell and support Tropic Networks' intelligent wavelength transport platform to cable operators. Under the terms of the OEM agreement, Scientific-Atlanta will have sales, distribution and support rights for the Tropic-developed family of intelligent optical transport products for the MSO market.

Tropic Networks, which is based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, developed a Reconfigurable OADM (ROADM) that enables service providers to remotely reconfigure add and drop capacity at each node. Tropic's system features an advanced optical layer management technology called "Wavelength Tracker".
  • In Ku;y 2004, Alcatel made an equity investment in Tropic Networks, a start-up offering metro-area optical networking gear. In addition to the financial investment, Alcatel also entered into a global agreement to market and distribute Tropic Networks products and technology. Financial terms were not disclosed.

  • Tropic Networks was founded in May 2000 by Kevin Rankin, formerly co-founder of the Broadband Copper Access division at Newbridge Networks; Dr. Dan Oprea, former senior architect at Nortel Networks and Mitel; Dave Coomber, former assistant VP of xDSL at Newbridge Networks; and Ben Bacque, co-founder of the Broadband Copper Access division at Newbridge Networks.

BelAir and Cityspace Create London's Biggest Outdoor Wi-Fi Net

The London Borough of Islington has activated what is described as the city's biggest wireless broadband hot zone, providing free Internet access. The "Technology Mile" is an unbroken wireless hot zone stretching the length of historic Upper Street, which links The City to the A1 main artery into north London. The one-mile hot zone is covered by seven BelAir200 Wireless Multi-service Switch Routers and one BelAir100 Wireless Multi-service Node.

The BelAir200 units deployed in Islington's Technology Mile are four-radio wireless switch routers that are built specifically for outdoor deployments. Each BelAir200 includes an access radio module that uses the 2.4 GHz band to support Wi-Fi client access. The access radio and integrated antennas project Wi-Fi signals over wide areas at street level; or directly into multi-story buildings from the outside, eliminating the need for indoor access points. The BelAir200s can also be configured with up to three separate 5 GHz backhaul radio modules.

XO Cites Antitrust/Anti-Competitive Issues in Telecom Mega-Mergers

SBC's acquisition of AT&T and Verizon's proposed acquisition of MCI will fundamentally reshape the telecommunications industry by combining the two largest local monopolies with their two largest competitors, doing irreparable harm to customers' choices and industry innovation, testified Carl Grivner, CEO of XO Communications, at a U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.

"If these mergers are approved, SBC and Verizon will control nearly 80 percent of the business wireline market, more than 63 percent of ILEC lines, and more than half of all wireless subscribers nationwide," Grivner added. "It is not consolidation that is the paramount concern. It is the massive concentration of market power and injury to customers that will result from these mergers."

Grivner downplayed the competitive threat SBC and Verizon claim from new technologies, such as cable telephony, VoIP and wireless. "Razzle-dazzle and hype about futuristic competitive alternatives or distant possibilities for market convergence have no place in the analysis of these mergers. Determinations need to based on facts engrained in current market realities, and I believe once this is done the conclusion will be clear: these mergers are bad for customers of all types and in all locations," he said.

Finally, Grivner believes that SBC and Verizon will continue their practice of not competing with each other after their acquisitions of AT&T and MCI are completed.