Wednesday, February 15, 2006

OIF Launches External Network-Network-Interface (E-NNI) Routing Project

The Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) is launching a new External Network-Network-Interface (E-NNI) Routing project aimed at formalizing routing inter-domain interfaces.

The Forum's Architecture & Signaling Working Group will lead the project to define information to be shared by ASON network elements and allow paths to be calculated for a connection through multiple network domains of optical switching equipment.

The new specification, titled E-NNI 1.0 Routing Implementation Agreement (IA), will be based on the provisional routing protocol used by the OIF in interoperability tests performed in 2003, 2004 and 2005.

The OIF plans to submit the completed E-NNI Routing IA to the IETF and other standards development organizations such as ITU-T after its ratification by the Forum's members anticipated for later this year.

Also, the OIF announced that it has established a liaison relationship with the IPv6 Forum and joined the Mountain View Alliance bringing the Forum's total number of such industry contacts to 15.

China Telecom Shanghai Deploys Juniper's TX Matrix Core Routers

China Telecom Shanghai is expanding its core IP network with Juniper Networks T-series core routing platforms, including the TX Matrix multi-terabit router. The T-series platforms will be added to Shanghai Telecom's existing base of Juniper Networks E- and M-series routing platforms and will provide the additional capacity, reliability and scale required to support increased demand for advanced IP-based services.

Shanghai Telecom currently uses Juniper Networks M-series multiservice platforms in smaller core sites and previously deployed the E-series Broadband Services Routers. The E-series routing platforms support Shanghai's ADSL subscribers, providing the advanced routing capabilities that will enable Shanghai Telecom's IPTV service.

The TX Matrix combines multiple T640 platforms to deliver multi-terabit scale.

Juniper said over 1,000 of its T-series core routers have been deployed in over 100 service provider production networks worldwide since the platform was launched in 2002.

Ericsson Awarded HSDPA Expansion Contract by Cingular Wireless

Ericsson and Cingular Wireless have reached an agreement that expands
Ericsson's role as a major supplier and integrator in the buildout of
Cingular's next-generation voice and data network. Financial terms were not disclosed.

With this contract expansion, Ericsson will provide Cingular with UMTS/High-Speed Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA) packet core and radio network equipment. Ericsson is also a supplier of professional services to Cingular.

Ericsson to supply HSDPA for mobilkom austria group

The mobilkom austria group selected Ericsson to upgrade their 3G networks to HSDPA. Deployments are underway and the network was launched last month in Vienna.

Under the contract, Ericsson will deliver commercial HSDPA hardware and software as well as implementation services to the members of mobilkom austria group. The solution enables peek download speeds of up to 14.4 Mbps.

As of December 2005, Ericsson is the prime supplier to
49 out of 91 WCDMA commercially launched networks worldwide.

Telefónica Moviles Chile Completes R4 3GPP Trial with Alcatel

Alcatel and Telefónica Moviles in Chile completed a field trial of a Mobile Core R4 3GPP and its associated data backbone.

The solution, which is based on the Alcatel 5020 Spatial Atrium, can seamlessly interconnect and interoperate with the existing GSM/CDMA/TDMA core networks, as well as with mobile radio access systems from other vendors. The mobile core R4 3GPP and its associated data backbone consists of 1 call server, 4 media gateways and 8 data nodes, distributed across Santiago de Chile, Valpara�so and Rancagua. Additionally, it would allow growth for corporate customers and, in the future, fixed-mobile convergence.

The Alcatel 5020 Spatial Atrium is a multistandard MSC Server that controls distributed Media Gateways and manages call/session control for voice and data services. It can simultaneously support multiple generations (2G, 2.5G, 3G) and technologies (GSM/CDMA/TDMA/UMTS) of mobile radio access.

Additionally, the data solution supplied for mobile access aggregation and backhaul, based on Alcatel 7670 RSP (Routing Switch Platform) and ESE (Edge Services Extender) products, guarantees connectivity of multiple transport technologies (ATM, E1, Frame Relay, TDM, Gigabit Ethernet, IP,...) and quality of service through IP/MPLS technology.

France Telecom Launches Linux Phone Standards Forum

France Telecom launched a new initiative called Linux Phone Standards Forum (LiPS) aimed at accelerating the mass-market adoption of Linux-based mobile, fixed and convergent terminals.

France Telecom is inviting open source and terminal industry players to work together to ensure compatibility and enhance interoperability of Linux-based telephony terminals.

The founding members of LiPS Forum include Cellon, Esmertec, France Telecom, FSM Labs, Huawei, Jaluna, MIZI Research, Open Plug and PalmSource. Other operators and industry players are invited to participate.

Rotani Introduces VideoPuck for In-home IPTV over Wi-Fi

Rotani, a start-up based in Scottsdale, Arizona, introduced its "VideoPuck" technology for multicast IPTV in the home using standard Wi-Fi and HomePlug networking equipment.

IPTV service providers typically use multicast to simultaneously send video to a large number of subscribers. Originally designed for highly reliable wired networks, multicast does not provide the error correction required for wireless 802.11 and HomePlug networks. Continuous packet loss over 802.11 and HomePlug networks ultimately results in screen pixilation and poor video quality.

Rotani said its VideoPuck works with the company's "AirReferee" Wi-Fi technology to automatically eliminate packet loss over wireless networks and support the performance and quality required for IPTV and wireless video applications.

AirReferee reduces interference from adjacent wireless LANs and sustains network performance.

Rotani's VideoPuck and AirReferee designs are available to OEMs and ODMs via open licensing agreements.

JDSU Licenses AT&T Broadband Tools

JDSU announced a licensing agreement with AT&T Knowledge Ventures, intellectual property arm of AT&T, to expand its management solution with new NetComplete Broadband Tools featuring broadband capacity and performance management network technology developed by the AT&T family of companies.

JDSU's NetComplete Consumer Broadband Tools software helps service providers support improved capacity management, lower costs and reduce trouble tickets. It also helps to accelerate revenue for their current consumer broadband offerings and for new, next-generation services deployment.

The JDSU solution will now be enhanced with the Broadband Tools Suite, a software management tool developed by AT&T for its own broadband network.

XM Satellite Reaches 6 Million Subscribers, Acquisition Costs Rise in Q4

XM Satellite Radio Holdings ended 2005 with 5,932,957 subscribers, an increase of 84 percent over 2004. XM achieved net subscriber additions of 898,315. Later than expected activations from strong holiday sales brought the total to more than six million during the first week of January.

XM said it hopes to exceed nine million subscribers and reach cash glow break-even by year-end 2006.

For the fourth quarter of 2005, XM reported quarterly total revenue of $177 million, an increase of 113 percent over the $83.1 million total revenue reported in fourth quarter of 2004. XM's full year 2005 total revenue was $558.3 million, an increase of 128 percent over the $244.4 million total revenue recorded in 2004. These quarterly and annual increases in revenue were driven by our significant subscriber growth and increases in average revenue per subscriber in connection with our price increase implemented in the second quarter of 2005.

For the fourth quarter, subscriber acquisition cost (SAC), a component of cost per gross addition (CPGA) was $89 compared to $64 in the same period last year. CPGA in the fourth quarter was $141 compared to $104 in the same period last year. These increases were primarily due to higher marketing expenses to meet a one-time competitive event in the fourth quarter. For full year 2005, SAC was $64, a slight increase from $62 in 2004, and CPGA was $109, compared to $100 in 2004. In the first quarter of 2006, XM expects a more normalized market environment and projects that SAC and CPGA will decrease in 2006.

XM reported an EBITDA loss of ($199.4) million for the fourth quarter of 2005, including $25.3 million in de-leveraging charges, compared to an EBITDA loss of ($139.7) million for the fourth quarter of 2004, which included $41.6 million in de-leveraging charges. The full year EBITDA loss was ($434.3) million, including $27.6 million in de-leveraging charges, compared to a 2004 EBITDA loss of ($388.4) million which included $76.6 million of de-leveraging charges. The increased EBITDA loss primarily resulted from our increase in subscribers as well as the higher fourth quarter marketing expenses.

XM's net loss for the fourth quarter of 2005 was ($268.3) million as compared to a net loss of ($188.2) million in the fourth quarter of 2004. For the full year 2005, XM's net loss was ($666.7) million, compared to a net loss of ($642.4) million in 2004.

Nokia Wins New Mobile Contract with Cable & Wireless

Cable & Wireless awarded an International Frame Agreement to Nokia for the supply of GSM and WCDMA 3G radio and core networks. Cable & Wireless is a new mobile network customer for Nokia. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The deal covers radio networks, including the Nokia HSDPA solution; core networks, including the 3GPP release 4 compliant Nokia mobile softswitch; and services, including the unique multitechnology Nokia NetAct solution, which supports both 2G and 3G networks.

The 3GPP Release 4 architecture of the Nokia MSC Server System will allow Cable & Wireless to gain significant cost savings in the operation of its GSM and WCDMA 3G networks and will enable the operator to offer the most advanced mobile multimedia services to its customers.

NETGEAR Reports Q4 Revenue of $122 Million, Supply Constraints

NETGEAR reported net revenue for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2005 was $121.8 million, a 15.9% increase as compared to $105.1 million for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2004, and $111.3 million in the third quarter of 2005. Net income, computed in accordance with GAAP, for the fourth quarter of 2005 was $8.9 million or $0.26 per diluted share.

Net revenue for the fiscal year 2005 was $449.6 million, a 17.4% increase as compared to $383.1 million for the fiscal year 2004. Net income, computed in accordance with GAAP, for the fiscal year 2005 was $33.6 million or $0.99 per diluted share. This net income was a 43.0% increase compared to net income of $23.5 million for the fiscal year 2004 or $0.72 per diluted share.

Patrick Lo, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of NETGEAR, commented, "Demand for our products in the fourth quarter was strong across all three geographic regions. Unfortunately, the demand mix was weighted more than we expected towards our RangeMax and Super G DSL gateways and our 802.11g wireless routers, which limited our ability to meet demand and therefore negatively impacted our net revenue. Our supply constraints also resulted in the company's inability to replenish the channel towards the end of the quarter. Compared to the end of 2004, we ended the year with significantly fewer weeks of inventory in the channel in the U.S. Despite these challenges, we believe we gained share in all three markets, US, Europe and Asia Pacific for Q4 and fiscal year 2005."

Enterasys Shareholders Approve Acquisition by Private Investors

Enterasys Networks' (NYSE:ETS) shareholders have approved the previously-announced merger agreement pursuant to which The Gores Group and Tennenbaum Capital Partners will acquire Enterasys for approximately $386 million.

Under the terms of the merger, each outstanding share of Enterasys common stock will be converted into the right to receive $13.92 in cash, representing a premium of 32% over the closing price on the New York Stock Exchange on November 11, 2005, the last trading day before the transaction was originally announced. The closing is set to occur on March 1, 2006.

Enterasys develops and sells connectivity and security solutions for enterprise customers. The Enterasys product portfolio includes multilayer switches, core routers, WAN routers, wireless LANs, network management, and intrusion defense systems. Following the closing of the transaction, the company's current senior management team will continue to lead Enterasys and its corporate headquarters will remain in Andover, Massachusetts.


EchoStar X Satellite Launched Successfully

The EchoStar X telecommunications satellite was successfully launched aboard a Sea Launch Zenit- 3SL launch vehicle from the Equator.

EchoStar X was designed and built by Lockheed Martin. It will operate from 110 degrees west and is designed for a minimum service life of 15 years. EchoStar X is the 27th of Lockheed Martin's award-winning A2100 series of spacecraft delivered to satellite operators around the world. EchoStar X also represents the sixth spacecraft Lockheed Martin has delivered to EchoStar, which include EchoStar I through EchoStar IV and EchoStar VII.

EchoStar X features a Ku-band direct broadcast (DBS) payload optimized to provide additional bandwidth for more satellite TV services for DISH Network customers. Used in conjunction with other EchoStar satellites, EchoStar X enables DISH Network to expand services and channel offerings for its customers nationwide.


Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Psytechnics Appoints New CEO

Psytechnics, which supplies VoIP, mobile video and IPTV Quality of Experience (QoE) assessment solutions, has appointed Anthony Finbow as chief executive officer. Prior to joining Psytechnics he was Managing Director at MetaSolv Software Inc (MSLV), where he was responsible for operations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. From 2000 to 2003, Finbow held a number of executive positions at Orchestream plc.

Teliasonera Tests Enterprise WLAN IP Telephony with Nokia, Cisco

TeliaSonera will trial wireless IP telephony via WLAN for enterprise customers using equipment from Nokia and Cisco Systems.

"The trials with Nokia and Cisco are part of TeliaSonera's ambition to provide customers with an easy-to-use wireless VoIP concept. We are pleased to be the first operator in Europe to conduct trials in this area with two strong partners. Simplicity, security and quality are important aspects which will now be tested in depth together with all parties.", said Anders Igel, CEO and President, TeliaSonera AB.

TeliaSonera is currently also conducting trials of a wireless VoIP solution using UMA technology for consumers in Denmark and Sweden.

U.S. Telecom Spending to Reach $944.7 billion in 2006, up 10%

Total spending in the U.S. telecommunications industry rose 8.9% in 2005 to an estimated $856.9 billion and is expected to climb 10.2 percent in 2006 reaching $944.7 billion, according to the newly released TIA's 2006 Telecommunications Market Review and Forecast.

TIA said this growth was led by double-digit increases in network equipment, wireless devices, wireless services, services in support of equipment, Internet access, unified communications, videoconferencing public room services and Web conferencing.

TIA is also predicting that the U.S. telecommunications industry will grow at a projected 9.0% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) 2006-2009, reaching $1.2 trillion.

Total international communications spending (not including the United States) reached $1.8 trillion in 2005, up 11.4% over 2004, fueled by double-digit increases in wireless transport services, Internet access, public network equipment and professional services in support of public network and enterprise equipment. Middle East/Africa was the fastest-growing region in 2005, with an 18.4% advance to $66.7 billion. Overall international telecommunications spending is expected to reach $2.7 trillion in 2009, growing at a 10.4% CAGR 2006-09.

Additional highlights of the report include:

  • Total U.S. equipment and software rose 5.4% in 2005, reaching $165.7 billion in 2005. A principal driver of this growth was revenue from wireless devices.

  • Wireless devices revenue reached $15 billion in 2005, a 22.6 percent increase over 2004.

  • Network equipment revenue rose over the past two years after falling 71 percent between 2000 and 2003, with increased spending on fiber optic cable the principal driver of the rebound.

  • Total revenue in the network equipment and facilities market is expected to reach $20.9 billion in 2006 and achieve a 5.2 percent CAGR 2006-2009, reaching $24.4 billion in 2009.

  • The U.S. enterprise equipment market expanded 6.9 percent to $98.3 billion in 2005. In the enterprise market, the long-heralded move to convergent technologies is now taking off and IP equipment and IP-based services are beginning to replace legacy technologies. As legacy equipment ages, replacement demand, along with rapid growth in video-conferencing and unified communications, will continue to fuel spending. Total spending on enterprise equipment is expected to reach $104.5 billion in 2006, a 6.3 percent increase over 2005.

  • Spending on transport services in the U.S. increased 4.2 percent in 2005, reaching $310.8 billion. Landline revenue continued to fall in 2005, recording its fifth consecutive year of decline, and wireless continued to grow at double-digit rates.

  • Total landline revenue in 2005 reached $192.3 billion, a 1.4 percent decrease over 2004; wireless services revenue reached $118.6 billion in 2005, a 14.8 percent increase over 2004. The downward trend in landline spending is the result of the erosion in landline subscribers. For example, with broadband Internet subscribership on the rise, the need for a second line to support dial-up Internet access has declined.

  • In 2005, the number of wireless subscriptions, 194.5 million, passed landline subscriptions, 172.1 million, and with approximately two-thirds of the U.S. population subscribing to a wireless service, the market still has room for expansion. TIA expects wireless penetration to rise to 88 percent by 2009, which would translate into 270 million subscribers.

  • Internet access revenue rose 10.2 percent in 2005, fueled by rising broadband penetration.

  • The U.S. broadband market has grown from 4.5 million high-speed Internet access subscribers in 2000 to 41.2 million in 2005.

"The U.S. market is back on an upward path and the international markets are growing even faster. With revenues from international markets more than double that of the U.S., the global marketplace is clearly where companies must compete," states TIA President Matthew J. Flanigan.

LongBoard and G-Tek Plan IMS-Compatible FMC Handsets

LongBoard, a developer of SIP-based Personal Mobility Applications, and G-TEK, a Taiwanese handset manufacturer, announced a partnership to integrate LongBoard's SIP-based Fixed-Mobile Convergence client with G-TEK's dual-mode handsets.

The handsets will enable seamless roaming between WiFi and cellular environments when deployed with the LongBoard OnePhone solution for IMS compatible Fixed Mobile Convergence (FMC).

G-TEK specializes in the production of Linux-based smartphones for consumer and enterprise environments. G-TEK's Linux-based handsets have also been integrated with a variety of key-systems and PBXs. http://www.longboard.com

MIT Media Lab Appoints New Director

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology named Dr. Frank Moss as director of the Media Lab. Moss has previously served as CEO and chairman of Tivoli Systems , a pioneer in the distributed systems management field, which merged with IBM in 1996. He also co-founded several other companies, including Stellar Computer, a developer of graphic supercomputers; Bowstreet Inc., a pioneer in web services; and Infinity Pharmaceuticals, an early-stage cancer drug discovery company.

With Moss's appointment, Media Lab co-founder Nicholas Negroponte will step down as chairman to concentrate on One Laptop per Child (OLPC), an independent nonprofit organization he launched in January 2005 to develop a very-low-cost laptop to help solve the problems of education, especially in developing nations. Negroponte will work with Moss on Media Lab sponsor outreach and strategy. Walter Bender, a founding member of the Media Lab who has served as lab director for the past five years, will take a two-year leave of absence from MIT to serve as OLPC's president for software and content development.

See also