Sunday, November 12, 2006

Infinera and Level 3 Demo 100 Gigabit Ethernet Long Haul Transmission

A demonstration conducted by Finisar, Infinera, Internet2, Level 3 Communications, and University of California at Santa Cruz successfully transmitted a 100GbE signal from Tampa, Florida to Houston, Texas, and back again, over ten 10 Gbps channels through the Level 3 network. The transmission used an Infinera-proposed specification for 100GbE across multiple links. A single Xilinx FPGA implemented this packet numbering scheme and electrically transmitted all ten signals to ten of Finisar's 10 Gbps XFP optical transceivers, which in turn converted the signals to optics. These signals were then transmitted to an Infinera DTN DWDM system and handed off to Infinera systems within the Level 3 network where it was transmitted across the Level 3 network to Houston and back.

The pre-standard specification for 100GbE guaranteed the ordering of the packets and quality of the signal across 10 Gbps wavelengths.

Infinera, which is showcasing the technology at this week's SC06 International Conference in Tampa, said the experiment demonstrated that it is possible for carriers to offer 100GbE services across today's 10 Gbps infrastructure..

"100 Gigabit Ethernet will be a critical technology to accommodate bandwidth growth, and this demonstration shows that we have the capability to implement this as a super-lambda service over today's networks," said Infinera co-founder and CTO Drew Perkins.

Infinera noted that the largest IP backbones are currently using multiple 10 Gbps links between core sites, and will soon demand 100 Gbps connections to increase their capacity to keep up with fast-growing bandwidth demand. The company predicts that service providers will prefer to support 100 Gigabit Ethernet links using their current transport network infrastructures.


Mobidia Unveils Multimedia Performance Management for Wireless Carriers

Mobidia, a start-up based in Vancouver, Canada, introduced its ".wave" (dot wave) multimedia services product set that lets wireless operators control the quality and delivery of mobile content on both uplink and downlink. The system uses a Dynamic Multimedia Protocol (DMP) that is able to monitor, classify and manage each application and data type on the wireless network, along with its real-time requirements. The process enables TCP mediation and admission control, preventing TCP inefficiencies.

Mobidia's .wave policy-, application-, link-, and device-aware solution enforces policy on both the uplink and downlink, prioritizes applications and class of services, and adapts the transport layer protocol to the available link. The solution improves performance by having the user's mobile device cooperate with the network rather than by solving service performance management issues on a piecemeal basis and by working only in the carrier network.

Mobidia said the source-based policy control embedded in .wave enables carriers to control network access and limit the impact of unacceptable network use on service delivery. .wave immediately determines the policy applied to the traffic on the source, e.g., paid or free, gold or bronze, or other policy, and therefore manages and controls the traffic at its source.

Mobidia's .wave comprises two nodes: one on the mobile device and a gateway node at the carrier's data center.

  • The Mobidia Intelligent Client (MIC) turns the mobile handset device into an intelligent network element, enabling carriers to monetize high-value services, offer supportable SLAs, improve the user experience, provide consistent service across mixed networks, and enhance users' support experience. The MIC also gives carriers an end-to-end view of the network as well as visibility into the device environment and communications experience, a critical feature required to reduce customer support times.

  • The carrier-grade Mobidia Advance Gateway (MAG) handles protocol conversion and connects to the carrier's OSS as well as to end-user and carrier applications and services such as wireless VoIP, streaming audio and video, and others. The MAG gives carriers a per-user, per-application, or per-service view of the network and enforces downlink policies. It also receives real-time performance information for any application over any link as well as detailed information for billing purposes.

Conexant Debuts ADSL2plus Central Office Chipset

Conexant Systems introduced its ADSL2plus central office (CO) system-on-chip (SoC) solution featuring 16- and 24-port configurations.

The company said its two new devices support all recent amendments to the ADSL2plus standards and are optimized for IPTV, video on demand (VOD), and high-definition television (HDTV) programming.

Key features include:

  • Enhanced Impulse Noise Protection (INP): Additional memory has been integrated into the chip to support INP, which facilitates the delivery of better quality video.

  • Dual-latency with dual-interleaving: Allows carriers to simultaneously deliver error-free video and data content with the appropriate level of error protection for each service, while maximizing channel capacity.

  • Dynamic spectrum management (DSM) Levels 1 and 2: Improves rate/reach performance via optimum spectrum shaping and balancing. This enables telcos to significantly boost broadband access subscriber rates over their existing copper infrastructure, eliminating the need for a costly network upgrade.

  • Mask-on-Demand (MoD): A DSM Level 1 innovation developed by Conexant that improves performance improvement in medium and long range loops. This adaptive version of reach-extended ADSL (READSL) boosts loop reach, and upstream and downstream rates by optimizing the shape of the transmit power spectral density design. This allows carriers to increase their geographic coverage area and expand their customer base.

  • RemedyDSL: An extensive loop diagnostic capability that helps operators pre-qualify, diagnose and maintain loops for DSL operation.

Both new chipsets can be used in conjunction with Conexant's Columbia family of DSLAM processors for next-generation CO digital loop carriers, optical network units, and multiple dwelling/tenant unit (MDU/MTU) applications. In addition, a universal digital signal processor (DSP) ensures design compatibility across all of Conexant's ADSL and VDSL product lines, further maximizing design flexibility and reducing system and design-in costs.

Sampling is currently underway with production scheduled for early 2007.

TELUS Selects Widevine

Widevine Technologies was awarded a six-year agreement by TELUS to apply its video content protection technology across a number of platforms.

TELUS offers a range of video products including downloadable multimedia content, cellular-based TELUS mobile TV and TELUS TV, an IPTV broadcast and video-on-demand service. Widevine will secure the delivery and consumption of content via set top boxes and PCs used by TELUS customers accessing these services. TELUS will also assess using the technology in its wireless devices such as cell phones.

Aktino Supports Amended VDSL2 Standard

At a meeting last week in Geneva, the ITU's standards group 15 (ITU-SG15) agreed to amend the VDSL2 (ITU-G.993.2) standard in order to enable greater deployment flexibility. The additional functionality is achieved through newly-defined flexible band plans that allow the modem to be configured for either asymmetric or symmetric rate services.

Atkino hailed the news, saying it has advocated the merits of DMT (Discrete Multi-Tone) technology -- the basis for VDSL2 -- since its founding in 2003.

"With this new functionality, VDSL2 is now positioned as the highest-performance, most flexible universal DSL technology," said Michail Tsatsanis, chief scientist and co-founder of Aktino, the industry leader in delivery of business-class broadband over the existing copper wiring infrastructure. "We are grateful for the significant support we received from all the major global ILECs and our partners to create this enhancement for the VDSL2 standard."

NET to Show its High-Speed Switching Platform

Network Equipment Technologies will showcase its NX5010 platform, a next generation, high speed multi-service aggregation and switching platform, at this week's SuperComputing'06 in Tampa, Florida.

The platform, which is initially targeted at government and financial customers, enables geographically dispersed data centers to connect and enables multiple components currently required to perform SAN to WAN communications to be replaced and collapsed into a single system. The platform was jointly developed by NET and Bay Microsystems.ttp://

QUALCOMM Plans Single-Chip UMTS and HSDPA

QUALCOMM announced an expansion to its QUALCOMM Single Chip (QSC) family to include support for UMTS. The company will offer a device for WEDGE (WCDMA and GSM/GPRS/EDGE) and another device for HEDGE (HSDPA/WCDMA and GSM/GPRS/EDGE). Sampling is expected by Q3 2007.

QUALCOMM said these two devices are world's first solutions to integrate a monolithic die -- with integrated radio transceiver, baseband modem and multimedia processor -- together with power management functionality into a single chip for WCDMA (UMTS) and HSDPA handsets. The complete chipset will come in a 12mm x 12mm package.

Key features will include:

  • up to 3 megapixel camera support

  • Support for WCDMA (UMTS) in one of 800/850/900MHz, and two of 1700/1800/1900/2100 MHz bands, as well as quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE

  • 72-voice simultaneous polyphonic ringtones

  • Integrated USB 2.0

  • advanced codecs, including eAAC+, H.264, Real and Windows Media

  • advanced codecs, including eAAC+, H.264, Real and Windows Media

  • support for OpenGL ES 1.0 3D graphics capability

QUALCOMM and Motorola Expand Relationship Beyond CDMA2000

Motorola Mobile Devices has approved QUALCOMM's Mobile Station Modem (MSM) chipsets for incorporation into future UMTS handset designs. The agreement expands an existing partnership between the companies focused on CDMA2000.


Nortel Announces Deployments by ntl and Denmark's Sonofon

Nortel announced key European customer deployments by ntl Telewest and Sonofon A/S/ Financial terms were not disclosed.

ntl Telewest, the UK's largest cable operator, is using Nortel's optical solution to deliver its triple-play of voice, video and data services to residential and enterprise customers. The deployment includes Nortel's DWDM platform and Nortel Global Services for managing current network traffic and helping deliver additional network capacity for quad-play services. The new solution comprises the Nortel Common Photonic Layer (CPL) and Optical Multiservice Edge (OME) 6500 convergence platform enabling circuit to packet migration.

Sonofon A/S, Denmark's second largest mobile telephone operator, is using the Nortel Metro Ethernet Networking wireless backhaul solution to deliver new, high-speed web-based products and services in Denmark. The new Sonofon Multiservice Transport Network is an extension of the Telenor network in Norway which was deployed by Nortel and delivers ATM, IP and voice services. The Sonofon network enables services to be downloaded at speeds reaching 1.5 Mbps. Sonofon's solution components include the Multiservice Switch 7480 for access aggregation and backhaul, the Multiservice Switch 15000 for backbone switching and the Ethernet Switch 470 for Ethernet aggregation.

BigBand Networks and TVWorks Demo ETV

BigBand Networks and TVWorks, a joint-venture between Comcast and Cox focused on developing next- generation interactive cable technology and services, demonstrated enhanced television (ETV) capabilities as part of a series of interoperability testing at CableLabs headquarters.

BigBand expanded the functionality of its Broadband Multimedia-Service Router (BMR to enable insertion of applications such as interactive advertising, TV-based eCommerce and interactive programming based on CableLabs' ETV specifications. BigBand's network equipment communicates with TVWorks' set-top box client and a range of other elements, including ad servers and set-top boxes from multiple vendors, to deliver interactive TV programming to subscribers.

The TVWorks platform enables deployment of applications based on the CableLabs Enhanced Television -- Binary Interchange Format (EBIF) specifications.

The companies said the EBIF standard should speed the time-to-broadcast and return-on-investment for interactive TV applications by allowing those applications to be developed once and deployed to the majority of the installed digital cable set-top boxes in North America, as well as next- generation cable set-tops coming to the market.


TI Releases Software Defined Radio Development Platform

Texas Instruments introduced a Small Form Factor Software Defined Radio (SDR) Development Platform targeted at the portable military communications market. The platform, developed in collaboration with Xilinx Inc. and other third parties, provides the entire signal chain hardware from antenna to baseband as well as a software board support package that supports a complete suite of software development tools in a single integrated development platform.

A10 Networks Raises $9 Million for Identity Management System

A10 Networks, a start-up based in San Jose, California, raised $9 million in Series B funding for its enterprise IP-to-ID product.

A10 Networks' "Smart" identity management system help businesses address regulatory compliance and security risks while reducing the complexity and costs of managing global networks. A10's IDsentrie product is a network appliance that combines Identity and Access Management (IAM) features.

A10 Networks' new investors Enspire Capital, H&Q/Asian Pacific and Miven Ventures join existing investors Triton Ventures and Harbinger Venture for the oversubscribed Series B funding round.

The new financing increases the total investment in A10 Networks to $16 million since its formation 24 months ago.
  • A10 Networks is headed by company founder Mr. Lee Chen, who was previously co-founder and vice president of engineering at Foundry Networks. Lee was also a founding member of Centillion Networks (acquired by Bay Networks).

Economist Survey Finds Growing Maturity of Network Convergence

A global survey conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) for AT&T has found that 48 percent of businesses have already implemented IP convergence in all or most of their business, nearly twice the number recorded a year ago. In addition, the vast majority -- 84 percent -- of business leaders now recognize the centrality of convergence to their strategic IT and business goals, compared with only 45 percent in 2005.

The Economist Intelligence Unit interviewed 395 global senior executives for the study.

Almost three- quarters of respondents (72 percent) expect their firms to increase spending in this area by at least 10 percent over the next two years.

Another key finding, 58 percent view network-security issues as the most significant challenge to implementing convergence.

Copies of the survey are available online.

European Commission Clears Nokia Siemens Networks

The European Commission approved the planned transaction to merge the Networks Business Group of Nokia and the carrier-related operations of Siemens into a new company -- Nokia Siemens Networks.

The Commission concluded that the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition in the European Economic Area (EEA) or any substantial part of it.

Specifically, the EC ruled that the main competitive impact of the proposed merger would be in the mobile network equipment sector, since Nokia has few activities in fixed-line telecommunications. Despite the considerable market share the merged entity would have in the mobile network equipment sector, the market structure would remain competitive because a sufficient number of credible competitors would remain in the market, notably Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent.

"We believe this decision by the European Commission is a key milestone in obtaining all the relevant approvals for the transaction. While there are notifications still pending in some countries, based on this decision we are optimistic that the merger can be closed within the timetable anticipated by both parties," said Simon Beresford-Wylie, CEO designate of Nokia Siemens Networks.

, is uniquely positioned to deliver compelling customer benefits with a comprehensive portfolio of products and solutions for the converging telecommunications market. Nokia and Siemens continue to expect that the operations of the new company will start in January 2007.
  • On June 19, 2006, Nokia and Siemens announced plans to combine Nokia's Networks business group and Siemens' carrier-related operations for fixed and mobile networks to form a new company called Nokia Siemens Networks. The new company had 2005 calendar year pro forma revenues of EUR 15.8 billion.

Deutsche Telekom Names René Obermann as new CEO

One day after the resignation of Kai-Uwe Ricke, Deutsche Telekom named René Obermann as its new Chief Executive Officer.

René Obermann, born in March 1963 in Düsseldorf, Germany, became a Member of the Board of Management of Deutsche Telekom AG, responsible for T-Mobile, in November 2002. Since December 11, 2002, he has also served as CEO of T-Mobile International AG.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Kai-Uwe Ricke resigns as Deutsche Telekom CEO

Kai-Uwe Ricke resigned his position as CEO of Deutsche Telekom with immediate effect following a meeting with the company's Supervisory Board. A meeting of the Board to discuss his successor is expected on Monday.

Kai-Uwe Ricke took over as Deutsche Telekom's CEO on November 15, 2002. During his term there was not only the clear reduction of debt, but also for example the internationalization both in Eastern Europe and the USA, the T-Online merger as well as the development of the German broadband market.
  • Last week, Deutsche Telekom reported its quarterly results, citing a fast consumer uptake for bundled services following the introduction of new rates in its home market. Howerver, Broadband/Fixed Network revenue in Germany declined 5.9 percent year-on-year to EUR 16.4 billion in the first nine months of 2006. This drop was attributed to lower call revenues and line losses, as well as to a decline in revenues from interconnection services and lower prices for Internet access. Competition remains fierce in broadband and mobile services, with T-Com managing to capture around 19% of the wholesale DSL lines activated by the company in Q3. Meanwhile, T-Mobile Deutschland had 236,000 net additions in Q3, but revenue in the third quarter was down 4.1 percent year-on-year at EUR 2.1 billion.

Thursday, November 9, 2006

Germany Orders 16% Cut in Mobile Termination Rates

Germany's Federal Network Agency (Bundesnetzagentur) approved a 16% decrease in the rates for call termination in mobile networks. The cut, which will occur in three steps, addresses a conflict between fixed-line and mobile providers.

The regulator said the three rate approvals are addressed to T-Mobile Deutschland, E-Plus Mobilfunk GmbH & Co KG and O2 (Germany) GmbH & Co OHG.

"With our decision we are correcting a competitive distortion between mobile communications and the fixed-line network and have established planning and legal security for all players. At the same time, we have aligned ourselves with comparable and efficient European mobile operators. In particular, this detailed benchmark ensures that German fixed-line customers do not need to pay more than in cheaper EU countries. On the other hand, the gratifying competition among mobile operators is being retained and the requisite adaptation process structured in such a way to correspond to comparable cost-based trends in Europe," said Matthias Kurth, president of the Federal Network Agency.

The actual rates amount to cent 8.78 for T-Mobile and cent 9.94 for both E-Plus and O2 (Germany). A decision on the termination rates of Vodafone D2 GmbH will be taken at a later date due to legally prescribed time schedules. For this reason the lower rates will not come into effect until 23 November 2006. Until then, the previous rates of cent 11 and cent 12.4 will remain unchanged. For the whole approval period lasting from 30 August 2006 to 30 November 2007, this results in an average rate level of cent 9.22 for T-Mobile and cent 10.43 for E-Plus and O2, corresponding to a decrease of roughly 16 per cent compared with the previous rates.

Touré of Mali Elected as Secretary-General of ITU

Dr. Hamadoun I. Touré of Mali was elected as Secretary-General of ITU for a four-year term.

Mr Touré won the position with 95 votes with 155 countries present and voting, and thus the required majority for election was 78 votes. The majority emerged in the third round of voting, with Mr Mathias Kurth of Germany receiving 60 votes.

Touré takes over from outgoing Secretary-General Yoshio Utsumi of Japan.

Dr Hamadoun Touré has served as Director of the Telecommunications Development Bureau (BDT) of the ITU since 1998. He holds a Masters Degree in Electrical Engineering from the Technical Institute of Electronics and Telecommunications of Leningrad (LEIS, USSR) and Doctor of Philosophy Degree (PhD) from the University of Electronics, Telecommunications and Informatics of Moscow (MTUCI, Russia).

Houlin Zhao of China was elected Deputy Secretary-General in the first round with 93 votes. Mr. Zhao has served as Director of the ITU's Telecommunication Standardization Bureau since 1998. He holds a degree from Nanjing University of Posts and Telecommunications and a Master degree of Science in telematics, University of Essex (UK).