Sunday, January 14, 2007

Fluke Networks acquires Crannog Software

Fluke Networks, which supplies solutions for the testing, monitoring and analysis of enterprise and telecommunications networks, has acquired Crannog Software. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Crannog Software, headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, develops software and solutions that take advantage of NetFlow, IP-FIX, and IP-SLA data from the network infrastructure.

Crannog's flagship product, NetFlow Tracker, offers essential capabilities for voice and security applications including a unique full-flow forensics database storing all the original flows and all the available NetFlow fields within the flow.

Fluke Networks said this capability complements its rapidly growing solution set for application performance and VoIP performance for converged voice/data networks.
  • In January 2006, Fluke acquired Visual Networks in a deal valued at approximately $75 million at the time.
    Visual Networks, was is based in Rockville, Maryland, supplied a range of enterprise network and application performance management solutions. Its flagship product, Visual UpTime Select, provides in-depth, real-time and historical information that enables organizations to intelligently manage application and network performance and availability across the entire enterprise.

BT Selects Nortel and Siemens for Provider Backbone Transport (PBT)

BT has selected Nortel and Siemens as key suppliers of carrier-scale Ethernet equipment for its 21CN network. BT plans to use PBB-TE (Provider Backbone Bridging Traffic Engineering), an emerging IEEE standard, for a Provider Backbone Transport (PBT) deployment. The network will be used to transport high-bandwidth services - from mission critical business applications to full-streaming video.

PBB-TE is currently progressing through industry standardization within the IEEE 802.1 Working Group. PBB-TE promises to bring control to data paths within very large carrier networks.

BT has selected Nortel's Metro Ethernet Routing Switch 8600 and Metro Ethernet Services Unit 1850 for the Ethernet component of its 21CN.

BT will also deploy Siemens SURPASS hiD Ethernet carrier-class switches, element management, system integration and support services.

Financial terms were not disclosed.
  • In December 2006, the first eleven Cisco CRS-1 Carrier Routing Systems were deployed in the IP/MPLS core of BT's 21st Century Network (BT 21CN). Additional CRS-1 systems will be deployed within approximately 100 BT POPs during 2007.

AT&T Kicks Offs Cingular Rebranding Campaign

AT&T launched an extensive advertising campaign to begin transition the Cingular brand to its own AT&T corporate identity.

AT&T estimates that 20 percent of the operating expense savings from the AT&T-BellSouth merger will come from advertising, as all operations are moved under a single brand. Previously, the three companies each supported distinct brands with three separate advertising campaigns.

"Around the world, our customers recognize the AT&T brand for meaningful innovation, a commitment to customer service, high quality and exceptional reliability," said Edward E. Whitacre Jr., chairman and CEO of AT&T. "AT&T, BellSouth and Cingular are now one company, and going to market with our services under one brand is the right thing to do."

Avaya to Acquire Ubiquity Software for $144 Million

Avaya will acquire Ubiquity Software Corporation plc, a developer of SIP end-user applications, for approximately GBP 74.3 million (approximately $144 million).

Ubiquity develops and markets SIP-based communications software for fixed and mobile communications service providers, systems integrators, independent software vendors and channel partners. Its SIP Application Server (SIP A/S) is both a carrier-class deployment platform and a programmable, standards-based application creation environment (ACE).

Avaya said the addition of Ubiquity's next generation software platform to its portfolio will help customers and developers enhance the integration of communications technologies and business processes.

Ubiquity is headquartered in Cardiff and has corporate offices in the US and Canada and representation in Japan and China.
  • Ubiquity Software offers "Voice Plus" solution for consumer IP telephony and multimedia services based on its SIP Application Server. Voice Plus is a carrier-grade, pre-built VoIP solution for Internet-based service providers (ASPs, ITSPs, ISPs) who want to deliver IP-based voice and other multimedia services to their residential customers over cable, DSL, WiFi, or other consumer broadband access networks. Voice Plus includes the "Top 10" residential calling features including PC to PSTN calling, PSTN to PC calling, PC to PC calling, voicemail, caller ID, call waiting, and three-way calling. Voice Plus is also a platform to deliver additional IP-enabled capabilities such as presence, instant messaging, video calling, file/desktop/content sharing, and instant conferencing services.

Guam's IT&E Deploys Metaswitch

IT&E, an innovative wireless and internet service provider serving Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands in the Pacific, is deploying MetaSwitch's switching and application solutions to offer advanced hosted PBX services, which are used by the islands' vibrant tourist industry.

IT&E, a 27-year-old carrier serving the 210-square mile U.S. territory in the Marianas island chain, is building on its history as a successful provider of long distance, PCS wireless and internet service by becoming a CLEC and offering advanced IP-based services such as wireless Internet and unified communications to its residential and business customers.

SpectraLink Offers Thin-Client Mobile Telephony Application

SpectraLink introduced a NetLink Softphone (NetLink SP) application that extends its Wi-Fi telephony capabilities to third-party mobile devices. The NetLink SP application allows voice-enabled mobile devices to function as full-featured business telephones integrated with an enterprise telephone system.

The NetLink SP thin client application runs on Microsoft Windows Mobile 5.0 and PocketPC operating systems. It works in conjunction with SpectraLink's NetLink Telephony Gateway using SpectraLink Radio Protocol (SRP), a lightweight protocol.

SpectraLink said the NetLink SP application is initially targeted at retail enterprises with support for Symbol Technologies' MC50 and MC70 devices, although additional devices are expected to be supported with future releases.

Asia Netcom to Build new 2 Tbps Trans-Pacific Cable

Asia Netcom will add a new trans-Pacific portion to its regional submarine cable system, EAC. The new 23,500 km cable, which is expected to be completed by July 2008, consists of a northern route connecting Japan to the US, and a southern route linking the Philippines to the US via Guam and Hawaii. EAC Pacific will also include a subsea link between the Philippines directly with Japan, which will close the ring design and integrate the trans-Pacific infrastructure with the current system. The new EAC Pacific system will feature 4 fiber pairs, each capable of supporting a minimum design capacity of 2.56 Tbps using 64-wavelength DWDM capable of transporting 10 Gbps per wavelength.

Asia Netcom said it will announce its landing partners for the system by April 2007 and will complete vendor selection by May 2007.

EAC Pacific has received committed funds of $636 million through its partners, investors and debt holders which will cover the build and peak funding requirements for the new system. The system, which will use a new innovative capital structure that is hybrid of the "traditional" club cable and a "private cable" structure, will be operational in July 2008.

"In light of the recent events that followed the Boxing Day earthquakes off the coast of southern Taiwan, there is clearly a need for more diversity between Asia and the US," said Bill Barney, Asia Netcom's Chief Executive Officer. "EAC Pacific is designed to enhance the connectivity options of the fast growing South Asian region and create a dedicated expressway for that region to connect to the US as well as Japan and North Asia."
  • In August 2006, China Netcom Group completed the sale of its Asia Netcom to an Investor Group led by Ashmore Investment Management Limited, Spinnaker Capital Limited and Clearwater Capital Partners. The total value of the deal is at US$402 million.

Alltel Wireless Extends Contract with Amdocs

Amdocs was awarded a multi-year contract extension to provide premium content services to Alltel's more than 11 million wireless subscribers. Alltel will continue to use Amdocs' Qpass Digital Commerce solution to deliver premium content services to its customers and manage the customer experience.

muvee Selects Limelight as Global CDN

muvee, the Singapore-based pioneer and leader in automatic video editing technology, has selected Limelight Networks as the global content delivery platform for its recently launched online video mashup service at The new online video mixing service lets users automatically mix video clips and pictures to their choice of music, with added visual effects and transitions that are synchronized to the beat. The finished "muvees" can then be shared on community sites or blogs.
  • In December 2006, Limelight Networks announced the opening of an Asia-Pacific headquarters in Singapore.

TI Samples Latest DaVinci Processor for Digital Video

Texas Instruments began sampling its latest system-on-chip (SoC) based on DaVinci technology designed for delivering high-quality video for portable audio and video applications, including portable media players (PMPs), consumer video security devices, medical devices, data terminals, IP netcams, automotive/in-flight entertainment systems and other digital audio and video applications. It delivers video performance of H.264, MPEG 2, MPEG 4 or VC-1, among others, at 30 frames per second combined with power efficient optimizations.

The DM6441 is a dual-core SoC that consists of an ARM9 and TMS320C64x+ digital signal processor (DSP) core plus video/imaging co-processors. With dual power modes the DM6441 can run at full speed (513 MHz DSP and 256 MHz ARM) at 1.2 V or in power-reduced mode (405 MHz DSP and 202 MHz ARM) at 1.05 V.

The DM6441 for portable audio and video applications is sampling now and it is $24.95 each in quantities of 10,000.

Avaya Names News CIO

Avaya announced the appointment of Lorie Buckingham as Avaya senior vice president and Chief Information Officer. Buckingham joins Avaya from Visteon Corporation, where she served as Chief Information Officer and senior vice president of the Global Services Group.

ARRIS to Acquire TANDBERG TV for US$1.2 Billion

ARRIS launched a bid to acquire TANDBERG Television, a leading supplier of digital video and IPTV hardware, software and services for approximately US$1.2 billion in cash and newly issued ARRIS shares. ARRIS is a leading supplier of VoIP, data broadband network equipment, including cable modem termination systems (CMTS), and consumer premises devices. ARRIS has a strong North American presence among cable operators, while TANDBERG TV offers deep expertise in encoding technologies, along with an international list of customers.

ARRIS said the acquisition would give it the depth and scale to prosper in the high growth video content creation, management and distribution markets. The combined company will have a significant global presence with over 1600 employees and 2000+ customers in more than 100 countries.

Jan Christian Opsahl, Chairman of TANDBERG Television since 1988, has
agreed to join the board of ARRIS upon completion of the transaction.

"The combination of ARRIS and TANDBERG Television is positive for the digital media industry and a truly exceptional opportunity for both companies," said Bob Stanzione, Chairman & CEO of ARRIS. "By bringing together these two market leaders we are able to expand on our vision to be the global leader in the provision of digital IP infrastructure and to enable voice, video and data to be delivered over integrated broadband networks from the content provider to the head-end to the home."

The Board of Directors of TANDBERG Television unanimously recommended that the shareholders accept the ARRIS offer.

"The on-going industry consolidation amongst our key customer base creates a demand for companies that can offer an increasing scale and scope of supply on a global basis. The combination of ARRIS and TANDBERG Television clearly creates that market leading supplier of voice, video and data solutions," said Jan Christian Opsahl, Chairman of TANDBERG Television.
  • In September 2006, TANDBERG Television introduced its next-generation high definition (HD) and standard definition (SD) MPEG-4 AVC encoding solutions claiming bandwidth improvements of up to 50% over currently deployed MPEG-4 AVC units. TANDBERG's new encoders enable HDTV services to be delivered at data rates below 6 Mbps, with similar improvements to SD services, and are designed to enable operators to deliver HD and SD multi-channel and single channel services across cable, satellite, telco and terrestrial networks.

  • In August 2006, TANDBERG Television acquired Zetools, a Los Angeles-based developer of software that enables the delivery of digital video services over the Internet. Financial terms were not disclosed. Zetools automates the formatting, management, programming and publishing of interactive and on-demand Internet video with a focus on ease-of-use.

  • In February 2006, TANDBERG Television acquired SkyStream, a supplier of IP video delivery solutions, for $80 million in cash and TANDBERG Television shares. The transaction is expected to close in April 2006. SkyStream's product line included its high density Mediaplex-20 and iPlex switched digital video headends for MPEG-2/MPEG-4 AVC encoding and transcoding. The platforms are used by IPTV operators in Asia, Europe and the US.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Integra5 Previews SMS to TV Application

In conjunction with Scientific Atlanta, Integra5 demonstrated an SMS-to-TV application that seamlessly converges quad play elements -- mobile phones, landlines, TVs and PCs -- into new cross-platform services.

The application, which is part of the i-Communicate application suite for Integra5's Converged Services Delivery Platform (i5 C-SDP), enables the user to send a text message from a cell phone to a TV. The text message is displayed on the TV and the recipient can then use the TV remote to reply to the message with pre-set responses, or to trigger a "click to call" response that initiates a call between the home landline phone and the cell phone that sent the text message. If the person sending the text message has been personalized via the i5 network address book, the SMS will be flagged with a picture and nickname of the sender on the TV screen similar to Integra5's Picture Caller ID service. The application will be available this summer.

Siemens to OEM Crossbeam's Unified Threat Management Platform

Siemens Networks will sell Crossbeam Systems' Unified Threat Management (UTM) platforms under an OEM agreement for deployment in mobile and fixed carriers' networks.

Crossbeam's UTM platform consolidates a variety of best-of-breed security applications such as firewall, spam filter, anti-virus, web security and intrusion prevention, used to recognize and repel attacks on the telecommunications network in a single device.

Within the partnership with Crossbeam Systems, Siemens will provide the design know-how for security solutions and network integration, as well as sales and technical support. The services from Siemens include loading software upgrades, designing a secure network structure, test runs, integration of the UTM platforms, maintenance and, if required, permanent operation including round-the-clock monitoring. Consolidating security solutions on one platform leads to extensive savings in infrastructure and operating costs, and meets the high demands of the network carriers in terms of availability, scalability, flexibility and network performance.

Radialpoint Names Martin Demers as President & COO

Radialpoint, which provides managed Internet services solutions for broadband providers, Martin Demers as President and Chief Operating Officer. Reporting to Hamnett Hill, CEO of Radialpoint, Mr. Demers will be responsible for all business operations, including pursuing new opportunities.

Prior to joining Radialpoint, Mr. Demers was President and CEO of Interstar Technologies. Before that, he was Chief Marketing Officer at ACE*COMM, a Washington DC-based provider of operations support systems (OSS), where he was responsible for building and growing its carrier business globally. He has also held senior management roles at Teleglobe, CAE Electronics, and Foxboro.
  • Radialpoint's Value Added Services (VAS), such as backup-and-restore, firewall, fraud protection, parental controls and malware protection, are currently available to over 20 million broadband subscribers worldwide. Customers include customers include Bell Aliant, Bell, TELUS and Videotron in Canada; Adelphia, BellSouth and Verizon in the US; and ntl, ONO, and Telewest in Europe.

  • Radialpoint is based in Montreal, Canada.

Intelsat Cites Restoration Role Following Taiwan Undersea Fiber Cuts

Intelsat said it was able to restore services for many voice, video and data providers following the 26-Dec-2006 undersea earthquake off the coast of Taiwan. The earthquake severed six major undersea fiber optic cables, disrupting telecommunications throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

Intelsat restored traffic to customers in Asia and the Middle East through its flexible satellite network and its GlobalConnex Managed Network Services infrastructure. Traffic delivery to the area has primarily used Intelsat's teleports and its six satellites serving the Asia-Pacific region. Specifically, Intelsat reestablished international and intra-regional links for more than 20 telecommunications operators, broadcasters and network service providers.

In one case, Intelsat was able to establish a new 56 Mbps of Internet service for a Southeast Asian telecommunications provider within four hours after the fiber outage.

Intelsat said the event illustrates the importance of satellites during and after natural disasters.

Nigeria Awards Spectrum License to Mubadala of UAE

The Nigerian Government has agreed to license spectrum in the 1800MHz and 900MHz bands to the Mubadala Development Company of the United Arab Emirates. The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) also intends to proceed with the licensing of radio spectrum in the 3G and 450 MHz bands. These new licences will encourage the deployment of advanced technology to continue the development of telecommunications in Nigeria.

Widevine Joins the Digital Watermarking Alliance

The Digital Watermarking Alliance, an industry group that was formed in September 2006 to create awareness of the value of digital watermarking to content owners, industry, policy makers and consumers, has added Widevine Technologies to its ranks.

Widevine provides content protection and forensic watermarking solutions for telco, internet, mobile, cable and satellite service providers worldwide. Its patented Widevine Mensor solution invisibly watermarks content at multiple points in a video distribution network and employs session-based watermarks in real-time to content that is streamed from a server to a client.

LG Earns CableLabs Certification for Two-Way Interactive Digital Cable HDTV

LG Electronics' plasma HDTV has achieved Certification status as OCAP-enabled interactive digital television set, including the multi-stream CableCARD (M-Card) system, from a recently concluded certification by CableLabs.

LG Electronics' 42-inch OpenCable plasma HDTV set features built-in OCAP technology, M-Card capabilities and interactive capabilities, as well as high-definition content and interactive services like Video-on-Demand and Pay-Per-View. The TV can connect directly to a local cable TV system, and receive current advanced interactive cable TV services, as well as be ready for future interactive applications -- without the need for a separate digital set-top box (STB).

Amino Links its STBs with Orb Network' MyCasting Service

Amino, which supplies IPTV set-top boxes, has formed a partnership with Orb Networks, a software developer offering the "MyCasting" media streaming service.

The two companies plan to integrate Amino's AmiNET series of (STBs) with Orb's software and roll out a series of product offerings throughout the year. The combination of technologies will close the gap between the STB and the PC, using the Orb MyCasting application platform as the bridge.

Orb MyCasting gives consumers secure, free, instant, and everywhere-access to everything from their photos and video to TV and music on virtually any Web-enabled device.