Thursday, January 18, 2007

Microsoft Adds Unified Communications Tools for Lotus Notes/Domino Users

Microsoft introduced new tools for helping IBM Lotus Notes/Domino customers transition to its new unified communication and collaboration capabilities in Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, the 2007 Microsoft Office system and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007. These resources include a new suite of tools for managing transitions of IBM's directory, messaging and application solutions, as well as new templates for SharePoint Products and Technologies.

RealNetworks to Offer Free Streaming of Independent Full-Length Movies

RealNetworks' division introduced a new "Movie of the Week" feature, which includes free streaming access to full-length movies along with information, interviews, and background on the movie and its creators. will showcase established and up-and-coming filmmakers and their films throughout 2007.

AT&T Unity Calling Plan Combines Wireline with Wireless Minutes

AT&T has launched a new "Unity" calling plan that lets customers call or receive calls for free from any AT&T wireless and wireline phone numbers nationwide without incurring additional wireline usage fees or using their wireless minutes. To sign up for a new AT&T Unity plan, a customer needs to subscribe to AT&T wireless service and unlimited AT&T local and long distance wireline services. The bundle includes both unlimited local and long distance plans and an AT&T Unity wireless plan.

ClearSight Enhances its VoIP Network Analysis

ClearSight Networks released enhanced features for its Analyzer product line, providing deeper analysis of VoIP performance issues and ease-of-use for monitoring and visualization of live network environments.

ClearSight Analyzer 6.0 evaluates live network traffic and then presents a real-time assessment of network performance in a ladder diagram display of packet flows. The main screen presents a comprehensive overview of the network, and hyperlinks are used to drill down to see more detailed information. The company said this visual approach enables VoIP service providers to quickly identify problems and drill down to resolve these problems in real time. Engineers can troubleshoot application, network, client, and server problems without having to decode packets manually.

UK's Eton College Replaces ATM with Extreme Networks

The renowned boarding school Eton College will replace its legacy ATM network with an advanced Ethernet network infrastructure from Extreme Networks and supplied by partner Data Integration. All pupils have laptops connected to the network throughout dormitories and the school will implement wireless LAN access points. Eton College also needed the flexibility to control access on both a PC-by-PC and user-by-user basis cost effectively connecting all 400 buildings owned by the school in a single LAN.

TI Gilles Delfassy to Retire from Wireless Unit

Texas Instruments announced that Gilles Delfassy, senior vice president and head of TI's wireless terminals unit, will retire. He has been at the helm of the company's successful wireless terminals unit since its inception in 1995, growing it into a multibillion dollar operation. Under his guidance, TI became the world's leading supplier of semiconductors for wireless handsets.

Effective immediately, TI has promoted Greg Delagi to senior vice president and leader of the operation, which develops semiconductors for cell phones. Delagi has presided over the launch of the industry's first 1-gigahertz DSP and the new DaVinci family of hardware and software for video applications.

Netopia and Ubiquisys Partner on FMC Residential Gateways

Netopia and Ubiquisys announced a partnership to accelerate the development of the femtocell market.

Femtocells are cellular access points for mobile operators looking to provide enhanced 3G mobile coverage within homes and small businesses.

Ubiquisys offers a "ZoneGate" cellular access system that sits on a customer's home network, behind a broadband gateway.

The companies noted that mass-market femtocell adoption will require advanced service activation and management technology. To deliver such a system, Ubiquisys is enhancing its ZoneGate access point to support the TR-069 specification and is working with Netopia to create a zero-touch, fully managed software solution that utilizes Netopia's NBBS TR-069 platform. NBBS is a standards-based management system that supports the DSL Forum's TR-069 specification for the remote management of customer premises equipment.

The ZoneGate access point will be shipped to customers with an active SIM card. Once connected to a customer's home network, the access point will first authenticate with the wireless carrier, and then connect to the Netopia NBBS management server hosted by the mobile operator. Based on the customer's service profile, the appropriate configurations will then be automatically downloaded to the access point. Finally, the access point will be tuned to the optimal settings for the particular home environment, and the customer's individual account will be activated. This all occurs without the intervention of either the mobile operator or the customer.

Hawaii IPTV Launches with NeuLion

A new "Hawaii IPTV" service has launched over the Web using NeuLion's iPTV platform. The service will deliver a variety of Hawaii programming, in real-time and on-demand, directly to subscription and pay-for-view consumers anywhere in the world with a broadband connection. The set top box costs $150 and the monthly service fee is $15.

Space Systems/Loral to Build Intelsat 14

Intelsat selected Space Systems/Loral (SS/L) to manufacture Intelsat 14, a new, high-power C- and Ku-band fixed satellite service (FSS) satellite that will carry 40 C-band and 22 Ku-band transponders across four different beams, covering the Americas, Europe and Africa. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Intelsat 14 is the first satellite awarded to SS/L in 2007. The company received seven satellite awards in 2006 from a wide variety of customers, including FSS operators, direct-to-home and satellite radio service providers.

Motorola Post Q4 Results

Motorola reported Q4 2006 sales of $11.8 billion, up 17% compared to fourth-quarter 2005 sales. Net earnings in the fourth quarter of 2006 were $0.25 per share, including $0.04 per share from discontinued operations and $0.21 per share from continuing operations, which includes special items. The company will trim about 3,500 jobs. Motorola now expects full year 2007 sales of between $46 billion and $49 billion.

"As I said earlier this month, we are disappointed with our fourth quarter operating earnings performance. However, the company generated strong revenue growth and met or exceeded our goals in many areas during the quarter. I am confident that we remain well positioned for continued growth and success," said Ed Zander, chairman and CEO.

Some highlights of the quarterly report:

  • Mobile Devices segment sales were $7.8 billion, up 19 percent compared with the year-ago quarter. Shipped a record 65.7 million handsets -- an increase of 47 percent compared to the same period in 2005 -- making it the No.2 player in the global market with an estimated 23.3 percent global market share.

  • Networks & Enterprise segment sales were $3.0 billion, up 6 percent compared with the year-ago quarter.

  • Connected Home Solutions segment sales were $980 million, up 39 percent compared with the year-ago quarter. Motorola noted quarterly and annual record-shipment milestones of digital entertainment devices and modems, and said it set record IP network infrastructure sales, including shipments to Comcast, Time Warner, NET (Brazil) and Starhub. Shipments are underway of IP digital entertainment devices for the AT&T U-verse digital video service deployment.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

European Commission Studies Network Resiliency

The European Commission is seeking feedback on how best to secure electronic networks against disruption from attack or natural hazards.

A new study has identified a range of important issues for ensuring that future networks are sufficiently protected and resilient. The consequences of the failure of or criminal attack on a single network or sub-system could potentially be propagated more widely and faster than ever before. The study argues that protective measures need to be put in place to ensure that critical services and infrastructure are not vulnerable to such failures, and that there can be no "domino effect" that might otherwise result in a major technological collapse of communications and the many services they support.

"Communication and information infrastructures are the nervous system of our modern society," said Viviane Reding, European Commissioner for Information Society and Media. "As our dependency on them grows, we need to do all we can to safeguard such networks. I would not like Europe to experience the huge problems Asia faced over the Christmas time as a consequence of an earthquake south of Taiwan. I therefore call on all stakeholders to participate in this consultation so that we can together determine how best to protect ourselves in the future."

The study carried out for the Commission reports on the reliability (against failure) and the robustness (against attack and other hazards) - of electronic communication networks. It provides insights into the overall security of these networks, based on extensive interviews with virtually all types of stakeholder.

The study makes 10 recommendations for key actions to be taken by the European Commission, Member States and the private sector. These include: emergency exercises and drills, the establishment of pre-arranged priority restoration procedures, the conclusion of formal mutual aid agreements between operators and service providers, addressing interdependencies between the communications and other critical sectors, enhancing information sharing mechanisms including cross-sector communications, the implementation of innovative trusted concepts, and the use of industry consensus best-practices.

The study is available online.

Tropic Networks Exec Appointed to SCTE

Tropic Networks, the developer of "Wavelength Tracker" powered metro regional ROADM systems, announced that Joe Thomas, Director of Sales Engineering, has become the Vice President of the Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers, (SCTE), Rocky Mountain Chapter, in Colorado. The SCTE is a professional organization that is dedicated to advancing the careers of cable telecommunications professionals and servicing the industry through professional development, information and standards.

Tehuti Unveils 10GbE 10GBASE-T and Dual 10GBASE-CX4 Adapters

Tehuti Networks announced three new additions to its adapter reference design family: a 10GBASE-T single port NIC, a 10GBASE-T dual port NIC, and a 10GbE dual port CX4, low-profile server adapter. All adapters are based upon the newly released Tehuti Networks TN3016 host hardware offload controller.

Navini Demos Smart Beamforming on Mobile WiMAX

Navini Networks demonstrated Smart beamforming on its "Ripwave" MX mobile WiMAX platform. Navini is applying the idea of beamforming to MIMO, delivering what it calls "Smart MIMO". The company said its combination of Smart beamforming and Smart MIMO enables "Smart WiMAX".

"Beamforming and MIMO are complementary. Beamforming enhances the performance of both MIMO A and B and provides crucial uplink performance that MIMO does not. Furthermore, beamforming makes MIMO practical. Without beamforming, MIMO B performance in many situations is suboptimal at best and non-existent at worst. Smart MIMO takes away that uncertainty allows MIMO B to work in all situations. From Navini's perspective having both (beamforming and MIMO) is always better," said Sai Subramanian, VP, Strategic Marketing and Product Management for Navini Networks.

Firetide Teams with PRO 911 Systems for Metro Mesh, Surveillance

Firetide has signed an agreement with PRO 911 Systems, a systems integrator for wireless mesh networks and video surveillance systems. Under the deal, PRO 911 Systems will provide Firetide mesh nodes, wireless access points, and mobility controllers for municipal and public safety mesh networking customers. Applications include wireless communications, video surveillance, shoreline observation systems, underwater networks, and utility SCADA telemetry and meter reading.

Microsoft to Offer Vista Download Option

Microsoft will make Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office release available for direct download by consumers starting January 30. Windows Vista editions offered through Windows Marketplace are available in English only, in either 32-bit or 64-bit versions.

Microsoft will also offer the ability to upgrade an existing edition of Windows Vista to a higher-grade edition by way of an online transaction.

Motorola Wins India's First UMTS Contract From MTNL

Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited (MTNL) has selected Motorola for the supply of a Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service (UMTS) cellular network for Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR). Under the agreement, which includes network deployment and maintenance services, MTNL will be expanding its GSM network by 2 million lines.

Described as the first UMTS rollout in India, the UMTS network deployment will take place after the relevant regulatory authority of India has authorized spectrum allocation and appropriate licenses are obtained by the network operators.

JDSU Exceeds Revenue Guidance

JDSU boosted its earnings estimates for the quarter ended 31-Dec-2006, saying it now expects to exceed its previously issued revenue guidance of $332 to $352 million. Based on preliminary data, JDSU now expects to report 2007 second quarter revenue in the range of $360 to $365 million.

The company said its Communications Test and Measurement segment performed particularly well during the quarter, benefiting from seasonal strength associated with customer spending patterns and improved execution relative to the previous quarter. Strong revenue growth in Communications Test and Measurement more than offset a small sequential revenue decline in the Optical Communications segment, associated with customer supply chain and inventory rationalization.

Chelsio Announces 10GBASE-T Adapters

Chelsio Communications has expanded its 10GigE portfolio with the introduction of 10Gb Ethernet adapter cards based on the new 10GBASE-T (IEEE 802.3an) standard interface for 10Gb transmission over Category 6 or Category 7 copper cabling.

Chelsio is announcing two new 10Gb Ethernet cards, the S310e-BT storage adapter and the N310e-BT server adapter. Both cards offer a single dual-speed auto-negotiating 1GbE/10GbE port, and support the PCI-Express host bus interface. The dual speed feature allows an immediate upgrade of server interconnects to 10G, while preserving the interoperability with existing 1G switches.

The S310e-BT is powered by Chelsio's Terminator 3 (T3) ASIC and Teranetics' TeraPHY TN1010 transceiver. The T3 fully offloads TCP/IP, iSCSI and iWARP RDMA processing from the host system. Protocol offload reduces CPU utilization by up to 90%, and decreases system power consumption, while increasing network bandwidth, and lowering communication latency. With these benefits, it becomes possible to converge applications that traditionally used niche technologies onto 10Gb Ethernet.

The N310e-BT is a stateless offload server adapter, delivering the highest throughput for 10Gb Ethernet server applications. With the N310 series, enterprises can cost effectively connect servers and storage systems directly to the 10GbE backbone switching infrastructure now using RJ-45 connectors, in addition to the previously available fiber and CX-4 copper.

AT&T Supplies Metro Ethernet for Southwest Business Corp.

AT&T was awarded a new contract by Southwest Business Corporation (SWBC) to connect the financial services company's new contact center with its corporate headquarters, both located in San Antonio. Under the three-year deal, AT&T will provide SWBC with AT&T OPT-E-MAN service, a switched Ethernet service that connects LANs within the same metropolitan area to create a consolidated communications system.