Sunday, April 22, 2007

KT to Offer Alcatel-Lucent's IP-PBX

KT will Alcatel-Lucent's IP-PBX solutions and handsets to provide a variety of customized multimedia services and applications for VoIP services targeting Korean business customers. Specifically, Alcatel-Lucent will supply IP-based OmniPCX Enterprise private switching systems, IP telephone handsets, and mobile Internet telephone handsets to KT's customers that need to deploy large scale IP-PBX solutions.

The SIP-based OmniPCX Enterprise can accommodate up to 5,000 lines per node while interoperating with KT's proxy server.

The Cloud Activates WiFi Mesh Across the City of London

The Cloud activated a Wi-Fi mesh network across the entire City of London -- the famous Square Mile. The project, described as the densest network of its kind in Europe, was built and is operated by The Cloud under a "neutrality" approach endorsed by the City of London. The Cloud will ensure other service providers can use the network, including O2, BT Openzone, iPass, Truphone and Skype on various handsets. Free access for the first month will be provided in association with Nokia.

BelAir Networks supplied the mobile broadband mesh technology for the network, which currently comprises 127 nodes.

SAP and Cisco to Develop SOA Applications

SAP and Cisco will jointly develop a new breed of business solutions to transform how applications and networks interact based on service- oriented architecture (SOA). The vision is to integrate the context of operational business applications with the intelligence captured throughout the network, providing customers with high levels of visibility, control and responsiveness across the extended enterprise.

The companies said their new network-aware solutions will focus on removing the artificial separation between application infrastructure and network infrastructure to intelligently route traffic based on contextual business relevance. The first solution produced from the collaboration will include composite applications that address the need for an integrated network and application platform providing a holistic view of the extended enterprise for better management of compliance and risk in today's dynamic business environment. The companies also plan to integrate unified business communication, such as e-mail, voice and podcasting, into business process applications to increase responsiveness to selected process events.

Specifically, the jointly developed solutions from SAP and Cisco will take advantage of enterprise service-oriented architecture (enterprise SOA) from SAP, the SAP NetWeaver platform and Cisco's Service-Oriented Network Architecture (SONA) to support successful customer implementations in a wide variety of enterprise use cases.

Separately, Cisco has selected SAP solutions for governance, risk and compliance (SAP solutions for GRC) as its internal GRC solution. This will help Cisco to unify its control initiatives and risk management across its extended enterprise.
  • In September 2006, Cisco and SAP AG announced a joint marketing agreement for the United States and Canada that will address governance, risk and compliance (GRC) business processes and IT control issues across the entire IT infrastructure -- from the network layer all the way through the application layer. The partnership will encompass sales and marketing activities as well as advanced service offerings. The joint effort aims to leverage the access and identity intelligence resident across Cisco's Service Oriented Architected Network Architecture (SONA). Specifically, SAP and Cisco offer new levels of IT management and controls between Cisco SONA and the three new applications in the portfolio of SAP solutions for GRC: SAP GRC Repository, SAP GRC Process Control and SAP GRC Risk Management.

Podbridge Raises $8.5 Million for Downloadable Content Advertising

Podbridge, a start-up based in Mountain View, California, closed a new round of venture funding totaling $8.5 million for its advertising service designed for downloadable content.

Podbridge currently provides measurement and advertisement services to many large media companies including Bloomberg, C/Net, Forbes, The Nielsen Company and InfoWorld, among others. The company aims to provide analytics and ad services for downloaded content across a wide range of media players and devices.

New investor Sutter Hill Ventures led this Series B round with initial investors Mayfield Fund and Worldview Technology Partners also participating.

"In the near future, most mainstream video, including TV shows and movies, will become freely and legitimately downloadable over the Internet. Advertising will form the backbone of business models surrounding downloadable content," said Greg Sands, Managing Director of Sutter Hill Ventures.

Juniper Posts Q1 Revenue of $626.9M, up 11%

Juniper Networks Q1 net revenues of $626.9 million, compared with $566.7 million for the first quarter of 2006, an increase of 11 percent. Net income on a GAAP basis for the first quarter of 2007 was $66.6 million or $0.11 per share, compared with a GAAP net income of $75.8 million or $0.13 per share for the first quarter of 2006.

"Our first quarter results were in line with our expectations," said Scott Kriens, Juniper Networks' Chairman and CEO.

ARCHOS to Feature CinemaNow on its 5th Gen Portable Media Players

ARCHOS reached an agreement with CinemaNow to deliver online video content and services directly to consumers using the forthcoming, 5th-generation ARCHOS portable media player.

CinemaNow is the first online video service to offer downloads to consumers in 1500K single-file format, which can be played on desktop and laptop PCs, Media Center Edition PCs, and ARCHOS portable media players.

The companies said they unveil additional details of the content partnership during the launch of the Generation 5 line of ARCHOS devices this summer.

Deutsche Telekom and Neuf Negotiate Sale of Club Internet France

Deutsche Telekom and Neuf Cegetel have entered into exclusive negotiations in relation to the sale of Deutsche Telekom's French Internet access unit T-Online France S.A.S., which trades under the Club Internet brand. Club Internet had close to 570,000 ADSL customers at the end of 2006.

The companies said a formal consultation process is being initiated with the workers' council of T-Online France. Subject to the outcome of the consultation process, both parties aim to complete the transaction by the end of H1 2007.
  • Beginning in April 2007, Neuf Cegetel is launching a FTTx service in Paris priced at EUR 29.90 (including VAT) per month. Like the company's "100% Neuf Box ADSL package", the new offer will include the phone line, unlimited calls to landline numbers in France and over 30 countries, a television bouquet, access to video on demand, and the Neuf Giga online storage service.

  • The Neuf FTTx service will deliver dynamic bandwidth of 50 Mbps (both uplink and downlinks at up to 50 Mbps). Neuf is also planning to offer a 100 Mbps premium service. Neuf, which began its fiber rollout in December 2006, is planning to pass one million homes by end of 2009. Coverage areas will include Paris and its suburbs, districts of other major cities, and other areas selected on the basis of rollout costs and opportunities to increase market share.

Verizon FiOS TV Adds Three National High-Definition Channels

Verizon has added three more HD channels to its FiOS TV programming -- HGTV HD, Food Network HD and LMN HD (Lifetime Movie Network). The three channels will be available in all FiOS TV markets by the end of this week, bringing the total number of HD channels to at least 27 in most markets, depending on the number of local channels that broadcast in HD. FiOS TV subscribers with an HD-capable TV and an HD set-top box will receive the three new channels at no additional cost.

Time Warner Cable Partners With FON for Open Wi-Fi

Time Warner Cable will enable its broadband subscribers to share their home connections as open Wi-Fi hotspots in the FON community. Through a partnership with FON, Time Warner Cable subscribers will be able to create FON access points via their home or business broadband connection.

FON users, or "foneros," are able to connect to the Internet via FON WiFi hotspots provided by other foneros. FON claims nearly 60,000 foneros in the U.S.

La Fonera router is secure out-of-the-box and offers two distinct WiFi channels. One channel is for the exclusive use of its owner; the second channel is shared with other foneros. The La Fonera increases security through an encrypted private network and Foneros decide how much bandwidth to share. Public users cannot access the private network and there is no anonymous usage.

Time Warner Cable operates in 33 states, with 13.4 million basic cable subscribers and 6.6 million residential high-speed data subscribers.
  • In February 2006, FON, a start-up based in Madrid, Spain, secured EUR 18 million (US$21.7 million for its software that enables users to share their Wi-Fi access points while gaining access to a global community of Wi-Fi hotspots.

  • FON investors include Index Ventures, Google, Sequoia Capital and Skype.

  • Members of the FON board include Danny Rimer (Index Ventures), Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis (Skype).

KDDI R&D Labs TestsNovera Optics' DWDM

Japan's KDDI R&D Laboratories has concluded lab trial testing on Novera Optics' Lambda-PON DWDM technology and will now conduct a feasibility study for use in next-generation transport services. KDDI R&D Laboratories also will begin a study of new products for broadband services with WDM-PON technologies.

Novera's DWDM transport solution enables point-to-point, bidirectional optical links through a single feeder fiber. The design eliminates the need for expensive, wavelength-specific optical network units (ONUs) on a passive optical network (PON).

Motorola to Acquire Terayon for Digital Video Grooming Platforms

Motorola agreed to acquire Terayon Communication Systems for approximately $140 million in cash ($1.80 per share. Terayon supplies real-time digital video networking gear to cable, satellite and telecommunication service providers worldwide. Its Terayon "CherryPicker" and related digital video system can be used to localize video services through digital ad insertion. The solutions support both SD and HD digital-into-digital ad insertion solutions, digital resolution change, digital logo overlay capabilities. Terayon is based in Santa Clara, California.

Motorola said the acquisition of Terayon will enhance its end-to-end portfolio for the delivery of next-generation services such as targeted advertising and program insertion solutions.
  • Earlier this year, Motorola acquired Tut Systems, which provides carrier-class end-to-end digital video encoding, processing and distribution products. Tut solutions support MPEG-2 and MPEG- 4 AVC video compression, local ad insertion, forward error correction, and real-time conditioning of video and audio.

  • Motorola's acquisitions in the digital video market have also included Netopia (customer gateways), Vertasent (VOD resource management solution), Broadbus (VOD server technology), Kreatel (IPTV set-top boxes) and Quantum Bridge (FTTP network solutions).

MFA Forum Launches MPLS-based Mobile Backhaul Initiative

The MFA Forum is launching a major technical initiative targeting the role of IP/MPLS in backhaul transport networks that support mobile radio access networks (RAN).

The MFA Forum said its MPLS Mobile Backhaul Initiative (MMBI) will help service providers migrate from existing separate, legacy ATM and TDM backhaul networks to a more cost-effective, converged, MPLS-enabled, and multi-purpose network. The Initiative will directly impact mobile operators' bottom line by substantially reducing operation costs, and will enable operators to offer additional value-added services for their enterprise customers.

Traditional 2G mobile networks are TDM-based and designed to carry circuit-switched voice traffic. The 3G GSM/UMTS networks have evolved with ATM to support voice and data. Mobile broadband services (such as HSPA, EV-DO, WiMAX), aided by enhanced air interface technologies, have fueled demand for mobile data traffic and packet-based services. Limited capacity at existing cell sites is expensive to upgrade, and is becoming the gating factor in the support of evolving broadband services. The MPLS Mobile Backhaul Initiative leverages MPLS' ability to support all generations of wireless voice and data services over a single packet-based RAN. MMBI enables a smooth migration from one generation to the next, using pseudowire technology and supports dynamic sharing of RAN capacity. Using the same MPLS based backhaul networks, operators can offer additional services such as L3 VPNs.

The MPLS in Mobile Backhaul Initiative will also:

  • Address how performance and reliability attributes of the traditional backhaul network can be maintained while adopting MPLS-based backhaul.

  • Create a roadmap that begins with existing service offerings (2G, 2.5G, and 3G services) and which facilitate the future evolution to packet-based, Next Generation mobile networks such as LTE, UMB, and Mobile WiMAX.

"The MFA Forum is defining the reference architecture and different cases where MPLS can be leveraged to enable operators to efficiently packetize their existing 2G/3G backhaul networks," said Nikhil Shah of Juniper Networks and MFA Board Member and VP of International Development. "In recent years, the Forum has published implementation agreements to facilitate the migration of ATM and TDM to MPLS-based infrastructure and that expertise will be leveraged in the Mobile Backhaul Initiative. We are aiming to complement the cost benefits of Ethernet with the proven track record of MPLS for building converged, reliable and QoS-aware mobile grade infrastructure."
  • In October 2006, The MFA Forum announced the approval of five technical specifications, including two that address multi-service interworking. Additional specifications cover high-speed connections, ATM and Frame Relay-to-MPLS control plane interworking, and virtual trunks for ATM/MPLS control plane interworking.

    The Multi-Service Interworking – Ethernet over MPLS (MFA Forum 12.0.0) specification is aimed at the delivery of Ethernet services utilizing an MPLS core network. The term "multi-service interworking" means that Ethernet frames are transported across the MPLS core in a pseudo wire (PW), and that the two attachment circuits (ACs) associated with the PW employ different Layer 2 technologies (e.g. ATM on one AC and Ethernet on the other). The specification enables carriers and service providers to introduce new Ethernet services, while preserving existing infrastructure and ATM and Frame Relay service end-points.

    The Fault Management for Multi-Service Interworking over MPLS Version 1.0 (MFA Forum 13.0.0) specification allows service providers to detect and isolate faults, and propagate alarms so that action can be taken to minimize or avoid service outages, and thus meet customer service expectations. This continues to be important as traditional ATM and Frame Relay, as well as emerging Ethernet and IP services are migrated to MPLS networks.

    The High Speed Connections (MFA Forum 11.0.0) specification defines a maximum rate of approximately 1.8 Terabits per second for data transfer between storage servers, maximizing optical links when ATM is part of the network solution.

    The ATM and Frame Relay to MPLS Control Plane Interworking: Client-Server (MFA Forum 10.0.0) specification defines the control plane and protocol interworking procedures for ATM and Frame Relay connections across an IP/MPLS network using pseudo wires, simplifying migration from ATM to next-generation multi-service packet networks. The specification is designed to protect carrier investment in current services and revenue streams while enabling emerging IP applications and services.

    The Virtual Trunks for ATM/MPLS Control Plane Interworking (MFA Forum 9.0.0) specification is a distributed interworking approach to the ATM and MPLS control planes, enabling separation of the MPLS network routing domains and the ATM routing domains.

Samsung Develops Highly Efficient Stacking Process for DRAM

Samsung Electronics has developed the first all-DRAM stacked memory package using "through silicon via" (TSV) technology -- a breakthrough that the company says will soon result in memory packages that are faster, smaller and consume less power.

Samsung's new wafer-level-processed stacked package (WSP) consists of four 512 megabit (Mb) DDR2 (second generation, double data rate) DRAM (dynamic random access memory) chips that offer a combined 2 gigabits (Gbs) of high density memory. Using the TSV-processed 2Gb DRAMs, Samsung can create a 4GB (gigabyte) DIMM (dual in-line memory module) based on advanced WSP technology for the first time.

In today's MCPs (multi-chip packages), memory chips are connected by wire bonding, requiring vertical spacing between dies that is tens of microns deep. That wire bonding process also requires horizontal spacing on the package board hundreds of microns wide for the die-connecting wires.

By contrast, Samsung's WSP technology forms laser-cut micron-sized holes that penetrate the silicon vertically to connect the memory circuits directly with a copper (Cu) filling, eliminating the need for gaps of extra space and wires protruding beyond the sides of the dies. These advantages permit Samsung's WSP to offer a significantly smaller footprint and thinner package.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Moovera and Vodafone Collaborate on Wi-Fi for Public Transport

Moovera Networks, a start-up specializing in mobile wireless broadband technology, has collaborated with Vodafone UK to launch high-speed Internet access on the Oxford Tube express coach service. Passengers traveling on the service between Central London and Oxford now have email and web access at speeds up to 1.4 Mbps using a combination of Moovera's mobile Wi-Fi equipment and Vodafone UK's 3G broadband network, which now covers 80% of the UK population.

Moovera supplies a small device that creates a Wi-Fi network throughout a vehicle. The device bridges the Wi-Fi network with Vodafone UK's 3G broadband service that uses HSDPA.

STMicroelectronics Offers Microcontrollers for 3G SIM Cards

STMicroelectronics introduced two new secure microcontrollers designed specifically for high-volume 2.5G and 3G SIM cards. The ST21Y036 and ST21Y144 provide 36 Kbytes and 144 Kbytes of user EEPROM, respectively, and they join the ST21Y068, which was announced towards the end of 2006 and is already in volume production.

The new devices include a hardware DES (Data Encryption Standard) accelerator and user-accessible CRC (Cyclic Redundancy Code) calculation block. The user EEPROM areas - which include 64 bytes of user OTP (One Time Programmable) memory - use highly reliable CMOS submicron technology, and provide 10-year data retention with a typical Erase/Write endurance of 500,000 cycles.

ST said operators need secure SIM products with increased memory capacity to store and handle the large amounts of data now used in a growing number of applications and services in mobile communications products, while maintaining overall performance and user-friendliness.

BCE creates Strategic Oversight Committee

The Board of Directors of BCE (Bell Canada Enterprises) has formed a committee of independent directors to oversee the its evaluation of a range of strategic alternatives. The announcement of the new committee follows the news last week that BCE is considering a buyout from a group of private investors.

Amdocs Wins 7-Year Managed Services Contract with AT&T

AT&T awarded a seven-year managed services agreement to Amdocs. Under the deal, Amdocs will provide application management services in support of AT&T's legacy ordering and wholesale platforms, including software development, testing, and production support. The project is to begin later this year.

Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Swisscom IT Services Names CEO

The Swisscom Board of Directors has appointed Eros Fregonas as the new CEO of the Group's IT subsidiary and member of the Swisscom Executive Board. Eros Fregonas is currently an independent consultant working in the finance and IT sector. Mr. Fregonas replaces Michael Shipton, who is leaving the company.

BT to acquire Comsat, Boosting its Latin American Presence

BT agreed to acquire Comsat International, a leading provider of data communication services for corporations and public sector organizations in Latin America, for an undisclosed sum.

Comsat International operates a fiber-based core network interconnecting the United States, Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Venezuela and Turkey.

Comsat International employs over 700 professionals with in-depth knowledge of Latin American markets and provides services directly in 15 countries.

As at the last audited balance sheet on 31 December 2005, the gross assets of Comsat International were $145 million.

Recently, Comsat has also been bidding for and acquiring WiMAX licenses throughout the region.
  • Comsat International traces its roots back to the early 1960s, when Comsat Corporation was created when President John F. Kennedy signed the Communications Satellite Act and paved the way for the formation of the first commercial enterprise dedicated to satellite communications. In the 1980's, Comsat International was formed as a subsidiary of Comsat Corp. to provide international communications services to major enterprises and other high end customers.

Google Acquires Marratech's Video Conferencing Software

Google has acquired video conferencing software developed by Marratech, a start-up based in Sweden. The software will enable from-the-desktop participation for Googlers in videoconference meetings wherever there's an Internet connection. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Marratech offers an e-meeting, collaboration solution that runs in a browser on Macs, Windows and Linux. As a "virtual office" application it includes whiteboards, multi-party video conferencing, VoIP, instant messaging and encryption.

Marratech's software is based on research from the Centre for Distance-Spanning Technology (CDT) at LuleƄ university of Technology, Sweden.