Sunday, May 27, 2007

Japan's FamilyMart Convenience Stores Accept DoCoMo Mobile Credit

FamilyMart, which operates approximately 7,000 convenience stores across Japan, and NTT DoCoMo formed a strategic alliance through a capital tie-up in which DoCoMo will acquire 2,930,500 shares of common stock (approximately 3% of the retailer).

From July 10, FamilyMart convenience stores nationwide will begin accepting mobile credit via DoCoMo's iD platform, thereby enabling users to make payments simply by waving their phones over a reader/writer. Currently, the iD platform is accepted in about 140 FamilyMart stores in Tokyo, Nagoya and Fukuoka cities.

Initially, FamilyMart will upgrade reader/writers at FamilyMart payment counters for compatibility with DoCoMo's ToruCa information-capture service, thereby enabling customers to download coupons and useful information into their DoCoMo phones. In addition, Osaifu-Keitai compatible reader/writers will be installed in "Famiport" multimedia terminals in all FamilyMart stores. These services will become available by the end of May 2008.

Norway's Largest Power Company Chooses PacketFront for FTTH

Norway's largest power utility company, Hafslund, selected PacketFront to build an open access FTTH network in Østlandet, the area in and around Oslo. The network will be open access and thus open to all service providers who wish to offer services through it. In the first stage, Hafslund will offer IPTV and other broadband services to selected cooperative housing areas in Oslo. PacketFront's partner, NetNordic, will be responsible for the integration of Hafslund's FTTH network. In addition, Datametrix will be responsible for the installation of the core network.

PacketFront described the project as one of the most important contracts in the Norwegian telecom sector. Financial terms were not disclosed.

ATEME Supplies Encoders for NHK's "Super Hi-vision" Project

ATEME's encoding technology was selected for use in the first public Ultra HD demonstration with MPEG-4 AVC (H.264) by NHK in Tokyo.

NHK's prototype Super Hi-vision (Ultrahigh-Definition Wide-Screen System) technology uses a video format with 7680 x 4320 pixels (16 times higher than standard Hi-vision, NHK's HDTV system). Super-fast cameras capture data at a rate of 4,000 frames per second and the audio component is 22.2 (as compared to today's 5.1 surround sound). A full specification for Ultra HD is expected by 2009, satellite transmission tests are predicted in 2011, and by 2020, NHK hopes that Ultra HD will be ready for broadcast to households.

ATEME said 18 minutes of uncompressed Ultra HD footage consumes 3.5 terabytes of data and one minute of uncompressed footage consumes 194 gigabytes. The use of ATEME's MPEG-4 AVC compression technology significantly reduces these requirements.

http://www.ateme.comIn November, NHK demonstrated live-relay DWDM transmission of Super Hi-Vision between Kamogawa of Chiba prefecture and NHK Science & Technical Research Laboratories.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Telstra Tests 40 Gbps Optical Transmission with Ericsson

Ericsson and Telstra completed a live network trial of 40 Gbps optical transmission technology. The trial was conducted over Telstra's existing 10Gbps 1,121 km coastal and 1,244 km inland optical fiber routes from Sydney to Melbourne.

Ericsson said its DWDM solution, Marconi MHL 3000, provides a seamless in service upgrade of capacity with minimal investment. The 40Gbps optical transmission technology is based on a new modulation format which exhibits high robustness against PMD (Polarization Mode Dispersion - a fiber characteristic which can limit high-speed transmission).

Alcatel-Lucent to Supply 802.16e-2005 WiMAX for Primus Canada

Primus Telecommunications Canada, the largest alternative communications carrier in Canada, and Mipps, a Canadian wireless operator that acquired 3.5 GHz licensed spectrum in most major cities across Canada, have selected Alcatel-Lucent's Evolium WiMAX solution to support market trials of IEEE 802.16e-2005 WiMAX broadband wireless access service.

Specifically, Mipps will deploy the Alcatel-Lucent 9100 Evolium WiMAX end-to-end radio solution, including base stations, Wireless Access Controller and Operation and Maintenance Center. Upon successful completion of the field trial, Primus Canada, through its strategic relationship with Mipps, will provide its subscribers with broadband access to high speed Internet and data transmissions with a guaranteed level of quality.

Alcatel-Lucent noted that more than 40 operators worldwide are deploying its WiMAX equipment.

CorEdge and Fujitsu Demo 10GbE MicroTCA

CorEdge Networks and Fujitsu Microelectronics America (FMA) are demonstrating a 10GbE MicroTCA implementation using CorEdge's 2U PicoTCA platform, which integrates a MicroTCA Carrier Hub (MCH), Power Module (PM), and up to four Advanced Mezzanine Cards (AMCs). Video streams are transferred between two of CorEdge's 10Gbps programmable AMCs through the 10GbE-capable MCH, using Fujitsu's MB8AA3020 20-port, 10 Gigabit Ethernet switch chip. 10GbE switching to the "fat pipe" region of the AMCs is enabled on the MCH by adding a 10GbE fabric module (CEN-FAB-E) to the base card. The Fujitsu MB8AA3020 20-port, 10 Gigabit Ethernet switch chip is the primary component for this module.

The demonstration is being given at the MicroTCA Summit in Baltimore, Maryland, between May 30th and June 1st. The companies said their demonstration addresses the need for 10Gbps data rate support in a MicroTCA environment, while also showing interoperability between leading commercial off-the-shelf (COTs) suppliers.

"We introduced the Fujitsu-based 10GbE fabric module for our MCH earlier this year," said Will Chu, president of CorEdge Networks. "This demonstration uses the fabric module to show that MicroTCA, in a form factor as small as our 2U PicoTCA platform, is ready to tackle 10GbE applications. It also reveals that CorEdge's 10GbE expertise is not only in switching, but also in providing 10GbE line card solutions using our programmable AMCs."


The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has canceled its forthcoming ITU TELECOM EUROPE 2007 event in Sofia, Bulgaria, which had been scheduled for December.

"Naturally, the decision to cancel an event is a disappointment. However, we feel that we have reached the best decision for all event stakeholders, given the constraints of time in which we found ourselves operating," Said ITU Secretary-General Dr Hamadoun Touré.

The next ITU event will take place in Africa and Asia in 2008. An announcement on ITU TELECOM AFRICA is expected imminently. ITU's flagship ITU TELECOM WORLD will take place in Geneva, Switzerland, 5−9 October 2009.

Nokia to Establish Research Facility at Tsinghua University

Nokia will establish a research center at Tsinghua University in Beijing. Tsinghua's professors and students will collaborate with NRC researchers on a wide range of topics; including wireless and Internet for Asia, interaction solutions for Asia, Mechanics & Hardware for Multimedia communications devices and mobile internet-based services. The collaboration will be substantial from the outset, with around 20 Nokia researchers working alongside 30 professors and associates and up to 50 students from Tsinghua.

Nokia has similar R&D arrangements with several world-class universities in the US, UK and Finland

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Boingo to Roam onto FON, More Than Doubling Its Hot Spot Network

Boingo Wireless signed a roaming agreement with FON, a Madrid-based start-up building a global community of Wi-Fi access point owners (or "foneros") willing to share their broadband connections. The roaming deal will provide Boingo users with access to an additional 130,000 hot spot locations -- more than doubling the company's network size.

The 130,000 Wi-Fi locations come from businesses and individuals who add their own hot spots to the FON community in exchange for the right to roam on other FON community locations for free or at a reduced rate. For Boingo users, these new locations provide a rich network of Wi-Fi locations in areas that complement Boingo's existing commercial locations.

Boingo said that access to the FON network will also benefit users of Boingo Mobile, its service for Wi-Fi-enabled handsets. Boingo Mobile users pay $7.95 per month for unlimited access to hot spots worldwide to make VoIP calls, use messaging services or surf the Internet from their handset.
  • In April 2007, Time Warner Cable agreed to allow and encourage 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

Parks Associates Predicts 60 Million IPTV Subscribers by 2012

The number of IPTV subscribers will reach nearly 60 million worldwide by year-end 2011, spurred by both aggressive and reactionary telco tactics, according to a new report from Parks Associates.

The new IPTV: From Quadruple Play to Multiplay report, which provides forecasts and analyses for the worldwide IPTV market, predicts television choices for European consumers in particular will expand greatly in the next several years, due to a growing number of IPTV providers per country, a surge in digital terrestrial offerings, and a resurgence of cable providers in certain markets.

While Asia has established solid growth to date, the Parks Associates' study finds that certain regulations may bar IPTV providers from offering truly differentiated content. Finally, North American growth, spurred by major Tier 1 providers, will reach solid numbers by the end of the forecast period.

"On a global scale, the IPTV experience is going to provide widely-varying levels of success and challenges," said Kurt Scherf, Parks Associates' vice president and principal analyst. "European incumbents are being encouraged now to enter non-traditional markets, and this has spurred not only growth of multi-channel television delivery, but a whole new level of reliance on residential gateways and the beginnings of truly converged communications services. Asian markets have, in many cases, the necessary infrastructure to support incredible television experiences, but providers may struggle to truly differentiate their offerings from cable competitors. Finally, the North American model for telcos is going to have to shift very quickly from a defensive to an offensive posture for Tier 1 providers to establish a foothold and actually build revenue per subscriber."

AudioCodes Releases VoIPerfect Solution for WiMAX CPE

AudioCodes released its "VoIPerfect" solution for WiMAX CPE applications, adapted for Intel WiMAX Connection 2250 (previously codenamed Rosedale 2) chipset. The AudioCodes toolkit includes a hardware reference design for a VoIP Analog Telephone Adapter (ATA) and a Linux-based SIP VoIP application, fully integrated and tested with the Intel WiMAX Connection 2250. A variety of vocoders are supported, including G.711, G.726, G.729, G.723.1, iLBC, etc., as well as wideband vocoders for HD voice quality.
Echo cancellation, T.38 Fax relay, conferencing and flexible telephony signals detection and generation are also supported. The solution also includes provisioning for Real Time Polling Service (RTPS) allowing dynamic allocation of bandwidth, which provides the Quality of Service (QoS) required for VoIP calls while optimizing the usage of the required bandwidth.

The AudioCodes VoIPerfect architecture, which has been deployed for over 12 years, includes a DSP firmware, media processing VoicePacketizer stack, SIP stack and call control layer for a complete SIP VoIP application. Additionally, an infrastructure is provided to allow the configuration and management of the stand-alone SIP VoIP application from the user's main application.

"With the growing number of WiMAX installations globally, service providers will want to enable their customers with voice as well as data," stated Shaul Weissman, Vice President, VoIP Processors, at AudioCodes. "Using our integrated VoIPerfect solution allows OEMs and ODMs to rapidly provide a VoIP enabled WiMAX CPE for such applications."

ViaSat Expands Agreement with WildBlue, Ordering 500,000 Terminals

WildBlue Communications awarded a requirements contract to ViaSat to supply the next 500,000 Ka-band satellite terminals to be deployed by WildBlue for use with its WildBlue-1 and Anik F2 satellites. Together with units already delivered, the number of terminals supplied by ViaSat is expected to exceed 750,000. The contract provides for potential expansion to other on-orbit Ka-band satellites that may be used by WildBlue. The contract, which also includes network infrastructure upgrades and software support services, could exceed a value of $200 million over the next three to five years, depending on the underlying market demand for WildBlue subscriber terminals.

"ViaSat and WildBlue have been working very closely together for a number of years to create a scaleable market for satellite broadband services," said ViaSat CEO Mark Dankberg. "WildBlue's impressive growth has shown there is very strong demand for high-quality, affordable satellite broadband service in rural America. We are extremely pleased to be a part of their continued growth."

ViaSat was first selected as the supplier of the WildBlue satellite networking system in 2001.
  • n March 2007, WildBlue Communications began offering Internet access services using its new Ka-band spot beam satellite, WildBlue-1. The new satellite allows WildBlue to more than triple its customer capacity, making high-speed Internet service available to more than 750,000 rural consumers throughout the continental United States. WildBlue expects that the additional capacity accessible on WildBlue-1 will be available to all areas of the contiguous United States by the second quarter of 2007. WildBlue will also continue to utilize its capacity on Anik F2, alongside WildBlue-1.

Hitachi's GPON Platform Receives USDA-RUS Acceptance

Hitachi Telecom's AMN1220 GPON product has been accepted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Utilities Service (RUS) for deployment under the Rural Development Broadband Loan and Loan Guarantee Program. Acceptance for the RUS program requires that the product is standards-compliant (ITU G.984.1 - 4 for GPON), has been deployed in a "revenue-generating service environment" with at least six months of operating experience, and is recommended by current customers.

RUS acceptance means that communities of up to 20,000 inhabitants can now install Hitachi's AMN1220 GPON Fiber to the Premises solution using funding obtained under the USDA Rural Development funding programs.

The Broadband Access Loan program provides loans for funding the costs of construction, improvement, and acquisition of facilities to provide broadband service to eligible rural communities.

Hitachi's GPON products for North America are compliant with ITU-T G.984 standards.

Voxant Partners With Dow Jones Online

Voxant has partnered with Dow Jones Online to make videos from The Wall Street Journal Online, and Barron's Online available through VSN's TheNewsRoom. Voxant offers proprietary "viral mashing" technology that allows the copyright-protected content to be "mashed" from TheNewsRoom and legally embedded on websites and blogs.

EarthLink to Launch Next Phase in Philadelphia Wi-Fi Rollout

The City of Philadelphia approved EarthLink's 15-square-mile Wi-Fi Proof of Concept (POC) area -- or test zone. In turn, EarthLink will continue building the 135-square-mile Wi-Fi mesh network, slated for citywide completion in the third quarter of 2007.

EarthLink will finance, build and manage the wireless network, and provide Wireless Philadelphia (the non- profit created by the City to manage the project) with revenue sharing fees to help support the non-profit and its Digital Inclusion programs.

EarthLink Wi-Fi for consumers offers download and upload speeds up to 1 Mbps for a limited time promotional rate of $6.95 a month for the first six months, returning to the recurring rate of $19.95 a month thereafter. A premium 3 Mbps download and 1 Mbps upload service is priced at $9.95 for the first six months, returning to the recurring rate of $21.95 a month thereafter. EarthLink will also offer business services.

AT&T Wins $30 Million Contract with Centers for Disease Control

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) awarded a $30 million contract to AT&T Government Solutions to provide Managed Telecommunications Services to multiple CDC locations throughout the country. AT&T will provide the CDC Information Technology Services Office with managed telecommunications and support services for its existing PBX and cabling systems. AT&T will also provide the CDC with a dedicated staff of employees responsible for maintaining and updating the CDC's telecommunications infrastructure.

The contract has a two-year base with a three-year option. AT&T will support 14 CDC locations in Atlanta, Ga.; Cincinnati, Ohio, and Hyattsville, Md. The CDC has approximately 6,500 employees.

Aruba Networks Posts Revenue of $34.7 Million

Aruba Networks reported quarterly revenues of $34.7 million, an increase of 65% from $21.0 million reported in the same quarter of last year. GAAP net loss for the quarter was $9.3 million, or $0.26 per share, compared to a net loss of $1.5 million, or $0.13 per share in the same quarter of 2006.

"Our momentum in the marketplace is reflected in our revenue growth, which increased during the quarter on both a sequential and year-over-year basis," said Dominic Orr, president and chief executive officer of Aruba Networks. "We continued to add new customers at a rapid rate and now have over 2,400 customers."

Sony Ericsson Joins the WiMAX Forum

Sony Ericsson has joined the WiMAX Forum.

"Sony Ericsson's membership in the WiMAX Forum is a logical step as we seek to understand the technology and the opportunities in the marketplace," said Mats Lindoff, Chief Technology Officer, Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB.

AT&T unveils Networx Transition Management Center

AT&T Government Solutions showcased its portfolio of products, services and capabilities for Networx Universal, a multibillion telecommunications network and services contract awarded by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA). At its Networx Universal Program Launch meeting , AT&T unveiled its Transition Management Center, where AT&T PMP-certified program managers and staff showcased tools, resources, inventory management and processes that will be used for agencies that will partner with AT&T for their transitions.

AT&T also detailed its products and services for Mobility, Network Disaster Recovery and Continuity of Operations, Security, Order Processing and Billing, Managed Services and Services Management, including its Web-based customer portal, BuisnessDirect.

RadiSys Releases Convedia CMS-3000 and CMS-9000 Media Servers

RadiSys announced the general availability of its Convedia CMS-3000 and CMS-9000 media servers, which are based on a modular hardware platform, incorporate the latest DSPs and processor chipsets and utilize the company's eXtended Media Processing (eXMP) technology.

The platforms are optimized for media-intensive IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) networks and can be used to enable fixed mobile convergence by delivering a shared IP media processing resource for any access network, including wireless, broadband, cable, PSTN or satellite. The media servers provide a standards-based Multimedia Resource Function Processor (MRFP) that can be shared across a broad range of IMS applications.

RadiSys said the processing of XML-based scripts for IVR applications, storing and retrieving multimedia files for messaging applications, as well as the growing use of low bit rate audio codecs, high complexity video codecs, and sophisticated VoIP security, including media encryption, require increasingly powerful and flexible IP media processing platforms.

The CMS-9000, a carrier-class IP media server, incorporates a family of new modular media processing cards. The processing cards are backwards compatible with CMS-6000 deployments, allowing existing customers to benefit from recent hardware advancements while fully protecting their investment in CMS-6000 systems.

The CMS-3000 media server, targeted at enterprise customers and smaller service providers, incorporates eXMP media processing technology in a 1RU network appliance packaging. Both products are backwards compatible with management and control interfaces from RadiSys, and meet or exceed Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) environmental standards for telecommunication equipment.