Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Toshiba Launches Enhanced Softphone

Toshiba America Information Systems launched its newly enhanced SoftIPT softphone.

Compatible with Toshiba's family of Strata CIX IP business communications systems, the new Toshiba SoftIPT 2.1 wirelessly extends the features and functionality of Toshiba desktop telephones to suitably equipped PDAs running Pocket PC 2003, Pocket PC Windows Mobile 5.0/6.0, SmartPhone Windows Mobile 5.0/6.0 as well as notebook computers, tablet PCs, and PCs running Windows 2000 or Windows XP and soon to be released for Windows Vista. The softphone enables users to access their desktop telephone features from virtually any location by connecting to the enterprise's Toshiba Strata CIX IP business communications system through 802.11 wireless networks or virtually anywhere there is Internet access. The new SoftIPT is fully compatible with Toshiba's new IP User Mobility feature and is a supported IP station that work in conjunction with Toshiba's Video Communication Solution (VCS).

Pakistan's Mobilink Chooses DragonWave for WiMAX Backhaul

Mobilink, a subsidiary of Orascom Telecom Holding has selected DragonWave's Horizon Compact high capacity IP backhaul product to provide 270 wireless backhaul links for a new nationwide WiMAX Network in Pakistan. Initial rollout will begin in the cities of Islamabad,
Karachi and Lahore. Financial terms were not disclosed.

DragonWave's Horizon Compact product will be used to enable Mobilink to backhaul traffic from their nationwide WiMAX deployments with a native IP backhaul solution. DragonWave's solution is providing high capacity IP backhaul as a fiber replacement and an economical and efficient way to provide full coverage across the country. The new network will provide data and other applications like VoIP access to enterprise, government,
residential and municipalities.

DragonWave's Horizon product operates within both licensed and
unlicensed radio frequencies in the 11-to-38-GHz range. It also features ultra-low latency, wire-speed native Ethernet connectivity up to 800 Mbps full duplex.
  • In September 2007, Pakistan Mobile Communications Limited (Mobilink), a leading mobile operator in Pakistan and a wholly owned subsidiary of Orascom Telecom Holding, awarded a contract to Alcatel-Lucent to participate in deploying Pakistan's first live network based on the Universal 802.16e-2005 WiMAX solution. The network will cover major cities in Pakistan, including Karachi, the nation's financial capital and the major business center.

  • Based on the latest IEEE 802.16e-2005 standards (also called Rev-e), the new WiMAX network will be deployed in the 3.5 GHz spectrum enabling rapid implementation of broadband services available in fixed and nomadic environments. It will deliver high-speed internet access, enabling the delivery of advanced broadband multimedia services, such as video streaming, through a variety of end-user devices including laptops, desktop computers, modems and WiMAX terminals.

RadiSys Posts Q3 Revenue of $84 Million

RadiSys announced revenues of $83.6 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2007 and a net loss of $2.5 million or $0.11 per share. Non-GAAP net income for the third quarter was $2.8 million or $0.11 per diluted share. Non-GAAP results in the third quarter excluded a loss of $0.22 per share, primarily attributable to the impact of acquisition-related expenses and stock-based compensation expense.

Commenting on the financial results for the quarter, Scott Grout, President and CEO stated, "I am pleased with our results in the third quarter. We grew revenues by 11% sequentially, and our non-GAAP earnings were up nicely from the prior quarter driven by higher revenues and an improved gross margin rate. We are also excited about our recent acquisition of the ATCA and cPCI assets of Intel's MCPD business. This acquisition further solidifies our leadership position in ATCA and communications platforms, broadens our base of customers and enhances our global operations and market penetration. The early stages of the integration are going well, and we currently project that this business will be cash flow positive in the fourth quarter."

Conexant Cuts Wireless In Restructuring

Conexant Systems reported quarterly revenues of $183.9 million, including a non-recurring royalty of approximately $4 million related to an existing license agreement. Core gross margins were 44.7 percent of revenues. Core operating expenses were $90.3 million. The core operating loss was $8.0 million, and the core net loss was $18.5 million, or $0.04 per share.

In addition, the company announced that it will terminate further investments in "stand-alone"" products for wireless networking but will continue to support DSL gateway solutions that incorporate wireless-networking capability. Conexant will eliminate approximately 140 positions worldwide. The company said it plans to maintain the staffing levels required to support existing wireless networking customers with current solutions. Conexant's remaining wireless employees will join the company's Broadband Access organization and support DSL gateways that incorporate wireless connectivity.

The company has also discontinued further investments in developing network processor solutions and packet switch products, and terminating its investment in HomePlug networking. In each case, the company will support current customers that are using existing products.

"In the fourth fiscal quarter, we made solid progress across multiple fronts," said Dan Artusi, Conexant president and chief executive officer. "We delivered on the performance expectations we established at the beginning of the quarter, we restructured our business and took action that will significantly reduce expenses, and we narrowed our business and product focus.

"Including the wireless networking actions announced today, we have reduced our worldwide workforce by approximately 20 percent over the past five weeks," Artusi said. "We will continue working to narrow our product-development focus in order to improve our engineering execution and our ability to deliver innovative, cost-effective solutions to customers on schedule. At this point, our most important company priority is to return to breakeven financial performance as quickly as possible."

TrendChip Offers New ADSL2+ Chipset

Taiwan's TrendChip Technologies announced a new ADSL2+ chipset composed of an ADSL2+ processor and an Analog Front End (AFE). The chipset is targeted at ADSL2+ Bridge, Router, and WiFi Gateway applications.

TrendChip said its design features a high performance ADSL2+ CPE processor with enhanced DMT structure and optimized cache architecture, which provides high processing power, enhanced Impulse Noise Protection (INP) capability for IPTV, advanced IP routing and bridging functionalities, QoS support, and high throughput performance. In addition, a new SPI (Serial Peripheral Interface) flash boot up feature allows customers to adopt serial flash memory and helps lower the memory component cost. By adding a second UART interface, designers can connect to new peripherals like Bluetooth and DECT cordless chips to develop value-added applications.

Sea Launch Prepares for Thuraya-3

Sea Launch has left its home port of Long Beach, California and is preparing for the launch of the Thuraya-3 satellite on November 13 from an equatorial launch site in Pacific.

Boeing designed and built the GEO-Mobile (GEM) spacecraft for Thuraya Satellite Telecommunications Company, which is based in the United Arab Emirates. Boeing also built, and Sea Launch successfully deployed into orbit, Thuraya-1 (October 20, 2000) and Thuraya-2 (June 10, 2003). The satellites are designed to provide a range of mobile voice and data services over large geographic regions.

Thuraya, the world's largest provider of handheld mobile satellite services, is preparing to operate commercially in Asia-Pacific markets as early as January 2008, when Thuraya-3 is expected to become operational. Thuraya's expansion towards East Asia will allow it to provide its proven and highly affordable voice, IP and rural telephony services to thousands of private, public and business customers in the densely populated Asian region.
  • In January 2007, Sea Launch experience the total loss of the NSS-8 spacecraft, which exploded at launch from its Odyssey Platform in the equatorial Pacific. The Odyssey Launch Platform sustained limited damage. Commander ship was not damaged during the launch attempt, as it was positioned four miles from the Launch Platform at the time of lift-off.

MySpace and Google Collaborate on OpenSocial APIs

MySpace and Google are joining forces to launch OpenSocial-- a set of common APIs for building social applications across the web. MySpace will provide critical user mass and platform guidance.

The companies said the OpenSocial standards will to evolve through contribution from the open source community and as new features are developed by various partners. Global members of the OpenSocial community include, Friendster, hi5, Hyves, imeem, LinkedIn, Ning, Oracle, orkut, Plaxo,, Six Apart, Tianji, Viadeo, and XING.

Verizon FiOS TV Readies for 150 HD Channels

Verizon announced plans for a fivefold increase in the number of HD channels carried by its FiOS TV service. In the spring of 2008, Verizon will begin expanding its HD lineup as well as the sports and multicultural program offerings on FiOS TV. Verizon initially will double the current number of HD channels, on a market-by-market basis, to more than 60, including additional sports channels. Verizon expects to have more than 150 HD channels by year-end 2008 as it continues to add to its HD lineup and programmers launch new channels. The company also will add standard-definition sports, multicultural and other programming during the year.

In addition to the expanded HD channel lineup, Verizon said it will offer HD programming through its video-on-demand library, which already totals more than 10,000 titles. Before the end of 2007, Verizon expects to introduce a limited number of HD on-demand titles, which will increase to more than 1,000 HD titles in 2008.

Verizon Shareholders to Vote on Executive Compensation

The Board of Directors of Verizon Communications adopted a policy that provides for an annual advisory vote related to executive compensation beginning in 2009. The company is also amending its executive severance policy to define more specifically the types of payments included in the calculation of severance payments.

Cisco Broadens its Activities, Investments and Sourcing in China

Cisco CEO John Chambers unveiled a multi-year investment initiative aimed at strengthening its business commitments and long-term corporate strategy in China. Highlights of Cisco's multi-year investment program include:

  • A significant increase in local procurement. In the past five years, Cisco has purchased more than USD $7 billion worth of China-sourced components and services, a critical part of the company's virtual manufacturing supply chain. According to Cisco estimates, these procurement commitments provide employment to 50,000 people in manufacturing management roles and through contract manufacturing and supplier partners.

  • The total value of Cisco's commitments in China since 2002 are estimated at more than USD $8.5 billion, and under the initiative announced today, could expand to approximately USD $16 billion during the next five years, including significant increases in materials procurement, and increases in education, Cisco Capital, research and development, direct and indirect investments and sales and service operations.

  • A Memorandum of Understanding with China Development Bank to explore a joint investment program that would provide capital and expertise for innovative Chinese businesses. The initiative is intended to support high-growth Chinese companies over multiple sectors, with a focus on information technology, "green" innovators, and other key segments

  • A commitment to expansion of the Cisco Networking Academies program in cooperation with China's Ministry of Education to add 300 additional academies in vocational colleges during the next three years, with a specific focus on China's central and western provinces. Currently, there are more than 200 Networking Academies in 70 cities throughout China, which have trained more than 90,000 students since inception. The new initiatives will add the capacity to train an additional 100,000 students by 2010. Cisco will also donate more than USD $6 million worth of networking equipment to assist in establishing labs in the new academies.

  • A memorandum of understanding with Alibaba Group, China's largest business-to-business (B2B) on-line portal. Under the MOU, Cisco and Alibaba will explore ways to jointly offer collaboration and business management solutions to small and medium businesses (SMBs) in China. Under a previous agreement, Cisco will also invest USD $17.5 million in Limited, a subsidiary of Alibaba Group, as part of its planned initial public offering on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, becoming one of only eight cornerstone investors in the listing

  • Establishment of incremental funding up to USD $400 million for Cisco Systems Capital China for providing financing facilities to Cisco customers in China during the next three to five years. Cisco Systems Capital China commenced captive financing operations in June 2006 and has funded USD $60 million in customer assets to date.

  • The establishment of Cisco's first global "green" technology center to address the increasing need for sustainable development, energy efficiency, reduction of electronic waste, and emission reductions inside and outside of China. The center will also augment existing programs underway by Cisco China's R&D teams in the area of application specific integrated circuits (ASIC) power efficiency design and expand this into other product areas.

  • Establishment of product and research teams to develop innovative networking equipment to address the SMB (small and medium business) market and emerging countries markets, leveraging local design and manufacturing resources.

Cisco first established operations in China in 1994 and now employs more than 2,300 staff in sales, customer support and service, research and development, BPO/IT outsourcing, Cisco Capital and manufacturing. The company has 12 offices in China, a major R&D facility in Shanghai, Scientific Atlanta R&D/manufacturing facilities, as well as several development centers supporting WebEx, which Cisco acquired in March 2007.

Cisco to Acquire Securent for Security Auditing Software

Cisco agreed to acquire Securent, a start-up offering policy management software for enterprises, for approximately $100 million in cash and assumed options.

Securent, which is based in Mountain View, California with development offices in Hyderabad, offers an Entitlement Management Solution (EMS), an XACML standard-based solution that allows organizations to create, enforce, review, and audit fine-grained access policies across heterogeneous application and IT environments distributed throughout the enterprise, all with centralized management and visibility.

Cisco said Securent's software will enable its customers to protect and secure valuable application data regardless of vendor, platform, or operating system while still allowing ubiquitous access to the content workers and their collaborative communities need to be productive. By delivering policy from the network, Cisco will simplify entitlement decisions for all communications, collaboration and other third party applications.

"As enterprises shift to service-oriented architectures and adopt technologies such as Unified Communications and Web 2.0 based collaboration, there is a rising need for control over access to distributed enterprise resources," said Don Proctor, senior vice president, Cisco's Collaboration Software Group.
  • Securent was founded in 2004 and is backed by funding from Greylock Partners and ONSET Ventures. The company has 57 employees.

  • Securent is headed by Rajiv Gupta, who previously was the Founder and CEO of Confluent Software, where he led efforts for the successful development and growth of its policy-based web-services management product, before Confluent was acquired by Oblix in 2004. Before founding Confluent, Gupta spent 11 years at Hewlett-Packard, most recently as the General Manager of the E-speak Division.

  • Cisco's 2007 acquisitions include: Securent, Navini Networks, Latigent, Cognio, Reactivity, Broadware, Spanslogic, WebEx, NeoPath Networks, Five Across, and IronPort Systems.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Taiwan's Chunghwa: 26% of Broadband Lines Exceed 8 Mbps, 350K IPTV Users

Chunghwa Telecom, the incumbent operator in Taiwan, was serving 4.22 million broadband subscribers (including ADSL and FTTB subscribers) at the end of September 2007, a 6.3% increase compared to the same period of last year. At the end of September 2007, the number of ADSL and FTTB subscriptions with service speed greater than 8 Mbps reached 1.12 million, representing 26.4% of total broadband subscribers. There were 81,000 net HiNet FTTB additions in Q3, bringing the total number of HiNet FTTB subscribers to 391k.

Also, Chunghwa had 358k MOD (IPTV) subscribers, with 24k new subscriptions added during the third quarter; a 74.1% increase year-over-year.

Some additional highlight's from the Q3 2007 financial report:

  • Total revenue increased by 10.0% to NT$52.1 billion

  • Internet and data revenue grew 5.6%; ADSL & FTTB increased by 4.1%

  • Mobile revenue grew 1.4%; Mobile VAS revenue increased by 32.4%

  • Net income totaled NT$11.9 billion, an increase of 6.8%

  • Fixed-line declines have been decelerated over the past nine months, with total fixed-line revenue declining 2.6% to NT$45.9 billion, compared to the 6.4% decline in the first nine months of FY2006. International Long Distance revenue increased 4.4%, primarily driven by the significant revenue growth in international prepaid cards and the wholesale business. This was offset by the 3.9% Local revenue decrease and the 7.2% Domestic Long Distance revenue decrease, mainly due to mobile and VoIP substitution.

  • Capital expenditures totaled NT$15.8 billon for the nine months ended September 30, 2007, of which 83% was for wire line equipment (including fixed- line and Internet and data) and 15% was for wireless equipment. Capital expenditures were down 14.6% from the NT$18.5 billion for the nine months ended September 30, 2006, mainly due to a NT$3.4 billion decrease in mobile spending.

  • Chunghwa had 8.66 million mobile subscribers, with net additions of 75k during the third quarter. Chunghwa had 308k net additions to its 3G subscriber base during the third quarter, bringing total 3G subscribers to 1.99 million.

Alcatel-Lucent Posts Q3 Revenue and Presents Restructuring Indicatives

Alcatel-Lucent reported Q3 revenue of Euro 4.35 Billion, up 2.3% sequentially and down 7.8 % year-over-year at constant EUR/USD exchange rate. Gross margin improved sequentially to 34.2%. The company also presented new restructuring initiatives.

"As you can see our results this quarter were essentially in line with the update we provided on September 13, and in a few areas a bit better; however they are still not at a level that we are satisfied with, commented CEO Pat Russo.

Alcatel-Lucent's Board of Directors expressed its support for a newly presented restructuring plan. Key points of the plan include:

  • Streamlining the core carrier business, accelerated product cost improvement with increased portfolio focus on IP transformation of wireline and wireless networks.

  • Enhancing growth by developing an offensive strategy on sectors offering a strong growth potential, namely: high value added services and applications for the carrier markets; solutions for the enterprise markets and Industry and Public Sector; streamlining the organization into a simplified model with a focused management committee with clear accountabilities and ownership to quickly execute the plans.

  • Lowering the cost structure, especially in support functions and other savings arising from the realigned and streamlined Carrier business Group. The company expects that this plan will result in incremental savings of Euro 400 million in gross margin and comparable operating expenses by the end of year 2009. This implies an acceleration of our ongoing headcount targets into 2008 with incremental reductions of about 4,000 by 2009.

Some highlights for Q3 2007

  • Revenue for the carrier business segment was Euro 3,142 million compared to Euro 3,706 million in the year-ago quarter, an 8% decrease at a constant Euro/USD exchange rate, or a 15% decrease at current rate. Adjusted operating income (loss) was Euro 22 million, a 0.7% operating margin.

  • Revenue for the wireline business group was Euro 1,520 million compared to Euro 1,447 million in the year-ago quarter, an 8% increase at a constant Euro/USD exchange rate, or a 5% increase at current rate.

  • Revenues were very strong in optical networking with good growth in terrestrial and a robust increase in submarine. Metro and long-haul WDM exhibited a very strong performance. North America, Europe and South and Asia-Pacific increased on a regional basis.

  • Broadband access also demonstrated a solid quarter in DSL with 8.0 million lines delivered (24.9 million lines delivered year to date), up 19% year over year, with strong traction in North America.

  • Revenue for the wireless business segment was Euro 1,276 million compared to Euro 1,674 million in the year-ago quarter, a 20% decrease at a constant Euro/USD exchange rate, or a 24% decrease at current rate.

  • The wireless revenue decline was largely due to a comparison with very strong CDMA results in North America in the year-ago quarter, when significant initial revenues were booked for the deployment of CDMA2000 1x-EV-DO Rev A by major operators following the commercial availability of the enabling software. Sequentially, CDMA revenue slightly grew as CDMA gained outside North America, primarily in India, and Rev A deployments continued in North America and globally.

  • Revenue in GSM declined from the year-ago quarter but continued to gain traction with its second consecutive strong sequential increase, notably with new product offerings (Twin TRX and ATCA BSC).

  • Revenue for the convergence business group was Euro 346 million compared to Euro 585 million in the year-ago quarter, a 39% decrease at a constant Euro/USD exchange rate, or a 41% decrease at current rate.

  • Classic core switching revenue continued to decline. In the multimedia and payment businesses, revenues were negatively impacted by the declining market in pre-paid payment solutions. Investments continued in order to evolve IPTV capabilities, including the acquisition of Tamblin, a London-based developer of applications and tools that enables interactive TV programming and advertising over IP.

  • Revenue for the enterprise business segment was Euro 380 million compared to Euro 362 million in the year-ago quarter, an 8% increase at a constant Euro/USD exchange rate, or a 5% increase at current rate. Adjusted operating income (loss) was Euro 29 million, a 7.6% operating margin. Revenues increased across all parts of the enterprise business, with a very strong performance in the Asia-Pacific region.

  • Revenue for the services business segment was Euro 777 million compared to Euro 775 million in the year-ago quarter, a 3% increase at a constant Euro/USD exchange rate, or flat at current rate. Adjusted operating income (loss) was Euro 40 million, a 5.1% operating margin.

  • Year-to-date the company has reduced headcount of 5,000 people before the impact of managed services and acquisitions (approximately 1,350 people). The company plans to achieve its synergy-related comparable pre-tax savings of Euro 600 million this year.

  • For the fourth quarter 2007 the company expects a solid ramp up in revenue over the third quarter 2007. For the full year, given some of the recent uncertainty seen in the market, revenues are likely to be around flat at Euro/USD exchange rate which is at the low end of the range previously provided.

Alcatel-Lucent Announces Senior Management Change

Alcatel-Lucent has named Hubert de Pesquidoux as its new Chief Financial Officer (CFO), replacing Jean-Pascal Beaufret, who is leaving the company to pursue other opportunities. Hubert de Pesquidoux currently leads the Enterprise Group of Alcatel-Lucent.

As part of its plan to improve profitability it has streamlined its regional structure, the company will create two regional structures, one for the Americas and one that includes Asia Pacific, Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Frederic Rose, who currently heads the Asia-Pacific Region, will assume additional responsibilities for the company's current Europe & North and Europe & South regions. Cindy Christy, will lead the Americas Region. Frederic Rose and Cindy Christy will continue to report directly to Patricia Russo. Olivier Picard, head of the Europe and South region will continue to oversee the Europe and South region, reporting to and serving as deputy to Frederic Rose. Christian Reinaudo, head of the Europe and North region, will be leaving the company to pursue other opportunities.

In addition, CEO Patricia Russo has established a seven-member management committee reporting directly to her to lead the overall operation of the company. The management committee will comprise seven business leaders: Cindy Christy, Americas Region; Etienne Fouques, who oversees Research, CTO, Strategy and Corporate Marketing; John Meyer, head of Services; Claire Pedini, head of Corporate Human Resources and Communications; Hubert de Pesquidoux, CFO; Michel Rahier, who leads the Carrier Business Group; and Frederic Rose, Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific. Janet Davidson, Chief Compliance Officer and head of the Integration and IT, will serve as secretary for the committee.

Telindus Offers Unified Communication Solutions from ShoreTel

Telindus, the European specialist in ICT solutions and services, will sell ShoreTel products to deliver unified communications as a managed service. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Telindus operates in 14 countries in Western Europe, Sweden, Hungary, China and Thailand. Telindus' headquarters are in Belgium.
  • In January 2006, Telindus joined the Belgacom Group, becoming the IT Services division of the market's new business leader.

Windstream to Bundles TiVo DVR & High-Speed Internet Access

Windstream will begin offering bundled internet and TiVo DVR services in 2008. Windstream has approximately 3.3 million access lines across 16 states.

Huawei Collaborates with ITU on Emerging Market Initiatives

Huawei Technologies signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) to jointly promote telecom technologies in developing countries. Under the MOU, Huawei and ITU will work together to improve connectivity in rural and remote areas in emerging markets, as well as to close gaps in broadband backbone networks. As a first step, the two parties will use Huawei's existing training centers in India and Nigeria to provide telecommunications training for local talent. Huawei operates 22 training centers across the world, with 12 strategically located in developing countries including India, Nigeria and Egypt.

Allot Announces First Commercial Deployment its New Service Gateway

Allot Communications announced the first commercial deployment of the Allot Service Gateway, Omega Series (SG-Omega). The Service Gateway provides a platform for broadband providers to build secure, manageable and profitable intelligent networks, optimized to deliver Internet-based content and services.

The Service Gateway has recently been deployed at a major DSL Internet service provider in the Asia Pacific region. The Service Gateway is operating on 10 Gigabit Ethernet lines, intelligently managing high-volume IP flows on its core network. The Service Gateway is also undergoing evaluations at additional carriers. The name of the carrier was not disclosed.

The SG-Omega leverages Layer-7 DPI technology and supports throughput of over 20 Gigabits per second on a single platform. The platform can be configured with up to four 10-Gigabit Ethernet interfaces that support two 10-Gigabit Ethernet lines and can process up to 20 million concurrent IP flows. The Service Gateway is based on an AdvancedTCA chassis for deployment in service provider networks. Its resilient hardware and software architecture ensures platform stability and availability through hot-swappable blades, efficient N+1 redundancy within the chassis, and internal hardware and software bypass mechanisms that protect against failures.

Avaya Launches "Master Reseller" Channel Programs Focused on SMBs

Avaya launched two programs that broaden its support for sales channels. Specifically, the Avaya Master Reseller program is enabling select Avaya BusinessPartners to recruit and train independent sales agents who work under their direction to sell Avaya's small and mid-sized business portfolio. Many of the new agents are companies that specialize in data networking but want to offer their clients ready access to voice solutions as well.

To date, 10 Master Resellers are working with more than 300 independent sales agents across North America. Avaya supports the program with a special educational program for new agents and with dedicated account managers and distribution managers for each Master Reseller.

Verizon Business Joins Internet2

Verizon Business has joined Internet2 as a corporate member.

The company plans to collaborate with the Internet2 community on projects involving advanced optical networking as well as in areas of next-generation content delivery and network security.