Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Huawei Wins WiMAX 16e Project with Pakistan's Mobilink

Pakistan's Mobilink, the nation's largest GSM operator and a subsidiary of Orascom Telecom, has selected Huawei Technologies, to deploy a commercial WiMAX 16e network. The network will cover central business districts and hot spots in the country' s six major cities, including Islamabad, Karachi, Sialkot, Faisalabad, Lahore and Rawalpindi. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Under the terms of the contract, Huawei will provide Mobilink with a complete WiMAX solution including distributed base stations, an access service network-Gateway and a network management system.

Huawei noted that it has won 19 commercial WiMAX contracts to date.


Nortel Names Asia-Pac Execs

Nortel announced the appointments of Jackson Wu and François Lançon as the new leaders of its Greater China and Asia Pacific Regions respectively. Michael Pangia -- formerly President of a combined Asia region -- is returning to North America as senior vice-president, Global Sales Operations and Strategy.

Wu, a 15 year Nortel veteran, has led the Greater China team since August 2006. François Lançon is appointed Leader for Asia Pacific, and will assume leadership for customer and market engagements throughout the Asia Pacific region -- encompassing the ASEAN countries of South East Asia, Australia and New Zealand, India, Pakistan and Japan. Lançon previously led the Enterprise Solutions business for the Asia Region.http://www.nortel.com

Hokkaido-Sakhalin Cable Activated -- Shortest Fiber Route from Tokyo to Europe

Russia's TransTeleCom and NTT Communications activated commercial service on the Hokkaido-Sakhalin Cable System (HSCS), which directly links the two companies' telecom networks via an undersea cable between Nevelsk, Sakhalin in Russia and Ishikari, Hokkaido, Japan, began commercial operation on July 3.

The two companies jointly started to construct the fiber-optic submarine cable HSCS in 2007 and the work was completed in December 2007. HSCS measures 570 km in length and has a capacity of 640 Gbps.

The carriers noted that this cable established the shortest fiber route between Japan and Europe. Alternate routes travel through southern Asia and the Indian Ocean or trans-Pacific, via the United States, and then trans-Atlantic.

The HSCS route will be added to the backbone of NTT Com's secure, scalable Arcstar Global IP-VPN Service (MPLS) beginning August 2008.http://www.ntt.co.jphttp://transtk.ru/www/nsf/esite.nsf/

Bell Canada Finalizes Financing for Privatization, Sabia Steps Down

BCE announced a final agreement with a company formed by an investor group led by Teachers' Private Capital, the private investment arm of the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, Providence Equity Partners, Madison Dearborn Partners, and Merrill Lynch Global Private Equity. Key terms include:

  • The purchase price will remain $42.75 per common share;

  • The Purchaser and the Lenders have delivered fully negotiated and executed credit documents for the purpose of funding the transaction, including an executed credit agreement and other key financing documents;

  • The reverse break fee payable by the Purchaser in the circumstances contemplated by the definitive agreement has been increased to $1.2 billion;

  • Closing will occur on or before December 11, 2008; and

  • Prior to closing, the company will not pay dividends on its common shares but will continue to pay dividends on its preferred shares.

"The final agreement, with definitive financing now in place, preserves the $42.75 per common share price announced last June, which the Board believes is very much in the best interest of shareholders, the company and Bell Canada, particularly given current capital market conditions," said BCE and Bell Canada Board Chair Richard J. Currie. "As previously announced, BCE secured all third party approvals prior to the June 30 deadline set out in the original agreement," added Mr. Currie.

In addition, Michael Sabia has stepped down as CEO of BCE and Bell Canada. He had previously indicated that he would leave the company once the privitization deal was done. BCE has confirmed George Cope as Mr. Sabia's successor as Chief Executive Officer of BCE and Bell Canada, effective July 11. Cope has served as President and Chief Operating Officer of Bell Canada since October 2005,http://www.bce.ca

WiMAX Forum Supports European Commission's 2.6 GHz Harmonization

The WiMAX Forum congratulated the European Commission on the completion of new regulation relating to the 2.6 GHz (2500-2690MHz) frequency band, which are key bands for Mobile WiMAX.

The 2.6 GHz decision* was unanimously supported in the European Commission's Radio Spectrum Committee, and it affords European Union administrations to make decisions in relation to the technology, services and usage that can be deployed within the band. It also offers administrations flexibility over the balance of paired (FDD) and unpaired (TDD) spectrum that can be awarded to operators, and provides the essential technical framework. The intention is that the market can decide which technology to deploy in this band, determine the most appropriate use of this spectrum, and create significant opportunities through opening the spectrum which will benefit all consumers.

"The 2.6 GHz decision is the result of many months of work by the European Commission, supported by the CEPT Electronic Communications Committee (ECC) and its project teams," said Ron Resnick, president of the WiMAX Forum. "The WiMAX Forum Regulatory Working Group - and its European Regional Task Group in particular - contributed extensively to support and encourage this work via participation in the relevant ECC activities. The WiMAX Forum is excited to see additional progress being made in Europe to further empower the individual governing bodies to make decisions on telecommunications service availability for its citizens."

The WiMAX Forum noted that this decision was made in addition to the recently published European Commission Decision 2008/411/EC harmonizing the 3.5 GHz band for electronic communications services and represents a key milestone in the drive to advance new liberalized approaches to spectrum management within the European Commission WAPECS ("Wireless Access Policy for Electronic Communications Services") initiative.http://www.wimaxforum.orghttp://ec.europa.eu/information_society/policy/radio_spectrum/index_en.htm

ESA Orders first 30 GALILEO Satellites

The European Commission and the European Space Agency (ESA) initiated the procurement process for the first 30 dedicated navigation satellites under the GALILEO program. The European Parliament and the Council have allocated a budget of € 3.4 billion for the European satellite navigation programmes EGNOS and Galileo for the period 2007-2013 and provided for an agreement on the governance structure of the programmes. This revised framework provides for the deployment of the full operational capability (FOC) of Galileo under a public procurement scheme, entirely financed out of the EU budget.

By 2013 Galileo is expected to be supporting five main services, namely the Open Service, the Safety of Life Service, the Commercial Service, the Public Regulated Service, and the Search and Rescue Service.http://emits.esa.inthttp://www.europa.eu

Deutche Telekom Launches "Life is for Sharing" Branding Campaign

Deutsche Telekom has kicked off a new branding campaign using the slogan "Life is for sharing".

Deutsche Telekom said the new slogan expresses a brand philosophy that will complete its changeover to a simplified brand architecture. There are now only three brands under the "T": T Home (services for the home), T Mobile (services for on the move), T Systems (services for business customers).http://www.telekom.de

BT Wins Outsourcing contract with UK's Nationwide Building Society

BT was awarded a seven year outsourcing deal worth £160 million by Nationwide Building Society. As part of the contract, BT will deliver a service transformation programme under which they will consolidate Nationwide's multiple networks onto its industry-leading 21CN Global network which will support both voice and data services on a single converged platform. BT will also deliver enhanced remote access facilities to Nationwide's non-office based employees. In addition, Nationwide will transfer all voice and data networking infrastructure, third party network contracts and in-scope staff to BT.http://www.btplc.com

Panasonic Mobile and NTT DATA Reach Agreement

Panasonic Mobile Communications and NTT DATA Corporation reached a basic agreement on a capital and business alliance on Panasonic Mobile & System Engineering Co., Ltd. (PMSE). , a wholly- owned subsidiary of Panasonic Mobile. Under the deal, NTT DATA will take over 60 percent of the shares issued of PMSE.

Panasonic Mobile will employ NTT DATA Group's technologies and know-how of system development and experience to enhance its mobile software business. This partnership will enable Panasonic Mobile to strengthen its development capabilities in the technology of product differentiation and reinforce its competitiveness in the mobile phone business which is one of core businesses in Matsushita Group.

VMware Acquires B-hive Networks for Application Performance Mgt.

VMware has acquired B-hive Networks, a start-up specializing in application performance management software. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. B-hive is based in San Mateo, California, and principal R&D facilities in Herzliya, Israel.

VMware said the B-hive team and technology will enhance its portfolio of application and infrastructure management products by offering proactive performance management and service level reporting for applications running within virtual machines.

B-hive technology brings insight into the performance of applications and the ability to automate changes using VMware's datacenter virtualization and management suite, VMware Infrastructure, to reallocate resources as needed to ensure service level objectives. In addition, with this acquisition, B-hive's R&D facility and team will form the core of VMware's new development center in Israel.http://www.vmware.comhttp://www.vmware.com/whatsnew/bhive.html

Southern Cross Cables Selects Nortel 40G

Southern Cross Cables has selected Nortel's 40G optical technology for its Southern Cross network, which provides the major link for Internet traffic from Australia, New Zealand and Fiji to the US, as well as linking Hawaii to the US mainland. Specifically, Southern Cross is upgrading its terrestrial optical network in the USA from its current 10G technology to 40G to give its customers the means to serve bandwidth-intensive applications like high-definition video conferencing, and at a lower cost than has been possible until now.

Nortel said its 40G/100G Adaptive Optical Engine will in future be able to deliver speeds of up to 100G or 10 times the current offering . The same 40G platform can be extended on to Southern Cross' Submarine segments.

Nortel's solution for Southern Cross is based on Nortel's flagship OME 6500, an optical convergence platform that supports transponding, TDM and Ethernet switching on a single device, allowing service providers a smooth migration to a reliable and scalable Ethernet infrastructure while maintaining minimal infrastructure costs. The OME 6500 features Nortel's unique electronic dynamically compensating optics (eDCO) technology that enables fiber spans of up to 2,000 kilometers without the need for costly regeneration equipment. OME 6500 has been deployed in over 200 networks globally, including with Verizon Business across Europe and Asia.http://www.nortel.comhttp://www.southerncrosscables.com
  • On March 31, 2008, Southern Cross lit up another 260 Gbps of capacity, or 130 Gbps on each of its two submarine fibre-optic cables that directly connect both Australia and New Zealand to the US Internet. When completed later this year the current upgrade will take Southern Cross total installed capacity to 860 Gbps.

Cisco Targets Venture Investments on Russia and CIS

Cisco will make an anchor investment in a venture capital fund that will focus on Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). In collaboration with Almaz Capital Partners, Cisco has made the anchor investment in Almaz Capital Russia Fund, which has initially closed at $60 million.

Almaz Capital Partners will seek investment opportunities and manage the fund's investments. The target companies for the fund primarily include high-growth small and medium-sized companies in the technology, media, and telecommunications sectors. Cisco will pursue investment opportunities in technology-related start-ups in the region, both directly as well as indirectly through this regional venture fund.

Cisco has already announced key direct investment commitments to the Russian market, including a stake last year in Ozon, the leading Russian online retailer.

Cisco noted that it currently has more than $2 billion in venture capital investments under management and has been an active equity investor in major markets such as China, India, Israel and Europe, in addition to the United States. http://www.cisco.com

RAD Data Communications Names President of US Subsidiary

RAD Data Communications has named Uri Zilberman as president of its U.S. subsidiary. Zilberman has been instrumental in driving RAD's U.S. sales for the past decade. He began his career at RAD's international headquarters as a product manager in the mid-1990s and continued with a similar assignment at RAD Data Communications, Inc. In 2000, he became president of RADirect, RAD's North American online sales branch.http://www.radusa.com

Orange Business Services Launches "Unik" Corporate FMC

Orange Business Services is launching its "Unik" fixed-mobile convergence service for corporate customers. The service seamlessly integrates mobile and office phones. Employees can be reached anywhere by dialing one number, which rings their office and mobile phones at the same time. Voice messages go to one mailbox.

In addition, international calls from employees' mobile phones can be routed through their IP PBX to their Business Talk Global voice network, saving money. Business Talk Global is Orange Business Service's international voice offering.

Unik for corporate is the latest development in the Unik line of services, including Unik, packaged for the consumer market, and Unik for business, which is designed for small companies with fewer than 50 employees. Unik for business is currently available in France, Spain, U.K. and Poland. Unik for corporate is designed for businesses with more than 200 employees, and can support thousands of users with availability in over 200 countries.

Orange Business Services said key benefits include:

  • Lower cost: spend less because international mobile calls can be routed via a corporate IP PBX over Business Talk Global, instead of paying high international rates to your mobile phone provider. This also helps enterprises to track and control international calling costs.

  • Increased productivity
    : Unik for corporate increases employee productivity by enabling the use of advanced IP PBX call features from mobile phones through an easy to use menu, including corporate dial plan, call conferencing, call transfer and more.

  • Improved responsiveness: employees never miss an important call from a customer or colleague while away from the office, improving customer relationships. Callers reach them through a single number no matter where they are.

  • Simplified life: for employees, Unik for corporate allows people to call one number to reach them, whether they are at their desk or on the go. Plus, they can seamlessly hand off calls between a mobile and desk phone. Checking one voicemail box saves time and trouble as well.


Nimbuzz Raises $15 Million for Mobile VoIP and IM

Nimbuzz, a start-up based in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Nimbuzz, raised $15 million in second round funding for its mobile VoIP and IM for social networks.

Nimbuzz offers a social interaction service combining presence, IM, and VoIP. The free application is available on the mobile phone, PC and Web, for (group) calling, instant messaging, (group) chat, file sharing across popular IM communities, including Skype, MSN, GTalk, Yahoo!, AIM, ICQ, plus 23 social networks including Facebook and MySpace. The company says it has deals with 10 major social networks and 3 operators.

Founder and CEO Evert Jaap Lugt commented: "We are actively working on strategic distribution deals with leading social networks and mobile operators. It is our aim to blend our technology with existing mobile internet access to upgrade the value chain for business and consumers alike. Operators understand the need for services like Nimbuzz which provide traffic and drive the demand for mobile data plans, an ever more important revenue stream."

The new round of funding was led by Naspers/MIH with Nimbuzz's other major existing investor Mangrove Capital Partners also participating.http://www.nimbuzz.com

AboveNet Installs 1,000th Private Customer Optical Network Node

AboveNet Communications has installed its 1,000th network node.

These nodes support a broad spectrum of protocols such as packet based protocols like high-bandwidth Ethernet, digital video transmission, storage and mainframe specific protocols such as Fibre Channel/ Escon/ Ficon, and traditional SONET/SDH transmission.

The company said its 1,000 node milestone is a significant vote of confidence from its customers for the world class provider of private wavelength-division multiplexing (WDM) solutions.

AT&T Terminates Marketing Deal with DISH Networks

On June 30, 2008, DISH Network received a notice of termination from AT&T concerning a reseller agreement under which AT&T markets the DISH Network programming services. As a result of the notice from AT&T, the commercial agreement will terminate on December 31, 2008. The deal has been in effect since July 2008.

Echostar confirmed the news in an SEC filing. Neither company commented further.http://www.echostar.comhttp://www.att.com

Monday, June 30, 2008

Alcatel-Lucent and Neuf Cegetel to extend FTTH in Paris

Neuf Cegetel, the leading fixed alternative operator in France, has signed a new frame agreement with Alcatel-Lucent for the deployment of an FTTH network in Paris.

Specifically, Alcatel-Lucent's GPON solution will enable Neuf Cegetel to offer very high-speed access and services to more than 100,000 apartments. The project is part of an initiative led by the Paris social housing office OPAC (Office Public d'Aménagement et de Construction) to bridge the digital divide in the French capital. Financial terms were not disclosed.

As part of this frame agreement, Alcatel-Lucent will supply and provide project management for the deployment of its 7342 Intelligent Services Access Manager Fiber to the User (ISAM FTTU), leveraging GPON technology to multiplex voice, video and data services onto a single fiber and supporting a 2.5 Gbps downstream capacity, the highest bandwidth offered to the mass-market today. The solution is complemented by a range of in-house Alcatel-Lucent optical network terminals (ONTs).

Alcatel-Lucent said this contract significantly increases its market strength in GPON, and confirms the company's readiness to engage in the mass deployment of GPON technology.

The company noted that it is engaged in over 80 FTTx projects worldwide, over 60 of which are with GPON.http://www.alcatel-lucent.com
  • As of the end of Q1 2008, Neuf Cegetel had 3,294,000 broadband clients, an increase of 70,000 compared to the end of 2007; this includes +100,000 new customers for the Neuf brand and -30,000 customers for the other brands.

Max Planck Institute's ATLAS Cluster Deploys Woven 10GigE Fabric

The ATLAS compute cluster at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics in Hannover, Germany, achieved top ranking among the 285 Gigabit Ethernet clusters in the most recent TOP500 list of supercomputer sites. The ATLAS cluster leverages the Dynamic Congestion Avoidance feature in Woven Systems' 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GE) fabric to reach a performance level of 32.8 Teraflops, making it the fastest Ethernet cluster in the world.

The ATLAS cluster consists of 1342 compute nodes occupying 32 full racks. The use of Intel Xeon Quad-core processors gives the cluster over 5,000 CPU cores. Each server node has its own dedicated Gigabit Ethernet connection to a Woven TRX 100 Ethernet switch, which has four separate 10 GE uplinks to the EFX 1000 Ethernet Fabric Switch at the core of the Ethernet fabric. Because this configuration is not over-subscribed, it assures non-blocking throughput performance for both inter-processor communications and storage access.

Woven Systems said its Dynamic Congestion Avoidance capability constantly balances traffic loads intelligently and in real-time along available paths in the non-blocking 10 GE fabric, thus delivering efficiency across the cluster.
A cluster's computational efficiency is critical to its performance, and efficiency is determined by the network's ability to handle inter-processor communications. The efficiency is calculated using the Linpack benchmark from the ratio of the actual performance to the theoretical peak performance for all processors in the cluster. Of the 285 Gigabit Ethernet clusters on the Top 500 List, only six achieved a computational efficiency greater than 60 percent and of those, ATLAS was the most powerful. Of the remaining Gigabit Ethernet clusters, 76 had efficiencies of 50 percent or less; 97 had efficiencies of 51-55 percent and 106 had efficiencies of 56-60 percent.http://www.wovensystems.com

Tata Communications Launches Cisco Telepresence Services

Tata Communications has begun offering private and public Cisco TelePresence rooms to businesses across the world. The Cisco-certified TelePresence network and managed services offers companies a reliable, highly secure facility. The Telepresence managed service includes a concierge service that takes care of reservations, scheduling, customer support, monitoring, management, reporting and billing capabilities, making it easy for customers to deploy and manage a highly effective collaboration tool.

Tata Communications said its global network and carrier relationships will allow it to grow Cisco TelePresence interconnections.