Thursday, November 20, 2008

KPN Commences EUR 1 bn Share Repurchase Program

KPN has commenced a EUR 1 billion share repurchase program for 2009. In order to meet the interests of both shareholders and bondholders, KPN said it is committed to its self-imposed financial framework with a net debt to EBITDA ratio between 2.0x and 2.5x. Net debt to EBITDA stood at 2.4x at the end of Q3 2008 and is expected to be lower by the end of 2008.

AT&T Wins $346 Million Managed Service Contract with State of Georgia

AT&T was awarded a five-year contract with the Georgia Technology Authority (GTA) worth a projected $346 million to provide managed WAN, Voice, and LAN services across state government agencies. The extensive managed network services contract is expected to establish a more robust and efficient network for Georgia's government operations, a centralized management model and standardized service levels across the state. In addition, the contract provides the state with a disaster recovery solution and information security services so government operations can be maintained in the event of a natural or man-made disaster.

Cavium to Acquire W&W for Video Processor

Cavium Networks agreed to acquire W&W Communications, a fabless semiconductor start-up based in Sunnyvale, California, for approximately $19.3 million.

W&W specializes in low power, super low latency and full-High Definition video processing solutions with single and multi-stream capabilities. The company provides a range of chips, software and board level solutions for single and multi-channel, High and Standard Definition H.264 applications at up to full 1080p encode and decode at 60 frames per second. W&W leverages a proprietary Super Low Latency (SLL) technology that produces perceptual lossless video quality at sub-frame encode-decode delay. Other features include a flexible encoder toolset with in-loop de-blocking filter, single-pass bit rate control, content-adaptive noise filtering, programmable cost functions for motion vector and prediction mode coding, efficient search algorithms, large search area, 1/2 and 1/4 pixel motion estimation interpolation and error resiliency and concealment.
W&W Communications has an R&D center in Beijing, China.

Cavium noted that the digital video market consists of five distinct segments, namely capture, process, transport, receive and display. Today Cavium Networks' single and multi-core processors are used in a range of video transport applications. High performance, video encode and decode capabilities are needed in the capture, process and display market segments. High end applications in these markets require encode and decode with pristine video quality, super low latency, single and multiple HD video stream processing up to 1080p at 60 frames/second and beyond. These requirements today are primarily delivered by multi-chip DSP based solutions. Low end requirements which include decode only or encode of low resolution streams are primarily delivered by ASIC based solutions.http://www.caviumnetworks.com
  • W&W is headed by Lars Herlitz (president & CEO), who previously was founder, president and CEO of DSP Research, which was acquired by W&W Communications in 2003.

Cisco Appoints Head of Brazil Operations

Rodrigo Abreu has been appointed as country manager for Cisco Brazil, effective December 15. Mr. Abreu joined Cisco three years ago and for the last two years has served as regional manager for the Cansac region. He replaces Pedro Ripper, who has decided to join one of Brazil's leading service providers, after five years with Cisco.

STMicroelectronics Joins MIT's Ultra-Low-Power Microcontroller Program

STMicroelectronics has joined the Microsystems Industrial Group (MIG) industry consortium at the Microsystems Technology Laboratories (MTL), Massachusetts Institute of Technology. MIG was founded in the 1980s to support Microsystems Technology Laboratories infrastructure and provide direction to the MTL research and educational objectives in consultation with the faculty. ST is the first European company to join the group.

"ST is a leader in the development of low-power technologies that can reduce power dissipation in embedded System-on-Chip solutions, while maintaining the same level of performance in cutting-edge industrial and portable consumer products," said Alessandro Cremonesi, Strategy and System Technology Group Vice President and Advanced System Technology General Manager, STMicroelectronics.

BridgeWave's Gigabit Wireless Complies with New ETSI Recommendation

BridgeWave Communications' 80 GHz multi-gigabit wireless links have been demonstrated to comply with the new European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) Draft Recommendation EN 302 217-3 V1.3.1 on its first day of publication. This is the first released version of this Recommendation to include specifications for equipment operating in the new 80 GHz millimeter-wave spectrum band that enables point-to-point wireless systems to deliver multi-gigabit capacity with ultra-low latency.

BridgeWave's 80 GHz wireless link products have been tested to the latest draft of ETSI, EN 302 217-3 v1.3.1, by Compliance Certification Services (CCS), a NVLAP-accredited Electro Magnetic Compatibility (EMC) Test Laboratory. CCS provides compliance and test services on cutting edge wireless standards, including the new ETSI requirements for 70 GHz and 80 GHz wireless links.

First Transatlantic 40 Gbps Single Wavelength Transmission Completed

The first transatlantic transmission of a 40 Gbps IP wavelength (OC768/STM256) was successfully demonstrated by Sprint, in collaboration with the TAT-14 cable system consortium, TeliaSonera International Carrier, and Sweden's research and education network (SUnet). This trial was also enabled through close collaboration between Cisco Systems and StrataLight Communications.

Spanning more than 9,000 km of fiber distance, the circuit includes a 7,630 km segment of transatlantic submarine TAT-14 cable system between Sea Girt, N.J. and BlAbjerg, Denmark. TeliaSonera provided support and optical backhaul from the European cable landing station for TAT-14 to Stockholm and SUnet.

Rather than using traditional external DWDM equipment to generate the long-haul signal, the connection was based on Cisco's Carrier Routing System, CRS-1, and IP-over-Dense-Wavelength-Division Multiplexing (IPoDWDM) systems. With the CRS-1 IPoDWDM production solution, the CRS-1 emits a colored 40-Gbps wavelength that is fed directly into existing 10-Gbps DWDM transmission equipment, providing four times the capacity and eliminating costly external transponders.

"This successful trial of 40-Gbps over IP on a submarine cable system represents another significant first in IP networking for Sprint," said Kathy Walker, chief information and network officer for Sprint. "It serves as a reminder of how far technology has advanced. TAT-14 and Sprint were the first to transmit data at 10-Gbps (OC192) speeds across the same path in 2001. Sprint and TAT-14 are making history again. By transmitting 40-Gbps over an existing 10-Gbps DWDM system, we've demonstrated that Sprint can increase capacity for its customers while minimizing additional capital and operational costs."

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Alcatel-Lucent announces new members of Management Board in Germany

Wolfgang Weik (63) will be leaving the Management Board of Alcatel-Lucent Deutschland AG and the management of Alcatel-Lucent Holding GmbH at his own request, effective December 31, 2008. He will be vacating the chairs of both boards and the office of Board Member for Finance.

Alf Henryk Wulf (46), currently Deputy Chairman of the Management Board and Board Member for Sales & Marketing of Alcatel-Lucent Deutschland AG, will become the new Chairman of the Management Board effective January 1, 2009.

Peter Kury, who will be moving from Thales Deutschland to Alcatel-Lucent during Q1 2009, will be the new Board Member for Human Resources. He will be filling the position currently held by Jürgen Pösinger, who will be leaving the company on December 31, 2008 as previously announced.

The new Chairman of the Management Board Alf Henryk Wulf, will fill the position of Labor Relations Director ("Arbeitsdirektor") in the interim. Dr. Rainer Fechner (52) will remain Board Member for Technology & Innovation. In this function, Fechner coordinates research and development activities to strengthen the innovative power of Alcatel-Lucent in Germany. The position of Head of Finance, which will become vacant with Wolfgang Weik's departure, will be announced in the near future.

Amino Acquires Tailfin's IPTV Set-top Box Division

Amino Communications agreed to acquire Tilgin AB's IPTV Set-Top Box (STB) division for GBP 2.5 million. Tilgin offers a range of H.264 HD IPTV STBs. In addition, the acquisition will also give Amino immediate access to additional middleware solutions -- such as Ericsson and Nokia Siemens Networks -- as well as extending the Group's customer reach. Amino said expects to enjoy R&D cost synergies delivered through the development and maintenance of common ST Micro based STBs.

Tilgin is based in Kista (north of Stockholm), Sweden. The company has shipped over 500,000 STB to date.

InnoPath's MDM Adds Support for the Newly Ratified OMA-DM SCOMO Standard

InnoPath Software has added support for the newly ratified OMA-DM Software Component Management Object (SCOMO) Candidate Enabler.

SCOMO is a standards-based method of managing the lifecycle of applications on mobile phones.

InnoPath first demonstrated draft SCOMO support at the Mobile World Congress in 2007, and as the convener of SCOMO within OMA-DM, the company has been actively working with its key operator and device manufacturer partners to bring to market a solution that is both deployable and scalable. Additionally, InnoPath was the first company to demonstrate interoperability with 3 rd party SCOMO clients.

"Mobile Device Management is evolving from point products based on customized platforms to a general solution providing care for both consumers and enterprises," said David Ginsburg, Vice President of Marketing at InnoPath. "That the industry has converged on SCOMO for lifecycle application management is a sign of a maturing market."

NXP Semiconductors Predicts 15% to 25% Sequential Decline

NXP Semiconductors warned that its Q4 sales will be significantly below market expectations. Citing weakening macroeconomic conditions and a deteriorating sales environment, NXP said that based on overall consumer sentiment, recent order book development, and expected future trading levels, it now foresee a 15% to 25% sequential sales decline in the fourth quarter on a business and currency comparable basis. This compares to the previous guidance of an 8 to 14% sequential sales decline as announced on 21 October 2008.

Clearwire Stockholders Approve Sprint WiMAX Deal

Clearwire's stockholders approved the planned combination with Sprint's mobile WiMAX business and the investment of $3.2 billion by Intel, Google, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks and Trilogy Partners.

Clearwire's board of directors had unanimously recommended that stockholders vote in favor of the transaction.

In addition, Clearwire has secured consent to the transaction from a majority of the lenders under a Credit Agreement and expects to execute shortly an Amended and Restated Credit Agreement permitting the Transactions.

No further consents or approvals for the transactions are required. The company is continuing to work toward closing the transaction before year-end.

RCN Metro Optical Networks Deploys Ciena

RCN Metro Optical Networks, a which provides transport services for carriers as well as large and medium-sized businesses, has deployed Ciena's CN 4200 FlexSelect Advanced Services Platform. RCN Metro's suite of services includes Ethernet, SONET, Wavelength, Video Transport, Internet, etc. The carrier has unique rights-of-way, spanning from Maine to Virginia and out to Chicago. In addition to RCN Metro's deployments, RCN Corporation has utilized the CN 4200 in an extensive upgrade to its core and metro networks. Financial terms were not disclosed.http://www.ciena.com

Orange Business Services Launches Secure My Device Worldwide

Orange Business Services has launched a "Secure My Device" service to help provide security, supervision and control of mobile and remote PC devices. The service integrates technologies from BigFix, an Emeryville, California headquartered provider of high performance platforms for delivery of managed services. Key capabilities include:

  • Central visibility -- Central reporting and management provided by a global solution gives an IT manager end-to-end visibility of what security policies and rules end-users have on their PC.

  • Easy and rapid roll out with low operational risk -- Orange Business Services host the platforms in secure data centers, manage, maintain and support the core service infrastructure without a dedicated customer infrastructure.

  • Flexible security & management solution -- The consolidated compliance check and patch distribution with security policies can be adjusted per category or per use of devices. The security policies and rules range from mere compliance and patch to a full Network Access Control feature.

  • Cost control -- An adaptive pricing model allows for "pay-as-you-go" pricing in which customers only pay for the options chosen.

  • Future proof -- The solution helps mitigating for zero day attacks and is ready for today's and tomorrow's security challenges.

The new service complements Business Everywhere and Mobile Office from Orange Business Services.

Point Topic: Global Broadband Subscribers Hit 400 Million

The number of broadband subscribers worldwide has reached the 400 million mark, according to a report prepared for the Broadband Forum by industry analysts, Point Topic. In 1998, there were just 57,200 broadband subscribers globally. Only a year later, this number had increased by nearly six times over to 280,890 subscribers worldwide. DSL quickly became the most popular choice of delivery. The past ten years has seen a 600,000 percent increase in the number of subscribers - 300 percent in the last 5 years alone - which now tops the 400 million mark. Over the same period, access technology evolved to include fiber, which began in 2002 with 18,000 subscribers. Since then, fiber now delivers broadband services to over 45 million people across the globe.

The Broadband Forum also noted its 15th anniversary. The organization evolved from the ADSL Forum, to the DSL Forum, and finally to the Broadband Forum, each time expanding its scope and remit to fit the needs of the industry. During this time its 200 plus member companies have worked together to issue 100 Technical Reports (TRs), with the aim of helping the industry develop the full potential of broadband in the areas of network management and control, access development, network architectures, interoperability, and digital home management. Planning for the future, focusing on IPTV, fiber access, Fixed Mobile Convergence (FMC) and Energy Efficiency (EE) are all high on the agenda at the Forum's last quarterly meeting of 2008, which is being held this week in Hawaii.


Nokia Opens Research Laboratory in Hollywood, USA

Nokia has established its newest research laboratory in Hollywood, California, in order to work with the media & entertainment industry on new entertainment concepts.

Specifically, web and TV. With a strong emphasis on entertainment and associated experiences, research topics will include mixed reality, content creation and user interface experiences, among others. In addition to recruiting from and collaborating with the Hollywood entertainment, media and art communities, the laboratory plans to further collaborate with the leading universities in the region such as University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and University of Southern California (USC).

Nokia Research Center noted that it also has collaborative efforts underway with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Stanford University in the US, the University of Cambridge, UK and Tsinghua University, China. This year Nokia Research Center announced a joint research program with two Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology in Lausanne and Zurich (EPFL and ETH Zurich) and opened a lab on the campus of Helsinki University of Technology in Finland.

AT&T Builds Network Disaster Recovery Organization

AT&T has completed a year-long initiative to integrate it Network Disaster Recovery (NDR) capabilities.

The integration project expands the scope of AT&T's NDR functions beyond the core backbone network to also encompass response to emergency situations that impact local wireless and wired access networks. AT&T has invested more than $500 million in its NDR function, which includes more than 150 technology and equipment trailers that can be quickly deployed anywhere in the U.S. or worldwide to respond to a disaster situation. As a result, the company said is now ready to bring unmatched resources to bear to help ensure the flow of both wireless and wired communications during times of need, all backed by centralized command and control to ensure maximum effectiveness and efficiency.

AT&T said that in addition to consolidating wireless, wired and backbone network recovery capabilities, it made a number of critical investments in NDR equipment and training in 2008, including the:

  • Completion of the 50th full-scale NDR training exercise since the organization's inception in 1991.

  • Expansion of the NDR fleet with new trailers expanding IP technology, satellite communications functionality, power distribution and specialized equipment supporting AT&T's new-generation, 40 Gbps backbone network.

  • Refit of multiple power trailers to improve performance as well as environmental profile.

  • Opening of a third NDR equipment warehouse in the southeastern United States.

  • Addition of an equipment warehouse in the United Kingdom.

Brocade Reports Record Q4 Revenue, up 17% YoY

Brocade reported Q4 revenues of $398.5 million, GAAP net income of $38 million or $.10 per share, and net income of $75.8 million or $.20 per share on a non-GAAP basis. In Q4 08, Brocade achieved record revenue, 9% quarter on quarter growth and 17% year on year growth. Revenue for fiscal year 2008 was $1,466.9 million, a growth of 19% over fiscal year 2007. Brocade's total installed base of SAN ports has now reached approximately 19.4 million.

"Q4 was another outstanding quarter for Brocade, where we achieved record revenues and better-than-expected profitability fueled by our product and innovation advantages in our target markets. Our strong performance in Q4 accentuates an overall outstanding fiscal 2008, in which we achieved double-digit growth, expanded our margin and announced exciting plans to expand into additional, larger markets through our planned acquisition of Foundry Networks."

Level 3 to Support Pando Content Delivery Cloud

Pando Networks, which offers content delivery cloud services, has selected Level 3 Communications to provide caching and downloading services. Under the terms of the agreement, Level 3 will support Pando's delivery of HD online video for NBC Direct. Currently in beta release, NBC Direct allows users free access to download high-resolution episodes of select NBC shows.

PCCW Activates CDMA2000 in Hong Kong

PCCW has activated a new service that enables visitors from mainland China and other parts of the world to use their home-based CDMA2000/CDMA IS-95 mobile phones to roam onto the company's CDMA2000 network in Hong Kong.

The new CDMA2000 capability is focused on Hong Kong's urban Golden Bowl Area, meeting OFTA's CDMA2000 license requirement for network coverage and service schedule. Full deployment will be completed by 2010, when CDMA2000 mobile service is envisaged to be available in prime urban areas and other strategic locations in Hong Kong.

The new service uses Huawei Technologies' fourth generation CDMA2000 BTS solution, based on CDMA2000 EV-DO Rev. A technology.