Tuesday, May 19, 2009

VZ Business Launches Cloud-Based Network Management, Monitoring and Reporting

Verizon Business introduced several new "cloud-based" capabilities for global enterprises. The new capabilities are:

Asset Assurance -- a new suite of fault management and monitoring tools and reporting capabilities that provide a cost-effective solution for global network device management. The service is available immediately to Verizon Private IP customers in the U.S., with plans to expand availability to a number of countries around the world by the end of 2009.

Asset Assurance is powered by CA Spectrum Infrastructure Manager, which is a SaaS-based service that employs a combination of device monitoring, alarming, fault isolation, root-cause analysis, service-level reporting and IT service management to pinpoint the cause of incidents. This new cloud-based capability is offered to Verizon Business customers via a software-as-a-service (SaaS) model and is offered with the Verizon Private IP -- Layer 2 and Layer 3 network services.

An enhanced Internet Security Assessment service, available globally, to provide expert analysis of potentially harmful traffic that could undermine the network connecting an extended enterprise.

The Internet Security Assessment includes Virtual Discovery & Classification and External Risk Assessment, supported by professional services. Virtual Discovery & Classification helps enterprises understand emerging threat activity and other related network issues. This service combines Verizon Business' security intelligence with data captured through Verizon's expansive backbone to provide customers with an unparalleled view of their network security.

The External Risk Assessment service, a component of Verizon's proprietary Security Management Program, utilizes intelligent vulnerability scanning and identifies potential threats to a network's health such as historically vulnerable software, unnecessary services and unusual use, as well as devices that have atypical characteristics that may indicate risks.

New managed security capabilities for Verizon Secure Gateway-Firewall -- also available globally, aimed at protecting customer networks from harmful traffic as enterprises move data, voice and video traffic between public and private networks. Specifically, Private IP customers can now take advantage of a fully managed offering that enables them to offload the management and administration of the network-based firewall.

Huawei Deploy WiMAX 802.16e in Italy for Retelit Group

Retelit S.p.A has selected Huawei to deploy its commercial WiMAX 802.16e network covering north and central parts of Italy where it owns a BWA 3.5 Ghz frequency license. Under this agreement, Huawei will provide an end-to-end WiMAX 802.16e mobile solution including Base Station, Access Service Network (ASN) Gateway, Hybrid TDM-IP Microwave equipment and Network Management Systems. Huawei has also delivered the first batches of its WiMAX terminals, which are already in use in the areas where the network has been activated.

Huawei Builds Optical-Layer ASON Network for VietNam's VNPT

Huawei Technologies has deployed an optical-layer Automatic Switch Optical Network (ASON) network for Vietnam Post and Telecommunication Group (VNPT), covering Hanoi and the northern provinces. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Huawei describes the project as the largest of its kind in the world, involving installation of hundreds of Huawei ASON products across Northern Vietnam. The network is able to ensure high carrier-class reliability of services even in the case of multi-point failures. The service level agreement (SLA) is also supported, which enables VNPT to define different service reliability levels and priority levels for different customers. In addition, the ROADM and tunable OTU technologies realize the fast provisioning of services and the decrease of maintenance difficulty and maintenance cost.

Alcatel-Lucent Teams with 1020 Placecast for Hosted Location-based Mobile Advertising

Alcatel-Lucent is working with 1020 Placecast, a start-up based in San Francisco specializing in location-based advertising, to launch a hosted location-based service for wireless network operators.

As part of this service, 1020 Placecast leverages its unique ad engine to weave location information into highly relevant SMS or MMS messages delivered on an opt-in basis to mobile users. Alcatel-Lucent, leveraging its Geographic Messaging Services Platform (GMSP) as a hosted service, tracks opt-in subscribers' locations on behalf of the service provider and pushes mobile content to the subscriber when and where is appropriate - based on the advertising campaign developed and managed by the 1020 Placecast platform.

Alcatel-Lucent's GMSP leverages algorithms developed at Bell Labs to create a "geo-fence" around a particular mobile user or physical location. This enables messages, promotions and ads to reach subscribers at the most appropriate time and place. When a mobile phone user crosses a given "fence," it triggers the delivery of an SMS text message or multimedia message that is relevant to that individual and that location, such as a promotion for a particular store, or the presence of a friend or associate in the area.

The companies said their network service can support millions of subscribers tracked within millions of geo fences. For example, mobile service providers could offer consumers an opt-in service where they will receive a mobile message offering a discount at a consumer's favorite retailer around the corner on their way to work. The message could include the store address, phone number, proximity to the customer, and other brand and carrier developed content. For subscribers, receiving messages and advertising from brands subscribers care about -- at the time and place they are most interested in getting them -- enhances the mobile experience. By maximizing advertising effectiveness in reaching brands' target audiences, it generates increased advertising spend with service providers.

The companies expect that nationally known retail chains will be among the first advertisers using the service.

For the network operator, Alcatel-Lucent said its hosted service provides a rapid path to enter a lucrative market with minimal upfront capital costs.

'Alcatel-Lucent's technology allows us to trigger the delivery of a tailored marketing message to a subscriber who has opted into the service when they enter a specific zone," said Alistair Goodman, CEO of 1020 Placecast. 'This enables a direct connection from mobile to the physical world. We're excited to partner with such an established solutions provider and offer carriers the best targeting and delivery in location-based mobile advertising and marketing."http://www.placecast.nethttp://www.alcatel-lucent.com

Zain Trials HSPA+ with NSN

Zain Saudi Arabia has completed an HSPA+ trial with Nokia Siemens Networks, paving the way for an all-IP flat architecture network of the future along with significantly improved data throughput speeds.

The trial introduced a simple, flat architecture demonstrating how traffic can bypass the Radio Network Controller (RNC) and the Serving GPRS Support Node (SGSN), to deliver improved data transmission speeds. Because of the re-routing, there is no need to build in additional capacity, in effect reducing the OPEX and CAPEX. Moreover, with flat architecture the operator is well prepared for the eventual move to Long Term Evolution (LTE). I-HSPA solution also shortens the network latency rates to 45ms enabling quicker response times and enhances the overall user experience availability of data serviceshttp://www.nsn.com

BH Telecom Selects NSN for Next Generation Network

BH Telecom, Bosnia and Herzegovina's biggest operator of mobile and fixed networks, has deployed Nokia Siemens Networks switching and broadband access solutions to optimize its legacy assets. The carrier is moving towards an all-IP network of the future.

Specifically, NSN is providing efficient call switching and broadband access, and enabling "Triple play" services (Fast Internet, IPTV and VoIP services) for BH Telecom subscribers across the whole network. The solution consists of the softswitch (hiE9200), Media Gateway, Multi Service Access Nodes (MSAN) along with the network management system and allows the operator to retain full control of its traditional voice business. In addition, the Nokia Siemens Networks Services team is handling the implementation as well as software maintenance. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Orange Business Services Builds Machine-to-Machine (M2M) Center with Mobistar

Orange Business Services has established an international machine-to-machine business center with Belgium-based Mobistar. The facility is aimed at developing real-time communication solutions to serve multinational businesses. On an international-scale, the IMC is aimed at both original equipment manufacturers (OEM), that include M2M technology with their products and services, and at national and multinational companies.

Orange Business Services currently supports over a million active M2M SIM cards in Europe and connects mobile networks in 29 countries. Currently, M2M applications cover fields as diverse as fleet management, telemetry and remote maintenance.

Qwest Ensures Disaster Recovery for Sterling Savings Bank

Qwest Communications announced a three year agreement to provide disaster recovery capabilities and hosting space in its state-of-the-art Seattle CyberCenter to Sterling Savings Bank Service is backed by an industry-leading service level agreement. Spokane-based Sterling is the leading commercial bank headquartered in Washington and provides complete personal, small business, commercial and institutional financial services.

Hibernia Atlantic Established POP in Equinix London Data Center

Hibernia Atlantic has expanded its network into Equinix's LD4 London Slough International Business eXchange (IBX) data center. This new Point of Presence (POP) reiterates the company's commitment to providing redundant, reliable connectivity solutions by-passing major congestion points generally located within major metro city centers. This POP also extends Hibernia's Global Financial Network (GFN), into Equinix Financial eXchange, a neutral electronic marketplace consisting of active financial market participants, which is located within the LD4 center.htpp://www.hiberniaatlantic.com

Empirix Releases Hammer Edge Emulation Tool

Empirix introduced a high performance realistic behavior emulation tool that network equipment manufacturers, service providers and large enterprises can use to emulate complex, unpredictable user behavior and multidimensional data traffic prior to network rollouts. The new Hammer Edge tool can emulate the realistic behavior of users, devices and network topology configurations; test realistic security scenarios; and predict user experience of data, video and voice applications, as an aggregate, in the pre-deployment phase. It emulates the behavior of users and devices required to test elements at the network edge, including border controllers, firewalls and deep packet inspection devices, as well as security and application level gateways -- in both secure and unsecure network topologies. In addition, Hammer Edge predicts the users' experience within these environments.

AT&T Offers 3G Mini Laptops

AT&T is expanding its portfolio of embedded 3G mini laptops to its 2,200 stores nationwide. The expanded embedded device lineup will include Acer, Dell and Lenovo mini laptops. Pricing and availability of the new devices will be announced at a later date. Mini laptops embedded with AT&T 3G service are also available through other national retailers.

Virgin America Implements Fleetwide WiFi

Virgin America is now offering Gogo In-flight Internet service on every one of its flights. Passengers have the option to surf the Web, check e-mail, or log on to their corporate VPN. Virgin America marked this in-flight WiFi milestone with another first for an airline: an air-to-ground Skype video call with Oprah Winfrey.

ARRIS Enables Gigabit Ethernet PON Solution

ARRIS introduced an Ethernet Passive Optical Networking (EPON) solution designed to leverage the existing cable infrastructure and drive fiber to the premises.

The ARRIS FTTMax EPON solution, which is comprised of the FTTMax EPON Optical Line Terminal (OLT) and Optical Network Unit (ONU), allows operators to add mixed use services incrementally without changing their existing back office operations. Operators already using the ARRIS CHP Max 5000 Head End chassis can add EPON to their service offerings by simply adding an ARRIS FTTMax EPON OLT to the CHP Max 5000 chassis and an ARRIS FTTMax EPON ONU at the customer premises. These "plug and play" modules leverage ARRIS widely deployed CORWave coordinated wavelength plan over existing HFC infrastructures, reducing up front capital investment, and allowing the EPON services to co-exist with other services, even over a single fiber.

ARRIS said its design allows cable operators to leverage existing DOCSIS back-office systems and existing routers and switches. Up to 1,280 customers can be served from the twenty OLT ports per 2RU. At less than ten watts per port, this high density also comes with low power consumption.

Nokia Opens Ovi Maps to Social Location Interaction

Nokia announced of the latest version of Ovi Maps, featuring a dynamic and personalized canvas - synchronized and shared between the mobile and the web - upon which people will be able to add personal location-based content.

The new release marks a shift from the one-size-fits-all static bitmap maps commonly found on the web, to using Nokia's dynamic vector-graphic maps as a browser.

Nokia also announced the release of the Ovi Maps Player API, providing a means to embed the rich and dynamic Ovi Maps experience into any compatible website using basic JavaScript. This opens the Ovi Maps service and technology for third parties wishing to add greater contextual innovation to their websites for a deeper level of integration, sharing and collaboration with their audiences.

Microsoft Offers Netflix Movies and TV via Windows Media Center

Microsoft is now offering more than 12,000 movies and TV episodes from Netflix via the Windows Media Center on PCs with Windows Vista Home Premium or Ultimate. The Netflix instant watching in Windows Media Center is powered by Microsoft Silverlight.

Windows Vista customers who are also Netflix members can start Windows Media Center on their PC and then select the new Netflix tile under TV+Movies to begin streaming movies and TV episodes instantly. People can also search the entire Netflix library, manage both their instant and DVD Queues, and even filter searches by titles that are available to watch instantly. Windows Media Center takes advantage of the Netflix recommended category lists to make it even easier to quickly find the movies and TV shows that consumers want to watch.

In addition to Windows Media Center users, Xbox 360 system owners already have access to watch movies and TV episodes instantly from Netflix via an Xbox LIVE Gold Membership. http://www.microsoft.com

Aricent Delivers Pre-Packaged Metro Switching Solution

Aricent released a new version of its Intelligent Switching Solution (ISS) specifically optimized for carrier and metro Ethernet product development. Aricent's ISS-Metro is a licensable, pre-packaged software framework targeted at networking and telecom equipment manufacturers building products and services to deploy high performance Ethernet in access, aggregation, edge and transport equipment. Applications include FTTH, FTTC, Ethernet DSL access, MSAN, mobile backhaul/cellular backhaul and VPNs over packet infrastructure.

The ISS-Metro release offers advanced spanning tree algorithms, Ethernet Operations, Administration and Management (OAM) capabilities, Ethernet in the First Mile (EFM), Provider Backbone Bridges (PBB), Provider Backbone Bridge Traffic Engineering (PBB-TE), virtualization of switching components, fault tolerant high availability, and Ethernet protection switching. Aricent also offers MPLS as an add-on to the ISS-Metro package. The new release is compliant with 802.1ag, 802.3ah, 802.1ah and 802.1Qay standards from the IEEE as well as the Y.1731 and G.8031 standards from the ITU-T.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Aricent and Cavium Collaborate on LTE eNodeB Designs

Aricent and Cavium Networks announced a joint collaboration through which the companies expect to offer pre-optimized, performance enhanced Aricent LTE eNodeB Layer 2 and Layer 3 stacks, and the Aricent LTE eNodeB Framework (eNBF), for Cavium's OCTEON Multi-core MIPS64 Processor Family for Long Term Evolution (LTE) base stations.

Aricent LTE eNodeB software -- comprising of the PHY, MAC, RLC, PDCP, RRC, S1AP, X2AP, GTPu and SCTP stacks, are key components for building LTE Femtocells, Pico and Macro eNodeB basestations. The Aricent LTE eNodeB Framework (eNBF) integrates Layer 2 and 3 functionality into a seamless package, accelerating and simplifying development of a carrier class eNodeB solution.

This pre-optimized solution is expected to be available on the current Cavium OCTEON Plus Processor Family and the upcoming OCTEON II CN63XX processor.

In conjunction with this announcement, Aricent has also joined the Cavium PACE (Partnership to Accelerate Customer End-solutions) ecosystem.

AboveNet Launches Metro 40Gbps Service Across U.S.

AboveNet launched its new Metro 40Gbps service in all 15 of its U.S. markets, providing the highest commercially available metro transport speed. AboveNet's Metro Wave services portfolio provides high-bandwidth connectivity over dedicated fiber and equipment. These services, including the new 40Gbps capability, offer various protection options with the ability to add additional services as needed over a private, scalable technology platform.

Vodafone Reaches 303 Million Users, Accelerates Cost Reduction Measures

Vodafone Group reported Q1 2009 revenue of £41.0 billion, up 15.6% over the same period last year (pro forma up 1.3% excluding foreign exchange), and an impairment charge of £5.9 billion. The basic earnings per share 5.84 pence after impairment charges.

Some highlights from the quarterly report:

  • Europe revenue was up 13.6%; outgoing voice usage was up 9.4%

  • Africa and Central Europe revenue growth was 11.2%

  • Asia Pacific and Middle East revenue growth was 32.3%, driven by India

  • Group data revenue was up 43.7% to £3.0 billion

  • Verizon Wireless profit was up 44.7%; The Alltel acquisition creates largest US wireless operator

  • £1 billion cost reduction programme is being accelerated; over 65% of reductions are expected to be achieved in the 2010 financial year

  • Vodafone's proportionate mobile customer base was 303 million on 31-March-2009.

"These results demonstrate the impact of the early actions we took to address the current economic conditions and highlight the benefits of our geographic diversity. The business continues to generate cash strongly and we have made good progress in implementing the strategy announced in November. Data revenue grew to £3 billion for the year and our broadband and enterprise businesses continue to perform well. Our £1 billion cost reduction programme is ahead of plan and we continue to explore further ways to reduce cost. We maintain our tight focus on capital discipline and returns to shareholders," stated Vittorio Colao, Chief Executive.

NEC Employs Atheros in DoCoMo Handset with AP Tethering Mode

Atheros Communications' AP Mode technology has been incorporated into NEC's new dual-mode handset (N-06A), which is now offered by NTT DOCOMO to its FOMA customers.

This new smartphone is the first on the market that uses Atheros AP Mode technology to allow users to connect their Wi-Fi-enabled laptops and devices to the Internet without an access point (AP) present. Atheros notes that this technology significantly expands the functionality of the handset, enabling a wide array of new applications for mobile users.

AP Mode, an optional feature of the Atheros AR6002 Radio-on-Chip for Mobile (ROCm) WLAN solution, allows handsets to operate in infrastructure mode, the primary wireless connectivity framework employed in access points, routers, laptops and other WLAN devices. Infrastructure mode offers significant advantages such as greater ease of use and lower power consumption over ad-hoc mode, a legacy approach to device connectivity. In infrastructure mode, the handset behaves like a typical AP, providing seamless connectivity to any WLAN-enabled client device without user intervention, whereas ad-hoc requires manual configuration of devices on both ends of the link every time a connection is created. With Atheros' AP Mode, client devices function in sleep mode when not actively transmitting or receiving data packets, resulting in superior power efficiency and extended battery life.

Atheros AP Mode is capable of concurrently connecting as many as eight Wi-Fi enabled devices in an open network environment, or up to six devices in a secured network. The clients connect to the mobile handset in AP Mode in the same way they would to a WLAN AP or router. Atheros AP Mode serves handsets and has also been introduced in new products such as wireless travel modems.