Tuesday, August 25, 2009

China Telecom Selects Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS Backbone across Ten Provinces

China Telecom signed a centralized purchasing contract for Alcatel-Lucent to provide and maintain an IP/MPLS backbone across ten provinces (Guangxi, Hubei, Jiangxi, Ningxia, Sichuan, Jiangsu, Guizhou, Gansu, Xinjiang and Shanghai). Completion of the project is set for October 2009. Alcatel-Lucent will deploy its 7750 Service Router (SR) and 7450 Ethernet Service Switch (ESS) providing the bandwidth, scale and service awareness required to support the growing market for more personalized, broadband offerings such as IPTV, WebTV, Virtual Private Networks, and 3G/4G mobile. The contract which is part of the US$700 million framework agreement recently signed between China Telecom and Alcatel-Lucent, was awarded to Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai Bell. http://www.alcatel-lucent.com

Arista Debuts Virtualized OS for Linking Physical, Virtual, and Cloud Networks

Arista Networks, a start-up offering 10 Gigabit Ethernet switches for large data centers and high performance computing environments, introduced its vEOS (virtualized Extensible Operating System), integrated networking software that peers with VMware vSphere 4 and manages the VMware vNetwork Distributed Switch to link physical and virtual machines to network policy and profiles. The software enables IT organizations to move workloads from physical servers to virtual machines and to cloud infrastructures while maintaining segmentation, trust boundaries, and policy control.

Today's data centers are increasingly virtualized creating a management gap between physical and virtual networks. Arista said new VMware vSphere 4 capabilities, such as VMware Dynamic Resource Scheduler (DRS) and VMware Fault Tolerance, are enabling virtual machines to move from one host to another automatically. This demands an order-of-magnitude more capacity, lower latency and new network architectures.

VEOS, which runs on the Arista 7000 Family of Cloud Networking Switches and as a VMware virtual appliance, provides a network interface to the administrator for configuration and monitoring, without disrupting the virtualized infrastructure. vEOS, in concert with VMware vSphere 4, enables workloads to be mobile, preserving networking state and policy as virtual machines move around data centers and into the cloud.

vEOS also brings critical monitoring and troubleshooting capabilities to virtualized environments including HP Openview support, standard SNMP monitoring, VM auto-discovery, and fully integrated access control while integrating with VMware Fault Tolerance to provide true high availability for the vEOS virtual appliance.

"With vEOS, Arista and VMware customers will now be able to more easily manage their growing converged networking infrastructure and enable easier mobility of virtual machines," said Jayshree Ullal, president and CEO of Arista Networks. "Arista's vEOS is fully compatible and capable of co-existing with the VMware vSphere 4 vNetwork Distributed Switch while providing consistent administrative experience to both the network and virtualization operator."

Arista Networks is preparing to launch an open-beta of vEOS. Commercial release is expected in Q4.
  • In May 2009, Arista Networks, a start-up based in Menlo Park, California, introduced its high density 10GBASE-T switches in a 1U form factor. The Arista 7100T layer 2/3 switches include 24 and 48-port models. Each model offers auto-negotiating 1/10GBASE-T ports with standard RJ-45 connectors and SFP+ uplink ports. The Arista 7100T switches support 10GBASE-T over Category 6a cabling up to 100m, but also support Category 5e and Category 6 cabling with distances up to 55m. This allows for investment protection with existing cabling plants.

Dell'Oro: Access Equipment Sales Rise in Q2 Driven by PON

Worldwide revenue for DSL, Cable and PON Access equipment recorded the first sequential increase in a year, propelled by strong EPON shipments to China and Japan in the second quarter of 2009, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. Combined Access revenue increased 2 percent over the previous quarter, but was 19 percent lower over the year-ago period. PON continues to be the bright spot in the market, as exhibited by its double-digit revenue growth both sequentially and over the year-ago period. On the other hand, DSL and Cable each experienced steep declines over the year-ago period.

"Two important factors impacting demand for Access equipment are broadband subscriber additions and network upgrades," said Tam Dell'Oro, President of Dell'Oro Group. "Total broadband subscriber additions have been lower since the peak year of 2006, and are having a negative impact on equipment demand, especially for a slower-speed technology such as ADSL. On the positive side are the upgrade projects that are being driven by competition, increasing internet traffic, government incentives, and the desire by operators to enable new revenue-generating services such as TV over broadband. These upgrade projects increasingly drive demand for higher-speed PON, VDSL, and Cable DOCSIS 3.0 equipment," Dell'Oro added.

Deutsche Telekom Chooses Verizon Business for Security Compliance

Deutsche Telekom has entrusted Verizon Business to help ensure that T-Pay, Deutsche Telekom's online-payment system, achieves compliance with the international payment card industry data-security standards.

T-Pay is the Internet payment system for all Deutsche Telekom subsidiaries in Germany, including T-Mobile and T-Home. The system processes daily a large amount of confidential financial data, particularly linked to consumer purchases such as music, software, games or video on demand. As such, compliance with the global Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS), which is designed to protect credit card data from misuse, is business-critical.

Verizon Business' professional security services team is providing a range of consultancy, audit, management and implementation services to help T-Pay achieve PCI-DSS certification.

First China-India Terrestrial Cable Transmission System Enters Service

China Telecom Americas and India's Reliance launched service on the first terrestrial broadband cable transmission system between China and India.

The cable system, with an initial capacity of 20 Gbps, is connected through Tibet to India. The terrestrial cable is co-built by China Telecom and Reliance, and carries DWDM and SDH transmission. The total cable capacity design is 4.8 Tbps, which is thousands times more than what had been the existing bandwidth between China and India.

"The launch of the China-India Cable System will change the communications status quo of connecting via international marine cable systems between China and India," Donald Tan, President of China Telecom Americas, stated. "By providing the direct connection between the two largest developing nations in the world, it will promote the growth of political, cultural and business relationships between China and India and the other South Asian countries, contributing to increased prosperity in the region. It also contributes to the implementation of 'The Five Year Plan for Full Economic and Trade Cooperation' between China and India"http://www.chinatelecom-h.com

JDSU Enhances Triple Play Services Handheld Tester

JDSU announced expanded functionality for its SmartClass Triple Play Services (TPS) test instrument, a handheld tool for the installation, maintenance and troubleshooting of IP video, VoIP, IP data, ADSL 1/2/2+ and copper services. New functions include an integrated Web browser for ease-of-use and verification of on-site subscriber website access; copper tests that are field tested and proven, including CableCheck and balance tests that provide one-button, pass/fail copper verification; a Broadcast Auto feature that simplifies IPTV testing and automatically detects IP stream formats; and a Packet Capture feature that enables technicians to capture data for offline analysis in the back office.

The SmartClass TPS provides triple-play services testing with Quality of Service (QoS) and Quality of Experience (QoE) functionality, advanced IP video analysis including the ability to test multiple HDTV streams, VoIP phone emulation, and a built-in USB Host 2.0 interface for easy file transfer.

EXFO Enables QoS Testing

EXFO Electro-Optical Engineering has integrated multiservice testing capabilities across its portfolio of transport and datacom modules, enabling simultaneous per-service measurements for more efficient QoS assessment and SLA validation. These new test functions allow service providers to simultaneously test up to 10 different service applications with different QoS levels, based on Ethernet and IP parameters such as VLAN ID (802.1Q), VLAN priority (802.1p), VLAN stacking (802.1ad Q-in-Q), ToS and differentiated services code points (DSCP). Specific service profiles including voice-over-IP (VoIP), video and data can be applied for quick and easy test configurations. All critical test parameters-throughput, latency, frame loss and packet jitter (RFC 3393)-are accessible simultaneously for each stream, allowing fast and in-depth qualification of all SLA criteria.

These enhanced capabilities are offered with all EXFO Packet Blazer and Transport Blazer test modules.

Nokia Sets Strategy for Mobile Financial Services

Noting that there are now over 4 billion mobiles phones worldwide but only 1.6 billion people with their own bank account, Nokia announced plans to launch a "Money" service that will provide consumers with mobile device with access to basic financial services. For many consumers, this will be the first time they have had any access to such financial services.

Nokia Money promises to make it possible to send money to another person just by using the person's mobile phone number, as well as to pay merchants for goods and services, pay their utility bills, or recharge their prepaid SIM cards (SIM top-up). The services can be accessed 24 hours a day from anywhere, meaning savings in travel costs and time.

Nokia said it is building a wide network of Nokia Money agents, where consumers can deposit money in or withdraw cash from their accounts. The goal is to make sending money as simple and convenient as making a voice call or sending an SMS.

The Nokia Money service will be operated in cooperation with Obopay, a start-up based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Nokia made an equity investment in the firm earlier this year. The service is based on Obopay's mobile payment platform, with unique and newly developed mobile elements. Nokia intends the service to be open and interoperable with other payment services as well.

"We believe mobile financial services offer a market opportunity with long term growth potential. In many countries, mobile phone ownership significantly exceeds bank account usage, suggesting that many mobile phone users have very limited or no access to basic financial services," said Mary McDowell, EVP and Chief Development Officer, Nokia.

Mobile payments will be the next step for delivering financial services to hundreds of millions of people, both urban and rural, who are underserved by existing payment means, especially in emerging economies.

"Obopay shares Nokia's vision for bringing mobile financial services to millions of people worldwide. We're excited that Nokia has chosen Obopay's platform. Nokia's leading market position, strong brand recognition and global distribution channel, using the Obopay platform with uniquely developed mobile elements, means the Nokia Money service is well positioned to bring the next generation of mobile payment services to the world," said Carol Realini, Founder and CEO of Obopay.

Nokia said it is also with different partners in different markets around the world. The Nokia Money service will be shown for the first time at Nokia World on the 2nd and 3rd of September 2009 in Stuttgart, Germany, and it is planned to be rolled out gradually to selected markets, beginning in early 2010.
  • In June 2009, Nokia announced the commercial launch of its pioneering Nokia Life Tools service in India. The service will be rolled out first in Maharashtra in association with the Maharashtra State Agricultural Marketing Board (MSAMB). Designed specifically for the emerging markets, Nokia Life Tools is a range of Agriculture, Education and Entertainment services sharply addressing the information gaps of target consumers. Nokia Life Tools service will be expanded to select countries across Asia and Africa later in 2009 and beyond.

360networks Positions Itself for Broadband Stimulus Funding

360networks (USA) has applied for federal stimulus funding to expand broadband access to rural and underserved markets. 360networks operates a 17,200 mile fiber network in the western United States.

360network's proposed "middle-mile" project will access seventeen rural markets and a surrounding ten-mile radius along its existing 1,011 mile fiber optic route extending from Chicago, Illinois to New Orleans, Louisiana.

The company said this could provide a cost effective alternative for broadband providers from most existing backhaul solutions. http://www.360networks.com

NTT Electronics Full HD H.264 Codec Selected for 2010 World Cup

NTT Electronics' AVC/H.264 HDTV/SDTV encoder/decoder have been selected by Sentech, a state-owned communication service company in the Republic of South Africa, as the codec equipment to be used for HD coverage of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa.

Sentech plans to use satellite links to carry video from each stadium to the International Broadcast Center (IBC), which is the base for broadcasters from around the world. The NTT Electronics HV9100 Series will be installed (system integrated by Comscience) in all 10 stadiums in various regions of the Republic of South Africa where games will be held, and will be used by Sentech for contribution feeds to the IBC.

The HV9100 Series supports both HD (1080i / 720p) and SD (480i / 576i). It additionally supports, optionally, up to 16 channels of audio input capability and an IP interface. http://www.nel-world.com/pr

Verizon Business Hazmat Team Ready for Emergencies

Verizon Business said its Major Emergency Response Incident Team (MERIT) is ready to roll in the event that the company's network becomes damaged during natural disasters or hazardous materials incidents. Potential threats include hurricanes, train derailments and industrial fires, plus the Santa Ana winds that sweep through Southern California during the fall.

Founded in 1992, MERIT consists of 35 team members including communications technicians and specialists, building engineers, and Verizon Business environmental, health and safety employees. All team members, who have fulltime daily responsibilities in their specialties, have been trained under Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) guidelines, the same certification guidelines used by major fire department hazardous materials teams in the U.S.

MERIT team members, who are also trained in emergency response management, are authorized to operate at the highest operational protection level (Level A), which allows them to enter a contaminated zone, wearing fully encapsulated hazmat suits. The team uses multiple tools to detect more than 30 chemicals, Ricin and radiological contamination.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Lebanon's OGERO Picks Zhone for Network Access

OGERO, the incumbent telecommunications operator of the government of Lebanon has named Zhone Technologies as its preferred IP access equipment provider. OGERO selected Zhone equipment to support several major projects which include public Wi-Fi access throughout the capital city of Beirut, and ADSL2+, EFM and VDSL2 deployments nationwide. Financial terms were not disclosed.

As the national incumbent in Lebanon, OGERO has already successfully rolled out services to over 75 percent of the country's DSL subscriber base using Zhone's MALC multi-service access platforms (MSAPs) and 8800 IP DSLAMs.

SkyZhone, Zhone's metro Wi-Fi solution, enables OGERO to leverage their existing copper infrastructure and Zhone management system (ZMS) which significantly reduces cost of provisioning and operations. SkyZhone is the only metro Wi-Fi system to provide integrated DSL backhaul and line powering coupled with an 802.11n, all-MIMO antenna architecture.

VeriSign to Sell Messaging Business to Syniverse for $175 Million

VeriSign agreed to sell its Messaging Business to Syniverse Holdings (NYSE: SVR) for $175 million in cash. The business has an annual revenue run-rate of approximately $140 million over the last 12 months. The business unit has approximately 300 employees, of which 100 are based in India.

The deal combines Syniverse's NEXT Advanced Messaging Hub and messaging services with with four of VeriSign's operator and enterprise messaging solutions:
  • Inter-Carrier Gateway enables operators to deliver inter-carrier person-to-person SMS and MMS messages across geographies and technologies.

  • PictureMail -- provides an MMS platform with core components that include a hosted MMS service center (MMSC) for MMS routing, handset photo applications, a social networking interface, and photo storage and sharing capabilities.

  • Premium Messaging Gateway -- manages delivery of "off-portal" or third-party content to subscribers.

  • Mobile Enterprise Solutions -- enables businesses to send time- and event-based messages or alerts via voice, text message or email to customers, employees or partners, and allows operators to offer their high-value customers a broader array of services, including enterprise and mobile financial services.

"As mobile messaging volumes continue to experience double-digit growth, Syniverse will have the scale, reach and capabilities needed to provide mobile operators -- large or small -- with greater vendor choice and faster time to market for the services subscribers demand. Ultimately, the mobile consumer will benefit from more messaging services and applications," stated Tony Holcombe, President and CEO, Syniverse.

"Even under challenging economic conditions, we have continued to execute on our divestiture strategy through aligning with buyers with complementary strengths," said Mark McLaughlin, president and CEO of VeriSign. "We are pleased to continue making progress on our divestiture program with this latest agreement with Syniverse."http://www.verisign.com

Alloptic's RFoG Deployed in St. Kitts

The Cable of St. Kitts has selected Alloptic's RFoG equipment to upgrade its network and extend its advanced broadband service offerings to customers on St. Kitts.

The Cable provides cable television, voice and data services to homes and businesses on St. Kitts.

Two high end developments on St. Kitts are now leveraging The Cable's fiber-based broadband services, demonstrating how both FTTx and advanced Smart Home applications add value to their properties. At Sundance Ridge for example, the model home showcases advanced home automation via the ability to completely monitor and control all of the electrically-connected items in the house including remotely opening and closing of hurricane shutters.
"While St. Kitts primary industry is tourism, there is still great demand for high end communication services by both full time citizens and by visitors, many of whom expect and rely on access to high speed, high quality connections to the rest of the world," said The Cable's General Manager, Bill Ewing. "The Cable prides itself in providing not only traditional video, but also in providing exceptional voice, data, and specialized communications services."http://www.alloptic.com

Vietnam's VTN selects Alcatel-Lucent for Network Transformation

Vietnam Telecom National (VTN), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Vietnam Posts & Telecommunications Corporation Group (VNPT), selected Alcatel-Lucent to provide its IP and optical solutions . Under the contracts, Alcatel-Lucent will provide its IP/MPLS solutions, including the 7750 Service Router(SR) and the 5620 Service Aware Manager (SAM).

Alcatel-Lucent will also supply its 1850 Transport Service Switch (1850 TSS) and 1830 Photonic Service Switch (1830 PSS). Financial terms were not disclosed.

Dell'Oro: Router Market Rebounds in Q2

The worldwide service provider router market rebounded from the dismal first quarter performance with a solid 9 percent increase in the second quarter of 2009, according to a newly published report by Dell'Oro Group. Stronger demand in North America and the Asia Pacific region was largely responsible for the market growth. Router manufacturers Tellabs, Cisco, and Alcatel-Lucent led the resurgence with double-digit growth rates.

"What we saw in the second quarter was that service providers had a bit more confidence in the economic outlook and were much more willing to make capital investments," said Shin Umeda, Vice President at Dell'Oro Group. "We are not out of the woods yet, but it does look like the first quarter was the low-point in this downturn," added Umeda.

Blue Coat's Revenue Rises 13% YOY to $116 Million

Blue Coat Systems reported net revenue of $116 million for its first fiscal quarter ended July 31, 2009, an increase of 13% compared with net revenue of $103 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2009, and an increase of 2% compared with net revenue of $114 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2009.

On a GAAP basis, the company reported net income of $4 million, or $0.09 per diluted share, in the first quarter of fiscal 2010, compared with net loss of $6 million, or $(0.15) per share, in the first quarter of fiscal 2009, and net loss of $3 million, or $(0.09) per share, in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2009.

"Blue Coat delivered solid quarterly results in a challenging economic environment," said Brian NeSmith, president and chief executive officer, Blue Coat Systems. "In the first quarter, our revenue and non-GAAP EPS performance met our expectations, and we experienced good cash generation. Importantly, we improved non-GAAP operating profitability, as driving better leverage in our business model continues to be a strategic initiative for Blue Coat in 2010."http://www.bluecoat.com

Verizon Business Offer IP-Enabled Automated Speech Recognition

Verizon Business is now offering its speech services in an IP-enabled version. Customers are now able to run their speech services on the Verizon's Hosted IP Interactive Voice Response (IVR) platform, as an alternative or in addition to its traditional Hosted IVR platform. Customers can choose to have Verizon Business host the services, manage them, or simply provide customer premises equipment.

Verizon Business' IP IVR service, together with VoIP Inbound, enables customers to efficiently manage and route inbound calls, with the flexibility to deliver customer calls to either traditional or IP-based contact centers.

Yahoo! Implements GIPS Codec for Messenger Video Calling

Release 10 of Yahoo! Messenger implements Global IP Solutions' GIPS VideoEngine to enable new high-quality video calling. Since early 2006, GIPS has provided the underlying voice technology for Yahoo! Messenger, allowing friends, family and colleagues to communicate. Now with the addition of the video calling feature, everyone on Yahoo! Messenger can enjoy video calls enabled by GIPS VideoEngine for superior sound, picture quality and user experience.

"With the launch of Yahoo! Messenger 10, we're allowing people to instantly communicate with friends and family around the world through new interactive and social features like video calls," said Dave Merriwether, senior director of Yahoo! Messenger.

Verizon Provides FiOS Customers with Service Management App

Verizon is now providing its FiOS customers with direct access to an application that performs many of the same setup, management and troubleshooting functions that previously required assistance from a help desk representative. Back-office systems and information resources have been integrated to create a tool that operates with point-and-click simplicity to perform functions like configuring a new PC to work on a home Wi-Fi network, setting up e-mail accounts, and automatically fixing Internet access or video problems.

The Verizon In-Home Agent leverages the unique capabilities of the Verizon FiOS network to provide help with support issues -- within a single application -- for Verizon FiOS customers. The home network connects the PC, broadband home router, set-top box and TV in FiOS-enabled homes and links to various Verizon operating systems and information resources.

In addition to the In-Home Agent, Verizon also has introduced a series of "quick codes" on the TV screen that, when utilized, can quickly identify and resolve a customer's FiOS TV problems or subscribe on the spot to many video options. For example, customers who get a "channel not available" or other on-screen message are given instructions on how to restore or establish service: They dial a toll-free number, enter a four-digit code, both of which appear on the screen, and the networked systems can either authorize service on the channel or provide instructions for subscription or restore the channel by cross-checking the customer's account.

Later this year, subscribers will be able to initiate the support inquiries and solutions by just pressing a button on the FiOS TV's remote control, eliminating the need to make a phone call.