Monday, August 31, 2009

AT&T Activates 3G in 850 MHz Spectrum in NYC Metro Area

AT&T has activated 3G services using the 850 MHz band across large portions of metro New York City, Long Island and New Jersey. The 850 MHz spectrum was deployed for 3G use at more than 1,600 cell sites.

The use of 850 MHz spectrum results in better in-door building coverage. While specific benefits of the additional 3G spectrum will vary by location, AT&T 3G said customers should see improved quality and coverage throughout New York City, Long Island and New Jersey where 850 MHz spectrum has been deployed. AT&T technicians nationwide responsible for monitoring network performance for service quality and coverage have seen significant increases in total 3G data traffic in areas where the 850MHz spectrum has been deployed.

"Where we deployed the additional 850 MHz spectrum, we saw an immediate increase in wireless data activity across the AT&T 3G network in those areas," said Tom DeVito, vice president and general manager for AT&T in New York and New Jersey.
Recently, AT&T announced plans to further upgrade its 3G network nationwide with HSPA 7.2 technology to deliver considerably faster mobile broadband speeds. The upgrades are planned to begin in the fourth quarter, with completion expected in 2011.

China Telecom Deploys World's Largest Cluster Router System with Huawei

Shaanxi Telecom, a subsidiary of China Telecom, has deployed a five terabits per second (Tbps) cluster router system on its metropolitan area network in Xi'an.  The companies believe this to be the largest router deployment of its kind.

Huawei said its NE5000E multi-chassis cluster systems with 2.56 Tbps capacity have been serving Shaanxi Telecom since 2006. Shaanxi Telecom has now upgraded the capacity of its existing Huawei cluster router to 5Tbps (4 cluster line-card chassis each with 1.28 Tbps capacity and 2 cluster central chassis configuration). The upgrade occurred without service interruption or hardware replacements.

Infinera Debuts Undersea Optical Transport Solution, Global Crossing Deploys

Infinera introduced its new submarine optical transport solution, which is designed to be deployed at land-based terminals of submarine networks. The platform, which has already been deployed by Global Crossing, offers submarine network operators a way to protect their investment in their subsea infrastructure while adding new capacity to the network via the Infinera Digital Optical Networks architecture.

Infinera claims several technical breakthroughs for its submarine solution. Infinera's large-scale photonic integrated circuits (PICs) have been enhanced with the addition of semiconductor optical amplifiers (SOAs) to provide trans-oceanic optical reach for the Infinera submarine solution. The enhanced PICs are implemented in the new Infinera Submarine Line Module (SLM), which provides 100 Gbps of PIC-based DWDM capacity on every line card. With up to 16 SLM modules multiplexed onto a single fiber, the Infinera submarine solution can provide up to 160 wavelengths on existing submarine optical networks.

Infinera said the submarine solution has already been deployed by global carriers including Global Crossing, for a total of almost 50,000 subsea route-kilometers. Specifically, Global Crossing has deployed the Infinera submarine solution on its Mid-Atlantic Crossing (MAC) and its South American Crossing (SAC) networks, for a total of 26,000 route-kilometers.

T-Mobile and Sierra Wireless sign MOU for joint M2M

T-Mobile and Sierra Wireless are planning a joint solution for the Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communications market. The areas of co-operation identified by a recently signed MOU are product development, marketing, sales and deployment of M2M solutions and related services. The co-operation targets the European market, with initial focus on Germany.

Verizon Business Expands Cloud Computing to Amsterdam Data Center

Verizon Business has extended availability of its "cloud-based" Computing as a Service (CaaS) solution to its Amsterdam data center. The service, which leverages Verizon's global IP infrastructure and data centers, enables mid-market and larger companies to use a Web-based portal to employ computing resources on an ad hoc basis. Verizon said the Amsterdam location particularly benefits companies doing business in Europe and elsewhere that need to operate under a "safe harbor" privacy framework that calls for a European-hosted location, or want to use facilities located closer to their European locations.

In June, Verizon Business announced its CaaS offering with the provisioning of the service in its U.S. data center based in Beltsville, Md. Additional CaaS locations are planned in the Asia-Pacific region in 2010.

Zain Nigeria Selects Harris Stratex Networks for Lagos NOC

Zain Nigeria has selected Harris Stratex Networks to launch a new network operations center (NOC) in Lagos. The NOC, which Zain commissioned in July, is part of a full, turnkey project completed by Harris Stratex, which includes NOC design and buildout -- supported by Harris Stratex' NetBoss integrated services assurance technology -- and network process re-engineering and optimization. The new facility is designed to boost the resilience and robustness of Zain's network, enhancing the customer experience while drastically reducing the amount of operational downtime. The state-of-the-art NOC is designed to monitor and manage multi-vendor, multi-protocol network infrastructure, including subscriber access, 4G/WiMax access, IP backhaul and core network technologies, as well as network elements providing energy, security and surveillance controls. It provides around-the-clock network surveillance, performance monitoring and trouble ticket management for Zain's voice, video and data networks. Financial terms were not disclosed.

ARRIS Acquires EG Technology's Video Processors

ARRIS has acquired the key patents and video processing technology of EG Technology (EGT) , an Atlanta-based company, for an undisclosed sum. ARRIS will also hire about 20-25 of the company's employees.

EGT developed video processing technology, including encoders and transcoders, for digital networks. ARRIS said the acquisition complements its video offerings by adding multi-functional, flexible, and scalable video processors to its portfolio of market leading voice, video and data solutions.

"The addition of EGT's video processing portfolio to the ARRIS portfolio is another step in our evolution towards addressing all of the quad play, three-screen needs of broadband network operators," said Jim Lakin, President, ARRIS Advanced Technology. "The primary benefits from this acquisition will be the long term enhanced engineering and solution capabilities the EGT product portfolio will enable. The transaction is expected to be neutral with respect to earnings per share, excluding amortization of intangibles associated with the acquisition."

AT&T Wins $45 Million Contract with U.S. State Department

The U.S. Department of State has awarded an eight-year, managed services contract valued at $45 million to AT&T Government Solutions. The award was issued via the General Services Administration's Networx Universal program. Selected by the State Department as the sole provider of telecommunication services ordered from the Networx Universal contract for the Cabinet-level agency, AT&T will provide Managed Services including Private Line, Multi-Protocol Label Switching, Frame Relay, Voice and IP Telephony. AT&T will deploy these services at more than 100 State Department locations, supporting systems and applications for its 13,000 employee work force.

The AT&T Transition Management Center, a government-dedicated site with PMP-certified program managers and staff, will manage the voice and data network transition for the State Department. With this new award, AT&T has now announced Networx awards with customers including the Department of the Treasury, the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration.

Microsoft Readies Windows Mobile 6.5

Smartphones based on Windows Mobile 6.5 are set for retail release on October 6, 2009. Windows Mobile 6.5 promises an improved, easy-to-use user interface, better browsing capabilities and access to valuable services, including Windows Marketplace for Mobile and Microsoft My Phone. The free My Phone service allows customers to automatically back up and sync photos, music, contacts and text messages from their phone to the Web, making it easy to access and manage them from their phone or PC or restore the information in the event of a lost phone. A redesigned Internet Explorer Mobile browser includes a new engine and built-in Adobe Flash Lite support. Microsoft Office Outlook Mobile delivers a consistent e-mail experience across the PC, phone and browser, while Microsoft Office Mobile allows customers to open and edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents from their phone.

Microsoft announced the following partners for the upcoming launch:

In North America: Mobile operators AT&T, Bell Mobility, Sprint, TELUS and Verizon Wireless, and phone manufacturers HP, HTC Corp., LG
Electronics, Samsung and Toshiba Corp.

In Europe: Mobile operators Orange, Deutsche Telekom AG and Vodafone Group Plc, and phone manufacturers Acer, HTC, LG Electronics, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Toshiba.

In Latin America: Mobile operator TIM Brazil, and phone manufacturers HTC, LG Electronics and Samsung.

In Asia Pacific: Mobile operators NTT DOCOMO Inc., SOFTBANK Mobile Corp., SK Telecom, Telstra and WILLCOM Inc., and phone manufacturers Acer Inc., HTC, LG Electronics, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Toshiba.

Orange Business Builds MPLS IP VPN for Neptune Orient Lines

Singapore-based Neptune Orient Lines (NOL), a world-leading global container shipping, terminals and logistics group, has renewed a five-year, $38 million communications infrastructure agreement with Orange Business Services. Orange Business will be responsible for NOL's global communications infrastructure entirely from design and implementation to management. The MPLS-based IP VPN drives NOL's complex international container shipping logistics and terminal management services. NOL will leverage managed IP Telephony, advanced messaging and unified communications solutions for greater business collaboration and efficiency across its operations that currently span more than 400 locations in the Americas, Asia-Pacific, Europe and the Middle East.

Dell Validates Force10 Switches for 10GigE SANs

Force10 Networks' C-Series switches and S-Series access switches have been tested and validated for inclusion in Dell EqualLogic-based storage area networks (SANs). The Force10 C-Series and S-Series switches, combined with the Dell EqualLogic SANs, leverage end-to-end 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10 GbE) capability as well as deep buffering to provide the bursty data center and storage applications with the ability to temporarily fill egress packet buffers.

Mellanox Adapter Card Supports Both 40 Gbps InfiniBand and 10 GigE

Mellanox Technologies released a new ConnectX-2 Virtual Protocol Interconnect (VPI) adapter card, providing fabric flexibility with InfiniBand and Ethernet connectivity.

The ConnectX-2 VPI adapter card includes both a 40Gb/s InfiniBand QSFP port and a 10 Gigabit Ethernet SFP+ port, and enables users with both technologies, in a dense solution, to save server real-estate, reduce power consumption and consolidate their networking infrastructure.

Mellanox said the ConnectX-2 delivers up to 30% less power consumption than its predecessor.

Sprint and M2M DataSmart Enter Partnership

Sprint announced a partnership with M2M DataSmart, a new privately-held wireless data service provider based in San Diego, for the emerging machine-to-machine (M2M) marketplace.

The companies said their collaboration will make it easier and quicker for an entrepreneurial startup or a traditional brick-and-mortar to take an idea from concept to completion and enter the lucrative machine-to-machine arena using Sprint mobile broadband. Sprint and M2M DataSmart will become a "one-stop shop" for machine-to-machine solutions. M2M DataSmart provides a full portfolio of services that make embedding wireless within a variety of devices and applications an easy and quick process.

Sprint noted that it already has an established presence in the machine-to-machine and embedded device marketplace -- enabling partner solutions such as the Amazon Kindle, Ford Work Solutions and DriveCam. Through the Sprint Open Device Initiative, Sprint has certified more than 300 non-Sprint branded machine-to-machine and embedded devices for use on the Sprint mobile broadband network.

eBay Sells Skype to Private Investors

eBay will sell its Skype communications unit to a group of private investors in a deal valuing the business at $2.75 billion. The buyer, who will control an approximately 65 percent stake, is an investor group led by Silver Lake and includes Index Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz and the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) Investment Board. eBay is expected to receive approximately $1.9 billion in cash upon the completion of the sale and a note from the buyer in the principal amount of $125 million. eBay will retain an approximately 35 percent equity investment in Skype. The transaction, which is not subject to a financing condition, is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2009.

In April 2009, eBay announced plans to separate Skype from the company, beginning with an IPO in 2010. The decision followed a year‐long review of Skype within eBay's portfolio. As it prepared for an IPO, the company said it would naturally consider bids for Skype that offered an attractive valuation.

In 2008, Skype generated revenues of $551 million, a 44 percent increase compared to 2007. Total eBay Inc. revenues for 2008 were $8.5 billion. Registered Skype users reached 405 million by the end of 2008, a 47 percent increase from 2007. Skype is attracting hundreds of thousands of new users each week.

Occam Develops High-Density GigE FTTP Blade, VDSL2 Blade

Occam Networks announced a high-density Gigabit Ethernet blade for its BLC 6000 multi-service access platform. The new blade enables service providers to deliver up to 576 Ethernet FTTP customers from a 12 rack unit platform.

Whether deployed as a standalone network element supporting a single node or in a high capacity chassis with a mix of technologies, the BLC 6316 allows service providers to easily transition from copper to fiber networks, one 48-port blade at a time. The blade also supports carrier grade 10GigE transport while simultaneously subtending downstream nodes via resilient 10GigE. The 6316 with integrated 10GigE eliminates the need for additional network elements and scales to meet both broadband demands and middle mile capacity requirements.

Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) services are also supported for SMBs and Enterprises converging towards Gigabit Ethernet WANs. Occam estimates that when compared to alternative Gigabit Ethernet FTTP offerings, the BLC 6316 reduces the amount of physical space required in gigabit Ethernet FTTP deployments by as much as 75%. Further, Occam expects that operators will realize significant power savings -- as much as 25-30% per subscriber when compared to alternative solutions. Commercial availability is expected in Q1 2010 as part of the Occam OS 7.0 system release.

Occam announced the availability of this new solution at its Fifth Annual Occam Networks Users' Group (ONUG) Conference, held August 31 -- September 3 at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort in Austin, Texas. More than 300 service providers, partners and others are attending.

In addition, Occam announced the newest blade in its BLC 6000 platform. The BLC 6216 VDSL2 blade has automatic fallback to ADSL2Plus and provides double the port density of competitive products in a more compact form factor and with less energy consumption. Commercial availability is expected in Q1 2010 as part of the Occam OS 7.0 system release.

When used with a dual-mode VDSL2/ADSL2Plus modem, the 48-port BLC 6216 delivers a VDSL2 connection to single family residences (SFRs), multiple dwelling units/multiple tenant units (MDUs/MTUs), and small and medium businesses within 4000 feet and transitions to longer reach ADSL2Plus technology when placed in nodes at further distances. Occam expects ADSL2Plus mode rate / reach performance to be as good or slightly better than existing ADSL2Plus only offerings. The BLC 6216 also features an extensive suite of software features including IP Security Management (IPSM), which allows for dynamic, "hands free" broadband network security. To assure the highest QoE, Occam's Video Channel Analysis (VCA) tool is embedded in BLC 6000 blades to monitor IPTV services. Occam will also integrate the BLC 6216 into the Dr. DSL loop analysis tool for outside plant qualification and operations.

NSN Appoints Rajeev Suri as CEO as Beresford-Wylie Resigns

Simon Beresford-Wylie will step down as CEO of Nokia Siemens Networks at the end of this month. The company's board of directors has appointed Rajeev Suri to take his place.

Suri, who currently leads the Services business of Nokia Siemens Networks, joined Nokia in 1995. He has held a number of executive positions in Business Development, Marketing and Sales and Strategy. He has been based in various locations including India, Finland, the United Kingdom and Singapore. Suri, 41, is an Indian citizen and is married with two children.

Beresford-Wylie joined Nokia in 1998 and held several positions in Asia and Europe before his appointment to head Nokia's infrastructure business group in February 2005. He was one of the leading drivers behind the creation of Nokia Siemens Networks and assumed the position of Chief Executive Officer of the company when it commenced operations on April 1, 2007. He has been a member of the Nokia Group Executive Board since 2005.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

EMC Acquires FastScale for Scaling Private Clouds

EMC has acquired FastScale Technology, a start-up based in Santa Clara, California, for an undisclosed sum.

FastScale's technology simplifies application and server stack management and optimizes deployment for physical, virtual and cloud infrastructures. Its flagship product -- FastScale Composer Suite -- is a fully automated platform for building, optimizing, managing and deploying application environments in physical, virtual and cloud infrastructures. The company says its system allows data centers to run up to three times more virtual machines without degrading performance. FastScale also claims its technology decreases memory and disk usage by up to 75%, enabling some of the highest levels of tier-one application performance in the private cloud.
FastScale's technology will be used to enhance EMC Ionix portfolio, which is also aimed at accelerating the journey from physical to virtual to private cloud. The acquisition of FastScale extends EMC's Ionix solutions for automating IT management across a unified infrastructure of storage, compute, network and virtualization resources.

In addition, EMC announced an agreement to resell VMware's vCenter AppSpeed. This new solution, along with EMC's virtualization services, will be offered through EMC Select as part of the EMC Ionix portfolio, enabling customers to have full management capabilities across their physical and virtual IT infrastructures.
  • Investors in FastScale included ATA Ventures, Leapfrog Ventures and Hunt Ventures.

Australia Japan Cable and Pacific Crossing Launch GigE, 10GigE Service

Australia Japan Cable (AJC) and Pacific Crossing Limited (PCL) have teamed up to launch a Gigabit Ethernet Service for carrier, enterprise, and ISP customers looking for scalable, flexible connectivity options between Australia and North America.

Both companies had announced Gigabit Ethernet offerings on their own networks earlier in the year.

"Partnering together, AJC and PCL can offer standard 1Gigabit and 10Gigabit interfaces together with the flexibility of scalable capacity from 150Mbs (STM1) up to the full size of the port interface," stated said Seth Davis, PCL CTO.

Testing of the Gigabit service on the AJC and PC1 networks confirmed transmission performance up to the full rate and for frames up to a jumbo size of 9224 bytes.

Australia-Japan Cable is a 12,700km optical fibre ring submarine cable network, directly connecting Australia and Japan, via Guam. Pacific Crossing owns and operates the trans-Pacific, subsea fibre-optic network ring, PC1, connecting the U.S. and Japan.

Calix Raises $100 Million in New Financing

Calix has raised $100 million in financing and added three new members to its board of directors. The new financing of $50 million in equity raised from existing Calix investors and $50 million in debt financing established with Silicon Valley Bank.

Calix will use the funds to capitalize on the growth opportunities afforded by the $7.2 billion U.S. Broadband Stimulus program. Noting that more than 40 percent of the rural service providers in the United States are using its Unified Access Infrastructure to deliver advanced broadband services. Calix said it is uniquely poised to benefit from the Broadband Stimulus portion of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA

The new directors to the Calix board include Michael Marks of Riverwood Capital, Adam Grosser of Foundation Capital, and Robert Finzi of Sprout Group.

Calix Raises $100 Million in New Financing

Calix has raised $100 million in financing and added three new members to its board of directors. The new financing of $50 million in equity raised from existing Calix investors and $50 million in debt financing established with Silicon Valley Bank.

Calix will use the funds to capitalize on the growth opportunities afforded by the $7.2 billion U.S. Broadband Stimulus program. Noting that more than 40 percent of the rural service providers in the United States are using its Unified Access Infrastructure to deliver advanced broadband services. Calix said it is uniquely poised to benefit from the Broadband Stimulus portion of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA

The new directors to the Calix board include Michael Marks of Riverwood Capital, Adam Grosser of Foundation Capital, and Robert Finzi of Sprout Group.