Saturday, September 5, 2009

Telefónica and China Unicom Expand Alliance

Telefónica and China Unicom announced plans to increase their financial stakes in each other's companies by investing $1 billion each.

Telefónica will increase its stake in China Unicom to 8.06%, from 5.38%. Meanwhile China Unicom will hold about 0.9% of Telefónica.

The companies are also working on ways to share infrastructure and strengthen their marketing alliance.
  • In February 2009, Telefónica and China Unicom agreed to develop integrated and mobile and 3G services.
    In addition, the agreement coverd a wide number of areas of collaboration such as developing innovative services, international business, joint procurement of network equipment, devices and handsets , platforms for innovative and advanced services, and services to corporate customers, among others.

Friday, September 4, 2009

AT&T Outlines New "Domain Supplier" Program

AT&T outlined a new "Domain Supplier" program aimed at transforming the way it purchases network equipment. As a key part of the program, the company has established a number of "domains" -- areas of the future network bounded by a particular technology set, such as wireline access. Within each of these domains are target technologies. For example, the wireline access domain includes technologies such as IP/DSLAM and FTTx.

Each domain will have two suppliers selected and pre-qualified by AT&T.

AT&T said it will work closely with selected suppliers over a multi-year period in order to define solutions that meet current and future needs. This includes sharing timelines, project roadmaps and other information, enabling suppliers to more quickly realize revenue due to expedited deployment of their hardware or software. In addition, regardless of the size of the initial business award from AT&T, each supplier within a domain will have an opportunity to expand the award beyond its initial scope. Suppliers selected for each domain will be responsible for the integration, testing, support and delivery of the complete end-to-end solution for the equipment or software in the domain that they have been awarded. If a selected domain supplier chooses to work with a third party to deliver the technology within their domain, they will be expected to completely integrate, test and support the third party provider's technology into the end-to-end solution.

AT&T said it expects its Domain Supplier program to:

  • Accelerate spend on future-oriented equipment categories, while reducing expenditures on legacy systems.

  • Achieve competitive cost and highest performance by increasing supplier competition within a domain.

  • Take advantage of the latest technologies and R&D efforts.

  • Focus development on collaboration around system capabilities versus component purchasing.

  • Stay in tune with innovations and the evolving market place.

  • Expand its best-in-class sustainability and supplier diversity programs.

"Customer expectations for network reliability have increased, and they are demanding speed to market for new technologies to satisfy today's ever-changing landscape," said Tim Harden, president, Supply Chain and Fleet Operations, AT&T. "We must continually challenge and collaborate with our equipment and software suppliers to improve their quality and step up to a higher level of performance. Our goal is to ensure that each investment in network infrastructure accelerates our move towards a network that enables the full promise of the Internet and other game-changing technologies."

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Verizon Developer Attracts 1,000 Mobile App Developers

One month after hosting its first Verizon Developer Community (VDC) Conference, Verizon Wireless reported that more than 1,000 developers have signed-up.

Verizon Raises Quarterly Dividend 3.3%

The Board of Directors of Verizon Communications declared a quarterly dividend of 47.5 cents per outstanding share, an increase of 1.5 cents per share, or 3.3 percent, from the previous quarter. On an annual basis, this increases Verizon's dividend 6 cents per share, from $1.84 to $1.90 per share.

"This increase reflects the strength of our cash flow and balance sheet," said Ivan Seidenberg, Verizon chairman and chief executive officer.

Verizon's COO Dennis F. Strigl to Retire

Dennis F. Strigl, Verizon Communications' President and Chief Operating Officer, confirmed plans to retire to from the company by the end of 2009. Strigl is responsible for the operations of Verizon's network-based businesses - Verizon Wireless, Verizon Telecom and Verizon Business -- as well as Verizon Services Operations, which provides financial, real estate and other services to all of the company's operations. He is widely recognized as a key architect of the wireless industry, and of Verizon Wireless, where he served as president and chief executive officer until assuming his current role in 2007.

Ciena's Quarterly Revenues Rise 14% Sequentially to $165 Million

Ciena's revenue for its fiscal third quarter ended July 31, 2009 totaled $164.8 million, representing a 14% sequential improvement compared to fiscal second quarter 2009 revenue of $144.2 million. Ciena's net loss (GAAP) was $(26.5) million, or $(0.29) per common share.

"We delivered significant sequential improvement in our fiscal third quarter across all major financial performance metrics, including revenue, gross margin and operating results," said Gary Smith, Ciena's CEO and president. "Through the challenging environment of the last 12 months, we've managed the business with the objective of balancing operating performance with a disciplined approach to strategic investment."

Force10 Sees Spike in Revenue from Data Center Build outs

Force10 Networks reported that revenues for the period ending June 30, 2009 increased 24% from the previous quarter thanks to increasing momentum behind the company's Ethernet switch/router products with both data center and carrier customers.

The Force10 ExaScale E-Series virtualized core switch/router, which was introduced in March 2009 and first began to ship in volume during Force10's Q3, was a significant contributor to the company's quarterly growth.

The company said new wins at mid-sized data centers and carrier points of presence (POPs) also supported ExaScale's sales momentum during the quarter.

Dell'Oro: 10 GigE NIC Market Posts Double-Digit Growth

The 10 Gigabit (10GB) Ethernet Network Adapter market saw double-digit sequential growth in both port shipments and revenue during the second quarter of 2009, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. The report also indicates that market average selling prices fell steeply during the quarter.

"Numerous factors are falling into place to drive steep 10GB Ethernet Network Adapter price declines," said Seamus Crehan, Vice President at Dell'Oro Group. "These include the migration from single- to dual-port cards, as well as a mix shift to copper-based technologies," Crehan added.

Japan's EMOBILE Launches HSPA with Ericsson

Ericsson confirmed its role in the recent launch of HSPA services in Japan by EMOBILE. Services with peak rates up to 21 Mbps were launched Tokyo, Osaka, Yokohama and Nagoya on July 24.

Under the agreement, Ericsson is the sole supplier of the core network and core systems integration services. Ericsson is also the main supplier for upgrading the existing WCDMA/HSPA radio access network with HSPA Evolution, including network deployment services.

EMOBILE is a leader in mobile broadband in Japan and has been working closely with Ericsson since 2006. As of July 31, 2009, EMOBILE's subscribers numbered more than 1.74 million.
  • Last month, Huawei announced that it provided EMOBILE with its end-to-end solution including the advanced distributed base station (DBS), as well as its HSPA+ data card (D31HW).

Sprint to Offer HTC's Android-based Hero with Google

Sprint will begin selling HTC's Android-based Hero handset over its EVDO Rev. A. network.

HTC Hero offers synchronization for built-in Google mobile services, including Google Search, Google Maps, Gmail, and YouTube as well as access to other Android applications.

"The arrival of HTC Hero and the Android platform to Sprint's network is an important milestone for our customers and the U.S. wireless industry," said Kevin Packingham, senior vice president of product development for Sprint.

Sprint said it is actively engaged with the Android community and is committed to an open Internet approach.

HTC Hero is the first U.S. device to feature HTC Sense, which features a seven-panel wide home screen that can be populated with customizable widgets.

Users can switch between "Scenes", such as work, social, travel and play. For example, a work Scene can be easily set up to include stock updates, work email and calendar, a play Scene could have music, weather, and a Twitter feed or a travel Scene could offer instant access to the local time, weather and maps.

HTC Hero also features an integrated 5.0 MP camera, camcorder, integrated GPS navigation, and trackball navigation. Additional features include:
  • Stereo Bluetooth 2.0 Wireless technology

  • Accelerometer, light sensor and home screen widgets for improved usability

  • Multimedia capable with microSD slot (32GB capable, 2GB included)

  • Sprint TV with live and on-demand programming

  • NFL Mobile Live and NASCAR Sprint Cup Mobile

  • Access to social networking sites, including Facebook, Flickr, and Twitter

  • Visual voice mail for quick and easy access to specific voice mail messages

Hong Kong's CSL Confirms LTE Rollout and UMTS 900 MHz, Picks ZTE

Hong Kong-based CSL, which is a subsidiary of Telstra, unveiled its plans for the roll-out of UMTS in the 900 Mhz band and the building of a 4G or Long
Term Evolution (LTE) network. CSL has selected ZTE as its strategic vendor.

At a jointly-held event, themed "Long Term Evolution -- Imagine Life Now", the companies presented a live demonstration of LTE technology in action. The joint demonstration featured peak download speeds in excess of 100 Mbps.

CSL's deployment of UMTS 900 is the first instance of spectrum re-farming seen in Hong Kong. "Deployment of mobile services using UMTS in the 900 spectrum range is
designed to increase outdoor coverage and in-building penetration rates; something that is vitally important in Hong Kong with its high density urban environment" said CSL's Chief Technology Officer, Mr Christian Daigneault.

"We have devoted major investment to build one of the world's most advanced networks in Next G with more than 2,200 sites throughout Hong Kong all operating with HSPA+ which provides a peak throughput of 21Mbps. We are now expanding our coverage even further with UMTS 900, and we will continue to invest in 4G LTE through our strategic partnership with ZTE Corporation. We believe that these initiatives play a crucial role in consolidating our network leadership and enabling new wireless uses for consumers and enterprises alike," stated Tarek Robbiati, Chief Executive Officer of CSL

Alcatel-Lucent Builds Optical Backbone in Mozambique

Telecomunicacoes de Mocambique (TDM) has awarded a EUR 21 million contract to Alcatel-Lucent to deploy the third phase of Mozambique's national transmission network. Under the terms of the contract, Alcatel-Lucent will lay 2,585 km of optical fiber and deploy its optical transmission solutions to connect any remaining geographic areas. Alcatel-Lucent recently finished the two first phases, laying 2,970 km of optical fiber across the country.

TELMEX Launches Intercompany Cisco TelePresence in Latin America

Teléfonos de México, S.A.B. de C.V. (TELMEX) launched Telepresencia Administrada TELMEX a regional plan in Latin America to market and deliver Cisco TelePresenceTM for multipoint intracompany services as well as for intercompany connectivity. Intercompany Cisco TelePresence services allows calls directly from a Cisco TelePresence room on a customer network to a TelePresence room on a different company's network through a secure connection from the service provider.

TELMEX is also offering public TelePresence Suites, the first of their kind in Latin America.

BT Launches Wholesale Broadband Managed Connect for ISPs

BT introduced a new service called Wholesale Broadband Managed Connect (WBMC) over IPstream Connect aimed at helping other operators deliver a mix of next-generation and legacy broadband services in different geographies across the UK over a single backhaul link.

Currently communications providers wishing to offer a UK-wide broadband service need to offer IPstream wholesale broadband internet services, such as fixed speed DSL and DSL Max in parallel with next generation broadband services which means running separate links to the internet. WBMC over IPstream Connect offers communications providers a single backhaul solution providing them the opportunity to deliver a richer service portfolio.

BT said its next generation broadband services are available from exchanges serving 40 per cent of UK homes and businesses and will reach 55 per cent by spring 2010.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

CWA Union Ratifies Wireline Agreement in AT&T's West Region

Wireline employees represented by the Communications Workers of America in AT&T's West Region (CWA District 9) voted to ratify a three-year agreement with the Communications Workers of America. The agreement covers about 23,000 employees in California and Nevada.
A total of about 57,500 employees -- roughly half of those covered under AT&T's core wireline contracts -- now have ratified or tentative agreements.
AT&T noted that negotiations are continuing in other regions where contracts expired on April 4, as they did in Midwest, West, and Legacy T. They include East (CWA District 1), and Southwest (CWA District 6). Negotiations are also continuing in Southeast (CWA District 3), where contracts expired Aug. 8.

BT Deploys ADVA's FSP 150 for National Ethernet Access

Openreach, BT's UK-based access network arm, is deploying the ADVA FSP 150, featuring Etherjack technology, throughout its national Ethernet Access Direct (EAD) services. Using a range of intelligent Ethernet services, Openreach's customers will now be able to perform last-mile test and diagnostic.

Designed to supersede Openreach's current Ethernet offerings, EAD will deliver point-to-point fixed symmetrical Ethernet bandwidth services ranging from 10 Mbps to 1,000 Mbps. Stretching across distances of 35km radial and up to a maximum of 66km route fiber, these new cost-effective services will form the foundation of Openreach's next-generation service roll out and will complement Openreach's Ethernet Backhaul Direct (EBD) and Bulk Transport Link (BTL) products.  Customers will be able to perform last mile test and diagnostics.

ADVA Optical Networking noted that it is currently the only vendor to provide Ethernet access devices into Openreach's EAD services.

Nortel Carries 40G Across 12,000km Submarine Cable

Nortel has demonstrated 40G optical transmission across Reliance Globalcom's Atlantic cable FA1.

The recently completed trial was conducted over a 6000 km submarine segment between the United Kingdom and the U.S. During the trials Nortel equipment was simply added to both ends of the third-party submarine cable, with Nortel able to demonstrate the ability to provide over two times the bandwidth capacity without the need to replace or upgrade the submarine cable or undersea repeaters.  In addition, the FA-1 cable was looped back to create a continuous 12,000 km segment.  The result is believed to be the longest 40G result yet achieved.

Qwest Readies 100 Gbps Upgrade with Alcatel-Lucent

Qwest Communications announced plans to upgrade its nationwide network to deliver speeds of up to 100 Gbps to its customer edge sites. This build-out has begun on Qwest's network and is planned through 2010.

Qwest's evolving backbone capabilities will deliver 100 Gbps across its national network directly to customers in markets where the company offers its Ethernet-based iQ Networking and QWave data networking services. Qwest's upgraded backbone will transport and switch data faster and more cost-effectively, thus ensuring Qwest customers have the ability to scale bandwidth more conveniently and with greater ease.

Qwest has selected Alcatel-Lucent's architecture to enable the upgrade. Specifically, Qwest will deploy Alcatel-Lucent's recently announced 100 Gbps Ethernet service routing capability. Installation includes supporting routers and switches out to the edge of the network, as well as Alcatel-Lucent's optical, ultra long-haul platform that will transport the 100 Gbps services. Terms of the agreement are not being disclosed.

Qwest said its objective with this network upgrade is to deliver more powerful capabilities to its customer base, including global enterprises and governments. Additionally, this upgrade directly addresses and alleviates pressure on the network backbone. Internet traffic is doubling approximately every 19 months. And each year, individual Internet users consume approximately 43 percent more bandwidth than the previous year.

"This industry-leading upgrade, with the help of our partner Alcatel-Lucent, allows Qwest to meet the very real challenges of responding to data consumption trends. Qwest is satisfying customers' appetites for increasingly sophisticated applications while honoring the need to be more resource-efficient," stated Pieter Poll, chief technology officer, Qwest:
http://www.alcatel-lucent.comIn July 2009, Alcatel-Lucent introduced a 100 Gigabit Ethernet interface and a 10-port 10 Gigabit Ethernet interface, both with massive queuing, classification and traffic management capabilities, for its 7750 Service Router and 7450 Ethernet Service Switch (ESS). Operators who have deployed Alcatel-Lucent service routers since 2004 can add the new line cards and immediately multiply capacity up to 100 Gbps per slot , double the current 50 Gbps maximum.

The new 100 Gigabit Ethernet capabilities are enabled by Alcatel-Lucent's custom FP2 chipset (launched July 2008), which is capable of sophisticated and optimized network processing and traffic management at speeds up to 100 Gbps. The FP2 chipset integrates 112 array cores for 95,000 MIPs performance and is implemented in 90nm process technology. The silicon was developed in house.

Dell'Oro: Supply Shortages Dampen Wireless LAN Market in Q2

The worldwide Wireless LAN market sales were constrained by supply shortages affecting a number of equipment manufacturers, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group.. The most significant impact on sales levels came from the enterprise class of products, followed by products targeting the Small Office Home Office users.

"The overall Wireless LAN market sales were about flat quarter to quarter at just under $1.0 billion," said Tam Dell'Oro President and Founder of Dell'Oro Group. "We calculate that sales would have risen about 5 percent had it not been for component shortages such as high speed memory chipsets. US government stimulus programs are turning into sales orders faster than people expected. It is not clear that the shortages are over," added Dell'Oro.

Occam Networks Introduces New GPON ONTs

Occam Networks introduced three new GPON optical network terminals (ONTs) designed to accelerate the transition to FTTP. The ON 2541, 2543 and 2544 ONTs offer a wide range of features allowing for maximum flexibility to fit subscribers' needs as well as the providers' network architecture. All ONTs are compatible with Occam's award winning BLC 6000 MSAP featuring the 6322 GPON OLT. The new ONTs will be available in late 2009.

All ONTs in the ON 2540 series provide a 2.5Gbps downstream and 1.2Gbps upstream GPON optical uplink and two POTS ports. The ON 2541 and ON 2543 also offer a Gigabit Ethernet option and the ON 2543's HPNA port allows for simple, cost-effective home device connectivity through existing coaxial wiring. The ON 2543 features the industry's first implementation of intelligent bandwidth management over coaxial interfaces. In order to assure high quality of experience (QoE), Occam has also integrated a significant set of troubleshooting and management tools for HPNA over coaxial cable. The cost-effective ON 2544 includes four Fast Ethernet ports for a variety of premise network and ancillary equipment connectivity needs.

All Occam ONTs feature patented IP Security Management (IPSM) that allows for dynamic, "hands free" network security that ensures robust subscriber traffic Administration, Authorization and Accounting (AAA). The ONTs deliver lifeline POTS using SIP or MGCP VoIP or GR-303, high speed Internet, Ethernet private line, IPTV and RF video. These new ONTs can be deployed in environmentally-hardened enclosures for outdoor installation, and are compliant with the following standards: ITU-T G.984, ITU-T G.984.4 OMCI, TR-156 and TR-101.

Occam announced the availability of these new ONTs at its Fifth Annual Occam Networks Users' Group (ONUG) Conference, held this week in Austin. Occam said more than 300 service providers, partners and others are attending.