Monday, September 20, 2010

PMC-Sierra Trims Q3 Forecast

PMC-Sierra trimmed its financial forecast for its third quarter ending September 26, 2010. The company now expects net revenues to be in the range of $161 million to $163 million, compared to the previous revenue range of $169 million to $177 million that was announced during the July 22, 2010 earnings conference. PMC-Sierra expects its gross margins in the third quarter of 2010 to be at the lower end of the outlook range provided of 67.5% to 68.5%. Operating expenses in the third quarter of 2010 are expected to be in the range of $64 million to $65 million, down from the prior outlook range of $66 million to $67 million.

Fujitsu Develops Distortion-Compensation DSP for 100 Gbps

Researchers at Fujitsu have developed a digital signal processing algorithm that compensates for waveform distortion in 100 Gbps signals sent over hundreds of kilometers. The researchers believe their DSP could lead to 100 Gbps links at lower cost than today's 10 Gbps within five years.

Some of this research was conducted as part of the "Universal Link Project R&D" sponsored by Japan's National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT). Fujitsu said that scaling conventional, non-linear dispersion compensation techniques would require massive circuits with more than 100 million logic gates. Its new signal-processing algorithm however, requires approximately one-quarter of circuit stages previously thought necessary. The technology has already been tested using a 112 Gbps signal over 1,200 km, and the signal quality using the new five-stage circuit was found to be comparable to that resulting from a conventional 20-stage circuit.

IBM Names Partners for Smart Grid Networks

IBM announced plans to deliver comprehensive communications to help utilities transform into "smart" grids. The goal is to provide a secure and scalable communications infrastructure integrated from the data center all the way to the sensor or smart meter.

IBM will provide consulting, design and implementation services using network technology from partners, including ADVA Optical Networking, Alvarion, Ciena, Cisco, Itron (in North America), Juniper Networks, Landis+Gyr (in North America), Motorola, RuggedCom, Sensus and Trilliant. All partners are either IBM SAFE (Solution Architecture for Energy & Utilities) validated or committed to validation as part of participation in the partner ecosystem.

"IBM was among the first companies to recognize the benefits of marrying information technology with the electricity grid," said Guido Bartels, General Manager, Energy & Utilities Industry at IBM and Chairman, GridWise Alliance. "Given our experience with more then 150 smart grid projects around the world, we are now building on that leadership by providing the first comprehensive global communications services offering of its kind."

AT&T Begins Selling TerreStar's Dual-Mode Cellular/Sat Smartphone

AT&T has begun marketing a new Satellite Augmented Mobile Service featuring the TerreStar GENUS dual-mode cellular/satellite smartphone.

The dual-mode device uses AT&T's cellular wireless network as the primary default mode and Terrestar's satellite network as a secondary option for voice, data and messaging. The TerreStar satellite network ensures coverage in remote areas for government, energy, utility, transportation and maritime users, as well as backup satellite communications capabilities for public safety agencies, first responders and disaster recovery groups. The satellite footprint covers the United States, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and territorial waters.

The service requires standard AT&T cellular voice and smartphone data rate plans, as well as a monthly satellite subscription feature. Usage of the satellite network for voice, data and messaging is not included in the monthly feature charge and is billed as per-minute, per-message or per-megabyte roaming charges on a customer's AT&T Mobility service invoice.

The TerreStar GENUS runs on the Windows Mobile 6.5 operating system to provide rich features and functionality, including a touch screen, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, camera and GPS.

"With advancements in satellite technology, satellite-based communications is poised to be the next standard in everyday mobile devices," said Jeffrey Epstein, President and Chief Executive Officer of TerreStar. "We are pleased to work with AT&T to bring powerful integrated satellite-cellular solutions to market, providing customers with critical communication capabilities and a great mobile experience."
  • TerreStar's dual-mode smartphone was developed by EB (Elektrobit). The device features quad-band GSM and tri-band WCDMA/HSPA capabilities. In addition to seamless satellite/terrestrial voice handovers, the smartphone is capable of SMS, MMS, IM, Email, Push to Talk and Location Based Services (LBS). Notably, TerreStar will use an all-IP core network, with services based on IMS.

  • The Terrestar-1 satellite, which was launched in July 2009, is the largest and most powerful commercial satellite to date. The hybrid satellite/terrestrial architecture ensures mobile coverage in rural areas across North America or in cases where the conventional terrestrial services become unavailable.

  • The satellite, which weighs a record 6,910 kg and was built at Space Systems/Loral's Palo Alto, California facility, operates in two 10-Mhz blocks of contiguous MSS spectrum in the 2 GHz band throughout the United States and Canada - with a spectrum footprint that covers a population of nearly 330 million. The satellite uniquely features an 18-meter deployable reflector and an S-band feed array with 500 spot beams.

Huawei Benchmarks "SuperMIMO" DSL at 700 Mbps / 400m

Huawei has demonstrated a "SuperMIMO" DSL prototype capable of achieving a data rate of 700 Mbps -- roughly seven times the previous theoretical top speed of a DSL connection.

Huawei said its SuperMIMO technology uses four twisted pairs to achieve a downstream rate of 700Mbps at a distance of 400 meters. The technology methodically addresses crosstalk among multiple twisted pairs and dramatically increases DSL bandwidth by 75 percent, from an average of 100Mbps per twisted pair to approximately 175 Mbps. Huawei's 700 Mbps DSL prototype accommodates high-speed FTTB/FTTC access and bandwidth-hungry private line applications, such as base station access.

You Yiyong, President of Huawei's Access Network Product Line, said, "DSL technologies for broadband access are showing great market potential. As a leader in the development of DSL technologies, our newest DSL prototype demonstrates our commitment to providing customer-centric and groundbreaking solutions and services for operators to enhance their competitiveness and profitability."

Telefónica España Launches Dual-Carrier, 42 Mbps HSPA+

Telefónica España will launch dual-carrier HSPA+ service under its Movistar brand in Madrid and Barcelona beginning in October. The company is offering Novatel Wireless' MC545 USB modem as its first device capable of reaching the peak speeds of 42 Mbps over a dual-carrier HSPA+ network.

During 2010, the company has been upgrading its network to HSPA+ to deliver up to 21 Mbps in Spanish cities with populations of over 250,000. These locations will now be upgraded to dual-carrier HSPA+ capability.

Novatel Wireless Launches Dual-Carrier HSPA+ USB Device

Novatel Wireless introduced a Dual-Carrier HSPA+ (DC- HSPA+) USB modem. At a press event in Madrid Telefonica Moviles launched the new Ovation MC545 and showcased over-the-air download speed of 40.5 Mbps supported by Ericsson's DC-HSPA+ network infrastructure.

The Ovation MC545 is based on the 3GPP Release 8 standard. DC-HSPA+ supports theoretical peak downlink data rates of up to 42 Mbps and 5.7 Mbps on the uplink. It supports the 900,1900 and 2100 MHz frequency bands. It also features Novatel Wireless' MobiLink 3 auto install connection manager, memory storage of up to 32GB via MicroSDHC and backward compatibility with HSPA technologies.

NSN Cites Progress in Mobile Backhaul Upgrades

Nokia Siemens Networks has migrated its 100th customer from legacy mobile backhaul technology to IP/Ethernet. The company said this milestone reflects a quickened pace in the mobile industry's adoption of IP architecture.

Today network operators face high capacity demands due to the increased uptake of smart devices and always-on applications," said Marc Rouanne, head of Network Systems, Nokia Siemens Networks. "We help our customers with a direct path to LTE -- migrating them to cost-efficient, highly reliable and scalable IP/Ethernet backhaul networks. The 100th customer deploying our technology shows that transformation to IP is developing at a rapid pace and that operators realize the value in our offering."

Nokia Siemens Networks Conducts 200G Trial

Nokia Siemens Networks succeeded in transmitting data at 200 Gbps over standard optical fiber. The lab trial, which was conducted at the NSN research facility in Munich, used its recently announced 400G-ready DWDM equipment.

Nokia Siemens Networks said the move to 400G is the next step in the optical transport deployments, following the current 10/40/100G networks. This 200G trial is seen as a stepping stone in this migration. The company expects network operators will start deploying 400G-ready optical networks by 2011.

"Nokia Siemens Networks has time and again demonstrated its capacity leadership in optical networks. Our latest trial shows that it's possible today to re-use existing fiber and double the speed per wavelength to 200G," said Oliver Jahreis, head of product management for WDM networks at Nokia Siemens Networks. "This development is an important milestone and shows that we are on the right track toward a cost-efficient approach to 400G networks and beyond."

As the demand for higher-capacity transport networks continues to rise, network operators need to increase the speed per wavelength in their existing networks. It will help operators get the most out of their investments, as laying additional fiber lines to meet the capacity demand is a costly option.

Re-use of existing fiber for the evolution to higher-capacity networks will protect operators' investments, while providing higher data speeds for end users.

Nokia Siemens Networks conducted the trial at its research and development center in Munich using its prototype equipment.
  • In July 2010, Nokia Siemens Networks announced that its hiT 7300 DWDM platform will be ready for native 400 Gbps single carrier optical transmission by Q1 2011. NSN will offer different muxponder cards to take advantage of this capacity, i.e. 10x40G and 4x100G muxed into a 400G wavelength. The company's optical line system will have 96 channel capacity and when the single-carrier 400 Gbps capacity is introduced, the overall system capacity will be 38.4 Tbps (96 channels of 400G).

MetroPCS Launches LTE in Las Vegas

MetroPCS launched the first LTE commercial service in the United States. The company has activated its first LTE network in central Las Vegas and had begun offering the Samsung Craft 4G LTE enabled handset as its first LTE device.

MetroPCS is offering unlimited talk, text and 4G Web access starting at $55 per month, including taxes and regulatory fees, with no annual contract required. An upgraded $60 per month plan adds "MetroSTUDIO", a music and video service powered by RealNetworks that provides on-demand content from NBC Universal, Black Entertainment Television (BET) and Univision. The $60 plan also features a built-in social networking and instant messaging aggregation application and a voice-activated GPS and turn-by-turn directions.

Tethering is not supported or allowed.

The Samsung Craft, which is priced at $299 plus tax, after $50 instant rebate, is a multi-mode 4G LTE/CDMA handset. It features a 3.3 inch AMOLED (Active-matrix organic light-emitting diode) screen, a 2GB microSD card, a combination touch screen, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, and Samsung's "TouchWiz" user interface. It also provides A 3.2 megapixel camera with flash and camcorder, and Wi-Fi capability.

MetroPCS' Las Vegas 4G LTE network, which was built through a partnership with Samsung Telecommunications America (Samsung Mobile), will cover the majority of MetroPCS' existing CDMA network footprint in Las Vegas.

The company said 4G LTE network rollouts in the remaining MetroPCS markets are planned for later this year and early 2011. These markets include Dallas, Detroit, Los Angeles, Sacramento, North Florida, Central Florida, South Florida, Boston, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Atlanta and New York City.

"The Internet is going mobile, and we are placing the true power of the Internet directly in our customers' hands, when and where they need it. By offering affordable, predictable and flexible 4G services on a no-contract basis, MetroPCS delivers immediate benefits to our customers and is positioned to meet their evolving needs well into the future," said Roger D. Linquist, president, CEO and chairman of MetroPCS.

Cyan Introduces Single-Slot "ROADM on a Blade"

Cyan is introducing a reconfigurable optical add/drop multiplexer (ROADM) module with up to 40 channels of wavelength selectable switching (WSS) for use in its Z-Series platforms. The new Z-Series WSS-402 module simplifies the upgrade of fiber transport routes for up to 400 Gbps of capacity per-fiber with simple plug and play modules, and optional fixed or tunable optics. Cyan's multi-layer management system provides network-wide, point and click provisioning of wavelengths on demand.

Cyan's Z-Series platforms support Carrier Ethernet services with connection oriented Ethernet transport, SONET/SDH transport, as well as G.709 muxponded and transponded services. As services consume available fibers, service providers have a choice of adding four, eight or up to 40 channels of DWDM capacity with simple card additions. Cyan's new single-slot WSS-402 module provides a fully integrated design providing DWDM, EDFA (Eridium Doped Fiber Amplifiers), OSC (Optical service channel) and WSS all in one single-slot module.

Tellabs Names Vice President of Professional Services

Tellabs named Dean Liming as vice president of professional services. He joins Tellabs after working as Senior Director, Professional Services, at Openwave Systems. At Openwave, he was responsible for all professional services accounts and activity in North, Central and South America, and for the establishment of all global professional services strategy and global fiscal forecasts. His experience also includes increasing responsible roles at Kenan Systems, Lucent Technologies and U.S. West.

Aviat Enhances Ethernet Switching in Mobile Backhaul

Aviat Networks announced enhanced integrated Ethernet switching capabilities for its Eclipse Packet Node microwave transmission platform. The new switching capabilities, which are designed for mobile backhaul applications, will be delivered on a new Gigabit Ethernet switching card --- planned for introduction later this year --- and will be offered alongside existing Eclipse Ethernet cards. In addition to synchronization over packet, the new card features advances in capacity, QoS, traffic management and Ethernet services, and supports new Ethernet protection options for high availability service assurance.

Aviat Networks recently demonstrated its enhanced platform at EANTC's annual Carrier Ethernet interoperability test event and was part of a multivendor Synchronous Ethernet (SyncE) test conducted over a combined microwave-wireline network with several vendors including Cisco, Symmetricom, Calnex and MRV.

Cavium Announces OCTEON II PCI-Express Gen2 Adapters

Cavium Networks introduced an Intelligent Network Adapter family based on OCTEON II CN63XX processor family. The Adapters deliver 10Gbps performance for applications such as Data Center security, cloud computing, network and storage data compression, Deep Packet Inspection, WAN optimization, TCP/IP Offload and iSCSI Offload.

The new adapters offer high performance networking, compression, storage features, DPI functionality with dual 10 Gigabit Ethernet interfaces in a single PCI-Express Gen2 form factor. The Intelligent Network Adapters also support non volatile memory (NVRAM) for data retention and failover in SSD deployments. Three models are being introduced: a two port 10Gigabit Ethernet adapter for inline acceleration and offload, a four port Gigabit Ethernet adapter and a coprocessor adapter for look-aside offload. All adapters have PCI-Express Gen2.0 connectivity. All of the above adapters have a DDR3 DIMM slot that can support up to 8GB of 1333 DDR3 Memory and NVRAM capability. The adapters also support an optional 1GB of DDR3 HFA memory for Deep Packet Inspection. Sampling begins in Q4.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Bharti Airtel Selects Ericsson, NSN and Huawei

Bharti Airtel has chosen Ericsson India, Nokia Siemens Networks and Huawei Technologies as network partners to launch 3G Services in India. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Ericsson was selected to supply the majority of the 3G License Circles held by Bharti. With the new contract, Ericsson continues to be Bharti's largest network partner across 2G and 3G circles in the country.

On the same lines, Bharti has also expanded its relationship with Nokia Siemens Networks, which would manage Bharti's 3G Network in 3 circles across India.

Bharti Airtel has also introduced Huawei Technologies as the 3rd partner for offering 3G services in a few circles.

Airtel said its upcoming 3G services will be specifically targeted towards mobile broadband. The network will be HSPA+ ready from launch.

Infinera Enables Programmable Multi-Service OTN Switching

Infinera is enabling new OTN (Optical Transport Network) capabilities the introduction of both hardware and software enhancements to its family of optical platforms.

The hardware enhancements are new Tributary Adapter Modules for the DTN digital ROADM core WDM system and new Service Interface Modules for the ATN metro/access WDM system. These new modules enable OTN, Ethernet, FibreChannel, SONET/SDH, and wavelength services with per-port programmability. They are compatible with field-deployed DTNs and ATNs, simplify sparing, and expand service delivery.

New software includes Infinera's latest release of the Digital Network Administrator (DNA Release 6), providing even better integration of end-to-end mixed DTN/ATN networks and a host of accelerated-workflow applications to speed and simplify common network operations tasks. The new products have already begun shipping and are planned to be generally available by next month.

Infinera said its approach offers full compatibility with international OTN standards while providing the added benefits of its Digital Optical Networks architecture. OTN promises to simplify, flatten, and reduce capital and operating cost in optical networks. However, most vendor implementations of OTN have been piecemeal to date. The Infinera DTN supports OTN switching at every node, enabling grooming and switching of OTN-encapsulated client services to maximize service reconfigurability and network performance monitoring throughout the network, for increased network bandwidth efficiency. The enhancements announced today add the capability to support native OTN end-to-end services from metro/edge networks across backbone/core networks and standard-compliant OTN networking across multiple operator networks.

New Measures for Europe's Digital Agenda

The European Commission adopted several measures aimed at boosting the roll-out and take up of fast- and ultra-fast broadband as part of its Digital Agenda for Europe.
The goal is to ensure that every European citizen could access basic broadband by 2013, and fast- and ultra-fast broadband by 2020. The newly adopted measures include:

  • A recommendation on access to next-generation networks, so that telecoms operators would know what EU laws will apply and that rules be consistent across the single market. The recommendation primarily covers remedies to be imposed upon operators designated with Significant Market Power (SMP) to ensure sharing of facilities. The recommendation holds that national regulatory authorities should also use their powers to facilitate the deployment of multiple fibre lines where feasible to ensure long term competition. The document also contends that alternative operators, some of whom have already deployed their own networks to
    connect to the unbundled copper loop of the SMP operator, "need to be provided with appropriate access products in order to continue to compete in an NGA context. For FTTH these may consist of access to civil engineering infrastructure, to the terminating segment, to the unbundled fibre loop (including dark fibre) or of
    wholesale broadband access, as the case may be."

  • A proposal to ensure that spectrum is available by 2013 for wireless broadband using the 800 MHz band. The European Commission has already adopted a recommendation calling for analogue broadcasting to be switched off by 1 January 2012, and this band should be made available for electronic communications in the EU by 2013. In the longer term, additional spectrum below 790 MHz could also be envisaged, depending on experience and the
    lack of spectrum in other bands adequate for coverage. Considering the capacity of the 800 MHz band to transmit over large areas, the EC believes coverage obligations should be attached to rights.

The EC also published a policy paper outlining how best to encourage public and private investment in high and ultra-high speed networks. Topics of discussion include using regional and local authorities to held reducing the civil engineering costs of new infrastructure; allowing direct investment in infrastructure by public authorities in line with state aid rules; better use of structural and rural development funds; encouraging wireless broadband because it is cheaper than wireline; and enhancing broadband finance instruments via the European Investment Bank.

Ceragon Acquires Elxys Innovations for RF Designs

Ceragon Networks has acquired Elxys Innovations, a designer of radio-frequency integrated circuits (RFIC).

Elxys, which has been Ceragon's design partner for a number of years, specializes in analog, RF, millimeter-wave and mixed signal integrated circuit design spanning from baseband up to 77 GHz. Total consideration was $1.6 million plus 200,000 restricted share units to Elxys founders who are now Ceragon employees. The company is based in Athens, Greece.

Ceragon said the acquisition allows it to further optimize its core radio technology, for superior radio performance, higher capacities, reduced power consumption and better overall cost.

Broadband Passes 500 Million Subscriber Mark

The number of broadband subscriber lines installed worldwide passed the 500 million mark in July 2010, according to the Broadband Forum and research from Point Topic.

As of the end of Q2 2010, global broadband subscribers reached 498 million lines (497,768,162), representing a 2.63% growth in the quarter and 11.99% in the last 12 months to end of Q2 2010. The number of IPTV subscribers has risen to 38.5 million, up by 2.3 million new IPTV subscribers in Q2 2010.

In some market, the number of DSL subscribers is decreasing, although these are being replaced largely by fiber deployment, either directly to the subscriber or fiber-to-the-building, with the final link often being VDSL2.

To help reach the next 500 million broadband subscribers, the Broadband Forum said it is now focused on defining the evolving end-to-end architecture, ensuring it can support multiple services with quality of service including multi cast. Work includes defining MPLS core specifications as well as access aggregation and local loop solutions (DSL, fiber, etc.). The Forum is also pursuing a Connected Home initiatives, built around TR-069, to provide the de facto remote management standard for remote and automated provisioning, management and troubleshooting of devices in the home.

"It has only taken 11 years to get to half a billion fixed broadband lines. The internet and all that it brings has taken hold like no technology since the invention of fire. It has brought the world closer together, improved health and education standards and introduced an era of cooperation and information sharing that will hasten economic growth and improve standards of living for potentially billions around the world," stated Oliver Johnson, CEO of Point Topic.

The data is being presented at this week's Broadband Forum quarterly meeting in Hong Kong. Some highlights of the report:

  • China represented 43% of all net broadband lines added in Q2 2010 and performed far better than the same quarter in 2009. China added 5,470,888 lines bringing its total to 120,591,488, over 24% of the 500,000,000 lines achieved in the early part of Q3.

  • In Western Europe, Germany, the UK, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Poland and Turkey amongst others all reported strong numbers.

  • Central and South American markets have cooled to an extent but many are still reporting good quarterly growth (in the 5%-7% range) . However North America, the USA and in particular Canada have significantly slowed and - in Canada's case - to levels not seen for a decade.

  • IPTV growth is in line with broadband growth so the proportion of the world's broadband lines carrying IPTV remains the same as Q1 at 7.7%.

  • Europe still remains the most established region for IPTV with almost 19 million subscribers, of which almost half are in France. China (with Hong Kong and Macau) had the most net additions this quarter - 421,000 - ranking it second, with USA in third place with almost 6.5 million subscribers.

  • China dominates the Asian IPTV market with over 6.7 million IPTV subscribers, although there is enormous potential in countries such as India which are just at the start of IPTV deployment. Services are also developing in other areas as well. For example, Colombia reported over 100,000 subscribers for the first time in Q2 2010.

Verizon Promotes Lowell McAdam

Lowell C. McAdam has been named president and chief operating officer of Verizon Communications, reporting to Chairman and CEO Ivan G. Seidenberg, where he will have responsibility for the operations of Verizon's network-based businesses - Verizon Wireless and Verizon Telecom and Business - as well as Verizon Services Operations. In addition, McAdam is expected to take over as CEO of the company when Seidenberg retires.

McAdam currently serves as President and CEO of Verizon Wireless. Prior to assuming this position in 2007, McAdam served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of Verizon Wireless from the company's inception in 2000. Before that, McAdam was president and CEO of PrimeCo Personal Communications, a joint venture owned by Bell Atlantic and Vodafone AirTouch. He also served as PrimeCo's chief operating officer, responsible for overseeing the build, deployment and successful launch of the new company's customer service operations and all-digital network. McAdam is a member and past chairman of the Board of Directors of the CTIA, the wireless industry trade association.

Separately, Verizon named Francis J. Shammo, currently president of Verizon Telecom and Business, to become executive vice president and chief financial officer of the company, effective Nov. 1. Shammo will succeed John F. Killian, who last Monday announced he will retire around the end of the year.

Verizon also announced that Daniel S. Mead, currently executive vice president and chief operating officer at Verizon Wireless, will become president and chief executive officer of Verizon Wireless, succeeding McAdam. The company additionally announced that John G. Stratton, currently chief marketing officer at Verizon Wireless, will succeed Mead as chief operating officer. The Mead and Stratton appointments are effective Oct. 1.

"This is a timely and logical next step in our evolution as we put in place an outstanding senior executive team that can carry us into the future. The decision by the Board to name these leaders now to such critical positions is a testimony to the depth, flexibility and breadth of Verizon's senior team, the soundness of our operating model, and strength of our culture. For the last several years, we have focused diligently on preparing these leaders to take on Verizon's most visible and challenging assignments. That diligence and focus is paying off with the development of highly skilled and broadly experienced executives who will ensure that Verizon doesn't skip a beat as we enhance value to customers and shareholders," stated Verizon Chairman and CEO Seidenberg.