Monday, March 26, 2012

NEC to Open Mobile Network Excellence Center in Chennai

NEC Corporation will establish a Mobile Network Excellence Center (NMEC) for the offshore development of mobile communication systems in Chennai, India. This is the first such development center that the NEC Group will establish in India. The center will design and develop hardware and software for the PASOLINK series of ultra-compact microwave communication systems, which are key products for mobile backhaul in the global market.

NEC Joins Cryptography for Mobile Project

NEC Corporation has joined a research project on anonymous authentication technologies for smartphones.

The goal is to develop a method of enabling sophisticated payment and location-based services without the risk of violating user privacy. The research explores cryptography-based, anonymous authentication technology for verifying users and terminals with IDs that can be used to track user access and behavioral history.

In order to address these issues, NEC is joining a research consortium along with France Telecom, Microsoft and other enterprises, that is funded by the French National Research Agency (l'Agence Nationale de la Recherche), the ANR.

eircom to Enter Court Restructuring

The Eircom Group submitted an application to the High Court in Dublin to be placed in Irish examinership with the objective of placing the company’s balance sheet on a stable financial footing for the medium to long term, with reduced debt.

Eircom said operations would continue as usual during the restructuring. All existing voice, broadband and data services provided to our residential, business, Government and corporate customers will continue. The company intends to maintain its existing relationships with all suppliers and honour all outstanding work and payment agreements.

Lantiq Samples ADSL2/2+ Gateway System-on-Chip

Lantiq unveiled its XWAY ARX300 device family for new ADSL2/2+ Customer Premise Equipment (CPE) designs. Four versions will be offered for different broadband gateway models. Key features include:

  • Complete ADSL PHY on-chip, including line driver circuitry, compliant with ITU-T G.992 for 28 Mbps downstream and 2.7 Mbps upstream data rates supporting physical layer features such as erasure decoding and retransmission (G.998.4), directly benefiting Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) applications.

  • Fully integrated Gigabit Ethernet switch and Gigabit or Fast Ethernet PHYs.

  • Integrated, flexible 802.11n Wireless LAN (WLAN) connectivity supporting 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz frequency band operation. XWAY WRX312 (2x2 MIMO) and XWAY WRX313 (3x3 MIMO) companion chips are low power multi-standard IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n RF transceiver with integrated power amplifier for 2.4 GHz band operation.

  • Two device versions: XWAY ARX382 and XWAY ARX388 derivatives leverage Lantiq’s extensive voice communications and home networking portfolio in multiple reference designs, including XWAY SLIC 100 voice interface, COSIC Modem DECT/CAT-iq single-chip device, and XWAY HNX chipsets for powerline/phone line/copper wire connectivity.

  • Low system Bill of Materials (BOM)

  • High-performance dual-processor architecture includes a 500 MHz CPU and dedicated 32-bit protocol processing engine that assures Gigabit routing performance with zero load on the application processor.

  • Fully-compliant 802.11n.e/i/h WLAN performance at up to 300 Mbps with zero-packet-error rate technology and “Thick MAC�? architecture to offload processor intensive operations from the main CPU supports carrier grade wireless links for rich media, including IPTV.

  • Designed with power management mechanisms to meet European CoC v4 and beyond requirements.

Google Data Centers Measure 2011 PUE at 1.14

Google announced that its trailing 12-month average PUE (power usage effectiveness) was approximately 1.14 -- an improvement from 1.16 in 2010. PUE is a ratio of the total power used to run a data center to the amount used to power the servers.

Google said its calculation includes everything that contributes to energy consumption in its data center -- not just power for servers and cooling systems. It also includes heating/cooling for the office, system inefficiencies like transformer, cable and UPS losses and generator parasitic energy draw. Otherwise, the number would have been even lower.

Comcast Business Launches Cloud-based Unified Communications

Comcast Business introducing a new cloud-based voice and unified communications service aimed at small and medium-sized businesses of up to 250 users.

The new Comcast Business VoiceEdge, which is delivered over either the company's HFC or fiber plants, is a hosted service that eliminates the need for a PBX on premise and delivers HD-quality voice with advanced features. Comcast is using the Broadsoft platform to enable all switching capabilities in the cloud. Polycom is a preferred supplier of IP phones provided with the service. Four digit extension dialing is possible to other branch locations also on the Comcast network. One number follow-me service allows workers to integrate their work line with their mobile device, home office or other locations to have calls follow them or push/pull them between devices without having to disconnect and then reconnect the call.

Business VoiceEdge is now available across most of Comcast’s Northeastern Division, which includes 14 states from Maine through Virginia and the District of Columbia, as well as Chicago. Nationwide rollout across Comcast’s entire service is targeted by the end of 2012.

ADTRAN Adds Session Border Control Capability to Enterprise Gateways

ADTRAN has added Session Border Control (SBC) software functionality to its NetVanta 3430 and 6000 series, as well as Total Access 900e IP Business Gateways.

The SBC capability gives service providers a new demarcation device to handle normalization, security and monitoring for their SIP trunking services. Specifically, the NetVanta and Total Access devices with the SBC features will handle NAT/firewall traversal, VoIP protocol interworking, transcoding, media anchoring and provide numerous service provider troubleshooting tools. By moving this functionality to the edge of the enterprise network, service providers can more easily integrate directly with a wide variety of IP PBX vendors’ SIP trunking implementations.

In addition, ADTRAN said its new SBC functionality combined with Total Access 900e IP Business Gateways will enable service providers to offer a customer migration path as the proliferation of IP continues into the foreseeable future.

Ciena Teams with SafeNet on Low-latency Ethernet Link Encryption

Ciena and SafeNet agreed to jointly sell high-speed, low-latency Ethernet link encryption services for commercial and government networks. Ciena’s Carrier Ethernet and Packet-Optical platforms, and SafeNet’s Ethernet Encryptor solutions, have been extensively tested for interoperability and provide assured, optimized and secure Layer 2 encryption services at speeds of up to 10 Gbps.

Vodafone Hungary Deploys Tellabs for Mobile Backhaul

Vodafone Hungary has selected to upgrade its mobile backhaul network to IP/Ethernet. The cornerstone of the upgraded network is the new Tellabs 8609 Access Switch, which can be deployed in various network locations, enabling HSPA and LTE-enabled networks. Previously, Vodafone Hungary had deployed the Tellabs 8600 Managed Edge System and the Tellabs 8000 Intelligent Network Manager into its mobile backhaul network in 2005.

TIM Brasil Selects Amdocs' Customer Experience System

TIM Brasil, the second largest mobile service provider in Brazil, has selected the Amdocs CES (Customer Experience Systems) product portfolio and a range of Amdocs consulting, integration and implementation services for its new TIM Fiber residential broadband service. Specifically, Amdocs will provide the business support systems (BSS) and operational support systems (OSS) required to deliver TIM Fiber broadband services.

TIM's new broadband offering follows its 2011 acquisition of AES Atimus, which operated a 5,000-kilometer fiber-optic network in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and other major Brazilian cities. Amdocs is also providing the strategic business-process consulting that will allow TIM Brasil to rapidly integrate the Atimus network and begin delivering broadband services less than 12 months after the acquisition.

NTIA Spectrum Report Proposes Sharing 1755-1850 MHz Band

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) issued its long-awaited report on reallocating spectrum currently occupied by the federal government for commercial purposes.

The "Assessment of the Viability of Accommodating Wireless Broadband in the 1755 – 1850 MHz Band" finds that 95 megahertz (MHz) of prime spectrum could be repurposed for wireless broadband use. Over 20 federal agencies currently hold more than 3,100 individual frequency assignments in this band. Federal uses of this spectrum include law enforcement surveillance, military tactical communications, air combat training, precision-guided munitions, weather balloons, etc.

Clearing a spectrum band of federal users requires finding other spectrum for these applications, as well as the cost and migration challenges in deploying new equipment. The NTIA estimates it may take a decade to complete a migration.

In addition, NTIA said its analysis of the cost of a complete relocation raises questions as to whether the proceeds from auctioning the 1755-1850 MHz band for commercial use will exceed federal relocation costs, as required by law.

Therefore, NTIA is proposing NTIA proposes a spectrum sharing scheme between government and industry.

"Spectrum is a finite resource in growing demand, and we need to focus on new ways to maximize its use. By working with the FCC, other federal agencies, and the industry, we can make more spectrum available to fuel innovation and preserve America’s technological leadership while protecting vital government missions,�? said Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information and NTIA Administrator Lawrence E. Strickling.
  • In November 2010, National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) recommended that 115 MHz of spectrum be reallocated for wireless broadband service within the next five years. As part of the announcement, NTIA released two complementary reports detailing the effort to nearly double commercial wireless spectrum: a Ten-Year Plan and Timetable, as well as a Fast Track Evaluation identifying the 115 megahertz of spectrum to be made available within five years. In the Fast Track Evaluation report, NTIA examined four spectrum bands for potential reallocation within five years: 1) 1675-1710 MHz, 2) 1755-1780 MHz, 3) 3500-3650 MHz, and 4) 4200-4220 MHz and 4380-4400 MHz. The report recommends that various portions of these bands totaling 115 megahertz be made available for wireless broadband use within five years, contingent upon the allocation of resources for necessary reallocation activities. Specifically, NTIA recommends reallocating 1695-1710 MHz, currently used for dissemination of severe weather information and alerts via satellites operated by Commerce's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and 3550-3650 MHz, which would be shared with Department of Defense radar systems mainly on ships. NTIA recommends some geographic limitations on the availability of these bands to prevent harmful interference to government facilities in the 1695-1710 MHz band and to the proposed commercial services in the 3550-3650 MHz band.

  • In June 2010, President Obama signed a Presidential Memorandum committing the federal government to make available 500 MHz of federal and commercial spectrum available to new mobile broadband usage over the next 10 years. The effort, which would nearly double the amount of commercial spectrum currently available for commercial use, was expected to result new rounds of spectrum auctions.

GreenTouch Achieves Major Gains in Energy Efficiency for Optical Access

The GreenTouch Consortium, a global research initiative dedicated to dramatically improving network energy efficiency, introduced a major breakthrough for optical access -- Bit-Interleaved Passive Optical Network (Bi-PON) technology. GreenTouch estimates Bi-PON ultimately could deliver power reduction of 30 times over current technologies while improving performance and reducing cost.

In a webcast, researchers from Alcatel-Lucent's Bell Labs, France's INRIA research lab and France Telecom Orange, described how the bit interleaving passive optical network (BIPON) leverages a new protocol that cuts energy consumption in time division multiplexing (TDM) PON optical network units (ONUs) by a factor of 10 compared to today’s protocols. The key observation is that 99% of data is unnecessarily processed in ONUs today. By modifying the protocol, an order of magnitude improvement in ONU performance can be attained.

The bit interleaving protocol reduces energy consumption in the ONU by reducing clock speed requirements, data processing requirements, voltage requirements, and memory requirements. The bits are spaced in time to match the clock rate. The bit interleaving protocol frame structure includes a header and a payload section. The header contains a synchronization code word and a unique identifier for each ONU on the PON. The header also contains information that allows the ONU to know where its payload bits are — at what offset and bit rate they are being sent in the payload section.

The consortium members said Bi-PON represents the next major leap in passive optical network (PON) technologies. It is expected to be a necessity as electronic processing will increase with future 40GPON systems.

“With this demonstration, GreenTouch again shows why it is one of the most ambitious collaborative environments in sustainable network technologies,�? said Gee Rittenhouse, GreenTouch chairman. “We are committed to reducing energy consumption across all ICT networks and Bi-PON is a huge and critical step in helping us achieve that goal. The impact is clear and wide-ranging including wireless backhaul and fiber to the home. Implementing Bi-PON over current technologies will have the energy savings equivalent to the carbon impact of permanently taking all the cars in a city like San Francisco off the road. We are making great progress toward our goal and are planning to make advances like this across all of our 25 research projects that are currently underway.�?
  • In February 2011, the GreenTouch Consortium demonstrated a Large-Scale Antenna System proof of concept with the potential for tremendous energy savings thanks to its novel wireless transmission techniques. Such an antenna array, consisting of dozens of individual units, would transmit only one percent of the energy transmitted by a single antenna, for the same quality of service. Instead of broadcasting signals throughout the entire coverage area as other antenna systems typically do, the Large-Scale Antenna System utilizes knowledge of the propagation channels to transmit concentrated beams of information selectively to many users at once. The greater the number of antenna elements deployed, the higher the concentration of the beams and, therefore, the lower the power that any antenna needs to send a given amount of information.

Vantage Data Centers Awarded LEED Platinum Certification

Vantage Data Centers has been awarded LEED Platinum certification for its second Santa Clara data center (V2). LEED certification is offered by U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) as a tool aimed at achieving high performance design and construction of buildings in areas such as human and environmental health. This includes sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality. LEED Platinum certification is the highest tier of LEED certification offered by USGBC.

“V2 is a highly efficient and highly engineered solution which meets the unique needs of our customer. It represents how Vantage is diverging further from an industry that has resisted innovation and that has forced tenants into ‘one size fits all’ products,�? said Jim Trout, Vantage Data Centers’ CEO. “What is also gratifying is that our customers share our passion for both operational excellence as well as continued commitment to minimizing their environmental footprint.�?

Vantage noted that all of its facilities have been constructed to meet LEED Platinum requirements.

In August 2011, Vantage announced their first data center, V3, had achieved LEED Platinum certification. Vantage’s third building, V1, is a LEED Platinum candidate and upon successful certification of this building, Vantage’s Santa Clara site will become the largest LEED Platinum data center campus in the U.S.
  • In February 2012, Vantage Data Centers reported that its V2 facility is delivering a Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) of 1.12, making it one of the most energy-efficient data centers in the industry. V2 was constructed and leased two years ahead of Vantage’s original business plan and developed in close collaboration with the single tenant now occupying the building.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Telstra International Deploys Infinera's 40 Gbps DTN to Undersea Cable

Telstra International has deployed Infinera’s 40 Gbps DTN solution for its optical subsea network in Asia. The deployment spans approximately 9,000 kilometers between Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan and South Korea. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Infinera’s DTN platform enables service providers to upgrade existing submarine cables with coherent 40 Gbps waves supporting FlexCoherent. The Infinera solution is upgradable in the future to 100 Gbps FlexCoherent, including Soft Decision Forward Error Correction, which will deliver 7.3 terabits per second (Tbps) of capacity over Telstra’s Reach North Asia Loop (RNAL) fiber plant.

Infinera noted that Telstra has now become its 100th customer.

"This is an exciting announcement for us,�? said Tom Fallon, Infinera’s CEO. “We are pleased to announce Telstra International as our first named 40 Gbps customer and Infinera’s 100th customer since shipping our market leading solutions in 2004. Leading global providers, like Telstra, trust us to deliver solutions that are simple, scalable and efficient to meet the needs of their customers. For Telstra’s subsea network, Infinera’s 40 Gbps solution delivers just that."

ADTRAN Selected for Broadband Stimulus Project in Missouri

Socket Telecom, a Missouri-based CLEC and Internet provider with the largest service area in the state, has deployed ADTRAN's Total Access 5000 broadband platform for its FTTH Broadband Stimulus project. Socket Telecom is utilizing the Total Access system to deploy high speed data services, voice and video to several underserved markets in central Missouri.
  • Last year, Socket was awarded $23.7 million by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to build a fiber-optic network in rural Callaway County and parts of Fulton, Mo. The funding consisted of a $16.6 million grant
    and a $7.1 million loan.

Orange Supplies 132-Site IP VPN for Aggreko

Orange Business Services announced a 36-month contract extension and renewal with Aggreko, the world leader in the provision of temporary power and temperature control services. Orange is providing managed IP VPN services to 132 sites in 31 countries, particularly in emerging markets – including nine South American countries, as well as China and India. Orange supports Aggreko’s core business applications, including ERP, Business Intelligence, financial and billing systems as well as new and planned telephony services such as video conferencing and IP Telephony, which will enable enhanced collaboration across Aggreko’s group-wide offices.

IEEE Enhances 802.22 White spaces Spec

The IEEE P802.22b Amendment Project for Enhanced Broadband Services and Monitoring Applications has officially been approved. The new amendment enhances the IEEE 802.22-2011 standard to accommodate a wide variety of applications using cognitive radio technology in Television White Spaces (TVWS). These applications include long range and regional area smart grid, critical infrastructure monitoring, triple play services like providing voice, video and data, backhaul for broadband access, offloading cellular telephony traffic, regional area public safety and homeland security networks, emergency broadband services, monitoring rain forests, monitoring livestock, and border protection etc.

Additional information on this amendment PAR can be found on the IEEE 802.22 WG webpage.
  • In July 2011, The IEEE published the 802.22 standard for Wireless Regional Area Networks (WRANs) using the favorable transmission characteristics of the VHF and UHF TV bands. 802.22 enables broadband wireless access over a large area up to 100 km from the transmitter. The standard specifies up to 22 Mbps per channel without interfering with reception of existing TV broadcast stations, using the so-called white spaces between the occupied TV channels.

    IEEE 802.22 incorporates advanced cognitive radio capabilities including dynamic spectrum access, incumbent database access, accurate geolocation techniques, spectrum sensing, regulatory domain dependent policies, spectrum etiquette, and coexistence for optimal use of the available spectrum.

MTN Nigeria Picks ZTE to Build 2G/3G Networks

ZTE announced a contract with the MTN Nigeria to build GSM/UMTS networks in Nigeria. The deployment covers two of the country’s most economically developed regions (including 8 states) by providing its ZTE's SDR-based Uni-RAN solution. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Hong Kong's PCCW Implements Huawei's 3GPP R8 Signaling Optimization

Hong Kong's PCCW mobile has adopted Huawei's 3GPP-Release-8 (3GPP-R8)-based smartphone signaling optimization solution to increase the performance of its UMTS network.

The preponderance of smartphones with "heartbeat" applications, which frequently transmit small data packets, along with smartphones' frequent changes from active to idle mode create high signaling traffic.

A joint effort between Huawei and PCCW mobile during the past few months has delivered a solution that optimizes smartphone signaling behavior. Huawei said live network statistics have shown that the solution reduces by over 25% of redundant signaling load from PCCW mobile's 3GPP-R8 smartphone signaling process while significantly enhancing network performance and improving mobile broadband connectivity.

Mr. Adam Wong, Head of Engineering, Wireless Business of HKT, said, "We really appreciate Huawei's solution. Signaling traffic produced by smartphones brings real pressure to networks. With this smartphone signaling optimization solution, networks can bring customers a much better experience."

Mr. Ying Weimin, President of GSM&UMTS<E wireless networks, Huawei, said, "It took several months for Huawei and PCCW mobile to finish the testing of our signaling solution on existing networks. The high performance of this solution shows that Huawei is capable of innovation to help customers succeed."

BT Tests Cable Tracking Technology to Deter Thieves

In an effort to deter copper theft, BT has been testing a tracking technology that can detect when a cable has been cut or damaged, accurately pin-pointing an incident to a road or street.

RABIT (Rapid Assessment Bt Incident Tracker), which was trialled in December 2011, alerts BT’s Security Control Centre and Police response teams when a cut is detected. The system has already forced cable thieves to flee the scene of the crime in Essex.

BT noted that the numbers of arrests related to cable theft are continuing to rise, with the average number of arrests per month up nearly eight per cent on last year. In the last 11 months the number of arrests has reached more than 480, already more than the 446 arrests in 2010. It is estimated that around 80% of BT’s cable theft is carried out by organised crime gangs. BT recovered 240 tonnes of stolen metal in the past eleven months, as a result of visits to scrap metal dealers and working with Police forces on targeted operations and national metal theft days of action.
  • In 2010, BT's Openreach division introduced an invisible, "SmartWater" forensic ink in its cabling across the UK as a deterrence to metal thieves. BT's Metal Theft Taskforce is using the SmartWater as a means to tag anyone tampering with its lines. SmartWater is a forensic marking liquid that is unique to a particular location. It will be used to mark the outer shell and inner core of Openreach cable, along with tools and other equipment. This will allow police to irrefutably identify where any stolen items have come from. Any thieves who target Openreach property face being sprayed with the liquid.

    BT and the British Transport Police the system, which is also interconnected with GPS, will be used in hot-spot areas to capture criminals red-handed.