Friday, December 7, 2012

CWA Ratifies Labor Deal with AT&T Southeast Wireline

Members of the Communications Workers of America have voted to ratify a three-year contract for the AT&T Southeast region.  The labor contract covers about 22,000 AT&T wireline employees in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.

AT&T wireline employees represented by the CWA earlier ratified, on Aug. 17, three-year contracts for the Midwest region and AT&T Corp.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Blueprint: The Transport Network Challenge

by Scott Wakelin, Product Line Manager in PMC-Sierra’s Communication Products Division

Optical network operators worldwide are faced with a tremendous challenge – expanding their networks to keep up with massive traffic growth and doing so profitably.

In 2012, Cisco’s Visual Networking Index (VNI) projected network traffic would quadruple between 2011 and 2016 to 1.3 zettabytes or 1.3 trillion Gigabytes annually. Video will continue to grow and eventually consume a 55% share of network traffic. Likewise, mobile traffic will grow 18x, driven by the transition to HSPA+, LTE, and LTE-Advanced.

Market research firms project that by 2015, optical spending will increase 25% over the $12B spent in 2010 as carriers prepare to build out their metro and access networks to deal with the massive increase in Ethernet and packet traffic.  

What will the new metro network look like and what capabilities will be required?

Before exploring these questions, let’s review the architecture of today’s typical carrier network.

Today’s Carrier Network

In the access network, TDM services (T1/E1 private line, ISDN, voice, 2G wireless) dominated until only recently. The last few years have seen dramatic changes in the access service landscape with Ethernet replacing T1/E1 for both enterprise and mobile access. At the same time, demand for native Video and Storage Area Network (SAN) transport has accelerated, adding to the service mix that carriers must support.

Meanwhile, outside of China, Layer 1 transport in the metro continues to be largely SONET/SDH based. Today, carriers aggregate client traffic into SONET/SDH (generally at 10G). The resulting OC-192/STM-64 signal is then fed into a transponder which converts the 10G client signal into a 10G wavelength using first generation OTN (ITU-T G.709 Optical Transport Network) equipment. At this point, the signal is ready for transport over the ROADM based DWDM infrastructure.

The access transition to Ethernet coupled with exploding bandwidth demands has exposed three fundamental weaknesses of SONET/SDH based Layer 1 aggregation, which fundamentally limits the ability of carriers to scale their metro networks:

  1. Fixed switching granularities which are only a fraction of the 10G line rate
  2. Inefficient support for Ethernet without the use of VCAT
  3. Little deployment beyond 10G and no roadmap beyond 40G
As a result of these challenges, carriers are preparing to deploy a new metro network. The next section explores the coming Metro Transport Network evolution.

 The New Metro Network

In order to scale their metro networks to handle the growth in access traffic, carriers seek a network technology that:

  • Supports the full range of protocols that exist in the metro, including Ethernet, SONET/SDH, SAN, and Video, without the use of Circuit Emulation or Pseudo-wire emulation techniques,
  • Supports efficient transport of packet services such as Ethernet
  • Is able to scale to 100G and beyond,
  • Offers a simple to manage Layer 1 network that extends end-to-end.
Today, carriers have broadly deployed OTN as the basis for their DWDM core networks and it has proven an effective technology in providing both the management, protection, and reach extension required in the core network.  The desire for continuity at layer 1 between the core and metro networks made OTN a primary candidate for the Metro transport network as well.  However, OTN technology, as originally deployed in the core, fell short in terms of efficiency of Ethernet transport, and switchability.  Nevertheless, the G.709 standard has evolved to become a highly efficient transport technology for Metro applications, with the result that OTN is the nearly unanimous choice of carriers globally to base their Metro networks.

PMC refers to this evolved OTN technology as Metro OTN.

Metro OTN

Let’s look more closely at how well OTN meets the needs of the new Metro network. 

Multi-Service Transport

Metro OTN provides standards-based methods to enable full bit and timing transparent transport of Ethernet (1GE, 10GE, 40GE, or 100GE) – which is critical for the growing Ethernet private line services market. In addition, OTN also supports GFP-F mapping of packet based services such as:
  • MAC terminated Ethernet
By virtue of this capability, and when coupled with Carrier Ethernet features such as IEEE 1588v2 (Precision Time Protocol) and Synchronous Ethernet, OTN is ideally suited for the quickly growing mobile backhaul market. 

Now, Ethernet is not the only client in the metro. SAN services such as Fiber channel and Infiniband are commonly used for datacenter to datacenter interconnect. Uncompressed HD and SD video streams are increasingly used in video contribution networks due to their superior quality and low latency. Prior to OTN, these bit and timing transparent services would generally be transported directly over DWDM but did so at the expense of reduced or no manageability. OTN provides the bit transparent transport these services require coupled with enhanced end-to-end OAM that includes 6 layers of Tandem Connection Monitoring (vs. the single layer offered by SONET/SDH).

Furthermore, there remains a tremendous installed base of SONET/SDH with new deployments still expected for at least the next 5 years. OTN was designed to accommodate both asynchronous and synchronous mapping of OC48/STM-16 and OC192/STM-64 clients. In this manner, OTN can provide the means for the bit and timing transparent transport of SONET/SDH, whether point to point or ring based – and importantly, without the need for PWE3 or CES.

 Efficient Resource Utilization

The efficiency issues associated with transporting Ethernet over SONET/SDH are well known. But even 1st generation OTN suffered from efficiency issues. Take for instance a GE to be transported over an OTU2 operating at 10 Gbps. First generation OTN equipment either:
  1. did not support this capability,
  2. did not support it efficiently, or
  3. did not support it in an interoperable manner
In contrast, Metro OTN naturally supports Ethernet, and unlike SONET/SDH does so with a single ODU container to provision, switch and manage. This greatly simplifies provisioning and management, ultimately leading to reduced OPEX. Furthermore, as Ethernet scales in the future, so will OTN.

With the development of Metro OTN, carriers can now efficiently map GE into the new ODU0 container operating at 1.25G – right sized for GE. The GE may be mapped in a bit and timing transparent manner for private line service, or may be MAC terminated for managed service delivery. Figure 6 illustrates that in comparison to 1st generation OTN, Metro OTN will double the efficiency of GE transport.

Figure 6 also illustrates how the new variable rate ODUflex container drives efficiency gains for other common metro access clients. Take for instance 3G-SDI. In 1st Generation OTN equipment, this video client was at best 30% efficient when transported using a 10G ODU2 signal. ODUflex enables a container to be assigned that closely matches the client rate. ODUflex can also be used to transport subrate 10GE signals, which has the power to open up new private line service options for enterprises and revenue streams for carriers, while at the same time allowing the carrier to efficiently use its fiber resources. Furthermore, each ODU container contains all of the OAM flexibility that OTN is known for.

The new ODU0 and ODUflex containers are also switchable. Let’s explore the final aspect of Metro OTN: the support for flexible, granular and distributed OTN switching.

Flexible, Granular and Distributed OTN Switching

The vast majority of access services are sub-10G, with GE the access currency of choice for broadband and enterprise access. At the same time, the metro network is generally built around 10G wavelengths, with carriers preparing for broad deployment of 40 and 100G wavelengths in the metro. As a result, the gap between client rate and wavelength bandwidth is increasing.

In recognition of this trend, early OTN deployments were based on muxponders which multiplex client signals into a single outgoing OTU2, OTU3, or OTU4 as shown in figure 5.

Muxponder based compact metro access solutions are ideal for aggregation of mobile, broadband, and enterprise services, and are a growing trend among equipment vendors and carriers alike. In a fiber-rich access network, muxponders can cost-effectively provide bit and timing transparent mapping of SONET/SDH, Ethernet, SAN, and Video into grey or colored OTN signals.

However, when used in multi-slot / multi-wavelength systems deeper in the metro and the core, muxponders and transponders can lead to inefficient wavelength utilization as a full wavelength must be assigned regardless of the total client bandwidth. Client Add / Drop and Continue is also hindered by the inflexible nature of Muxponder/Transponder architectures. Only clients that are physically connected to a particular board can be mapped into that boards specific outgoing wavelength. This leads to a more complicated service provisioning and management model. For example, if a client needs be moved from one muxponder to another (in order to be transmitted on a different wavelength), human intervention is required. This inflexibility leads to increased OPEX for the carrier.

Metro OTN addresses these challenges through the deployment of OTN switching systems.

In comparison to muxponders, the benefits of OTN switching include:
  • Efficient grooming of any sub-wavelength client onto any outgoing lambda,
  • Maximum wavelength utilization
  • The ability to switch an ODU from any outgoing line interface to any outgoing line interface
  • The ability deploy remote management, eliminating the need for manual patching,
  • Separation of client and line optic interfaces, which enables a carrier to deploy 100G wavelengths as traffic dictates

Unlike SONET/SDH, OTN imposes no limitations on switching granularity. All ODUs may be switched between any ingress and egress line card through a cell, TDM, or off-the-shelf packet fabric using the new OIF OTN over Packet Fabric format.

The deployment of an OTN switching system in the metro is a critical requirement if carriers are to achieve the most efficient use of their network resources at the lowest possible OPEX.  

Silicon Impact of Metro OTN

Just as the metro transport evolution is driving new requirements for OTN equipment vendors, Metro OTN also drives new requirements for silicon vendors. No longer is a simple implementation of G.709 sufficient. The following fundamental features are also required:

  • Any-Service, Any-Port, Any-Rate SERDES and mappers  in order to deliver true multiservice capabilities,
  • High density deeply channelized OTN framing, mapping, and ODU0/ODUflex granular switching,
  • High Density SONET/SDH framing, mapping and switching to enable carriers to transition from SONET/SDH to OTN without stranding their legacy network,
  • Onboard Carrier Ethernet PCS and MACs with integrated packet timing capabilities in order to address the requirements of mobile backhaul in the age of LTE,
  • Packet and OTN fabric interfaces to enable both packet and OTN switching applications,
  • Ability to address OTN, packet and lambda switched deployments with the same device
These features enable the equipment vendor to address all present and future requirements imposed by Metro OTN while minimizing total cost of ownership.


PMC-Sierra has introduced a new family of OTN products that uniquely delivers on the requirements of Metro OTN enabling OEMs to deliver a new class of transport equipment upon which carriers can build their next generation Metro transport networks which are:

  • Multi-service, with seamless transport of Ethernet, Storage, Video, SONET/SDH, and Private Line
  • Scalable with the rapid growth in packet traffic
  • Switchable, providing fine-grain sub-lambda grooming
  • Efficient, especially for the transport of packet centric services
  • Compatible with the core network, providing end-to-end Access-Metro-Core continuity for flexibility, protection and management.
With this new class of equipment, carriers can achieve reduction in  OPEX and CAPEX necessary to enable profitable scalability to support the upcoming 4x growth in network traffic. 

About the Author

As a Product Line Manager in PMC-Sierra’s Communication Products Division, Scott Wakelin has helped define some of the industry’s most successful communication semiconductor solutions including PMC’s HyPHY, TEMUX, and FREEDM product families. Currently focused on packet-optical transport solutions, Mr. Wakelin has over 12 years of experience delivering OTN, SONET/SDH, and Ethernet products to market. Mr. Wakelin holds a Master of Applied Science degree in network infrastructure and security.

About the Company

PMC (Nasdaq: PMCS) is the semiconductor innovator transforming networks that connect, move and store big data. Building on a track record of technology leadership, the company is driving innovation across storage, optical and mobile networks. PMC's highly integrated solutions increase performance and enable next-generation services to accelerate the network transformation. For more information visit

Malaysia Allocates 2600 MHz Band for LTE

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) has allocated the 2600 MHz spectrum band for 4G LTE services.

Eight (8) companies will be allowed access to the 2600 MHz spectrum band:

  • Celcom Axiata Bhd,
  • DiGi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd,
  • Maxis Broadband Sdn Bhd,
  • Packet One Networks (M) Sdn Bhd,
  • Puncak Semangat Sdn Bhd,
  • REDtone Marketing Sdn Bhd,
  • U Mobile Sdn Bhd and
  • YTL Communications Sdn Bhd.

Deutsche Telekom Boosts CAPEX to Accelerate Network Transformation

 Deutsche Telekom will increase its capital expenditures over the three years to around EUR 9 to 10 billion per year.  The focus is on Germany, where DT will accelerate the building out of its LTE network as well as rolling out optical fiber and vectoring technology in the fixed network. On top of that, a hybrid solution is planned for launch that combines LTE and vectoring, thereby increasing bandwidths. In the U.S., T-Mobile USA will roll-out its national LTE network.

T-Mobile USA reached an agreement with Apple to offer the iPhone for the first time.

"Hesitation now means playing catch-up later. We are investing in the future – with resolve and a clear strategy," said René Obermann, Chairman of the Board of Management of Deutsche Telekom, speaking at the company's Capital Markets Day in Bonn.  "The investment plans we have presented today will lay the foundation for future growth. And it is the people in Germany in particular who will benefit more than ever from the modern infrastructure."

Some key points

  • The acceleration of the LTE build-out will bring coverage to 85 percent of the population covered by 2016 with data transmission rates of up to 150 Mbps.
  • The build-out of the optical fiber network (FTTC) to cover around 65 percent of the population within the same time frame.
  • Deployment of the new vectoring technology, provided a corresponding regulatory framework is in place, will increase VDSL data transmission rates to up to 100 Mbps.
  • Hybrid-box technology will feed traffic in both directions via vectoring and LTE. This will make download speeds of up to 200 Mbps possible and upload speeds of up to 90 Mbps.
  • Investments in Germany from 2014 through 2016 are to increase to EUR 4.1 to 4.5 billion, respectively, compared with an average of EUR 3.6 billion in the preceding three years.
  • In the United States, capital expenditure of around USD 4.7 billion has been planned for 2013 and around USD 3 billion in each of the two subsequent years compared with USD 2.7 billion per year on average from 2010 to 2012.
  • DT issued free cash flow guidance for 2013 of around EUR 5 billion from which a dividend of 50 euro cents is to be paid out both in 2013 and in the following year. Free cash flow of around EUR 6 billion is targeted for 2015.
  • Adjusted EBITDA is forecast to be around EUR 17.4 billion for 2013. 

In addition, T-Systems' newly launched Telekom IT unit, which pools all of the Group's internal IT activities in Germany, is expected to reduce the Group's IT costs by EUR 1 billion by 2015. In external business, T-Systems is focusing even more squarely on cloud-based solutions.

AT&T Rolls its Content Delivery Network into Akamai

AT&T has formed a strategic alliance with Akamai Technologies to deliver a global suite of content delivery network (CDN) solutions to companies.

Under the deal, Akamai will deploy CDN servers at the edge of AT&T's IP network and in AT&T facilities throughout the United States. AT&T will transfer its existing CDN operations, customers and service to the Akamai platform in 2013.  The companies have also agreed to dedicate shared resources including technical support, customer care, marketing and professional services support.  Financial terms were not disclosed.

The companies said the combination of AT&T's network assets with Akamai's CDN will help enterprises simplify content distribution management and drive higher-performing end user experiences for consumers accessing content on the Internet. They hope to expand their efforts internationally within 12 months.

"The alliance with Akamai positions us perfectly to deliver premier content delivery solutions to our business customers," said Andy Geisse, Chief Executive Officer, AT&T Business Solutions. "By embedding Akamai's technology within AT&T's IP network, our customers now have access to a suite of solutions that more than meet their need for content delivery and support. In an environment where companies and consumers alike are accessing video content and other applications online and from a multitude of devices, I can't think of a better way to address the explosive growth in content that is sweeping across industries like media and retail."

"Aligning Akamai's services with the global reach, scale and product depth of AT&T creates a powerful relationship aimed at helping enterprises optimize their online businesses," said Paul Sagan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Akamai. "Together with AT&T, we share a common goal of developing solutions to maximize the Web and mobile end user experience, while driving down network-related costs and improving network efficiencies. We believe there will be tremendous value to customers in deploying within AT&T's robust IP network, and in jointly going to market with leading content delivery and cloud infrastructure offerings."

Separately, Akamai announced the acquisition of Verivue, a privately-held company based in Westford, Massachusetts that provides licensed content delivery network (CDN) infrastructure solutions for network operators. The combination of the two companies’ technologies and teams is expected to help Akamai accelerate market availability of a comprehensive portfolio of Operator CDN products.

  • In November, Akamai announced a partnership with Orange Business Services.  Specifically, Orange will begin selling enterprise content delivery network (CDN) services using Akamai Technologies' optimization and acceleration solution.  Orange Business Services will market these solutions initially in France. The companies have formed an innovation steering committee to identify areas of innovation in the field of CDN solutions.

Cloudera Lands $65 Million for Big Data Apache Hadoop

Cloudera, a start-up based in Palo Alto, California, closed $65 million in new funding  to support its Apache Hadoop-based data management software and services.

Cloudera offers a packaged solution for enterprise customers to ensure production-ready deployment of CDH4, the most widely deployed and proven commercial distribution of Apache Hadoop.

The company cited rapid growth over the past year, both in terms of customers and volume of data under management.  Cloudera's customer base includes more than half of the Fortune 50, and includes companies such as AOL, CBS, EBay, Expedia, Experian, JP Morgan Chase, Monsanto, Morgan Stanley, Network Appliance, Nokia, RIM, and The Walt Disney Company.

The latest funding round led by Accel Partners, with support from Greylock Partners, Ignition Partners, In-Q-Tel, and Meritech Capital Partners.

"Big Data continues to fuel significant new business opportunities and revenue streams for our enterprise customers, spurring the need for new, large-scale data management solutions that can meet the needs of today's demanding enterprise workloads," said Mike Olson, CEO at Cloudera. "This new investment will speed the expansion of our sales and support operations to meet increasing enterprise demand for our real-time, Hadoop-based platform, as we scale to address the enormity of this global market opportunity."

Harris Sells Broadcast Comm. Business for $225 Million

Harris will sell its Broadcast Communications business to an affiliate of The Gores Group $225 million.

Harris Broadcast supplies a full line of workflow, infrastructure and networking tools for broadcasters. The Harris product suite includes next-generation routers, processors, master control and branding systems, multiviewers, video servers, network monitoring and control, broadcast graphics systems, test and measurement tools and video networking systems. Harris also supplies analog and digital television and radio transmission systems, along with media management hardware and software.

"The sale of Broadcast Communications reflects our strategy to optimize our business portfolio and focus on our core businesses," said William M. Brown, president and chief executive officer of Harris. "As previously communicated, we plan to repurchase up to $200 million of our shares after the deal closes. This is in addition to the $200 million of share repurchases already planned for fiscal 2013 and reflects our ongoing commitment to effectively deploy capital, including returning cash to shareholders."

The Gores Group is a global investment firm focused on acquiring controlling interests in mature and growing businesses.

BT Cuts Wholesale 330Mbps FTTP Cost by 37%

BT Openreach will slash the wholesale rental price of its ultra-fast 330Mbps Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) service by 37%.  The wholesale service currently costs £60 a month but it will fall to £38 a month from June 2013. The company also announced the lower price will apply to the new Fibre-to-the-Premises on Demand (FoD) service that Openreach will launch and begin to make available in Spring 2013.

In addition, BT said the 330 Mbps service will be available across the whole of BT's fibre footprint for the first time and not just from those exchanges that currently offer FTTP.

As Openreach has previously indicated, CPs will be charged a distance based construction charge for FoD due to the extra work involved in providing a direct fibre connection.

"Our fibre plans are going very well. Our deployment is one of the fastest in the world and our services are proving very popular with the public," stated Mike Galvin, Managing Director NGA, Openreach.

Verizon Declares 51.5 cent Dividend

Verizon Communications declared a quarterly dividend of 51.5 cents per outstanding share, unchanged from the previous quarter.

Verizon has approximately 2.7 million shareowners and approximately 2.9 billion shares of common stock outstanding. The company made $3.9 billion in dividend payments through the first three quarters of 2012.

Nokia Sells Espoo HQ for EUR 170 Million, Leases Back

Nokia will sell its headquarters in Espoo, Finland to Exilion, a local real estate management trust, for EUR 170 million.  Nokia will then lease back the building on a long-term basis.  The 48,000 m2 building has been Nokia's head office since 1997.

"We had a comprehensive sales process with both Finnish and foreign investors and we are very pleased with this outcome. As we have said before, owning real estate is not part of Nokia's core business and when good opportunities arise we are willing to exit these types of non-core assets. We are naturally continuing to operate in our head office building on a long-term basis," said Timo Ihamuotila, CFO, Nokia.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

ECI’s Native Packet Transport Brings Simplification with MPLS-TP

ECI Telecom introduced five new Native Packet Transport (NPT) platforms with multidimensional flexibility (capacity, interfaces, protocols) for handling both Ethernet and native TDM traffic in metro networks.

ECI's Native Packet Transport leverages MPLS Transport Profile (MPLS-TP) for handling of packet and TDM traffic, which will continue to co-exist in metro network for a long while. The company said MPLS-TP is ideally suited for the metro because it is simple to operate and manage, because it is scalable to large networks, and because it is lower cost than IP/MPLS + CES (circuit emulation service).  MPLS-TP brings all of the traffic engineering benefits of MPLS, but does not require running the control plane on
thousands of network elements (NEs) across the metro.

ECI’s Native Packet Transport platforms are managed by the company's existing LightSoft  network management system, which ensure unified multi-layer management for     MPLS, WDM and TDM.  The NMS offers GUI-based operation, enabling the packet transport      network to be as easily managed as existing TDM-based transport networks.

"There is no question that data traffic is exploding around us. The NPT was developed to help realize the promise of low cost packet transport, without compromises in functionality. With the NPT, we are addressing our customers’ needs for a simplified solution able to cost-effectively handle both packet and TDM traffic. ECI is once again proving our commitment to be a partner for growth to our customers, by providing tailored solutions that meet their pain points and lower the TCO for the ever-changing transport environment," stated Alon Moshes, Head of the Packet Transport Line of Business, ECI Telecom. ​

Plexxi Unveils its SDN Switch with LightRail Optical Interconnect

Plexxi, a start-up based in Cambridge, MA, introduced a Software-defined Networking (SDN) data center switch that creates network connections by implementing efficient topologies based on actual workload needs and by scaling with a proprietary "LightRail" optical interface between switches.

Plexxi is targeting cloud and virtualized data centers. The aim is "a system that directly manifests workload-optimized solutions in the real, physical network, creating a network that delivers to applications what they need, when they need it – every time, all the time."

The Plexxi solution consists of two initial products:

  • Plexxi Control is server-based software that dynamically and continuously computes connectivity for actual workload needs. It provides SDN-based affinity-driven network orchestration, management, and control software. The multi-tier SDN controller architecture uses distributed processing at the edge of the network for scale and performance and centralized knowledge for topology planning and optimization, achieving incremental performance as the network grows.
  • Plexxi Switches provide standard high-performance, low-latency 10Gb and 40Gbps Ethernet access connections, but interconnect with each other via Plexxi's high density, high capacity "LightRail" optical interface. The patent-pending LightRail interconnect system provides 400 Gbps of dynamically assignable core capacity per switch, scaling linearly with each switch, achieving, for example, 100 Tbps in a 250-switch network. The LightRail interface eliminates additional layers in a data center network.
Plexxi Switch 1 starts at $64,000 including all inter-switch optics and cabling; Plexxi Control starts at $5,000 per Switch. Monthly pricing options are available.

"Big data, mobile and XaaS are bringing on new application connectivity requirements and more intense workloads at an accelerating pace. Legacy network switching architectures cannot respond to application needs," said David Husak, CEO of Plexxi. "Networking doesn't have to be this hard or frustrating. With 97 percent of the cost and complexity invested in today's networks providing zero value, Plexxi is on a mission to replace this mess with a complete SDN system for the data center – designed from the ground up – that makes networking simple, efficient and transparent."

Plexxi is backed by Lightspeed Venture Partners, Matrix Partners and Northbridge Venture Partners.  The company has raised over $48 million in funding to date.

Redknee to Acquire NSN's Business Support Systems

Redknee agreed to acquire Nokia Siemens Networks’ Business Support Systems (BSS) business, which provides real-time charging, rating, policy, and customer care solutions to more than 130 communication service providers, for EUR 15 million  in cash at closing, plus a maximum of EUR 25 million for certain performance-based cash earn-outs expected to be paid over 12 to 36 months post-closing.

NSN claims half of the top 100 global mobile operators are users of its BSS platform.

The deal includes customer and supplier contracts, intellectual property rights, fixed assets and associated liabilities, along with BSS employees.  Nokia Siemens Networks plans to retain a small number of broader customer contracts that include elements of BSS for GSM-R and mobile broadband related mediation.

The employees expected to transfer to Redknee are mainly based in Berlin, Germany; Bangalore, India; and Wroclaw, Poland.

Redknee is also a supplier of software and services that help operators to monetize the value of each subscriber transaction. Its revenue generating solutions provide advanced converged billing, rating, charging and policy for voice, messaging and new generation data services to over 90 network operators in over 50 countries. Redknee is based in Missisagua, Ontario, Canada.

"This planned transaction supports our transformation to focus on mobile broadband. Both Redknee and Nokia Siemens Networks have a reputation for high quality and customer commitment, which provides a common foundation for Redknee to build the BSS business in the future. We will work with Redknee to ensure a smooth transfer of the business and to provide some mobile broadband specific elements of the BSS portfolio to our customers," stated Rajeev Suri, CEO of Nokia Siemens Networks.

  • Earlier this week, Nokia Siemens Networks will sell its Optical Networks business unit to Marlin Equity Partners.
  • In November 2011, DragonWave and Nokia Siemens Networks reached a deal by which DragonWave acquired NSN's microwave transport business, including its associated operational support systems (OSS) and related support functions, in a transaction potentially worth up to EUR 110 million.

Emulex to Acquire Endace, Providing Entry to Network Visibility

Emulex announced an offer to acquire Endace, a supplier of  network visibility infrastructure, for approximately $130 million in cash.

Endace, which is based in New Zealand, supplies Intelligent Network Recorders which capture, index and record 100-percent of network traffic while scaling from 1 Gbps to 100 Gbps.  Endace's proprietary web-based application enables engineers to visualize, search and retrieve network traffic from any Endace Recorder anywhere across the network.  In addition to network probes, Endace also offers a 40/100 LAN/WAN network visibility fabric.

Emulex supplies Fibre Channel Host Bus Adapters, 10Gb Ethernet Network Interface Cards, Ethernet-based Converged Network Adapters, controllers, embedded bridges and switches, and connectivity management software for servers. Emulex is headquartered in Costa Mesa, California.

Emulex said the combination of its software-defined convergence architecture and Endace’s network visibility infrastructure will provide organizations with new and innovative ways to solve the challenges of network complexity and ensure application-level performance at speeds of 10Gbps and above.

"This acquisition provides Emulex with a strategic entry point into the network performance management space at a disruptive point in time, as speeds move to 10Gb, making network visibility from end-to-end a critical requirement in a converged network environment,” said Jim McCluney, chief executive officer (CEO), Emulex. "Acquiring Endace aligns with our software-defined convergence strategy, doubles our total addressable market and places Emulex in another high-margin, high-growth market. Excluding transaction related expenses, we expect the acquisition to be neutral to our non-GAAP earnings per share for fiscal 2013 and accretive at the beginning of fiscal 2014."

Qualcomm Atheros Cuts Size of NFC Chip by 50%

Qualcomm Atheros unwrapped a new ultra-low power near field communication (NFC) system-on-chip (SoC) for mobile devices.

The QCA1990 boasts an overall footprint that is 50 percent smaller than current NFC chips, making it the smallest on the market.

It can be paired with Qualcomm Atheros' WCN3680 1-stream, dual-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi/Bluetooth 4.0/FM chip, the QCA1990 will enable seamless user experiences in the mobile, computing and consumer electronics markets. It also offers platform-level integration with the Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 and next-generation processors and modems to seamlessly enable NFC on Qualcomm's OEM partner smartphones and tablets.

"Qualcomm Atheros believes NFC will be another key element of an enriched experience for smartphone and tablet consumers. As consumers continue to adopt functions like mobile payments and contactless data exchange, Qualcomm intends to be at the forefront of delivering simple, easy-to-use solutions to OEM partners," said David Favreau, vice president of product management, Qualcomm Atheros. "

Verizon Wireless' LTE Marks 2nd Anniversary

December 5th marked the second anniversary since the launch of Verizon Wireless' 4G LTE  network.  The company noted the occasion by listing some of its most current operational statistics:

  • More than 11 million LTE customers
  • More than 35% of data traffic now carried on the LTE net
  • More than 440 markets with LTE coverage in the U.S.
  • 20 other mobile operators participating in its LTE in Rural America program.

Spirent Collaborates with InCNTRE, IU's Software-defined Networking Lab

Spirent Communications is working with Indiana University’s Software Defined Networking (SDN)/OpenFlow research organization, InCNTRE, to develop the conformance test suites within OFTest, an open source based test solution for OpenFlow networks.

OFTest is a Python-based conformance-testing framework, built on Open Networking Foundation’s (ONF) OpenFlow standards. It is designed to test the conformance of Ethernet switches in high-security and IP-based mobile networks.

Spirent said its iTest, an integrated test authoring and execution solution built for testers, developers and automation teams, is providing automation support for OFTest.

“OpenFlow is an important technology for meeting the demands being placed on today’s networks, and conformance testing is critical to the success of  OpenFlow in the marketplace,” said Matt Davy, executive director of InCNTRE at Indiana University. “We are pleased to collaborate with Spirent on developing OFTest to ensure it can be used to validate that Ethernet switches conform to the OpenFlow standard.”

CipherCloud Raises $30 Million for Cloud Tokens and Encryption

CipherCloud, a start-up based in San Jose, California, announced $30 million in new venture funding from Andreessen Horowitz for its cloud protection.

CipherCloud provides cloud encryption and tokenization gateways to help enterprises to securely adopt cloud applications by eliminating concerns about data privacy, residency, security and regulatory compliance. The company said it is currently protecting 1.2 million cloud application users and 100 million customer records for more than 40 enterprise clients across eight countries.

The CipherCloud product portfolio supports popular cloud applications including Salesforce,, Chatter, Google Gmail, Microsoft Office 365, and Amazon AWS.

Customers include top firms in banking, insurance, healthcare and technology, as well as government agencies.

CipherCloud’s existing investors include Andreessen Horowitz, Index Ventures and T-Venture, the venture capital arm of Deutsche Telekom.

"When I founded CipherCloud it was clear to me that the entire enterprise market was accelerating its move to the cloud," said Pravin Kothari, the company's CEO. "Our vision has been to create solutions that enable organizations to safely and securely complete their cloud journey while maintaining a high level of security and retaining control of their information.”

  • Prior to founding CipherCloud, Pravin Kothari was Founder, CTO, and Interim-CEO of Agiliance, a leading Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC) software company. Previously, he was Co-founder and VP Engineering of ArcSight

Broadcom Ticks Up its Financial Guidance for Q4

Broadcom narrowed its financial guidance for the fourth quarter of 2012 toward the higher end of its previously stated range, or approximately $2.00 to $2.10 billion, due to slightly better-than-expected revenue in ots Mobile & Wireless business.

The company said its Product Gross Margins should also be up slightly compared to the previous quarter, while expenses are down approximately $5 to $15 million from Q3 '12, due to lower-than-expected headcount costs.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

CenturyLink Installs Infinera's DTN-X for 100G Backbone

CenturyLink has deployed Infinera's DTN-X platform, featuring 500 Gbps long haul super-channels, on its nationwide fiber optic backbone.

The deployment marks a significant Tier-1 win for Infinera's next gen platform.  Financial terms were not disclosed.

Infinera said its DTN-X platform enables CenturyLink to enhance its nationwide next generation backbone transport network to support critical video, mobile, and cloud IP services, and extend its ability to deliver up to 100 Gigabit Ethernet services (GbE) tothe company’s data centers and customer facilities around the country.

The DTN-X uniquely delivers 500 Gbps FlexCoherent super-channels and integrates 5 Terabits per second (Tbps) of OTN switching per chassis.

"Our experience with the Infinera DTN platform has demonstrated a system based on quality, ease of use, proven technology and reliability. As a customer since 2004, we look forward to including the DTN-X as part of our next generation network and achieving the same positive results as we have in the past," stated Matt Beal, CenturyLink senior vice president - corporate strategy, product development and chief technology officer.