Thursday, May 9, 2013

Open Compute Project to Develop Top-of-rack Switch

The Open Compute Project, which was launched by Facebook to build better data center systems, confirmed plans to develop an open, OS-agnostic top-of-rack switch.  The effort will be led by Najam Ahmad, who runs the network engineering team at Facebook.

Companies that are supporting the effort include Big Switch Networks, Broadcom, Cumulus Networks, Facebook, Intel, Netronome, OpenDaylight, the Open Networking Foundation, and VMware.

In a blog posting, Frank Frankovsky, Chairman/President, Open Compute Project, says the goal of this undertaking is to create "an open, disaggregated switch will enable a faster pace of innovation in the development of networking hardware; help software-defined networking continue to evolve and flourish; and ultimately provide consumers of these technologies with the freedom they need to build infrastructures that are flexible, scalable, and efficient across the entire stack."

AT&T's Project VIP On Track - Small Cells and DAS

AT&T is on-track to bring LTE to 90% of its wireless footprint to year-end and Project VIP will extend the network significantly in both the wireless and wireline domains, said Bill Smith, President of AT&T Network Operations, speaking at the Jeffries 2013 Global Technology, Media and Telecom Conference.  AT&T's CAPEX budget for 2013 is in the $21 billion range.
Some notes from his presentation.

  • Project VIP aims to reach 10,000+ macro cell sites by year-end 2015, along with 1,000 DAS and 40,000+ small cell sites.
  • Project VIP also aims to bring fiber to 1 million new business locations by year-end 2015.
  • In 2012, AT&T installed 800 distributed antenna systems and deployed 81,000 new antennas.
  • More than 90% of traffic on AT&T's wireless network is now carried of its enhanced backhaul (Ethernet)
  • AT&T now has more than 33,000 Wi-Fi hotspots.
  • AT&T's plan is to move to small cells that have UMTS + LTE + Wi-Fi

  • AT&T's network carries 43.4 petabytes on average business day

Blue Coat Acquires Netronome's SSL Inspector Line

Blue Coat has acquired Netronome's SSL appliance product line for an undisclosed sum.

The SSL appliances, which are based on Netronome’s NFP family of flow processors, provide visibility into encrypted SSL traffic. Driven by the adoption of cloud-based SaaS applications and the growing use of HTTPS for Web sites such as Google and Facebook, encrypted SSL packets can account for a significant percentage of the traffic on a corporate network.   Netronome’s SSL appliances deliver SSL decryption in networks ranging from 100 Mbps to 10 Gbps full duplex.

Blue Coat said the Netronome SSL appliance technology will be fully integrated with its existing Blue Coat products.  The appliances also provide up to four data feeds to a wide range of in-network security applications, such as intrusion prevention, intrusion detection, sandboxing and forensics, which can then analyze the data for threats or data breaches.

“The SSL appliances are the industry’s highest performance transparent proxy for SSL network communications, and provide unique visibility exposing inbound threats and outbound leaks,” said Howard Bubb, chief executive officer at Netronome. “The product is an ideal complement to Blue Coat’s comprehensive suite of cyber security products, and extends their leadership position in securing SSL communications.”
“Netronome’s SSL appliances are crucial for helping customers address a threat landscape made more complex by the growing amount of SSL traffic on the network,” said Greg Clark, CEO at Blue Coat Systems. “Netronome’s leading high performance flow processors are at the foundation of its SSL appliances and will play an important role in our product portfolio moving forward.”

Netronome said the deal enables it to focus on its flow processors and flow processing technology.

Cyan Completes its IPO

Cyan completed its initial public offering (IPO) and began trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the ticker symbol "CYNI".

Mark Floyd, Cyan's Chairman and CEO, joined by members of the company’s management team, rang The Opening Bell on the NYSE.

"Listing on the NYSE marks a major milestone for the company and I want to thank the entire Cyan team, without whose tireless efforts this could never have happened," said Mark Floyd, chief executive officer, Cyan, Inc. "As a natural next step, we expect this event to enable Cyan to continue to catalyze the transformation and virtualization of networks globally. Our cutting edge Z-Series platforms combined with our unique, open and proven Blue Planet software, positions Cyan to benefit from the change in the way networks are designed and managed."

AT&T's Aio Wireless Offers Unlimited Talk/Text/Data with No Contract

AT&T has launched a new subsidiary -- Aio Wireless (pronounced "A-O") -- to deliver a new nationwide wireless service for consumers interested in value pricing without an annual contract.

Aio kicks off today Houston, Orlando and Tampa, offering a pre-paid, unlimited talk/text/data plan with no annual contract. Pricing ranges from $35 to $70 per month.  Download speeds on AT&T's 4G network are capped at 4 Mbps.

Aio expects the service to roll out in multiple markets across the U.S. over the next year.

“We talked with no-annual-contract customers and created our service around what they want.  They want simple, easy plan choices with unlimited offers; first-class service at affordable prices; great devices; nationwide voice and data coverage; and no annual contracts. Today’s wireless customers don't want to compromise,” said Jennifer Van Buskirk, president of Aio Wireless. “We are set up to win over value-conscious customers who are increasingly moving towards smartphones and mobile broadband.”

Devices offered include smartphones, tablets, and feature phones from Samsung, Nokia, ZTE and others.

Huawei's Founder Gives First Media Interview

Ren Zhengfei, the founder of Huawei, made his first media appearance since establishing the company over 26 years ago.

Speaking to the media in New Zealand, Ren said Huawei does not present a cyber security threat and there is no factual basis to make such accusations.

Huawei recently won a major bid to supply LTE equipment to  Telecom New Zealand.

Equinix Expands its AWS Direct Connect Service

Equinix continues its rollout of AWS Direct Connect Service, which is now available at the Equinix International Business Exchange (IBX) data centers in Seattle (SE2 and SE3).

AWS Direct Connect provides a private connection to Amazon Web Services (AWS) via a cross connect at the Equinix data center.  It can also be used to onnect to the AWS GovCloud (US) from all existing AWS Direct Connect locations in North America.

Existing Equinix customers can connect to AWS Direct Connect inside the Seattle data center.  Customers can achieve millisecond latency between their infrastructure and AWS infrastructure.

Since the roll out of AWS Direct Connect in Equinix’s Ashburn, Virginia data center campus, AWS Direct Connect has expanded to Equinix locations in Seattle, Silicon Valley, Singapore, Sydney and Tokyo. Equinix customers such as Badgeville, Box, Carpathia Hosting and NetApp are using AWS Direct Connect to lower network costs into and out of AWS, bypassing the public internet.

McAfee Announces 40 Gbps Intrusion Prevention Powered by Intel

McAfee introduced its Network Security Platform NS-series, a new network intrusion prevention system (IPS) appliance powered by Intel processors and capable of 40 Gbps throughput performance with all of the NGIPS services running.

The NS-series, which is McAfee’s first IPS hardware platform based on Intel technology, is more compact than previous appliances while retaining substantial port density.

“Although the raw throughput of the new McAfee NS-series is impressive by any measure, the real story is the full next generation IPS services at those throughputs,” said Pat Calhoun, senior vice president and general manager of network security at McAfee. “The IPS industry has been talking about next generation IPS functionality for several years now, but when scalability tests are run, these services are almost always disabled, sacrificing security to boost throughput. These next generation IPS services, such as application visibility, situational and behavioral analysis, are needed to address today’s advanced threats.”

BT Selects Level 3 for SIP Toll-Free in U.S.

Level 3 Communications will provide SIP Toll-Free Services BT over its MPLS network, enabling BT Conferencing to provide its flexible communications solutions in the U.S. The two-year agreement builds upon the existing business relationship between the two companies.

Dish Network Closes Q1 with 14 Million Subscribers, Higher Costs

DISH Network posted Q1 revenue of $3.56 billion, down from $3.58 billion for the corresponding period in 2012. The company cited declines its Blockbuster unit and said subscriber-related revenue for its DISH segment increased from $3.22 billion to $3.35 billion, or 4.0 percent.

Net income attributable to DISH Network totaled $216 million for the quarter ending March 31, 2013, compared to $360 million from the year-ago quarter. The company cited higher subscriber-related expenses driven by increased programming and subscriber acquisition costs.

Some highlights:

  • DISH added about 654,000 gross new pay-TV subscribers compared to approximately 673,000 gross new pay-TV subscribers in the prior year’s first quarter.
  • Net subscribers grew by approximately 36,000 in the first quarter. The company closed the first quarter with 14.092 million pay-TV subscribers compared to 14.071 million pay-TV subscribers at the end of first quarter 2012.
  • Pay-TV ARPU for the first quarter totaled $78.54, an improvement over the first quarter 2012 pay-TV ARPU of $76.24. Pay-TV subscriber churn rate was 1.47 percent versus 1.35 percent for first quarter 2012.
  • DISH also added about 66,000 net broadband subscribers in the first quarter, compared to the addition of approximately 6,000 broadband subscribers in the year-ago period.

SingTel Launches Mobile Broadband 150 Service

Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel) launched Mobile Broadband 150, a 4G mobile broadband service boasting top theoretical download speed of 150 Mbps.  Plans start at S$60 per month with a 5GB cap.

SingTel is offering a mobile Wi-Fi USB dongle modem as a promotion.

The service is accessible at many outdoor locations across Singapore, as well as popular indoor locations such as Jurong Point, Raffles City, Tampines Mall, Bishan Junction 8, Bugis Junction and Changi Airport.  SingTel is working closely with building owners and property developers to implement 150Mbps 4G capabilities in as many buildings as possible.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Project Clearwater Aims for IMS in the Cloud

Project Clearwater, an open-source IMS core initiative for the cloud, launched its website and opened its doors to software developers and systems integrators.

Metaswitch Networks contributed the initial codebase for Project Clearwater and is sponsoring the initiative.

Metaswitch said the goal of Project Clearwater is to deliver critical call and session control functions, along with Telephony Application Server (TAS) capabilities, within any virtualized data center.  Clearwater is being developed for massive scale and "telco-grade" reliability in private or public Cloud environments, together with exceptionally low running costs of around 2 cents per subscriber per year based on Amazon AWS pricing.

Clearwater provides SIP-based call control for voice and video communications and for SIP-based messaging applications.  It is designed for deployment on Amazon Web Services or other private cloud infrastructure.

“Traditional paths to IMS have been expensive and exceedingly vendor-centric,” says Martin Taylor, CTO of Metaswitch Networks. “Our aim is to provide operators and developers with the keys to quickly move to highly-scaled VoIP and VoLTE networks and create tomorrow’s most advanced Web-scale communications applications.

Fujitsu Outlines SDN-based Intelligent Networking and Computing Architecture

Fujitsu outlined an Intelligent Networking and Computing Architecture based on the principles of software defined networking (SDN) that aims to provide optimized control over three unique ICT domains: data centers, wide area networks, and smart devices.

The FUJITSU Intelligent Networking and Computing Architecture can virtualize resources across the three domains. The company said that by administering and controlling these virtualized resources on two layers, a "virtual infrastructure layer" and a "distributed service platform layer," the technology is able to achieve optimal service levels while improving the quality of experience for the end user.

The first set of products supporting this vision include an updated version of unified administration and control software for server, storage and network resources, a new switch that supports network virtualization, and a new virtual appliance platform.

  • FUJITSU Software Server Resource Orchestrator -- a resource management software solution that performs unified management of multiple server, storage, and network ICT resources for virtualized consolidation, integration and private cloud applications. The software allocates resources as needed and automatically sets parameters, thereby implementing SDN in data centers.

  • New converged fabric switch -- this network virtualization switch auto
  • matically configures and modifies virtual network parameters. Using the new switch, network administrators are able to pre-configure networks for each virtual system and modify network settings when adding, replacing or migrating servers, thereby sidestepping the troublesome task of network operations.
  • PRIMERGY Converged Fabric Switch -- this virtual appliance platform virtualizes the IPCOM network server, which integrates functions such as firewalls and load balancers, and can run multiple instances of virtual IPCOM on a single piece of hardware. Unlike in the past, where a separate IPCOM would have to be provisioned for each virtual system, the new IPCOM VX Series allows a single piece of hardware to handle multiple virtual systems, obviating the need for additional IPCOM hardware when adding virtual systems. This, in turn, delivers greater speed and flexibility.

Telefónica: Brazil is its Largest Market, Surpassing Spain

Telefónica reported Q1 2013 revenue of 14,141 million euros, a decrease of 1.6% compared to a year earlier not counting impacts from exchange rate fluctuations, and down 8.8% in actual terms.  The company's OIBDA reached 4,567 million euros and the operating result was 2,066 million euros, down 0.1% and 2.9%, respectively compared to Q1 2012. Telefónica Europe is impacted by the macroeconomic situation, the intense level of competition and the negative impact of regulation, while Telefónica Latin America continues to grow.

At the end of March the Telefónica Group had a customer base of almost 316 million accesses (+2%), over 78% of whom are mobile customers. There was acceleration in the growth of the contract mobile accesses to +8% in the quarter, with year-on-year increases reaching +13% in Latin America.

Some other highlights for Q1:

  • Latin America generated over 50% of the consolidated revenue.
  • Brazil has become Telefónica's biggest market in revenue generation, surpassing Spain for the first time.
  • Mobile accesses stood at 247.3 million at the end of the quarter (+3% year-on-year).
  • Mobile broadband accesses -accesses with a data tariff attached- posted a solid 34% year-on-year growth to surpass 55 million at the end of March 2013 and accounted for 22% of mobile accesses (+5 percentage points year-on-year).
  • Smartphones accounted for 20% of the total mobile access base (+6% pp year on year).
  • Non-SMS mobile data revenues increased 21.9% in organic terms and already represent 62% of total mobile data revenues (56% in the first quarter of 2012).
  • Telefónica Brasil served 91.1 million at the end of March, up 1% year-on-year despite the application of more restrictive accounting criteria for prepay customers. Mobile accesses stood at 76.0 million (+2% year-on-year), with contract segment growing by 17% year-on-year and accounting for 26% of mobile accesses.
  • In the first quarter of 2013, Telefónica's net financial debt was negatively impacted by exceptional effects, specifically the devaluation of the Venezuelan bolivar (€873M) and the payments for spectrum auctions (€701M) as well as the recurrent first quarter´s seasonal effect.
  • Telefónica invested 1,941 million euros in the first quarter of the year, including the acquisition of spectrum in the United Kingdom and Uruguay. 82% of the total investment was in growth areas, specifically 3G, 4G and fibre networks.
  • Telefónica has 132,726 employees worldwide, which is about the same as last year.

Deutsche Telekom's Profits Rise in Q1 as Revenue Dips 4.5%

Deutsche Telekom's net revenue for Q1 2013 decreased by 4.5 percent compared with the prior-year period to EUR 13.8 billion and adjusted EBITDA declined by 4.3 percent to EUR 4.3 billion. However, Deutsche Telekom generated a year-on-year increase in adjusted net profit of more than 30 percent to EUR 767 million in the first quarter. Reported net profit increased by 3.5 percent to EUR 564 million.

"We have resolved some major issues," said René Obermann, Chairman of the Board of Management of Deutsche Telekom. "The biggest of those were our customer figures in the United States, which are finally back on the up. The positive regulatory decisions form the basis for our planned broadband build-out."

Some highlights for Q1 2013:


  • Smartphone sales recorded growth of 16 percent, reaching over a million.
  • In the fixed network, the total number of VDSL and FTTH lined climbed 63 percent, compared with the first quarter of 2012, to 1.1 million. With 156,000 new fiber-optic customers in the quarter, Deutsche Telekom achieved a record high. Of these customers, 46,000 came from the wholesale area, mainly due to the successful launch of what is known as the contingent model.
  • The number of mobile contract customers increased by 441,000 in the first three months of the year, after a decline of 107,000 in the prior-year quarter. In addition to the expanding reseller segment (service providers), new customer growth was also attributable to 144,000 new customers under the Deutsche Telekom and Congstar brands.
  • Revenue in the Germany operating segment amounted to EUR 5.6 billion in the first quarter of 2013, 1.6 percent lower than in the prior-year period. 


  • T-Mobile USA completed its merger with MetroPCS as of April 30, 2013.
  • T-Mobile USA sold some 500,000 iPhones in the first four weeks after marketing began.
  • The number of branded contract customers declined by 199,000, after a decrease of 510,000 a year earlier.
  • The total number of customers increased by 579,000 to 34 million.
  • Revenue in the United States operating segment amounted to EUR 3.5 billion in the first quarter, 8.0 percent lower than in the prior-year period. 


The European subsidiaries made progress in growth areas, while at the same time battling with negative effects from the economy and regulation. Total revenue in the Europe operating segment declined 6.9 percent year-on-year to EUR 3.3 billion. Excluding the reduction in mobile termination rates, the decline in revenue would have been much lower at 3.4 percent. In Greece, for example, rates were reduced by 74 percent compared with the prior-year quarter.
Mobile data revenue in Europe increased substantially by 14 percent year-on-year due to exchange rate effects.


Deutsche Telekom's Systems Solutions segment recorded strong order entry of EUR 2.1 billion, up 33 percent compared with the prior-year period. This was due to agreements with EADS and the Swiss National Railways (SBB) as well as numerous deals for cloud services.

Inphi Demos 2.4 Tbps Line Card Tech -- QSFP28

Inphi is demoing interoperability of its second generation Tri-Rate PHY/SerDes Gearbox (GB) ICs with Luxtera and TE Connectivity (TE) optical modules at this week's Interop in Las Vegas.

Inphi is showcasing its new Tri-Rate IN112510-LD 100G GB interoperating with a Silicon Photonics QSFP28 module from Luxtera, as well as VCSEL based QSFP28 from TE to highlight the availability of the QSFP28 form factor using different optics technologies. The new GB ICs with Inphi's Tri-Rate foundation enables seamless support of 10G, 40G and 100G Ethernet and OTN on a single line card.

"Our next-generation Tri-Rate PHY/SerDes GB ICs interoperating with industry leading QSFP28 technology from Luxtera and TE demonstrates that the technology of the future is now available for designers to successfully build ultra-high density line cards for hyper scale data center systems," said Siddharth Sheth, vice president of marketing for Inphi's high-speed connectivity products. "As an agnostic vendor to the type of technology used in QSFP28 modules, Inphi continues to work with a broad ecosystem of partners using Silicon Photonics, VCSEL or other optics and laser sources to further the deployment of 100G."

Luxtera is also showing its 100G Silicon Photonics chipset packaged in a QSFP28. 

Net Optics Launches Network Packet Broker for 40G

Net Optics introduced its xStream 40 Network Packet Broker (NPB) for 40G networks, providing advanced filtering, aggregation, load-balancing, time stamping, etc.

Net Optics said its new platform provides 30 percent improved latency over the previous latency record. xStream 40 also provides twenty percent more filters and 2.6X higher port density with the same form factor.

Key features include:

  • Delivery of up to 64 wire-speed 1 GbE and 10 GbE ports, or 48 wire-speed 1 GbE and 10 GbE ports and 4 40 GbE ports
  • Improved hardware includes support for IEEE 1588, Precision Time Protocol and time stamping on ingress
  • Time stamping of packets on the fly with nanosecond accuracy and packet manipulation options on all ports at line rate
  • Integrated capabilities for streamlining SDN migration supporting multiple management and integration protocols
  • Ability to leverage the supersized 1.28Tbps backplane to process more traffic at faster speeds while maximizing network performance and security
  • SPYKE 1.5 delivers AA-NPM supporting 10G networks and is designed to monitor applications and networks of companies from small branch sites to 10G Enterprise-wide networks. New support for 10G traffic monitoring allows Enterprise customers to deploy a plug-and-play, cost effective solution to complement current monitoring infrastructure. AA-NPM demands deep diving into packet payloads to identify the underlying application and extract relevant performance indicators. Spyke 1.5's DPI engine adds coverage for hundreds of applications, letting customers examine and extract application meta-data for fast troubleshooting and problem resolution.

Availability for xStream 40 and Spyke 1.5 are expected early Q3.

"Most monitoring tools see packet headers and provide flow information only," says Dave Britt, Net Optics Director of APM Technologies, "whereas DPI is like opening a letter to see the content."

Internet2 Offers Cash Prizes for SDN Research Apps

Internet2, in conjunction with Juniper Networks, Ciena, and Brocade, is offering cash awards for winning open source, data movement, software-defined networking (SDN) enabled, end user applications, which benefit the research and education (R&E) community, implemented on the nation’s first open, national-scale SDN platform -- the Internet2 Network.

The new Internet2 Network is the first open, national-scale 100G network that employs SDN and OpenFlow standards. It includes equipment from Juniper Networks, Ciena, and Brocade.

“The new Internet2 Network can advance global research collaboration in previously unimaginable ways," said Rob Vietzke, vice president of Network Services, Internet2. “Leveraging our new 100G, SDN-enabled network, we're on the hunt for the most innovative applications that help to accelerate and transform discovery in big data sciences."

More info is posted here: