Monday, September 9, 2013

Cortina Intros First Dual 15G EDC

Cortina Systems announced the availability of the industry’s first dual 15G Electronic Dispersion Compensation (EDC) PHY for low port count applications transitioning from 1 to 10 and 15G.

Cortina said its CS4227 Dual 15G EDC PHY device and its companion chip, the CS4223 Quad 15G EDC PHY, will drive dramatically lower power and support higher bandwidth for the expanding lower port count application market, such as uplinks and NIC cards.

“With the integration and innovation happening throughout the network, system vendors are looking to upgrade to 10G and 15G speeds to increase the bandwidth and unleash the power of their networks,” said Scott Feller, director at Cortina Systems, Inc.  “Cortina’s CS4227 and CS4223 PHYs extend the 28 nm portfolio of low latency, power, and cost, to lower port count applications.”

The CS4223 Quad EDC PHY functionality supports four full duplex 10G links, or one full duplex 40G link. The device-wide operating frequency range covers 1 GbE, 10 GbE, 1G FC, 2G FC, 4G FC, 8G, 16G FC, Infiniband SDR, DDR, QDR and FDR, and CPRI Options 1 to 7.  EDC capability allows the device to operate with linear SFP+/QSFP optical modules to Direct Attach Copper, 10GBase-ZR, and DWDM SMF applications. The device is fully compliant to 10G SFP+, 802.3ba 40G and 100G nPPI, and nAUI specifications. The fully autonomous device does not require external processors to control the convergence or dynamic adaption of the dispersion compensation. The CS422x Dual and Quad EDC PHY also integrates the auto-negotiation and coefficient training functionality for 10G KR, 40G KR4, 40G CR4, and 16G Fibre channel, for seamless interoperability with existing equipment.

Palo Alto Networks' Revenue Hits $112 Million, up 49% YoY

Palo Alto Networks reported revenue of $112.4 million for the fourth quarter of its fiscal year 2013, up 49% compared with $75.6 million in the fiscal fourth quarter of 2012.  GAAP net loss for the fiscal fourth quarter was $15.8 million, or $0.22 per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $4.6 million, or $0.18 per diluted share, in the fiscal fourth quarter of 2012.

"Demand was strong in the fourth quarter across all theaters and verticals resulting in 11 percent sequential revenue growth and 49 percent year-over-year growth," said Mark McLaughlin, president and chief executive officer of Palo Alto Networks. "In fiscal 2013, we grew revenue by 55 percent and added over 4,800 customers as Palo Alto Networks continues to significantly outpace the competition and cement its position as the global leader in next generation security."

For fiscal year 2013, total revenue grew 55 percent to $396.1 million, compared with $255.1 million in fiscal 2012. GAAP net loss was $29.2 million, or $0.43 per diluted share, in fiscal 2013, compared with net income of $0.7 million, or $0.00 per diluted share, in fiscal 2012. Non-GAAP net income for fiscal 2013 was $16.0 million, or $0.21 per diluted share, compared with non-GAAP net income of $14.7 million, or $0.14 per diluted share, in fiscal 2012. Non-GAAP results for fiscal year 2013 include $3.6 million of expenses related to IP litigation, which on a tax effected basis was $0.03 per diluted share.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

American Tower to Acquire Global Tower Partners for $4.8 Billion

American Tower Corporation agreed to acquire 100% of the outstanding common membership interests of MIP Tower Holdings LLC, a private real estate investment trust, which is the parent company of Global Tower Partners, for approximately $4.8 billion.

GTP owns and operates approximately 5,400 towers across the U.S., 800 domestic property interests under third-party communications sites, and has management rights to over 9,000 domestic sites, which are primarily rooftop assets. In addition, GTP owns 500 communications sites in Costa Rica.

The deal increases American Tower's U.S. portfolio by 25%, strengthening its presence in top 10 markets, including New York, San Francisco and Washington D.C.

GTP's Revenue Sources:
AT&T - 25%
Sprint - 17%
T-Mobile - 16%
Verizon - 12%
Other - 30%

“GTP has constructed and acquired an outstanding U.S. portfolio of tower, rooftop and land assets, which is highly complementary to that of American Tower. Moreover, GTP’s management of these assets has been excellent, as confirmed through our rigorous due diligence process. GTP’s towers boast a high quality customer base, a strong position with respect to ground ownership and lease terms, and additional structural capacity available to facilitate future leasing activity.

With all four major domestic wireless carriers engaged in aggressive multi-year 4G LTE deployments, we believe our acquisition of GTP solidifies our path to achieving our strategic goals related to growing our AFFO over the next five years,” said Jim Taiclet, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of American Tower.

American Tower will pay using approximately $3.3 billion in cash and the assumption of approximately $1.5 billion of existing indebtedness.
American Tower expects to use cash on hand and borrowing capacity under its existing revolving credit facilities, as supplemented by additional anticipated sources of debt financing, to satisfy the cash consideration for this acquisition and other previously announced acquisitions. American Tower intends to maintain its financial and capital structure policies, consistent with investment grade credit metrics, and expects to use the quality cash flow and margin characteristics of the GTP portfolio to de-lever over time back to its stated target leverage range.

American Tower expects that in aggregate, in 2014, the portfolio will generate approximately $345 million in revenues and approximately $270 million of gross margin, and is anticipated to be immediately accretive to Adjusted Funds From Operations (“AFFO”) upon closing.

Last month, American Tower Corporation agreed to acquire up to 2,790 towers in Brazil and 1,666 towers in Mexico from NII Holdings for approximately $413 million and $398 million, respectively.

American Tower said the majority of the portfolio consists of towers located in and around major population areas and along major highways. On average, the towers have a tenancy ratio of just over one tenant per tower, with Nextel Brazil or Nextel Mexico as the primary tenant, providing significant opportunities for future site leasing growth.

Both Nextel Brazil and Nextel Mexico have agreed to leaseback the towers from American Tower for a minimum 12-year initial lease term with additional renewal options thereafter. NII International Telecom S.C.A, a subsidiary of NII based in Luxembourg, has agreed to provide certain credit support with respect to the obligations of Nextel Brazil.

Las Vegas' Switch SUPERNAPS Continues Rapid Growth

Switch, which operates the SUPERNAPS data centers in Las Vegas, sold a record-breaking 19 megawatts of power to 23 clients during the month of August.

Switch provides massive-scale colocation, connectivity, cloud and content solutions for more than 600 global clients. SUPERNAP 8 is built from Switch’s modular optimized designed products, which includes the Switch SHIELD (redundant weather-proof roofing structures), the TSC 1000 ROTOFLY (HVAC system), the T-SCIF (equipment heat containment pods), and the IRON BLACK FOREST (data center separation and containment environment)

In June, Switch, which operates the massive SUPERNAP data center complex in Las Vegas, unveiled plans for its most advanced building yet.

The SUPERNAP 8 data center will be built with two independent, separate and individually rated 200 mph steel roof decks. The two roofs are located nine feet apart and are attached to the concrete and steel shell of the facility and contain zero roof penetrations. The new facility will use the Switch IRON BLACK FOREST temperature control system for heat containment and to mitigate an disaster event impacts.  The building will also feature a patent pending flywheel to support refrigeration and temperature controls during a power outage by delivering uninterruptable high-efficiency data center cooling.

In addition, SUPERNAP 8 will offer the same tri-redundant backup power systems and the enhanced security that Switch uses in its other building. 

Switch notes that its Las Vegas location is extremely well connected by national fiber.  It is also located in "the safest desert on the planet, free from natural disasters and disturbances and built on the newest and greenest power grid in the United States."

Oracle Government Cloud Opens for Business

Oracle announced the availability of the Oracle Government Cloud, its suite of secure cloud applications built specifically for government.

Oracle owns, manages and certifies the underlying technology for Oracle Government Cloud.  The company is initially offering Software as a Service (SaaS).  Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) options will be available soon.

“We are very excited to meet our public sector customers’ demands for a highly secure, robust suite of cloud solutions built for government. The maturity and transparency of the standards-based Oracle Government Cloud will enable agencies to confidently move mission-critical government applications to the cloud without compromising security, performance, or reliability. We are committed to helping agencies enhance operational efficiency through the cloud,” said Mark Johnson, senior vice president, Oracle Public Sector.

NEC Cites 50% Power Reduction for Innovative Cooling Technology

NEC has developed an innovative, multi-stage cooling technology that enables data centers to reduce air conditioning power consumption by up to 50%.

NEC is leveraging phase change coolants, which are able to remove a large amount of heat from the system at the temperature point when they change from liquid to vapor. The company said its technology is able to substantially reduce the air conditioning load inside server rooms because the heat from devices is collected before dispersed and is transported directly to the outside of the server room. In the case of a server room in which power consumption per rack is 12kW, total air conditioning power consumption (i.e. power consumed by fans and cooling machines) can be reduced by as much as 50%. Recent tests conducted at an NEC facility with 10 servers demonstrated that approximately 50% of the heat exhausted from the back of a rack was transported to the outside of the server room.

NEC has also developed a technology used to distribute and efficiently circulate coolant through each level of a multi-stage rack based on the amount of heat generated. The system uses an environmentally friendly coolant with an ozone depletion potential (ODP) of zero and a global warming potential of less than one half of conventional products such as HFCs, thus providing an ideal balance between high-efficiency cooling and low environmental impact.

Qualcomm Unveils Low-Power Wi-Fi

Qualcomm Atheros introduced a low-power Wi-Fi chip familt designed to connect the "Internet of Everything."

The new QCA4002 and QCA4004 networking platforms include the IP stack and full networking services on the chip to enable customers to add Wi-Fi to virtually any product.  The platforms feature an on-chip processor and memory, which are designed to eliminate the need for a system controller that adds to product cost, complexity and power consumption. Using the QCA4004, customers can now write their own applications on the Qualcomm Atheros platform instead of simply using it for Wi-Fi connectivity.

Target applications for the QCA4002/4004 platforms include major home appliances (such as washing machines, air conditioners, hot water heaters, and so on), consumer electronics, and sensors and smart plugs for home lighting, security and automation systems. The QCA4004 has been incorporated into a washer/dryer combo and an air conditioner unit by Haier, a global leader in home appliances and consumer electronics.

The QCA4002/4004 platforms also feature the AllJoyn software framework, which enables the “Internet of things near me” by providing seamless connectivity and communications among a diverse set of products, applications and services to create compelling, proximal user experiences. The AllJoyn software framework provides basic building blocks for maximum flexibility and includes a set of services that, by design, are very simple and address near-universal requirements for users to interact with nearby things: onboarding, notifications, audio streaming and control.

Both the QCA4002 and QCA4004 include a Green TX feature that allows devices to reduce the transmit power by up to one-half when in close proximity of another device or access point. This dynamic power adjustment, along with sleep modes consuming less than 1mW, allows for more efficient communication and longer battery life (in applications such as remote controls, thermostats and sensors). The low power sleep operation is handled through an onboard wake-up manager that enables self-wake and sleep management on the platform which can further reduce sleep power (down to microamps). Additionally, the platforms can wake from suspend four times faster than other products in the category, which reduces the total average power profile and any system latency.

“Part of Qualcomm’s vision for the Internet of Everything is to provide low power, efficient connectivity as its enabling foundation. Qualcomm Atheros is making standards-based Wi-Fi feasible for a multitude of new devices in the home and office,” said Jason Zheng, senior vice president, Qualcomm Atheros. “The QCA4002 and QCA4004 platforms enable lower power usage and elimination of host processors to ensure better usage and simpler implementation with ease of configuration and interoperability, a first in the industry.”

The QCA4002 is available in full production now. The QCA4004 chip is currently sampling.

Infonetics: Ethernet Switch Market Expands 6% in Q2

Globally, the Ethernet switch market was up 6% in 2Q13, to $5 billion, according to a new report from Infonetics.

"In the second quarter of 2013, global Ethernet switch sales grew from a seasonally slow first quarter, but not enough to drive year-over-year growth," reports Matthias Machowinski, directing analyst for enterprise networks and video at Infonetics Research.

"North America, the largest region for Ethernet switches, was the bright spot, with revenue jumping 15% sequentially,” continues Machowinski. "However, weak economic conditions persist in EMEA and demand is slowing in China and Japan, tempering overall growth."

Some other highlights:

  • 10G ports recovered after a temporary dip in 1Q13, and are up 39% from the year-ago quarter
  • 40G Ethernet is growing rapidly: On the heels of over 1,000% growth in 2012, 40G port shipments doubled again sequentially in 2Q13
  • The new 100G Ethernet switch segment tripled from the previous quarter, thanks to broader availability of 100G solutions
  • Alcatel-Lucent, Enterasys and Juniper all posted strong (+20%) sequential revenue gains in 2Q13.

Ericsson acquires Airvana's EVDO Business

Ericsson has acquired Airvana Network Solutions' EVDO business. The acquisition resolves a lawsuit filed by Airvana in Februaru 2012 against Ericsson. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Airvana Network Solutions is a Massachusetts-based company and supplier of EVDO software to Ericsson. EVDO software enables data transmission in a CDMA wireless network and is an important part of the CDMA ecosystem. Airvana's approximately 38 EVDO specialists joined Ericsson group.

Ericsson said the acquisition ensures long-term support for its CDMA customers.

Paul Challoner, Vice President, head of CDMA Radio product, says: "Ericsson is committed to CDMA and to its CDMA customers. We recognize that CDMA will continue to be an important technology in the operators' networks. We continue our vertical integration strategy for key CDMA products and further strengthen our control over product portfolio, ensuring long-term support to our customers with the ability to better respond to their requirements."

Telefónica Picks Ericsson for LTE in Madrid and Barcelona

Telefónica has selected Ericsson selected as its LTE vendor for the cities of Madrid and Barcelona, among others. The roll out cover about 1000 nodes in 2013, in order to support Telefonica's goal to take 4G to as many customers as possible already this year. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

GSA: 213 LTE Networks in Commercial Operation

A total of 213 operators have commercially launched LTE services in 81 countries, an increase of 113 networks in the past 12 months, according to Global mobile Suppliers Association (GSA), which now forecasts there will be 260 commercial LTE networks in 93 countries by end 2013.

Some highlights from GSA's new report:

  • 456 operators are investing in LTE in 134 countries. This is made up of 406 firm operator commitments to build LTE networks, 213 have commercially launched networks in 81 countries plus 50 additional operators engaged in various trials, studies, etc.
  • 1,064 LTE user devices have been announced by 111 manufacturers, representing around 150% annual growth.
  • The majority of LTE operators have deployed the FDD mode of the standard.
  • The most widely used band in network deployments continues to be 1800 MHz (band 3) which is used in 43% of commercially launched LTE networks. The next most popular contiguous bands are 2.6 GHz (band 7) used in over 31% of networks, followed by 800 MHz band 20 (over 11%).
  • 21 LTE TDD systems are commercially launched (within the total LTE launch count of 213) and 10 of them have been deployed within combined LTE FDD and TDD networks, which is a growing trend.
  • GSA reported last month that 222 user devices support the TDD mode.
  • There are almost 30 operators who have launched, or are planning enhancements to their networks including support for Category 4, multicarrier operation, and LTE-Advanced features such as carrier aggregation. 

Alan Hadden, President of the GSA, stated: For the first time operators are reporting that they are selling more smartphones than any other device type. Our research confirmed that smartphones are the largest device category for LTE users. Operators need to invest to keep delivering the best mobile broadband experience, and compete.

Vertical Systems: Mid-2013 Global Provider Ethernet Leaderboard

Vertical Systems published its Mid-2013 Global Provider Ethernet Leaderboard, the industry's benchmark for measuring multinational Ethernet network market presence. Global Providers ranked on the Leaderboard hold four percent (4%) or more of retail business Ethernet installations based on billable ports at sites outside of their respective home countries.

The following seven companies were listed: BT Global Services (U.K.), Orange Business (France), Verizon (U.S.), Colt (U.K.), AT&T (U.S.), NTT (Japan) and Level 3 (U.S.).

"The migration of legacy access to Ethernet is in full swing across all regional markets throughout the world," said Rick Malone, principal at Vertical Systems Group. "Providers cited Ethernet access for multinational IP VPNs as the top driver for port growth during this research cycle. BT has taken advantage of this opportunity within its extensive base of global VPNs to attain the top position on our Global Provider Leaderboard."

Other Global Providers offering Ethernet services outside of their home countries have port shares that are below the Leaderboard threshold. These companies are segmented by share into two tiers: the Challenge tier and the Market Player tier.

The Challenge tier companies as of mid-2013 are the following (Note - in alphabetical order): Cogent (U.S.), Reliance Globalcom (India), SingTel (Singapore), Tata Communications (India), T-Systems (Germany) and Vodafone (U.K.). Vodafone achieved a Challenge tier position based on its acquisition of Cable & Wireless Worldwide.

The Market Player tier encompasses all other providers selling retail Ethernet services outside their home countries. Providers in the Market Player tier include the following companies (Note - in alphabetical order): Airtel (India), Bell Canada (Canada), Bezeq (Israel), CAT Telecom (Thailand), CenturyLink (U.S.), China Telecom (China), China Unicom (China), Chunghwa Telecom (Taiwan), Easynet Global Services (U.K.), Eircom (Ireland), Embratel (Brazil), euNetworks (U.K.), Exponential-e (U.K.), Globe (Phillipines), GlobeNet (Brazil), GTS (Poland), GTT (U.S.), Indosat (Indonesia), Interoute (U.K.), KDDI (Japan), Korea Telecom (Korea), KPN International (Netherlands), Masergy (U.S.), O2 (Czech Republic), PCCW Global (Hong Kong), PLDT (Phillipines), Rostelecom (Russia), Softbank Telecom (Japan), StarHub (Singapore), Swisscom (Switzerland), TDC (Denmark), Telecom Italia International (Italy), Telecom New Zealand (New Zealand), Telefonica Worldwide (Spain), Telenor (Norway), TeliaSonera (Sweden), Telkom Indonesia (Indonesia), Telkom South Africa (South Africa), TelMex (Mexico), Telstra (Australia), Telus International (Canada), Time (Malaysia), TM (Malaysia), Vector (New Zealand), Virgin Media Business (U.K.), Zayo Group (U.S.) and others.

Market shares are calculated using the base of enterprise Ethernet services installations, plus input from Vertical's surveys of Ethernet providers throughout the world.

Ericsson Completes Acquisition of Microsoft Mediaroom

Ericsson completed its previously announced acquisition of Microsoft's Mediaroom business and TV solution. The deal, which was first announced in April 2013, makes Ericsson the world's largest, by market share, and the most experienced provider of IPTV middleware technology and solutions.

The Mediaroom IPTV platform holds about a 25% share of the global IPTV market. Mediaroom-powered TV services are offered by nearly 60 of the world's leading operators, delivering services to almost 13 million households, and close to 24 million set top boxes, throughout the world. Customers include AT&T U-verse, Entertain of Deutsche Telekom, Telefonica, TELUS Optik TV and Swisscom.

Per Borgklint, Senior Vice President and Head of Business Unit Support Solutions at Ericsson said: "This acquisition places us even more securely at the heart of an exciting and highly innovative industry. IPTV subscribers alone are predicted to grow by more than 18% each year to reach 105 million subscribers and revenue of USD 45 b. by 2015. By incorporating Mediaroom into our broad portfolio of solutions we will ensure our customers have the ultimate partner as they transform towards true TV Anywhere multi-screen services and optimized video delivery in any network"

Mediaroom is based in Mountain View, California, and is comprised of more than 400 people worldwide. The former Mediaroom business unit, including staff, will be integrated into the Ericsson group under the Business Unit Support Solutions, and will be called Ericsson Mediaroom .

NSN Support LTE-A Launches in Korea

NSN confirmed that is supported the world’s first operators to launch LTE-Advanced commercially:  SK Telecom, LG U+ and Korea Telecom .

The operators have implemented LTE-Advanced carrier aggregation with a software upgrade for Nokia Solutions and Network’s Flexi Multiradio Base Stations.

LTE-Advanced carrier aggregation enables the operators to reach up to 150 Mbps throughput by dynamically combining the resources of the two LTE frequency bands. The carrier aggregation feature doubles the data rates compared to those before the upgrade.

“Our collaboration with SK Telecom, LG U+ and Korea Telecom over the years has given us a deep understanding of one of the world’s most advanced LTE markets. Our innovative approach to carrier aggregation and expertise in delivering superior network performance have enabled the three operators to move ahead with full speed and confidence when launching their LTE-Advanced networks,” said Marc Rouanne, executive vice president, Mobile Broadband at NSN. “We are now witnessing great momentum in LTE adoption worldwide – and we are ready to help operators meet the ever increasing bandwidth demand while taking full advantage of their LTE spectrum.”

Dubai's UAE-IX Cites Rapid Growth in First Year of Operation

UAE-IX, the Dubai-based Internet exchange that opened one year ago, now serves more than 20 networks from the Middle East.

Customers include leading global players and providers from the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and Turkey. Recent new peers include STC and Vodafone Qatar, further increasing the reach of the exchange.

UAE-IX’s customer base now reaches 55% of all eyeballs in the GCC markets. This makes UAE-IX the partner of choice for a wide variety of providers, including access networks, cloud computing players, hosters and content delivery networks (CDNs).

UAE-IX, which is fully operated by DE-CIX, was the first carrier-neutral Internet exchange for the Middle East and is built on a fully redundant switching platform.

“In the past, Internet content destined for the Middle East region was delivered through European Internet hubs,” comments Harald A. Summa, CEO for DE-CIX. “Cloud computing and rich media content drives today’s traffic growth, demanding higher-quality content that is located close to the users to guarantee a great broadband experience. The TRA, the data center operators and UAE-IX together create an attractive environment to drive large content networks to the region, while access providers benefit from lower cost and improved broadband experience for their end-users.”

ADVA Hits Milestone as BT Deploys over 100K FSP 150 Circuits

ADVA Optical Networking announced a significant milestone:  Openreach, the infrastructure division of BT Group, has deployed over 100,000 FSP 150 circuits into its Ethernet Access Direct (EAD) services.  Since its public launch in 2009, EAD services have been widely adopted by enterprises throughout the U.K.

“This milestone represents a significant achievement and is the culmination of many years of determination and effort,” said Mark Logan, director Fibre Products, Openreach.“Our teams have worked closely to ensure we identify and meet the needs of our customers. The ADVA FSP Management Suite interoperates with our Operations Support System (OSS), to ensure we can offer our customers simplicity and zero-touch provisioning.”

“Openreach is a company that's working hard to meet and exceed its customers' expectations” commented Sarah Mendham, account director, ADVA Optical Networking. “Together we've helped to drive Ethernet connectivity across the U.K., and we believe a major cornerstone for this achievement is our FSP Management Suite."

Telefónica Picks Alcatel-Lucent for LTE in Spain

Telefónica has named Alcatel-Lucent as a reference supplier for its 4G LTE network in Spain.

Alcatel-Lucent will deploy some 8,000 4G LTE base stations and the 5620 Service Aware Manager (5620 SAM). Alcatel-Lucent will also deliver installation and turnkey project management services in the initial phase of the project, as well as systems integration, maintenance and configuration optimization

Alcatel-Lucent said this award represents the largest LTE deployment in Western Europe so far.

NSN Supplies LTE for Tele2 Netherlands

Tele2 Netherlands selected Nokia Solutions and Networks to supply a nationwide greenfield radio access network and related services to enable new 4G services.  Tele2 Netherlands holds licenses for the 2600 MHz and 800 MHz frequency bands.

NSN will provide its Single RAN advanced platform, which is based on its Flexi Multiradio 10 Base Station. As well as providing the NSN Radio Access security solution for authentication and data protection, the company will also implement the NetAct network management system to enable consolidated configuration, monitoring and optimization of the operator’s LTE network. Financial terms were not disclosed.

"With the ever increasing demand to deliver high-bandwidth data services any time, anywhere, operators need to evolve their networks to adopt new technologies like LTE,” said Peter Wennerstrom, head of Tele2 global account team at NSN. “We are pleased to be entrusted with this project to help Tele2 build a highly innovative 4G network."

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Intel Targets Hyperscale Data Centers with Atom C2000

Intel launched its second generation, 64-bit Intel Atom C2000 product family aimed at lightweight workloads in hyperscale data centers.

The new Intel Atom C2000, which are the first products based on the company's Silvermont micro-architecture and 22nm Tri-Gate SoC process technology, deliver significant increases in performance and energy efficiency over the previous Atom generation introduced only nine months ago. They also maintain compatibility with the existing software ecosystems.

The Atom C2000 features up to eight cores, a range of 6 to 20 Watts TDP, integrated Ethernet and support for up to 64 GB of memory.  Intel is delivering 13 specific models with customized features and accelerators that are optimized for particular lightweight workloads such as entry dedicated hosting, distributed memory caching, static web serving and content delivery. The company said this level of silicon customization enables it to expand into new markets like cold storage and entry-level networking.

The new Intel Atom configurations also offer hardware accelerators, called Intel QuickAssist Technology, that improve cryptographic performance in applications such as routers and security appliances.

Intel said that by consolidating three communications workloads – application, control and packet processing – on a common platform, a great deal of flexibility can be achieved. The Intel Atom C2000 product family, which is now shipping, has more than 50 design wins to date.

At a press event in San Francisco, Intel also introduced a new MXC silicon photonics connector that uses Corning ClearCurve optical fiber to provide rack interconnections at 1.6 Tbps at up to 300 meters.

Intel also introduced the Intel Ethernet Switch FM5224 silicon which, when can be combined with the WindRiver Open Network Software suite, enables Software Defined Networking (SDN) capabilities. Specifically, the Intel Ethernet Switch FM5224 silicon and the WindRiver software can be combined to create a 2.5 GbE, high-density, low latency, SDN Ethernet switch for microservers.  Switches using the new Intel Ethernet Switch FM5224 silicon can connect up to 64 microservers, providing up to 30 percent higher node density.

"As the world becomes more and more mobile, the pressure to support billions of devices and users is changing the very composition of datacenters," said Diane Bryant, senior vice president and general manager of the Datacenter and Connected Systems Group at Intel. "From leadership in silicon and SoC design to rack architecture and software enabling, Intel is providing the key innovations that original equipment manufacturers, telecommunications equipment makers and cloud service providers require to build the datacenters of the future."

At the press event, Ericsson confirmed that it plans to use the Atom C2000 in cloud infrastructure solutions.

Microsoft and Intel alco announced a collaboration to innovate on Microsoft's next-generation RSA rack design. The goal is to bring even better utilization, economics and flexibility to Microsoft's data centers.

In July, Intel also outlined its roadmap for products based on its forthcoming 14nm process technology, which is scheduled for 2014 and beyond. These products, which are aimed at microservers, storage and network devices, will include the next generation of Intel Xeon processors E3 family (codenamed "Broadwell").  It also includes the next generation of Intel Atom processor SoCs (codenamed "Denverton").

Inside the data center, Intel's Rack Scale Architecture (RSA) promises to dramatically increase the utilization and flexibility of the datacenter by moving to pooled compute, memory and I/O resources in a rack. These resources will have shared power, cooling and rack management software.  Optical interconnects could be used a "rack fabric" uniting all these resources. Each component would be modular, enabling easy upgrade paths for compute, memory or I/O components.  Rackspace Hosting is already deploying server racks based on this RSA vision.  Rackspace is also a big backer of OpenStack.

In April 2013, Intel introduced its Open Network Platform Switch Reference Design, previously codenamed "Seacliff Trail," is based on scalable Intel processors, Intel Ethernet Switch 6700 series and the Intel Communications Chipset 89xx series.  It will include Wind River Open Network Software (ONS), an open and fully customizable network switching software stack using Wind River Linux. Wind River ONS allows for key networking capabilities such as advanced tunneling as well as modular, open control plane and management interface supporting SDN standards such as OpenFlow and Open vSwitch. Common, open programming interfaces allow for automated network management, and coordination between the server switching elements and network switches enabling more cost-effective, secure, efficient and extensible services. three platforms for software defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV):

EMC Delivers Performance Boost, Cloud Scalability and Software-Defined Capabilities

EMC Corporation unveiled significant technology advances in its VNX line of midrange storage, new capabilities for its VSPEX reference architecture, the upcoming general availability of ViPR – a new Software-Defined Storage platform, a preview of "Project Nile" – which EMC expects to be the world's first commercially-available, Web-scale storage infrastructure for the data center.

"Customers are demanding more performance and efficiency from their current data center infrastructure while, at the same time, deploying new architectures for their next generation mobile and Web applications. By fully embracing and exploiting disruptive technologies such as Intel MultiCore, virtualization and flash, EMC is providing customers with the products and solutions they need to help transform their IT department," stated EMC President and Chief Operating Officer, David Goulden.

Some highlights:

The new range of VNX unified, mid-range storage systems leverages the power of flash, accelerating application and file performance by up to 4X. The new platform also delivers unprecedented price/performance—one-third the price for the same performance of the previous generation.

All EMC VSPEX reference architectures are now powered by the new VNX Series—delivering 2X more virtual machines at the same prices. 

The ViPR Software-Defined Storage Platform is planned to be generally available later this month. ViPR is scheduled to include both the ViPR Controller and ViPR Object Data Services. ViPR Object Data Services gives customers the ability to view objects as files, providing file access performance without the latency inherent in current object storage models.

Project Nile aims to give IT departments or Service Providers the ability to deliver easily consumable storage services, similar to those offered by the Web scale Public Cloud providers, but with the control security and reliability of a Private Cloud. Project Nile is intended to support multiple standard APIs including Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3), OpenStack Swift, HDFS and EMC Atmos.