Monday, December 2, 2013

NTT Com Launches WideAngle Security Service

NTT Com Security (formerly Integralis) introduced its next generation Managed Security Services (MSS) for global enterprises.

The enhanced MSS, which is available under the company’s single global brand, WideAngle, is capable of analysing vast amounts of disparate data and distilling it into actionable information that enables businesses to manage increasingly diverse threats and make informed risk management decisions.

The new service has three key building blocks – device management, automated analysis and security enrichment – and is delivered by NTT Com Security experts through its Global Risk Operations Centres (GROC).  The 24/7 service is available in five different service levels.

Andrew Lev, Chief Product Officer, NTT Com Security, stated: "Companies are operating in a new, and disruptive, computing environment.  At the same time the security threats they face are becoming ever more sophisticated. We have built on our expertise and heritage to create a portfolio of services that empower organisations to proactively manage risk in this new landscape. Embedding the knowledge that comes from our global data centre network gives organisations a unique and comprehensive view into the developing threat landscape as it happens.  Our ability to proactively remediate those vulnerabilities in a customer as well as in cloud and hybrid environment is vital for delivering the next generation of information security risk management."

Akira Arima, CEO, NTT Communications, added: "The ongoing expansion of NTT Com Security's Managed Security Services offering demonstrates the power of leveraging group-wide global skills and capabilities.  Most importantly it shows how by working together, companies within the group can develop and bring to market dynamic services that address customers’ security risks and challenges.  We are very positive about the capability of WideAngle MSS and are working to ensure that, as a group, it is part of everything we do."

  • NTT Communications acquired Integralis AG in 2009 for its IT security expertise.

T-Systems Unifies onto Dynamic Cloud Platform with Cisco

Deutsche Telekom's T-Systems will operate all cloud solutions on a single Dynamic Cloud Platform (DCP), which it plans to launch shortly. The unified platform, which will begin operations in Munich, will support all of the company's cloud offers, including Infrastructure as a Service, Collaboration as a Service and Software as a Service.

T-Systems' Dynamic Cloud Platform (DCP) was developed by Cisco.  The DCP is fully IPv6-capable and features redundant 10GbE fiber connections between all components with quality of service for data prioritization. All DCP locations are constructed according to the twin core principle, which ensures that backups are always stored in a second data center.

The Dynamic Cloud Platform promises to reduce operating expenses for T-System thanks to standardization.  Automated processes will make it easier to launch new services within a few hours or days

T-Systems said it will work closely with customers to gradually migrate systems that were spread over multiple cloud platforms to the new environment.  T-Systems plans to roll out the platform to its data center in Houston (USA) later this year, followed by Frankfurt. If demand rises Magdeburg (Germany) will be next, as well as a data center in the Asia-Pacific region.

"Converting to other systems is generally burdensome and generates high costs and downtime. Thanks to the Dynamic Cloud Platform, this will no longer be a problem for growing customers who need more capacity," says Ferri Abolhassan, Director of Production and Board member at T-Systems. "Customers can combine cloud services flexibly and use them as needed. This means better service and more comfort for the more than 12,000 different customer landscapes that can now be operated in one data center."

Akamai to Acquire Prolexic for Cloud-based DDoS Control

Akamai agreed to acquire Prolexic, a start-up based in Hollywood, Florida, for a net cash payment of approximately $370 million.

Prolexic offers a FIPS 140-2 SSL/TLS Layer 7 DDoS detection, monitoring and analysis solution for protecting data centers and enterprise IP applications from attacks.  Prolexic operates a DDoS "scrubbing center" in Ashburn, Virginia and San Jose, California as well as other facilities in London and Hong Kong.  The company says its solution was used to mitigate the largest Gbps attack faced to date (167 Gbps), as well as the world’s most powerful attack campaign (144 million packets per second). Its customers include some of the world’s largest banks and the leading companies in e-Commerce, SaaS, payment processing, travel/hospitality, gaming, energy and other at-risk industries. The company has previously disclosed global partnerships with HP, Level 3, BT, NTT and Datacraft.

"By joining forces with Prolexic, we intend to combine Akamai’s leading security and performance platform with Prolexic’s highly-regarded DDoS mitigation solutions for data center and enterprise applications protection. We believe that Prolexic’s solutions and team will help us achieve our goal of making the Internet fast, reliable, and secure," stated Tom Leighton, CEO of Akamai.

  • In July 2013, Prolexic closed a US$30 million Series C funding round led by new investors Trident Capital and Intel Capital. Prolexic’s existing shareholders include Kennet Partners, Camden Partners and Medina Capital.  The company said it planned to use the new funding to expand its worldwide scrubbing center footprint, increasing the capacity of its cloud-based DDoS mitigation platform beyond 1 Tbps, and to develop new cloud-based security services. 
  • Prolexic is headed by Scott Hammack, who previously served as CEO of e-dmz, which was acquired by Quest Software in 2011. Previously, he has served as CEO of Cyberguard Corporation, which was acquired by Secure Computing in 2004, and CEO of MasterChart, Inc., which was purchased by Allscripts in 2001.
  • Prolexic was founded in 2003.

AMS-IX New York Signs Netflix as First Customer

The Amsterdam Internet Exchange (AMS-IX) announced that Netflix is the first customer for AMS-IX New York.  Netflix established a peeringconnection at AMS-IX in Amsterdam earlier this year.

AMS-IX USA recently reached agreements with Digital Realty, DuPont Fabros Technology, Sabey Data Centers and 325 Hudson to operate and build an Open-IX Internet Exchange in the New York/New Jersey area. AMS-IX also has plans to deploy its distributed Internet Exchanges in the Chicago and Silicon Valley markets, which are currently planned to go live in respectively the first and second quarter of 2014.

Mavenir Releases Software-based SBC for VoLTE

Mavenir Systems released a software-based Session Border Controller (SBC) for delivering Voice over LTE (VoLTE) and Rich Communication Services (RCS) services.

The company said its SBC provides the full suite of standards-defined wireless functions needed to launch VoLTE and RCS services. The software-based, carrier grade solution can be deployed on cloud-based infrastructures using Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) and Software Defined Network (SDN) technologies, and its architecture provides the flexibility needed to adapt to the varied traffic models that these IP-based services impose on mobile operator networks. It can be deployed for either Access or Interconnect SBC use cases, with full support for VoLTE and RCS deployments.

“We believe that as VoLTE and RCS services are launched and carriers start peering at the IP layer, the demand will increase and traffic will grow,” said Pardeep Kohli, President and Chief Executive Officer, Mavenir Systems. “Our next generation SBC is built for wireless services and mobility, and is basically redefining Border Control.”

University of Florida Deploys Brocade 100 GbE Core Routers

The University of Florida is deploying Brocade MLXe Core Routers with 100 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) blades and Brocade ICX Switches in its core network connecting the institution's HiPerGator supercomputer and external research networks, such as Internet2. In the newly opened data center, the University of Florida consolidated three primary Campus Research Network (CRN) sites to two, resulting in a 200 GbE triangle configuration connection between the two sites and the gateway to Internet2.

"All high-energy physics researchers in the southeast United States use the University of Florida's network as a resource and all of the data flows through Brocade routers," said Erik Deumens, Ph.D., Director of Research Computing at the University of Florida. "The 100 GbE Brocade MLXe routers enable us to keep up with demands and are also what the campus needed to develop a clear technology roadmap supportive of software-defined networking (SDN)."

In addition to the 100 GbE network, the University of Florida is participating in an early field trial of the recently announced Brocade MLXe 40 GbE module and connecting the Brocade MLXe Core Routers with high-density Brocade ICX 6650 Switches that provide 40/10 GbE performance. Brocade said the resulting solution positions the university as a leading example of a campus deploying an SDN-ready 100 GbE network core with 40 GbE connectivity to the aggregation layer.

Orange Business Services Opens Integration Center in Florida

Orange Business Services has opened its first U.S.-based integration and briefing center in Clearwater, Florida.

The facility, a joint investment between Orange and top technology partners, contains state-of-the-art equipment to demonstrate the latest in cloud computing, unified communications and collaboration, mobility, network and application optimization, infrastructure management services and customized implementations.  It offers multi-platform integration, allowing enterprises to mix and match technologies from different vendors to ensure compatibility before choosing a migration strategy. It promotes faster implementations and gives customers the confidence to experiment with new innovations. The facility houses an on-site data center, labs where customer conditions and migration strategies can be simulated, and a site-to-site VPN for connecting remote locations to the testing process.
“Previewing tailored solutions at our integration and briefing center helps assure companies that new IT innovations can be implemented successfully,” said Diana Einterz, senior vice president of the Americas and French Major Accounts, Orange Business Services. “Upgrading an IT infrastructure, especially one containing a mix of different technologies and vendors, has always carried a certain amount of risk. ‘How effective is this new piece of technology? Will this work with that? Will I face higher costs or down times if I proceed?’ At Orange’s integration and briefing center, we can help our customers with their migration strategies, while they can test drive their solutions in a safe environment to make sure they are a good fit.”

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Comcast: World's Largest, Native IPv6 Deployment

Comcast’s Xfinity Internet native IPv6 deployment is the world’s largest IPv6 deployment, as measured by the Internet Society’s World IPv6 Launch Measurements.

The company recently launched IPv6 support for the ARRIS Touchstone Telephony Wireless Gateway Modem (TG852G and TG862G) that brought IPv6 to over four million customers.

Currently, over 25% of Comcast’s Xfinity Internet customers are actively provisioned with native dual stack broadband Internet service.  Native IPv6 support has been deployed to over 75% of our broadband network.  Comcast aims for 100% in early 2014.

Comcast said its number one ranking is not only a measurement of the percentage of network equipment that is enabled for native IPv6, but more importantly the number of people actively using native IPv6 on a day to day basis.

Intel Prepares for Tablet War with Sub-$100 Pricing

by: James E. Carroll
Look for a new crop of 7" and 8" tablets powered by Intel processors with value pricing of under $100. These will be the opening salvos of what Intel expects will be a big battle for the tablet market in 2014.

During the course of 2013, Intel established its first footprint in the tablet market with a design win in a Samsung Galaxy device, said company CEO Brian Krzanich during an investor meeting in Santa Clara, California. For 2014, Intel will "invest to scale" with a goal of increasing shipments by 4X to more than 40 million Intel-based tablets sold.

Because the tablet market has grown up without Intel, the company's first objective has been to convince the ecosystem that it is serious about this space. In some cases, Intel has now made long-term agreements with OEMs to convince them of its determination.

The plan calls for a performance segmentation strategy, support for Android and Windows, integrating McAfee security into the offering and introducing "Perceptual Computing" capabilities driven by multiple sensors in each device.

Last week, Taiwan-based DigiTimes reported that Intel may be ready to offer US$1 billion in market subsidies to help major OEMs make the transition to its Bay Trail processors.  Per unit cost of the Intel processors is said to be around US$20, although the DigiTimes report suggests even lower prices for large brand vendors.

Sub-$100 Tablets

At the low-end, Black Friday sales in the United States included new tablets from Dell, HP and others based on Intel's current dual-core and quad-core "Medfield" Atom processors.  The company will span from upper end devices (above $450) to entry level devices (under $100) good for browsing the Web.

For example, Walmart is offering the HP Mesquite for $89.  At Costco, the Dell Venue 8 tablet is available for anyone buying a regular PC for $599 or more.  The same Dell Venue 8 tablet is expected to be available directly from Dell for $129.

Beyond driving prices lower, Intel is seeking to takes its innovations for the PCs down into the tablet market. The first step in this direction is to scale Android for 64-bit, which will allow larger memories and enable enterprise applications.  The first 64-bit Bay Trail Atom tablets are expected in 2014, beginning with Windows.

Broxton and SoFIA Mobility Chipsets for Tablets

Intel's LTE chipsets will also make their way into tablet designs.  By mid-2015, Intel plans to introduce a next generation Atom processor called "Broxton" for high-end smartphones and tables. Broxton will feature a core chassis that can be rapidly modified for integration with other intellectual property blocks.  The will enable Intel to rapidly rollout multiple iterations of the Broxton processor for OEM customers, much like how ARM has been able to create many customized versions of its cores.

Taking the same pragmatic market approach, Intel is also planning to introduce SoFIA entry-level, mobile broadband processor based on technology from its acquisition of Infineon Wireless.  The plan is to replace the ARM core with an IA design but to keep using the outside foundry for the first 3G device and later an LTE device. Eventually, SoFIA will move to an Intel foundry using 14nm.

SK Telecom Demos LTE-A Carrier Aggregation of 1.8GHz + 800MHz Bands

SK Telecom has demonstrated downlink speeds of 225 Mbps by using LTE-Advanced Carrier Aggregation to combine 20MHz bandwidth in 1.8GHz band and 10MHz bandwidth in 800MHz band. For comparison, the carrier's regular LTE service delivers a maximum of 150Mbps of speeds using 20MHz of continuous spectrum in one band.

SK Telecom said its planned upgrade to LTE-Advanced (20MHz+10MHz) will enable mobile customers to download an 800MB movie in just 28 seconds, significantly faster than other networks. Measured at their maximum speeds, downloading the same movie file via 3G, LTE, and the existing LTE-Advanced (10MHz+10MHz) would take 7 minutes and 24 seconds, 1 minute and 25 seconds, and 43 seconds, respectively.

The company said that it expects to launch the ‘20MHz+10MHz’ LTE-Advanced service nationwide through smartphones in the second half of 2014, pending release of LTE-Advanced smartphone chipsets.

SK Telecom is also working on aggregating three component carriers (20MHz+10MHz+10MHz) to support up to 300Mbps.

Alex Jinsung Choi, Executive Vice President and Head of ICT R&D Division at SK Telecom said, “SK Telecom has been leading the development of wireless networks since it commercialized CDMA (2G) technology for the world’s first time in 1996. Today’s successful demonstration of 225 Mbps LTE-Advanced will serve as a momentum for SK Telecom to realize more innovative network technologies, which will also lead to the growth of relevant industries, including device, content and convergence fields.”

  • In June 2013, SK Telecom launched the world's first LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) service through smartphones. The LTE-A service offers download speeds of up to 150 Mbps, which is two times faster than its regular LTE service, and 10 times faster than its 3G network. LTE-A coverage initially is available in Seoul and central city areas of Gyeongg-do and Chungcheong-do.  Expansion to 84 cities nationwide is planned. At top speed, SK Telecom's LTE-A users can download an 800MB movie in just 43 seconds. The LTE-A implementation leverages several advanced mobile network technologies including Carrier Aggregation (CA) and Coordinated Multi Point (CoMP). SK Telecom plans to implement Enhanced Inter-Cell Interference Coordination (eICIC) in 2014.
    CA supports up to 150 Mbps speed by combining two 10 MHz components carriers to form an effective bandwidth of 20 MHz. The company said further advancements should yield rates up to 300Mbps speed by aggregating two 20MHz component carriers by 2015, and become capable of combining three component carriers by 2016. An uplink capability using carrier aggregation should also be possible by 2016.  The current CA standards allow for up to five 20 MHz carriers to be aggregated.
  • In August 2013, SK Telecom gained authorization to operate 35 MHz bandwidth (20 downlink + 15 uplink) in 1.8GHz band, and immediately launched diverse measures to strengthen both its LTE and LTE-Advanced services by utilizing the newly acquired bandwidth.

Vivendi Confirms Plans to Spinoff SFR

Vivendi Group confirmed plans to proceed with a demerger under which shares in its SFR subsidiary will be distributed to Vivendi shareholders.  This will give Vivendi shareholders the opportunity to invest in two separate vehicles listed on the stock market and valued according to the specifics of their respective sectors.

Vivendi is an international media group, bringing together strong brands in the production and distribution of original content.

SFR is a French telecommunications operator delivering mobile, landline, internet, IP television and mobile internet to consumers and businesses.

  • Vodafone sold its 44% share in SFR to Vivendi in 2011.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

BT Looks for Growth in Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Africa

BT will hire 400 new employees to focus on regional business growth in key markets, including Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Turkey. These new employees are in additional to the 600 positions announced earlier this year for BT’s Global Development Centre in Bangalore and to the c.600 hires expected for BT’s new Global Shared Service facility in Kuala Lumpur announced in April.

BT also confirmed the activation of five new IP and Ethernet Points of Presence starting with India and Turkey, four Network-to-Network Interfaces (NNIs) with the first in Indonesia, and an enhanced satellite capability to support remote coverage and disaster recovery.

TeliaSonera Dismisses Execs over Eurasian Deals

TeliaSonera announced the dismissal of four individuals because of irregularities in transactions and agreements made by TeliaSonera and partners in Eurasia over the past few years.  The company had retained the international law firm Norton Rose Fulbright LLP to conduct a review of the deals.

“The Board’s conclusion is that some senior employees no longer have the trust of the Board. Therefore they have been notified that their employment with TeliaSonera will be terminated and they will leave their position effective immediately. It is not the Board’s task to assess the legal aspects, but we have decided to hand over the material from the Norton Rose Fulbright review to the Prosecutor’s office as part of our continuous dialogue,” stated Marie Ehrling, Chairman of the TeliaSonera Board.

Separately, the company announced that Christian Luiga, currently Head of CEO Office, will assume the position as acting Chief Financial Officer, replacing Per-Arne Blomquist who will leave his position effective immediately.

  • In February 2013, Lars Nyberg resigned as President and CEO of TeliaSonera following an outside review of  Mannheimer Swartling regarding illegal business practices by the firm in Uzbekistan.  While the review did not find evidence that TeliaSonera engaged in bribery or participated in money laundering, it did criticize TeliaSonera for not vetting its investment partners in Uzbekistan. At the time, TeliaSonera's Board of Directors appointed Per-Arne Blomquist as acting President and CEO.

  • In October 2012, TeliaSonera's Board of Directors hired the law firm Mannheimer Swartling to investigate whether TeliaSonera's investment in a 3G license, frequencies and number blocks in Uzbekistan in 2007 involved corruption or money laundering. Later, the investigation was expanded to include more recent investments in connection with TeliaSonera's operations in Uzbekistan.

Orange to Sell Subsidiary in Dominican Republic for EUR 1.1 Billion

The Orange Group will sell 100% of Orange Dominicana S.A., its  subsidiary in the Dominican Republic, to Altice for US$1.435 billion (EUR 1.1 billion).

Orange Dominicana was established in 2000 and is now a leading telecommunication operator in the Dominican Republic, one of the largest and most dynamic economies in the Caribbean with an estimated population over 10 million. The company posted revenues of DOP 22.8 billion (EUR 451 million) in 2012 and had 3.4 million subscribers at the end of September 2013. The company employs approximately 1,400 people.

Altice is a multinational cable and telecommunications company with presence in six countries—Israel, Belgium, Luxembourg, the French Overseas Territories of Guadeloupe and Martinique, Portugal and Switzerland.

The deal requires regulatory approval in the Dominican Republic.

Orange said this sale represents a significant step forward in the optimization of its assets portfolio.

DOCOMO Offers LTE Roaming for KT

NTT DOCOMO will offer LTE roaming to subscribers of Korean mobile operator KT Corporation when they travel in Japan.  DOCOMO said it plans to partner with other overseas mobile operators to offer LTE international roaming services, including for DOCOMO users traveling outside of Japan.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

GSA: Mobile Broadband Subscriptions Top 2 Billion

Global mobile broadband subscriptions have passed the 2 billion milestone, according to newly published statistics from GSA.

There were 126.1 million LTE subscriptions (Q2 2013) and this figure was expected to have topped 150 million by the end of September 2013.
There are currently 222 commercially launched LTE networks in 83 countries, rising to 260 commercial LTE networks by the end of the year.

Some other numbers from the report:

  • 23 commercially launched TD-LTE networks in 18 countries, of which 11 are dual mode FDD + TDD systems.  More trials are underway.  There are 274 LTE TDD devices on the market.
  • LTE-Advanced is a commercial reality already with several networks in South Korea using carrier aggregation.
  • The first wave of VoLTE service launches that include support for HD voice (using W-AMR) has begun. Many operators have committed to VoLTE deployments or trials in 2013-2014 including KT, LG U+, SK Telecom, Evolve Broadband, T Mobile Austria, Azercell, Sasktel, China Mobile, E Plus, O2 DE, CSL Limited, Bharti Airtel, RIL, NTT DoCoMo, Tele2 NL, Yota, StarHub, Telekom Slovenije, Tele2 SE, Etisalat UAE, AT&T, C-Spire, MetroPCS, US Cellular, Sprint, Verizon Wireless.
  • 55% of phones sold in Q3 2013 were smartphones, compared to 50% in Q1 2013.
  • 80% growth in data traffic between Q3 2012 and Q3 2013 driven mainly by video. 

The full report is online.

CloudEthernet Forum Sets Five Priorities

The CloudEthernet Forum (CEF) has identified five key priorities to drive its work:
  • Virtualization – VMWare, Citrix and Microsoft are all working to extend their platforms to encompass network virtualization, and network service providers need to manage both the end to end transport of storage and virtual machines, and network virtualisation tunnels. How to make sure that a unified management layer can be rolled out across a network, and meet the deterministic performance requirements of cloud traffic? The role of Network Function Virtualization (NFV) in this process is also considered.
  • Automation – automated creation and deployment of VMs is evolving quickly. Storage can be established in seconds, but network automation lags far behind. Vendor independent protocols and standards are needed to accelerate network automation and delivery and creation of services, particulary across multiple service providers – such as in a hybrid cloud environment.
  • Security – the cloud is well established as a principle, data has become highly mobile, but regulatory and privacy laws must be complied with. For the cloud to remain on its growth path it needs robust structures to ensure end to end security. The industry also needs to formulate guidelines to inform the security decisions made by governments and regulators.
  • Programmability – most routers and switches can be programmed by their makers, but few are open to third party APIs. A number of groups – including ETSI and the ONF– are working on this within the domain of a single customer, but coordination is needed around the specific needs of cloud computing, and inter-provider service continuity.
  • Analytics –  A continuous exchange of information between the network and the cloud service providers on network and application service performance and requirements is needed, followed by real-time analysis of whether additional resources, either from the cloud or the network service provider, are required.

Working groups are already being established by the CEF to address specific concerns, and members can get involved in shaping the future of the cloud computing.

“Networks are seeing a number of major transitions under the pressure of mobility and the move to cloud services,” said James Walker, President, CloudEthernet Forum (CEF). “Now the explosion in machine to machine (M2M) communications promises the fastest growth ever in connected devices, with 73% of devices being mobile or M2M by 2017. Unless the industry – vendors, service providers and OTT providers included – really work together to define global standards and address these challenges, then cloud computing could fall victim to its own success.”

Dell'Oro: Wireless Packet Core Revenue up 17% YoY

The overall Wireless Packet Core market grew more than 17% during the third quarter of 2013 versus the year-ago period, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group.

Huawei, Ericsson, Cisco and Nokia Solutions and Networks were the top revenue-producing vendors in the overall market.  In the faster-growing Evolved Packet Core (EPC) segment, Alcatel-Lucent joined Ericsson and Huawei in the top three vendor list.

Dell'Oro said the Evolved Packet Core (EPC) market is changing in three ways:

  • Regions outside the North American LTE market are now driving EPC results, allowing a larger set of vendors to compete in the worldwide market.  We expect EPC spending to accelerate in Europe and in China in coming quarters.
  • New Network Function Virtualization (NFV) technology furnished by leading vendors is now being trialed by operators.  We expect that in 2014 and beyond, operators will begin deploying NFV EPC systems.
  • Additional services are being added along with EPC core networks, including Voice over LTE (VoLTE) and Rich Communication Services (RCS).  These new systems will create additional vendor decisions for Service Providers as their networks are enhanced.

“Network Function Virtualization (NFV) means vendors can sell software-only telecom core network systems,” explained Chris DePuy, Vice President of Wireless Packet Core Research at Dell’Oro Group. “These new systems will run on top of data center-class servers, effectively matching the features and performance of systems that were previously available as hardware-based systems.”

See also