Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Seagate Unveils Kinetic Platform Tools for Open Compute Project

Seagate Technology introduced two development tools related to its Kinetic Open Storage platform and designed for the Open Compute Project.

The Seagate Kinetic Ethernet Drive interface and the Seagate Kinetic T-Card development adapter have been accepted by the Open Compute Foundation as important open standards available to Open Compute Project (OCP) solution providers and system builders.

The Seagate Kinetic Ethernet Drive interface enables solution providers to transition existing SAS or SATA based chassis designs to systems by replacing conventional HDD SATA or SAS backplanes with Ethernet backplanes.

The Seagate Kinetic T-Card development adapter enables software developers to write and pre-test applications by communicating over the connectors to Kinetic Open Storage hard drives. Both specifications are designed to conform to the dimensions, specifications, power signal assignments, and physical placement of industry standard SAS drives.

“Seagate is committed to driving open source innovation and empowering an active ecosystem of system builders and software developers with the tools they need to deploy cutting-edge storage solutions and drive this truly revolutionary platform,” said Mark Re, Seagate’s chief technology officer. “A true game changer, the Kinetic Open Storage platform will provide this community with the ability to deliver innovative, first-of-their-kind, scale-out storage architectures at the industry’s lowest total cost of ownership.”

Announced in 2013, the Seagate Kinetic Open Storage platform is a device-based open source platform that leverages a traditional hard disk drive assembly, the key/value API, and Ethernet connectivity to enable greater performance, scale, simplicity and a lower TCO for scale-out storage architectures.

http://developers.seagate.com
http://seagate.com/www/kinetic

GENBAND Delivers WebRTC Unified Communications with Generation Enterprise

GENBAND introduced a unified communications suite (voice, HD video, collaboration) that leverages enterprise cloud technologies to deliver secure connections across multiple devices (tablets, smartphones, desk phones, PCs) and networks (wired and wireless, private and public, TDM and IP).

The GENBAND Generation Enterprise leverages the company's WebRTC-enabled UC platform, SMART OFFICE 2.0, and offers software-based deployment options for enterprises, governments and universities, whether on premise, in the cloud, or as a hybrid or hosted solution. The result is a premium, WebRTC-enabled UC client that lets business users communicate via their preferred device.

The end-to-end solution is powered by GENBAND’s carrier-class EXPERiUS Application Server platform; the QUANTiX portfolio, which offers advanced security, session management and policy control technologies and includes the industry’s most scalable session border controller; the high-density CONTiNUUM gateway family; and NUViA cloud solutions.

“We designed Generation Enterprise to meet the productivity, ease-of-use and collaboration requirements in an increasingly mobile-driven communications economy,” said David Walsh, CEO of GENBAND. “Generation Enterprise addresses communications challenges facing many of the world’s largest and most vital organizations by enabling cost-effective, non-disruptive migration of legacy enterprise voice systems to IP. For our channel and service provider partners, Generation Enterprise enables a rapid go-to-market approach for breakthrough standards like WebRTC with value-added, over-the-Internet applications that are ideal for today’s highly mobile workforce.”

Generation Enterprise also offers a rich set of APIs for vertical market customization. GENBAND’s SPiDR WebRTC Gateway provides an intelligent bridge between traditional VoIP networks and the open ecosystem of the Internet, leveraging real-time embedded communications.

GENBAND, which owns Nortel's PBX enterprise intellectual property, noted that many companies around the globe need to transition from legacy voice system to modern UC systems without totally replacing the existing infrastructure or giving up PSTN-like service, quality and reliability.

http://www.genband.com

Range Networks Appoints Ed Kozel as CEO -- Open Source Mobile

Range Networks, a start-up developing open source cellular systems, appointed Edward Kozel as its new CEO.

Kozel spent 12 years at Cisco Systems, where he served as chief technology officer, senior vice president of business development and as a board member. Most recently Kozel was chief technology and innovation officer with Deutsche Telekom in Germany.

Range Networks, which was founded by the creators of OpenBTS, uses open source software to present ordinary cellular handsets as SIP endpoints in a VoIP system. All are designed to work as a single-site network or as part of a multi-site network.  The company already has a number or deployments around the world  – including Indonesia, Zambia and Antarctica.

Range Networks also noted that it raised $10 million in funding last year and doubled its employee headcount.  The company is based in San Francisco.

"We believe that in the not-too-distant future mobile networks will look entirely different than they do today. Software-defined mobile infrastructure providing end-to-end IP transport, combined with the power of the open source model, will transform the industry. We look forward to continuing to support these initiatives and demonstrating the strength of open source systems throughout 2014 and beyond," stated Edward Kozel, CEO of Range Networks.

http://www.rangenetworks.com

AT&T: Smartphone Penetration at 77% of Postpaid Base

AT&T reported Q4 2013 consolidated revenues of $33.2 billion, up 1.8 percent versus the year-earlier period.  Q4 net income totaled $6.9 billion, or $1.31 per diluted share, compared to $(3.9) billion, or $(0.68) per diluted share, in the year-earlier quarter. Adjusting special items, earnings per share was $0.53 compared to an adjusted $0.44 in the year-ago quarter, an increase of 20.5 percent.

AT&T said it is on track to deliver the financial targets laid out with Project VIP. It expects consolidated revenue growth in the 2 to 3 percent range for 2014, including strength in wireless service and wireline consumer revenues. The company also expects stable consolidated margins with continued improvement in wireless margins helping offset Project VIP pressure in wireline. Adjusted earnings per share growth is expected to be in the mid-single digit range excluding any impact from future share buybacks.

AT&T expects capital expenditures in the $21 billion range. Free cash flow is expected to be in the $11 billion range.

Some Wireless Operational Highlights

Wireless Service Revenues -- total wireless revenues, which include equipment sales, were up 4.5 percent year over year to $18.4 billion. Wireless service revenues increased 4.8 percent in the fourth quarter to $15.7 billion. Wireless data revenues increased 16.8 percent from the year-earlier quarter to $5.7 billion. Fourth-quarter wireless operating expenses totaled $14.5 billion, down 3.9 percent versus the year-earlier quarter, and wireless operating income was $3.9 billion, up 53.8 percent year over year.

Phone-Only Postpaid ARPU -- Postpaid phone-only ARPU increased 3.9 percent versus the year-earlier quarter. Total postpaid subscriber ARPU, which includes high-margin but lower-ARPU tablets, increased 2.1 percent versus the year-earlier quarter. This marked the 20th consecutive quarter AT&T has posted a year-over-year increase in postpaid ARPU. Postpaid data ARPU increased 15.4 percent versus the year-earlier quarter.

Smartphones and Tablets -- AT&T posted a net increase in total wireless subscribers of 809,000 in the fourth quarter. Subscriber additions for the quarter included postpaid net adds of 566,000. Postpaid net adds include 299,000 smartphones. Total branded smartphone net adds (both postpaid and prepaid) were 529,000. Total branded tablet net adds were 440,000.

Connected device net adds were 398,000 -- Prepaid had a net loss of 32,000 subscribers primarily due to declines in session-based tablets; however, prepaid revenues increased both year over year and sequentially. Reseller had a net loss of 123,000 subscribers primarily due to losses in low-revenue 2G subscriber accounts.

Q4 Postpaid Churn -- The company had its lowest-ever fourth-quarter postpaid churn of 1.11 percent compared to 1.19 percent in the year-ago quarter. Total churn was stable at 1.43 percent versus 1.42 percent in the year-ago quarter.

Smartphones Reach Record 93 Percent of Phone Sales -- AT&T added 1.2 million postpaid smartphones in the fourth quarter. At the end of the quarter, 77 percent, or 51.9 million, of AT&T's postpaid phone subscribers had smartphones, up from 70 percent, or 47.1 million, a year earlier. The company sold 7.9 million smartphones in the quarter. More than 1 million of those smartphone sales were on the new AT&T Next program. Smartphones accounted for a record 93 percent of postpaid phone sales in the quarter. AT&T's ARPU for smartphones is twice that of non-smartphone subscribers. More than half of AT&T's postpaid smartphone customers now use an LTE device, and 77 percent use a 4G-capable device (LTE/HSPA+).

Some Wireline Operational Highlights

Wireline Revenues -- Total Q4 wireline revenues were $14.7 billion, down 1.4 percent versus the year-earlier quarter and up 0.3 percent sequentially. Wireline service revenues were down 0.7 percent year over year. Total U-verse revenues grew 27.9 percent year over year and were up 7.0 percent versus the third quarter of 2013. Fourth-quarter wireline operating expenses were $13.3 billion, up 1.0 percent versus the fourth quarter of 2012. AT&T's wireline operating income totaled $1.5 billion, down 18.8 percent versus the fourth quarter of 2012. Fourth-quarter wireline operating income margin was 9.9 percent, down versus 12.0 percent in the year-earlier quarter, primarily due to declines in voice revenues, success-based growth, U-verse content costs and costs incurred as part of Project VIP.

Consumer Revenues Increase 2.9 Percent -- Revenues from residential customers totaled $5.6 billion, an increase of 2.9 percent versus the fourth quarter a year ago and up 1.3 percent sequentially. Continued strong growth in consumer IP data services in the fourth quarter more than offset lower revenues from voice and legacy products. U-verse, which includes TV, high speed Internet and voice over IP, now represents 57 percent of wireline consumer revenues, up from 46 percent in the year-earlier quarter. Consumer U-verse revenues grew 26.8 percent year over year and were up 6.8 percent versus the third quarter of 2013.

U-verse TV Churn -- Total U-verse subscribers (TV and high speed Internet) reached 10.7 million in the fourth quarter. U-verse TV had the lowest-ever churn in its history. U-verse TV added 194,000 subscribers in the fourth quarter with an increase of 924,000 for the full year to reach 5.5 million in service. AT&T has more pay TV subscribers than any other telecommunications company. U-verse high speed Internet had a record fourth-quarter net gain of 630,000 subscribers, to reach a total of 10.4 million, and a record annual increase of 2.7 million, or 34 percent. Overall, total wireline broadband subscribers were essentially flat in the quarter but grew year over year. Total wireline broadband ARPU was up more than 7 percent year over year. Total U-verse high speed Internet subscribers now represent 63 percent of all wireline broadband subscribers compared with 47 percent in the year-earlier quarter.

About 59 percent of U-verse broadband subscribers have a plan delivering speeds up to 12 Mbps or higher.

Some Business Services Operational Highlights

Total revenues from business customers were $8.8 billion, down 3.4 percent versus the year-earlier quarter, and were essentially flat from the third quarter.

Revenues for next-generation business solutions — including VPN, Ethernet, cloud, hosting and other advanced IP services — grew 17.4 percent versus the year-earlier quarter. These services represent a $9 billion annualized revenue stream and are more than a quarter of business wireline revenues. During the fourth quarter, the company also added 78,000 business U-verse high speed broadband subscribers.

http://www.att.com/gen/press-room?pid=25228&cdvn=news&newsarticleid=37405

DragonWave Harmony Trunk C Hybrid Microwave radio

DragonWave introduced a Harmony Trunk C hybrid trunking microwave radio as part of its existing high capacity Harmony Trunk microwave product portfolio.

The small form factor of the Harmony Trunk C is available for either all-outdoor or all-indoor network requirements supporting up to 4 RF carriers in a single outdoor cabinet or indoor shelf.

DragonWave said its new Harmony Trunk C provides greater trunking options for mobile operators, military, and broadcast applications worldwide. It is available in STM-1, hybrid or full IP configurations.

http://www.dragonwaveinc.com

ONF Adds Start-ups to Membership Roster

The Open Networking Foundation (ONF) has added a number of start-ups to its membership ranks, including Criterion Networks, Corsa Technology, GuardiCore, Konodrac, Tallac Networks, and Xinguard Inc. Additional startups are currently in the membership application phase and will become ONF members in the coming months.

The ONF has introduced a new, low-cost category of membership specifically for SDN startup organizations, helping them to become more actively involved in building the SDN ecosystem.

“ONF’s dedication to the promotion and adoption of SDN through open architecture and standards development is one of the many reasons that ONF is embracing startups,” said Dan Pitt, executive director of the Open Networking Foundation. ““We want to make participation in ONF activities possible for the full range of organizations. Encouraging the innovation that startups bring to the space will further propel the advancement of open SDN and adoption of the OpenFlow™ standard.”

https://www.opennetworking.org


TE Connectivity Enhances its FlexWave Prism Distributed Antenna System

TE Connectivity is expanding its FlexWave Prism distributed antenna system (DAS) with new high-density modules capable of supporting up to 75 MHz per band, with two frequency bands per module. The new modules enable a 2-bay FlexWave Prism remote unit to support up to four frequency bands, 40 watts, or up to 300 MHz of spectrum.

TE is positioning its new module for delivering 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, or 2600 MHz MIMO and 800 MHz digital dividend services in the EMEA and Asia-Pacific regions of the world.

“The FlexWave Prism DAS supports multi-operator, multi-protocol services in a compact, cost-effective, and power-efficient manner,” said Peter Wraight, vice president, TE Wireless. “It is ideal for mobile operators who want to deploy DAS with multiple frequencies and high power levels without the complexity of multiple DAS equipment overlays.”


The new FlexWave Prism modules support migration from 3G to 4G services as well as multi-operator applications where two or more mobile operators share a power amplifier. Moreover, by using digital simulcast to deliver services between the DAS head end and remote units, the FlexWave Prism module enables operators to easily shift capacity from one area to another as subscriber needs dictate. The digital DAS reaches up to 20 kilometers to serve urban and suburban areas as well as stadiums, office parks, and other facilities.

http://www.TE.com

Monday, January 27, 2014

AT&T to Offer Private VPNs into Equinix Data Centers

AT&T and Equinix announced an alliance under which customers will be able to connect to cloud services hosted in Equinix facilities using their private AT&T VPN networks.

AT&T NetBond, which will be available in select Equinix data centers, will deliver highly secure connections with high reliability and performance capabilities, rather than relying on access via the public Internet.

“Business customers want rock solid network-based security protecting their traffic and applications when they use cloud services,” said Jon Summers, senior vice president growth platforms, AT&T Business Solutions. “Virtual private networking gives them better protection against Internet threats while also delivering the reliability, agility and performance they need when accessing the cloud.  This agreement with Equinix will expand the opportunity for cloud service providers to use our virtual private networking and AT&T NetBond technology to enhance the end user’s cloud experience.”

“Equinix sits at the intersection of cloud service providers, network service providers and enterprise customers that want to use those services. The alliance lets AT&T quickly expand its portfolio of AT&T NetBond-enabled cloud services by using our position as a cloud hub,” said Pete Hayes, chief sales officer for Equinix.  “Together, we’re making the network as flexible as the cloud and giving enterprises confidence they can move their most demanding applications to the cloud and still meet their security, scalability and performance requirements.”

The companies expect these capabilities to be available in the first half of 2014.

http://www.equinix.com/
https://www.synaptic.att.com/clouduser/html/productdetail/ATT_NetBond.htm


  • AT&T NetBond uses a software-defined and virtual connection that runs over AT&T’s MPLS core backbone. On its website, AT&T says NetBond will be able to provide coordinated, on-demand provisioning of private network connectivity and cloud compute resources for accommodating dynamic workload distribution across a customer’s hybrid cloud.  It will feature a pay-as-you-go pricing model with a minimum commitment.

Level 3 Opens Cloud Content Exchange

Level 3 Communications introduced a new cloud-based file transfer platform that simplifies and accelerates the process of sending large video and data files, such as syndicated content and advertising files.

Level 3's Cloud Content Exchange stores media files in a central, cloud-based library where they can be metatagged, sorted and accessed in real time with rapid upload and download speeds..  The service leverages Level 3's extensive worldwide storage platform and global network connectivity to deliver faster distribution than FTP or other alternatives.

FOX Broadcasting Company was the first to beta test the service.

"The daily movement of media files is critical to the operations of media broadcast companies such as FOX, in addition to sports teams and other large enterprises," said Mark Taylor, vice president of Media and IP Services at Level 3. "Cloud Content Exchange is a comprehensive, secure media transfer solution that delivers an easy-to-use interface offering access to data anywhere there is an Internet connection. This allows customers to realize greater efficiencies, reduce operating costs, and better meet important delivery deadlines."

http://www.level3videocloud.com
http://www.level3.com

SaskTel Picks Oracles for IMS Core

Canada's SaskTel has selected Oracle Communications Unified Session Manager to deliver the single IMS core and help secure its network borders.

SaskTel plans to use the IMS network for hosted businesses services, expanded VoLTE, rich communications services, session initiation protocol trunking and consumer voice services.

"As we transition to an all-IP environment, it was important for us to consolidate our infrastructure on a common, compact IMS core to help ensure our business and residential customers receive next-generation services quickly and securely. With Oracle Communications Unified Session Manager, we can deliver trusted real-time communications services across network borders,” said Daryl Godfrey, chief technology officer, SaskTel.

http://www.oracle.com/us/corporate/press/2113118


Ericsson Settles GSM/UMTS/LTE Patent License with Samsung

Ericsson and Samsung announced a global cross license agreement covering patents relating to GSM, UMTS, and LTE standards for both networks and handsets.  Under the multi-year deal, Samsung will make ongoing royalty payments to Ericsson. The initial payment in the agreement will impact Ericsson sales and net income in Q4 2013 by SEK 4.2 billion (US$650 million) and SEK 3.3 billion  (US$510 million) respectively.

Ericsson said that it is committed to licensing its standard-essential patents on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms for the benefit of the industry.

"We are pleased that we could reach a mutually fair and reasonable agreement with Samsung. We always viewed litigation as a last resort," said Kasim Alfalahi, Chief Intellectual Property Officer at Ericsson. "This agreement allows us to continue to focus on bringing new technology to the global market and provides an incentive to other innovators to share their own ideas."

http://www.ericsson.com/news/1757163

Ireland's Research Network Upgrades with Coriant

HEAnet, Ireland's National Education and Research Network, has commissioned a new national all-optical transmission network supplied by Coriant.  The upgrade increases network capacity and enhances network resiliency for the research network, which supports some 200,000 third-level students and associated staff as well as approximately 800,000 first and second-level students and associated staff.

"Our advanced optical networking solutions portfolio provides HEAnet with a new level of optical layer efficiency, scalability, reliability and automation to deliver enhanced service value to its customer base," said Herbert Merz, President and CEO, Coriant.

http://www.coriant.com/company/press_release.asp?id=1044

Mellanox Releases 40 GigE NIC for Open Compute Project

Mellanox Technologies is offering its 40GbE NIC as a proposed contribution to the Open Compute Project.

The new 40GbE NIC uses Mellanox’s ConnectX-3 Pro ICs and is designed to meet OCP specifications. It supports RDMA over Converged Ethernet (RoCE).

“Mellanox has been active in the OCP Network Project and has contributed to the open hardware and software model to help achieve OCP’s vision for true open standards and faster pace in network technology innovation,” said Kevin Deierling, vice president of marketing at Mellanox Technologies. “We’re pleased to continue our collaborations with Facebook in delivering 40GbE NIC technology to OCP to deliver unmatched performance and rich feature-sets that enable superior data center productivity and efficiency.”

http://www.mellanox.com/page/press_release_item?id=1217

Liberty Global to Acquire Ziggo, the Dutch Cable Operator

Liberty Global agreed to acquire Ziggo, a Dutch cable operator, for around EUR 10 billion in stock and cash.

Ziggo serves approximately 2.8 million households, with 1.9 million Internet subscribers, almost 2.3 million subscribers for digital television and 1.6 million telephony subscribers.

Liberty Global is an international cable provider with operations in 14 countries and 24 million customers.

The acquisition will give Liberty Global a footprint reaching about 90% of Dutch households.

http://www.libertyglobal.com/pdf/press-release/Joint-announcement-press-release-Ziggo-Final.pdf

Crehan: Data Center Switching Market Hits New Phase

2014 should be a year of major transition for Infiniband, Fibre Channel and Ethernet data center switch technologies, according to Crehan Research.

Crehan's most recently published Data Center Switch Long-Range Forecast Report, predicts that each technology will surpass its incumbent, becoming the majority of its respective segment on an annual basis:

  • In Infiniband, 56Gbps FDR will overtake 40Gbps QDR to comprise more than 50% of shipments.
  • In Fibre Channel, 16Gbps will exceed 8Gbps to comprise more than 50% of shipments.
  • In Ethernet, 10 Gigabit will outstrip 1 Gigabit to comprise more than 50% of shipments.

“10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) is finally on the verge of becoming the most popular data center switch port connection, after a long and sometimes rocky adoption curve,” said Seamus Crehan, president of Crehan Research. “And as 40GbE starts to ramp, we are still forecasting its adoption curve to look much better than that of 10GbE. This is already evidenced by the fact that recent data center switch introductions are really pushing the envelope on 40GbE port densities and economics,” he added.

In its year-ago Data Center Switch Long-Range Forecast Report (January 2013), Crehan illustrated that 40GbE would comprise close to one-third of all data center switch shipments by 2017, and this latest forecast maintains the same outlook. In Fibre Channel, the report further shows that despite a more gradual ramp than that seen for 8Gbps, 16Gbps Fibre Channel adoption is picking up steam. Crehan predicts that it will become the majority Fibre Channel switch technology by 2014.

"In the Infiniband switch market, 56Gbps FDR is well on its way to becoming the next de facto high-speed interconnect, setting the foundation for upgrades to the forthcoming 100Gbps EDR products."

Stanford's Professor Paulraj Wins Marconi Prize for MIMO Breakthrough

Stanford University's Professor (Emeritus) Arogyaswami Joseph Paulraj has been awarded the prestigious 2014 Marconi Society Prize for his idea for using multiple antennas at both the transmitting and receiving stations.

His work in MIMO technologies is fundamental to current Wi-Fi and 4G systems.

In 1992, Paul was granted a U.S, patent titled “Distributed Transmit – Directional Receive DTDR” (with his then supervisor Prof. Kailath as co-inventor).  Spatial Multiplexing, as this is now known, boosts spectral efficiency by creating “parallel spatial data streams” within the same frequency channel.

The Marconi Society, which is celebrating its 50th year in 2014, has posted Professor Paulraj's story online.

http://www.marconisociety.org/press/2014paulrajannouncement.html

Sprint Activates 40 More LTE Markets

Sprint activated LTE service in 40 more towns and cities across the U.S., bringing its total number of markets served to 340 across the country.

"We are making great strides towards achieving nationwide scale with 4G LTE. The momentum we have demonstrates our commitment to provide an exceptional wireless experience for our customers,” said Bob Azzi, chief network officer. “Today we are well underway with our build-out and delivering faster data speeds to our customers in more places where they live, work and play.”

http://network.sprint.com/?ECID=vanity:network

*** Planning Coverage for Mobile World Congress 2014 in Barcelona ***



Planning is underway for news coverage at Mobile World Congress 2014, especially in the areas of Small Cells, LTE-A, VoLTE, NFV solutions, and methods to improve the customer experience.  I'm interested in interviewing mobile operators engaged in any of these areas.  Contact us for more details.

http://www.convergedigest.com/p/mwc14-video-showcases.html

See also