Friday, February 14, 2014

Intel Data Platform Software Digs into Hadoop

Intel introduced a software analyics suite for importing, managing and analyzing big data.

The Intel Data Platform, which builds on the Intel Distribution for Apache Hadoop software, provides streaming data processing, interactive and iterative analytics, and graph processing. This enables enterprises to extract value from Apache Hadoop.

Intel noted that it is also working with carrier to help uncover value in data.  One example is China Mobile Guangdong, which is using Intel systems and software to be able to retrieve up to six months' worth of call data records in near real time. Intel said China Mobile Guangdong's detailed billing statement inquiry system can now retrieve 300,000 records per second and insert 800,000 records per second or the equivalent of 30 terabytes of subscriber billing data per month.

Radisys Delivers Large Scale Media Processing for VoLTE

Radisys introduced a new high-capacity MPH6 media processing card for its MPX-12000 Broadband Media Resource Function (MRF).

The new blade is specifically designed to support the processing requirements for large deployments of real-time telecommunication services, including Voice over LTE (VoLTE), high definition (HD) video conferencing, and high capacity multimedia transcoding services.

VoLTE enabled mobile phones and tablets that use HD audio (AMR-Wideband) codecs will require connectivity with GSM, CDMA or PSTN endpoints that use legacy codecs including AMR Narrowband (AMR-NB), EVRC or G.711. This will require the underlying IMS services infrastructure to have scalable, economical and high capacity transcoding capabilities to interconnect new VoLTE devices to legacy handsets and subscribers.

Radisys said its new card, based on the latest multicore Digital Signal Processing (DSP) technology, delivers industry-leading DSP power for processor intensive media stream manipulation, enabling large scale, economical real-time HD communication services utilizing a broad range of HD audio and video codecs including H.264, VP8, and AMR-WB.  It also leverages the MPX-12000 fault-resilient architecture for service reliability, including preserving active sessions for call continuity, customer satisfaction and revenue assurance.

“Radisys is a leading provider of media processing platforms and is deployed today in VoLTE networks and trials around the globe,” said Grant Henderson, vice president of marketing and product management, Radisys. “Our flagship MPX-12000 combined with the MPH6 delivers the highest capacity IP media processing platform on the market for communication equipment providers and operators, not only for multimedia transcoding, but for a broad range of IMS and web communication services.”

The Radisys MPX-12000 is a Broadband Media Processing platform for large LTE IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) network deployments.

The MPX-12000, which is based on Radisys 40G ATCA open platform technologies, is specifically designed to provide mobile and IMS network operators the capacities, capabilities and reliability essential for monetizing real-time wireless broadband communications, including mobile video and voice over LTE (VoLTE). The platform performs the Multimedia Resource Function (MRF) in LTE IMS networks.

Brocade's Q1 Revenue Dips 4% YoY as SAN Business Grows

Brocade reported first quarter revenue of $565 million for the 3-month period ending 25-Jan-2014, down 4% year-over-year and up 1% quarter-over-quarter. The company reported GAAP diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.18, up from a loss of $0.05 per share in Q1 2013. Non-GAAP diluted EPS was $0.24, up from $0.21 in Q1 2013.

"Brocade achieved solid results in Q1, exceeding our outlook for revenue and profitability," said Lloyd Carney, CEO of Brocade. "Our performance was driven by the strength of our Storage Area Networking (SAN) business as customers continue to adopt Gen 5 Fibre Channel networks for their highly virtualized data centers and high-performance storage environments, including Solid State Disks (SSDs). While the overall IP Networking business declined year-over-year, we achieved our outlook for the quarter. This is a transformational year for Brocade and we remain committed to our mission to be the network provider of choice to the world's data centers."

Some highlights:

  • SAN business revenue, including products and services, was $412 million, down 1% year-over-year and up 8% sequentially. SAN business revenue grew sequentially across all product segments and performed better than the company's outlook for Q1 2014. Gen 5 Fibre Channel products represented approximately 71% of director and switch revenue in the quarter, higher than the 42% reported in Q1 2013 and 69% in Q4 2013.
  • IP Networking business revenue, including products and services, was $153 million, down 11% year-over-year and 15% quarter-over-quarter. The year-over-year and sequential decline was principally due to lower sales into the U.S. Federal government as well as lower non-Federal sales in the Americas region. During Q1 2014, an estimated 59% of our IP Networking product revenue came from data center customers, a favorable shift in the mix of our IP business from an estimated 48% in Q1 2013 and 53% in Q4 2013.

Extreme Networks Names New CTO - Eric Broockman

Extreme Networks named Eric Broockman as Vice President and Chief Technology Officer (CTO).  Broockman most recently served as the CEO of Alereon, where he led the strategy and product development of the industry's first gigabit OFDM wireless solution. He holds numerous US patents, is an active inventor, and was a National Science Foundation Fellow.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Aerohive Files for IPO

Aerohive Networks, which specializes in controller-less Wi-Fi and cloud-managed mobile networking for the enterprise market, filed a registration statement on Form S-1 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission relating for a proposed initial public offering (IPO) of shares.

Aerohive is based in Sunnyvale, California.

  • Aerohive is headed by David Flynn, who previously was Vice President of Marketing and Product Management at NetScreen (acquired by Juniper). Later, he was Juniper's Vice President of Products for the Security Products Group.

CEO Interview: 2014 Outlook for DSL

Dr. John Cioffi, CEO of ASSIA, Inc., discusses the outlook for DSL technologies in 2014, including market opportunities, the use of Vectoring to improve performance, and Phantom Mode.

  • Are there new markets or applications for DSL?
  • What are the prospects for upgrading the existing DSL base with vectoring?
  • Future prospects for DSL in the U.S.?
  • Future prospects for DSL in Europe?
  • Does DSL have a new chance with Australia's NBN?
  • Does DSL make sense in areas with poor copper plants?
  • How has vectoring evolved?
  • How good is nodescale vectoring?
  • How fast can DSL ultimately go?
  • Any more opportunities to enhance DSL?
  • What are the prospects for
  • Does FTTH still cost too much?
  • What is Phantom Mode?
What's next for ASSIA?

NSN Extends "Liquid Applications" to Mobile Base Stations

Nokia Solutions and Networks is extending its "Liquid Applications" framework to enable accelerated content delivery and real-time utilization of network information at the base station.

Liquid Applications’ new capabilities focus on three areas:

Building entirely new types of real-time services delivered from the base station.

Examples include instant video replays at sports venues delivered to nearby subscribers, high speed and secure access to corporate intranets, or video surveillance and advanced analytics running in the base station to improve urban transport systems. Liquid Applications’ distributed cloud capabilities coupled with NSNs AppFactory allow for agile application development and deployment in very short cycles.

Accelerating content delivery to improve customer experience

NSN’s Liquid Applications run on its Radio Application Cloud Server (RACS) within the base stations. The company is now extending the software capabilities of RACS with advanced content acceleration and optimization as well as enabling storage of third-party content. Serving content directly from the base station cuts time-to-content by up to 80 percent and reduces backhaul traffic by up to 25 percent.

Improving network operations and gaining new insights into customer behavior

NSN is introducing RACS-based agents in the base station that collect and process network data in real-time. By using tools such as NSN’s Service Quality Manager to analyze this data, operators can gain deeper insight into user actions and preferences. They can pinpoint precisely how to utilize the available network capacity to best effect and tailor services based on user preferences and location.

NSN is also bringing to the market a cloud based IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) aimed at Voice over LTE (VoLTE) services. These will be shown at this month's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

NTT and Partners Demo NFV Service Chaining

NTT, Cisco Systems, Juniper Networks, and Hewlett-Packard Japan are testing service chaining based on network functions virtualisation (NFV) principles.  The use case has been approved as an authorized PoC (Proof of Concept) by ETSI's Industry Specification Group for Network Functions Virtualisation (NFV ISG).  This is the first such trial use case in Japan (the second in the world) approved as a PoC.

NTT said interoperability will be crucial for its vision of service chaining, in which virtualized appliances are interconnected in conjunction with networks.

For this PoC, multiple multiple services from multiple vendors are chained together. NTT Network Technology Laboratories is developing a service chaining method in which each packet is assigned an identifier to enable customers to select and apply virtualized functions on demand. The identifier shows a chain of virtualized network functions and forwards packets to them as appropriate.

NTT: Providing service chaining method
Cisco Systems: Providing vDPI
Juniper Networks: Providing vFW
Hewlett-Packard Japan: Providing vCPE

A demonstration is being held this week at the NTT R&D Forum 2014.

IBM Develops Ultra-Fast Analog-to-Digital Converter

IBM Research and Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) have developed an ultra-fast and energy efficient analog-to-digital converter (ADC) technology to enable complex digital equalization across long-distance fiber channels.

An ADC converts analog signals to digital, approximating the right combination of zeros and ones to digitally represent the data so it can be stored on computers and analyzed for patterns and predictive outcomes.

IBM has awarded a non-exclusive technology license to Semtech, including access to patented designs and technological know-how, to develop the technology for its own family of products ranging from optical and wireline communications to advanced radar systems.

The 64 GS/s (giga-samples per second) chips for Semtech will be manufactured at IBM’s 300mm fab in East Fishkill, New York in a 32 nanometer silicon-on-insulator CMOS process and has an area of 5 mm2. This core includes a wide tuning millimeter wave synthesizer enabling the core to tune from 42 to 68 GS/s per channel with a nominal jitter value of 45 femtoseconds root mean square. The full dual-channel 2x64 GS/s ADC core generates 128 billion analog-to-digital conversions per second, with a total power consumption of 2.1 Watts.

IBM cited a number of Big Data use cases, including radio astronomy projects that are expected to produce 10 times the global internet traffic loads in a few years.

“Our ADC supports IEEE standards for data communication and brings together speed and energy efficiency at 32 nanometers enabling us to start tackling the largest Big Data applications,” said Dr. Martin Schmatz, Systems department manager at IBM Research. “With Semtech as our partner, we are bringing our previous generation of the ADC to market less than 12 months since it was first developed and tested.”

“Through leveraging the IBM 32nm SOI process with its unique feature set, we are developing products that are well-suited for meeting the challenge presented by the next step in high performance  communications systems such as 400 Gb/s Optical systems and Advanced Radar systems. We are also seeing an expanding range of applications in the existing radio frequency communications marketplace where high-speed digital logic is replacing functions that have been traditionally performed by less flexible analog circuitry,” said Craig Hornbuckle, Chief Systems Architect, Semtech.

Gigamon Partners with Vistapointe on Big Data Monitoring + Network Intelligence

Gigamon and Vistapointe announced a partnership to provide mobile network operators with deep visibility and insight into the operations and transactions occurring on their network.

Vistapointe delivers data extraction, analysis and insight generation technologies for mobile traffic.  Its product portfolio, following the NFV architecture, is completely software-based, runs on COTS and ATCA platforms, and provides a 360°visibility around Subscriber, Applications, Networks, Roaming, Tethering and Device proliferation. The solution passively taps into the data, session and signaling layers of 3G, 4G LTE and Wi-Fi networks non-intrusively. It complies with the 3GPP, IETF & IEEE standard protocols, without requiring any integration with the existing vendors.

Gigamon provides an intelligent Visibility Fabric architecture for enterprises, data centers and service providers. Its GigaVUE portfolio of high availability and high density products intelligently delivers the appropriate network traffic to management, analysis, compliance and security tools.

Under the partnership, Vistapointe becomes part of Gigamon's Visibility Fabric Ecosystem Partner Program, which offers visibility solutions for network security, troubleshooting, application analysis, forensics review and SOX compliance.

"There are significant changes occurring within carrier networks as a result of various forms of virtualization and Big Data," said Andy Huckridge, Director of Service Provider Solutions at Gigamon. "The associated business impacts are also changing the way these operators deliver services and generate revenue. The Gigamon Visibility Fabric and a new class of tool vendor, like Vistapointe, are addressing the needs of these mobile service providers. We look forward to working with Vistapointe to truly deliver greater value to our carrier customers."

"Vistapointe is excited to partner with Gigamon to bring new and valuable solutions to mobile operators," said Ravi Medikonda, CEO, Vistapointe Inc. "Mobile providers are looking for ways to deal with the explosion in the amount and variety of traffic flowing through their networks. They need to enhance subscriber experience, while reducing churn and revenue erosion. The combined Vistapointe and Gigamon solution can support this new Big Data business model, while working towards delivering enhanced value in increasingly virtualized environments."

NEC Launches E-band Radio for Small Cells and Cloud-RAN

NEC introduced an all-outdoor, E-band radio unit designed for small cell backhaul aggregation and wireless extensions to fiber broadband networks.

The iPASOLINK EX leverages E-band millimeter wave spectrum, which typically offers lower licensing costs than any other radio solution.

NEC also noted that new addition of a Common Public Radio Interface (CPRI) enables the unit to provide wireless fronthaul in a Cloud RAN (C-RAN) environment. This ensures high data transmission speeds and capacity to connect baseband processors and Remote Radio Heads (RRH) wirelessly in a distributed RAN.

Ichiro Kaneko, Senior Manager of NEC's Mobile Wireless Solutions Division, commented:  "NEC engineered iPASOLINK EX to provide an even higher level of upgradeable data capacity in a small, exceptionally reliable radio unit. With this latest product launch, NEC aims to continue to provide the most advanced and most comprehensive range of mobile backhaul and fronthaul solutions on the market."

NEC has already deployed over two million microwave transmission systems across 147 countries to support LTE, digital broadcast, Terrestrial Trunked Radio (TETRA), 3G and other types of communication networks.

Ericsson Offers Telecom Cloud Transformation Consulting

Ericsson is launching a Telecom Cloud Transformation consulting practice to help network operators add value by either improving the quality of existing services or launching services of their own.

The unit combines Ericsson's professional services experience and technology insights across business, IT and telecom with the latest developments in SDN and NFV.

Paolo Colella, Vice President and Head of Consulting and Systems Integration, Ericsson, says: "The cloud offers operators advantages such as efficiency gains in operations as well as improved time to market. With our professional services leadership and data center experience, we can help operators identify how best to transform their existing technology and process environments to take advantage of the cloud opportunity."

Comcast to Acquire Time Warner Cable

In a deal that combines the No.1 and No.2 cable operators, Comcast has agreed to acquire Time Warner Cable for $159 per share, representing a enterprise value of about $45 billion.

Comcast is the largest U.S. cable operator with approximately 23 million subscribers.  Time Warner Cable has about 12 million subscribers.  The combined company would have $86.8 billion in annual revenue.

The proposed merger is expected to face regulatory reviews. Comcast and Time Warner said they are prepared to shed 3 million subscribers if needed to gain approvals.

Previously, Charter offered $132 per share to acquire Time Warner - a bid that was rejected by the company as below value.

The companies believe they will be able to achieve $1.5 billion in ongoing operational efficiences, including $400 million in capital savings through the merger.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Ericsson to Offer "Small Cell as a Service"

Ericsson will begin offering "Small cell as a Service" in urban areas where it is not practical to densify existing operator networks.  The Ericsson service involves using low-powered, short-range radio access nodes to supplement existing telecom networks and increase capacity in traffic hot spots where large numbers of users gather. The plan would seamlessly combine 3G/4G with carrier-grade Wi-Fi while allowing for the monetization of dedicated media content, advertising and over-the-top services.

The resulting densified network would be owned by either Ericsson or a partner, and could serve multiple operators in scenarios when dedicated operator deployments are impractical. Ericsson would in essence take over the existing network infrastructure, which – depending on the type of
environment – could be either a distributed antenna system (DAS), a Wi-Fi system or both.

Ericsson said it is well positioned to enter the business of "Small Cell as a Service" because of its ability to plan, design and operate networks in very challenging radio environments.

"This is an innovative managed services model that we are launching to cope with the huge volumes of traffic that are generated in areas where large numbers of people gather. Our solution is unique because of our ability to seamlessly combine 3G/4G with carrier-grade Wi-Fi, thereby ensuring that network capacity always exceeds demand," stated Jean-Claude Geha, Vice President and Head of Managed Services, Ericsson.

Ericsson Launches Virtualized Evolved Packet Core

Ericsson is launching a virtualized version of its Evolved Packet Core (EPC) solution including implementations that can run on third party hardware.

Key components of Ericsson's virtual Evolved Packet Core include virtual Evolved Packet Gateway, virtual SGSN-MME, virtual Service-Aware Policy Controller and virtual Service Aware Support Node.

Ericsson said its solution conforms to the principles of network functions virtualization (NFV).  It will be demonstrated at the upcoming Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Jan Häglund, Head of Product Area IP & Broadband at Ericsson says: "At Mobile World Congress in Barcelona we are launching virtual Evolved Packet Core to support operators' transition to a network-enabled cloud. Based on our open platform Ericsson Cloud System, the real-time networking capabilities of Ericsson Service Provider SDN and our Telecom Cloud Transformation service, we support operators' next step to enable the networked society and provide innovative services."

Cisco's Q2 Revenue Falls 8% YoY

Cisco reported Q2 revenue of $11.2 billion, net income (GAAP) of $1.4 billion or $0.27 per share, and non-GAAP net income of $2.5 billion or $0.47 per share. Q2 sales were down 8% compared to the same period a year earlier, and net income declined 54.5% in part due to a pre-tax charge of $655 million related to the expected cost of remediation of issues with memory components in certain products sold in prior fiscal years.

"We delivered the results we expected this quarter. I'm pleased with the progress we've made managing through the technology transitions of cloud, mobile, security and video," stated chairman and CEO John Chambers. "Our financials are strong and our strategy is solid. The major market transitions are networking centric and as the Internet of Everything becomes more important to business, cities and countries, Cisco is uniquely positioned to help our customers solve their biggest business problems."

Some highlights from the report:

  • Cisco announced a quarterly dividend of $0.19 per common share, a two-cent increase over the previous quarter's dividend.
  • Gross margin came in at 61.3% compared to 62.3% a year earlier.
  • Geographically, sales were down 5% YoY in the Americas, down 2% in EMEA, and down 5% in APJC.
  • By customer segment, Enterprise were down 2%, while Service Provider sales fell 12% compared to a year earlier.

  • In its last quarterly conference call on 13-Nov-2013, Cisco warned that revenue would decline 8-10% this quarter (Q2) due to lower demand in certain countries, such as China, due to fallout from the NSA scandal.  Service Provider orders backlog was said to be significantly weaker than expected.

Cisco Cites Memory Component Failure for $655 Million Charge

Cisco said the premature degrading and failure of a memory component used in many of its products between 2005 and 2010 will necessitate to take a charge of $655 million against its earnings to resolve customer support issues.  The bad component from a single supplier, which Cisco has declined to name.

Impacted products include the following:

Enterprise Switching
*Cisco Catalyst 6000 (C6000)
Enterprise Routing (Edge) 
*Integrated Services Router Cisco 18XX (18XX)
*Integrated Services Router Cisco 28XX (28XX)
*Integrated Services Router Cisco 38XX (38XX) 

Integrated Services Router Cisco 800BB (800BB)
Enterprise Switching (Access)
Cisco Catalyst 2960 (C2960)
Cisco Catalyst 3560 (C3560)
Cisco Catalyst 3750 (C3750)
Enterprise Wireless
Cisco Aironet 11XX Series (AIR11X)
Cisco Aironet 12XX Series (AIR12X)
Service Provider Routing (Edge)
Cisco 7200 Series Router (7200)
Cisco 7304 Router (7304)
Cisco ASR 1000 Series Aggregation Services Routers (ASR1000)
Cisco 7304 Router Shared Port Adapters (SPA)
Service Provider Routing (Access) 
Cisco ME 3400 Series Ethernet Access Switches (ME3400)
Service Provider Routing
*Cisco Carrier Routing System (CRS)
*Cisco 7600 Series Routers (7600) 

Cisco Embedded Services Routers (ESR)
Service Provider Mobility 
Cisco ASR 5000 Series (ASR5000)
Service Provider Video 
*Cisco uBR10000 Series Universal Broadband Routers (UBR10K)
Cisco uBR7200 Series Universal Broadband Routers (UBR7200)
Data Center 
Cisco MDS 9000 Series Multilayer Switches (MDS)
Cisco Nexus 7000 Series Switches (N7K)
Cisco ASA 5500 Series Adaptive Security Appliances (ASA)
Cisco Firewall Services Module (FWSM)

Poland Cancels LTE Spectrum Auction

Poland's Office of Electronic Communications abruptly decided to cancel the spectrum auction for licences in the 791-816 MHz band and in the 832-857 MHz band, as well as in the 2500-2570 MHz band and in the 2620-2690 MHz band.  Initial bids were initially due on 13-February-2014, however this period was extended by one day due to technical reasons.  After having made this extension, the President of the Office of Electronic Communications decided to cancel the entire auction because some bidders complained that the auction environment was not stable and predictable, possibly leading to legal uncertainties.

Cambium Launches Sub-6 GHz Backhaul Radio for Small Cells

Cambium Networks introduced a Point-to-Point (PTP) 650S Small Cell backhaul radio that delivers up to 450 Mbps aggregate throughput at 2km and packaged in a small form factor suitable for mounting on the sides of buildings or poles.

The Cambium PTP 650S is a sub-6 GHz point-to-point (PTP) wireless backhaul solution tailored for small cell networks. Non-line-of-sight (NLOS) installations are made possible by 2x2 multiple-input multiple-output orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (MIMO-OFDM) and Dynamic Spectrum Optimization (DSOTM) technologies. Bands supported include 4.9, 5.2, 5.4 and 5.8 GHz frequencies, and future support of 2.6 and 3.5 GHz is planned. Timing and synchronization support includes IEEE 1588v2 and Synchronous Ethernet.

Cambium also noted that with a volume of less than 3 liters volume (or less than 0.1 cubic feet), the PTP650S can qualify as “De Minimis” in certain European countries and the UK, and therefore does not require planning permission enable rapid small cell deployments.

"Performance, reliability, scalability and agility are the cornerstones of all of our platforms. In PTP 650S, we have given all of these qualities a boost with built-in technologies: dynamic spectrum optimization (DSO), IEEE 1588v2, Synchronous Ethernet, and dual stack IPv4 and IPv6 support to name a few,” said Scott Imhoff, vice president of product management, Cambium Networks. “With small cell networks continuing to proliferate and require additional support, in addition to the need for flexible platforms to suit global connectivity spanning industries and applications, the timing for PTP 650S’s release couldn’t be better."

Ericsson Packs More Radio Capacity into Outdoor Enclosures

Ericsson introduces a modular All-in-One Outdoor Enclosure that houses and powers multi-standard radio, transmission, power and climate equipment for high-capacity mobile broadband sites. Built to complement its RBS 6000 portfolio, the maximum high-capacity configuration houses up to 8 digital units, 18 radios and 4 MINI-LINK hops in a footprint of less than 0.5 square meters (70 x 70 cm).

Thomas Norén, Vice President and Head Product Area Radio, Business Unit Networks, Ericsson says: "Optimizing outdoor enclosures is an important area for operators to reduce time-to-service. The All-in-One Outdoor Enclosure helps them to add capacity cost-efficiently, enabling them to handle the massive data growth in the Networked Society."