Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Blueprint: Better Service Control for Telco Agility

By Thomas Vasen, VP Product Marketing and Marketing, DigitalRoute

In a globally deregulated telecoms industry where intense competition is rife, differentiated products and services mean commercial success. To deliver these, lean and agile systems are required.

In this regard, though, the current situation looks grim. Many telcos are fixed on addressing issues that mitigate minor risks rather than trying to exploit growing opportunities. This makes little sense. The case of PCRF is a good example.

Applied as they are today, PCRF (policy and charging rules function) applications enforce policies that invariably constrict service usage rather than looking for new ways to expand the relationship with the customer. It’s ironic, because they should be able to easily do the latter. The “other half” of the Policy application set, service control, addresses what might be called the “positive side of the equation.”

Service control, is, like Policy Control, built on the mediation platform. But where it differs is that it is designed to quickly and easily enable new services that advanced networks are increasingly being deployed to support.  The cornerstone of service control’s value is thus the enablement of service agility and this is built in from first principles.

It makes sense that this happens in mediation, traditionally, all about adapting to the landscape and making data fit with all the requirements and purposes around itself.  Doing this quickly, with a very high degree of self-control and flexibility, is where the agility comes from.

Service control supplements PCRF. It adds a new dimension to what the Mediation/Policy box can provide. Furthermore, since service control offloads certain functions in the traditional Business Support System (BSS) infrastructure, such as billing, incremental new services can be introduced with very different cost-per-transaction profiles. This means the legacy BSS cost stack need no longer represent a barrier to progress for operators wary of the limitations of their existing infrastructure. This is a common and very real concern.

Service control’s three fundamental deliverable characteristics underline what it delivers:

  • To decrease time-to-market and total-cost-of ownership in architectures where legacy is a barrier to service innovation
  • To provide a cost effective platform that increases service possibility through legacy BSS offload
  • To increase the ability to exploit the profit opportunity contained in Over-The-Top (OTT) services.

Consider service control in action. In highly competitive markets, versatility is key to opening up new revenue streams that often present themselves only briefly such as when regulatory statutes change in unpredictable ways and a brief window of opportunity arises as a result.

In this case, service control can provide Subscriber Usage control, Network Experience monitoring and the ability to improve subscriber interaction and engagement. Service control’s real-time enablement layer, with only small changes to its core infrastructure, can support incremental new service launches quickly.

Where profits are declining and customer spend is stagnant or traditionally dominant services (like voice) have been commoditized, service control can help access and exploit new revenue streams. Its network-based control infrastructure enables differentiation on the basis of either the service or the subscriber and partners. Other key players in service delivery are easily accommodated into the back-end, enabling critical revenue shares to be quickly implemented.

Service control increases Average Revenue Per Account (ARPA) while not reducing the bundled content delivered to end-users. An example is using service control to support an innovative sponsored data offering. This is a use case legacy BSS struggles to accommodate.

Opening Doors to Sponsored Data

Sponsored data requires splitting data bits into different buckets, where one stream goes to the consumer’s individual bucket and the other to a common one, sponsored by a content provider. It works like a 0800 number or an e-commerce site where a second party pays for postage on the goods purchased.

Having many people consuming the same sponsored bucket is a particularly tricky challenge and requires fast, capable and lean systems in place. Partner enablement, roaming buckets, and Freemium service offerings are also addressed by service control.

For operators, realizing these things can be handled in existing mediation and policy platforms is appealing. Service control’s easy configuration enables sponsored data simply by adding a newly configured use case into a platform that is already installed in the data center. The operator’s end-customers are attracted by a service in which sponsored content is not counted in their data bundles and the operator itself gains a new revenue stream by being able to directly charge the OTT provider for delivery of the sponsored service. This increases ARPA for a percentage of its traffic while not reducing the bundles that it sells to end-users.

The solution is capable of metering all subscriber and partner information and its open nature enables easy integration with any existing downstream applications. Its easily configurable business logic supports innovation and responsiveness to the demands of the market.

By handling these requirements, service control addresses the three key questions that CSPs have to answer in order to succeed commercially:

  • Can I offset the exponentially increased cost of many new services by deploying attractive, low-margin services quickly as an upsell opportunity? 
  • Can I address the requirement for service transparency and tiered offerings via a solution that enables both subscriber and service control from the same platform?
  • Can I deliver incremental services quickly and reactively enough that I can lead the market?

Service control takes the policy box into a new dimension, and offers telco service providers a big step towards next generation commercial success.

About the Author

Thomas Vasen, has over 15 year’s operational experience with product and service development in the telecoms industry. Before his present position with DigitalRoute, he was responsible for solution development at Service Assurance pioneer Polystar OSIX and before that he was an entrepreneur in a series of Voice over IP projects at operators in Europe. At B2 Bredband AB, the largest FTTH broadband operator in Sweden, he was responsible for the setup and operations of the 1st primary line local-loop replacement service launched on the SIP technology in the world. Thomas has studied at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam and at the London School of Economics.

About DigitalRoute

DigitalRoute has been providing new approaches to enterprise data management since 1999. Its software platform offers high throughput and provides a unique degree of user configurability, processing all usage and statistical data extracted from the networks, including both billable and non-billable events. Over 300 leading companies worldwide actively use DigitalRoute technology to meet their data management needs, including a number of OEM partners who use our platform as a central part of their own offerings. DigitalRoute is built on the core values of Expertise, Open- Mindedness and Commitment. DigitalRoute is a venture-backed, privately held company with a turnover of 30m EUR in 2013 and a record of profitability since 2005. With close to 200 employees, the company is headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden with regional offices in Gothenburg, Atlanta, and Kuala Lumpur. http://www.digitalroute.com/

Windstream to Separate Network Operations from Service Business

Windstream announced a bold plans to spin off its fiber and copper network, along with certain other assets, into an independent, publicly traded real estate investment trust (REIT).  The network operations business would then lease back the physical assets to Windstream through a long-term triple-net exclusive lease with an initial estimated rent payment of $650 million per year.

The company said the separation of its physical network from its services business will enable it to become a more nimble competitor, while accelerating network investments, and maximizing shareholder value. The new REIT would be open to diversify its assets through acquisitions.

"This transaction will make Windstream a more nimble competitor in today’s increasingly dynamic communications marketplace and accelerate our deployment of advanced communications services," said Jeff Gardner, president and CEO of Windstream. "Additionally, the REIT will have geographically diverse, high-quality assets and sustainable cash flows with the ability to grow and diversify over time."

Windstream anticipates that the spinoff would occur in the first quarter of 2015.


  • Earlier this month, Windstream announced the nationwide availability of its enterprise-class Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS).  Windstream’s UCaaS is a fully managed cloud-based solution, offered to enterprise and mid-sized businesses for a flat monthly rate. The UCaaS product suite is hosted in Windstream’s secure data centers and leverages Windstream’s high-quality MPLS with Quality of Service (QoS) for optimized performance. For its UCaaS solution, Windstream's partners include Avaya, Cisco, Mitel and ShoreTel.

Nokia Tests LTE Broadcast in 700MHz UHF Spectrum in Germany

Nokia Networks is participating in a field trial of wide-area TV broadcasting in Germany using a single LTE frequency within UHF spectrum.

The trial, which includes the Institut für Rundfunktechnik, the research institute of broadcasting companies in Austria, Germany and Switzerland, Bavarian broadcast company, Bayerischer Rundfunk, and other research partners, is testing eMBMS (evolved Multimedia Broadcast/Multicast Service) LTE Broadcast for distributing TV over existing mobile broadband infrastructure. Subscribers would be able to watch TV on their devices without eating into their mobile data plan and independent of network load.

The trial uses a test license of spectrum, which is also referred to as 3GPP band 28 or "APT700". Nokia LTE equipment is deployed at four sites of the Bavarian broadcast company, Bayerischer Rundfunk, in northern Munich and connected by a high performance optical transport network.

“Today, when watching videos over a mobile network, the content is individually streamed to each user. With LTE Broadcast the same signal is received by many users at the same time, resulting in more efficient capacity and spectrum use,” said Hossein Moiin, chief technology officer, Nokia Networks. “Spectrum doesn’t need to be dedicated to either broadcast or broadband, but can be used flexibly for both according to users’ needs. We believe that LTE Broadcast is a technology well suited to distribute TV and broadcast services and will help us expand the benefits of mobile internet to everyone while evolving the TV viewing experience.”


Cambium Releases Wireless Radios for 5 GHz U-NII Spectrum

Cambium Networks released its ePMP Force 100, a high-gain, 5GHz integrated subscriber radio now supporting fixed outdoor wireless in the unlicensed national information infrastructure (U-NII) band covering 5150 and 5250MHz.

The ePMP Force 100’s release comes on the heels of Cambium Networks receiving FCC grant authorization to operate in the U-NII band.  The additional 100 MHz spectrum is available via download of software release 2.1.

The ePMP Force 100 can be deployed as a subscriber module that can connect to any ePMP access point, as well as peer nodes in point-to-point deployment configurations. Service providers who already have the ePMP 1000 Connectorized Radio in their networks have the option of purchasing the ePMP Dish separately to enhance throughput and increase deployment range.

Key features of the ePMP Force 100:

  • Frequency availability in the United States: 5150 – 5350 and 5470 – 5850MHz
  • Security: 128-bit AES encryption (CCMP mode)
  • Peak gain: 25 dBi antenna gain with 30 dBm of transmit power
  • Round Trip Latency: 6 ms (flexible frame mode), 17 ms (GPS Sync mode)
  • Throughput: 150 Mbps of real user data


Cloudwatt Deploys with Juniper's OpenContrail SDN

 Cloudwatt, a new public cloud provider based in France, has deployed Juniper's open source OpenContrail SDN to build a sovereign and secure public cloud for its enterprise customers. The network went live at the end of June.

Juniper said Cloudwatt is one of the most active contributors to the OpenContrail community to-date.

"The choice of an open source SDN solution was essential for us from a sovereignty perspective. By integrating OpenContrail with our choice of cloud management platform, OpenStack, we can greatly simplify our cloud network design and operations, seamlessly connect virtual and physical environments and scale out our cloud without compromising security and privacy. Ultimately, OpenContrail makes it possible for us to enhance sovereignty, contain network operation cost and to provide competitive pricing to our customers," stated Didier Renard, president and CEO, Cloudwatt.


  • Investors in Cloudwatt include Orange,Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations and Thales.

  • In September 2013, Juniper Networks introduced OpenContrail, a new initiative that makes the source code library for its Contrail SDN solution available through an open source license.  OpenContrail will provide all the components necessary to run a data-center overlay including an SDN controller, virtual router, orchestration API, analytics and management console.  The use of OpenContrail is available via an Apache 2.0 License. 
    The company said it decided to offer an open source version of its SDN system due to customer interest in open source and the desire to boost innovation in the industry.  OpenContrail gives developers the opportunity to innovate, adopt and experiment with SDN technology that seamlessly integrates with existing network infrastructures.  
    The paid version of Contrail is backed by the company's full support resources.

Ericsson to Acquire MetraTech for Metadata-driven Billing

Ericsson agreed to acquire Boston-based MetraTech Corp., a provider of metadata-based billing, commerce and settlement solutions.  Financial terms were not disclosed.

MetraTech, which was founded in 1998, offers a flexible billing platform that supports new revenue models and global commerce that are being driven by IoT and XaaS. MetraTech’s metadata-driven MetraNet billing and settlement platform can support new NFV services and business models, as well as services in legacy silos. The company has 140 employees and contractors.

Ericsson said the acquisition extends its expertise in billing and expands its geographic presence in the US.

Per Borgklint, Senior Vice President and Head of Business Unit Support Solutions, Ericsson says: “For a range of industries, thriving in the Networked Society means having the ability to quickly support new revenue models and shift strategies as fast as customer and partner needs evolve. MetraTech’s metadata-based billing solutions strengthen our extensive OSS and BSS portfolio and billing capabilities across a range of sectors, helping us extend our leadership as we support a world with increasingly more connections.”


  • Investors in MetraTech included Accel Partners and Vesbridge Partners.

BT Business Selects RingCentral's Cloud Phone Platform

BT Business has selected the RingCentral platform for a new generation of cloud business phone systems in the UK. Beginning early next year, the cloud phone system will be offered through BT Local Business, a network of independent BT businesses across the UK, and through BT's dedicated telesales call centers.

John Thorneycroft, Managing Director, Commercial and Marketing at BT Business said: "UK businesses are looking for a new generation of solutions to meet the rapidly changing communications needs of their distributed and mobile workforce. RingCentral brings unique cloud solutions with unparalleled ease of use and management, combined with a rich set of capabilities.”

The new generation of RingCentral’s cloud solution is now available with HD video and web conferencing.

Separately, RingCentral announced Q2 revenue of $52.8 million, up 40% from the second quarter of 2013. Service revenue was $47.9 million for the second quarter of 2014, up 39% from the second quarter of 2013. Product revenue was $4.9 million for the second quarter of 2014, up 52% from the second quarter of 2013. Net income (loss) per diluted share was ($0.20) for the second quarter of 2014 compared with ($0.60) for the second quarter of 2013.

RingCentral is headquartered in San Mateo, California.


Monday, July 28, 2014

The OpenCloud Project Aims for Programatic Interoperability

The OpenCloud Project, which is sponsored by the CloudEthernet Forum, is on-track to launch a test bed later this year for end-to-end interoperability for cloud, datacenter and network services.

Comcast, Verizon and Tata are hosting the first meeting of the OpenCloud Project this week in Silicon Valley. Specifically, the aim of the project is to solve the following problems:

  • Lack of end-to-end SLAs 
  • Provisioning of network services 
  • Policy for compliance, regulation and privacy laws 
  • Single view for managing services 
  • Standardized communication between cloud services

The OpenCloud Project has now put together a reference architecture that will be the basis of its forthcoming testbed.

“Where other standards bodies had the space to shape standards in advance of market penetration, cloud computing is already surging ahead in every direction -- powered by NFV, SDN, virtualization technologies and networking – technologies that are themselves still evolving quickly. Our response is to iteratively develop the Reference Architecture, the Test Bed and the standards simultaneously to keep ahead of business needs. The aim is to evolve a fully interworking cloud environment and the advance best practices to manage OTT and cloud services,” stated James Walker, president of the Cloud Ethernet Forum.

Jeff Schmitz, CEF Chairman, commented, “The OpenCloud Project is now in the design stage. We are putting a range of use cases to the test, starting with remote relocation and multiplication of virtual machines across the cloud.  The published results will reveal what does and does not work and will invite participation in addressing these challenges. Those who commit to the project now will help shape tomorrow and the $200Bn cloud services market.

Members of the Cloud Ethernet Forum include: Alcatel-Lucent, Avaya, Comcast, Ciena, Cisco, Citrix, CoreSite, Ericsson, Equinix, Juniper, HP, Huawei, Interexion, PCCW Global, Spirent Communications, Tata Communications, Telx, Verizon and others.


AT&T, IBM and ACS Develop Cloud-to-Cloud Interconnect

AT&T Labs, IBM Research and ACS (Telcordia), working under DARPA's CORONET program, have been developing a dynamic, cloud-to-cloud interconnection framework for very high-bandwidth, on-demand services.

In a blog posting, AT&T's Chris Rice writes that AT&T's vision for a User-Defined Network Cloud (UDNC) becomes much more practical when it becomes possible to set-up cloud-to-cloud connections in under a minute. A prototype developed by the researches can enable setup times as short as 40 seconds, compared with the previous setup time of several days.


In October 2012, AT&T and IBM announced a partnership to deliver secure, network-enabled cloud services.

The service combines AT&T virtual private networking and IBM SmartCloud Enterprise+ cloud capabilities using software from AT&T Labs to create a new, fast and highly-secure shared cloud service.  This will enable enterprises to quickly and reliably move data and applications between their own data centers (private clouds) and this new cloud service.  The software from AT&T Labs dynamically allocates networking resources to computing resources, automating functions that are often performed manually. The companies said more than 70 security functions are built-in, ensuring that traffic never leaves the protection of the VPN.

NTT Com Delivers Wholesale IaaS Solution to Philippines’ PLDT

NTT Communications announced a partnership with the Philippines’ largest telecommunication company, Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT), to provide PLDT’s enterprise customers with NTT Com’s enterprise-grade, infrastructure as a service (IaaS) solution, Enterprise Cloud.

Commercial services are scheduled to begin in or after September.

Enterprise Cloud, which enables enterprises to virtually access their individualized customer portal to configure virtual data centers, is offered via multiple servers in multiple international locations, including Japan, US, UK, Germany, Australia, Thailand, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia, totaling nine countries and 11 data center locations.

PLDT will provide globally standardized IaaS services combining Enterprise Cloud and its own network services for Philippine-based enterprises. The enterprises will use these services to develop new solutions for global operations, especially in countries where NTT Com’s cloud is present, and to strengthen business continuity using NTT Com resources outside the Philippines.

“We are very pleased to offer this highly value-added IaaS solution to clients through our new partnership,” said PLDT’s EVP Alberto. “NTT Com provides optimum ICT solutions for multinationals operating out of the Philippines, and for Philippine corporations who choose to go global. With this partnership between NTT Com and PLDT, our clients may now capitalize on PLDT’s local accessibility and interfacing, and also seamless, high-quality cloud services.”


SkyBox Builds LEED Silver Houston Data Center

Skybox Datacenters, a Dallas-based data center developer, has begun construction on an 86,960-square-foot data center in the fast-growing Energy Corridor of Houston, Texas.

The new Skybox Houston One facility initially offers four private 10,000-square-foot data halls and could be expanded to 12 data halls within its 20-acre campus.  The facility is designed to a LEED Silver standard and the FM I-150 roof system with concrete roof deck is designed to resist 190 mph hurricane grade winds.  It boasts 12.5 megawatts of critical load and is powered by a loop-fed, 300-megawatt electric utility substation immediately adjacent to the site.

"Houston has become a very dynamic datacenter market over the past 2-3 years.  A meaningful contributor to the market has been major oil & gas firms and their need for fast, low-latency access to geoseismic data," says Bryan Loewen, global datacenter practice leader at Newmark Grubb Knight Frank. "Additionally, we expect the requirements for local datacenter product to only increase as the reliance and dependence on technology increases for all companies in the greater Houston market."


AT&T Confirms All-Fiber GigaPower Rollout for Nashville

AT&T confirmed that it will rollout its all-fiber GigaPower network in the City of Nashville and is also considering five other Tennessee areas – Clarksville, Franklin, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, and Spring Hill as candidate municipalities for the service..

The AT&T GigaPower network will provide services offered over an all fiber network featuring symmetrical upload and download broadband speeds up to 1 Gigabit per second, and AT&T's most advanced TV services to consumers and businesses.

Specific locations of availability and pricing for the Nashville market will be announced at a later date.


  • On April 21, 2014, AT&T announced a major initiative to expand its ultra-fast AT&T GigaPower fiber network to up to 100 candidate cities and municipalities across 25 markets nationwide.  

  • As part of its proposed acquisition of DIRECTV, AT&T has also committed to extend the all-fiber AT&T GigaPower network to an additional 2 million customer locations.

VisionChina and Huawei Contemplate Free Wi-Fi for Public Transport

VisionChina Media Inc., a company that currently operates over 100,000 digital display screens in subway stations in 19 Chinese cities, is looking to Huawei and China Unicom to help launch a free Wi-Fi service for the public transport sector.  The idea is to provide free Wi-Fi with advanced video and location-based services in urban buses and trains.  The 3G/4G/LTE network would be used for backhaul.

"We believe the establishment of a national WIFI network across China's mass transportation systems will deliver unique value to urban commuters and national and multinational advertisers alike," said Mr. Limin Li, VisionChina Media's chairman and chief executive officer. "We aim to provide ubiquitous, high quality internet access that will make the daily commute for tens of millions of daily riders more enjoyable, while offering advertisers big data analytics and precision marketing ophttp://www.visionchina.cn/portunities that will help ensure ads reach their audiences more effectively."


ViaSat Acquires Gray Labs for High-rate Satellite Modem

ViaSat has acquired a high-rate modem product line and custom spacecraft technologies for earth observation from Gray Labs Inc., a private company based in Georgia. Applications include high-speed intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) data communications. Financial terms were not disclosed.

ViaSat plans to continue to support Gray Labs products and customers with state-of-the-art design from its Duluth, Georgia campus. The former staff of Gray Labs has relocated to ViaSat facilities, and Dr. Jim Gray, former Gray Labs president, has assumed a senior consulting position at ViaSat where he will help expand the capabilities of satellite-to-earth communications for ISR.

"The output of ISR sensors is growing exponentially, so maximizing satellite data rates is increasingly important," said Kent Leka, VP of Satellite Ground Systems at ViaSat. "The expertise we obtained from Gray Labs in high-rate communications gives us important new ways to deliver a higher level of performance and increased data throughput for commercial and government customers. We're also gaining technical expertise and an entrepreneurial spirit that the Gray Labs team has in common with ViaSat."


Mavenir Posts Q2 Revenue of $33 Million, up 29% YoY

Mavenir Systems reported Q2 revenue of $33.3 million, an increase of 29% year-over-year and 16% quarter-over-quarter. GAAP operating loss for the second quarter of 2014 was $(2.2) million, compared with $(0.9) million in the second quarter of 2013 and $(2.2) million in the first quarter of 2014.

"We achieved a number of financial and business milestones again this quarter. The company delivered a strong quarter with strong financial results, again setting a new quarterly revenue record with Gross Margin above the high end of our guidance range,” said Pardeep Kohli, president and chief executive officer, Mavenir Systems. “Mavenir is seeing momentum in our two major areas of focus that are driving mobile network transformation - the adoption of all-IP technology and the build out of next generation networks using software-based solutions. LTE network transformation has begun in key markets with several VoLTE launches and announcements in the second quarter indicating that 2014 is the year of VoLTE.”

For Q3, Mavenir provided an estimated revenue range from $31.0 million to $33.0 million, reflecting growth of 19% to 27% over the third quarter of 2013.


Telefónica’s Movistar Pay TV Service Launches Cloud DVR with ALU

Telefónica’s Movistar pay TV service in Spain has implemented a network-based DVR service that gives subscribers access to up to 350 hours of personal online recording through their set-top boxes.

The service uses Alcatel-Lucent’s Cloud DVR solution, which also includes a "mosaic" TV feature for major sporting events also allows customers to select between six different streams of the live action.

TE Connectivity Floats $1 Billion in Senior Notes

TE Connectivity Ltd. (NYSE: TEL) ("TE Connectivity") today announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Tyco Electronics Group, has priced an offering of:

  • $500 million aggregate principal amount of its floating rate senior notes due 2016;
  • $250 million aggregate principal amount of its 2.350% senior notes due 2019; and
  • $250 million aggregate principal amount of its 3.450% senior notes due 2024.


Sunday, July 27, 2014

California Looks to CalCloud for Gov IT in the Cloud

The California Department of Technology and IBM introduced CalCloud, a public-private partnership aimed at migrating government services into the cloud.

IBM is supplying and managing the infrastructure, while the California Department of Technology will manage all other aspects of the service offering. In addition to IBM, CalCloud partners include AT&T, which will provide network services for the core and edge networks, and IT consulting firms Alexan International and KPMG will help drive CalCloud’s adoption rate and migration to the new service.

More than 20 state departments have already requested IT services through CalCloud, which uses security standards based on National Institute of Standards (NIST) for cloud based services and FedRAMP.

The California Department of Technology said the main benefit of CalCloud will be to give state and local government the ability to buy only the computing resources needed with the flexibility to quickly scale up or scale down resources as workloads demand.

CalCloud is an important step towards providing faster and more cost effective IT services to California state departments and ultimately to the citizens of California,” said Marybel Batjer, Secretary of the Government Operations Agency.

“Transforming how the State of California delivers technology services is not only more efficient and cost effective, it will spur innovation with cloud capabilities that are open and secure,” said Erich Clementi, Senior Vice President, IBM Global Technology Services. “California is setting an example for other states on how to use cloud technology to improve coordination across agencies and municipalities while reducing the barriers and duplication that can impede the delivery of government services.”


Intel's Latest SSDs Offer 256-bit Encryption and OPAL 2.0 Policy Control

Intel introduced a new SSD Pro 2500 Series drive featuring security and manageability features aimed at business users.

The Intel Pro 2500 Series SSDs are self-encrypting drives (SED) utilizing hardware-based 256-bit encryption to protect data without a loss of performance. Additionally, the new Intel drives feature the Trusted Computing Group's OPAL 2.0 standard and are Microsoft eDrive capable. These policy-based controls help to prevent data breaches and support crypto erase to repurpose the drive for reuse.

Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series offers IT departments peace of mind with advanced security features and capabilities designed for businesses ranging from small companies through large IT-managed enterprises. Security and remote manageability features, combined with

Intel also claims lower annual failure rates (under 1%) than hard disk drives (HDDs), which typically reach as high as 5% in mobile devices.

"The Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series is the second-generation OPAL-based client storage solution that helps IT departments protect their users' data and also provides valuable features to reduce operational costs," stated Candace Worley, senior vice president and general manager, Endpoint Security, McAfee*, part of Intel Security. "The Pro 2500 Series is a perfect companion to our data protection solutions, managed by McAfee ePolicy Orchestrator, all working in concert to provide IT departments with data security, management and control, wherever their endpoints may be."

The drives can also be managed remotely with Intel vPro technology.

The Intel SSD Pro 2500 Series will be available in both 2.5-inch and M.2 form factors and in capacities ranging from 120GB to 480GB.


Equinix Buys Out Brazil's ALOG Data Center Business

Equinix has bought the remaining shares it did not already own in ALOG Data Centers of Brazil for US$225 million in cash.

In April 2011, Equinix, together with Riverwood Capital, acquired a majority stake of ALOG, with Equinix holding a 53 percent ownership of the company. With today’s announcement, Equinix has purchased the remaining 47 percent stake and will integrate the company into Equinix.

ALOG serves approximately 1,500 customers across its four data centers in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.

“ALOG’s strong position in Brazil and complementary business model provided Equinix the opportunity to establish a presence in an important emerging market and meet growing demand for data center services in Latin America,” said Karl Strohmeyer, president of the Americas for Equinix. “The ALOG team has done an outstanding job of leveraging the company’s strength in Brazil – specifically in cloud and mobility – and integrating it into Equinix’s global footprint to extend the world’s leading data center platform into Brazil.”

Equinix also announced an expansion of its second São Paulo (SP2) International Business Exchange (IBX) data center. SP2 is a Tier III-certified data center located in the São Paulo suburb of Tamboré. is home to two popular online services in Brazil: Apontador, a search engine visited every day by one in five Brazilians, and Maplink, an API geo-localization platform. Both are owned by Local LBS Group, and collectively generate 40 terabytes of data per month.