Thursday, July 31, 2014

T-Mobile Goes Nationwide with VoLTE

Just two months after activating Voice over LTE (VoLTE) in its first market (the Seattle area), T-Mobile announced the availability of VoLTE across its entire U.S. LTE network, which now covers 233 million Americans in 325 metro areas. The rollout uses Enhanced Single Radio Voice Call Continuity (eSRVCC), a new LTE Advanced function.

T-Mobile's VoLTE is currently supported on LG G Flex, Samsung Galaxy S 5, Galaxy Light and Note 3 devices.  The company said that more than 2.8 million VoLTE-capable devices are already on its network, and that customers have made more than 52 million VoLTE calls to date. For HD Voice, T-Mobile US uses a 23.85 Kbps voice codec rate.

In May, Neville Ray, Chief Technology Officer at T-Mobile, said VoLTE would reach nationwide status by the end of the year.

T-Mobile is also aggressively rolling out Wideband LTE, which the company defines as at least 15+15MHz.  Wideband LTE is already in 17 metro areas.  T-Mobile expects at least 26 total metro areas will be up with Wideband LTE by the end of the year. The carrier is also starting to roll out its new low-band 700 MHz A-Block spectrum. Wideband LTE enables peak network download speeds up to nearly 150 Mbps.

In July, Mavenir Systems confirmed that T-Mobile US' recent VoLTE launch was enabled using Mavenir’s converged IMS voice solution, which was first deployed to launch Wi-Fi Calling in 2011. T-Mobile leveraged those early investments in Wi-Fi Calling to accelerate network readiness and launch VoLTE service.

Mavenir provides the end-to-end IMS solution including key IMS components such as the CSCF (Call Session Control Function), Session Border Controller (SBC), Telephony Application Server (TAS), as well as professional services to perform verification and integration testing to ensure successful end-to-end service interworking.

Nokia to buy Panasonic’s Basestation Business

Nokia Networks plans to acquire part of the wireless networks business of Panasonic System Networks.  Financial terms were not disclosed.

The deal covers Panasonic’s LTE/3G wireless base station system business for mobile operators and related wireless equipment system business.

“Japan is a key market for us, and this agreement is a major milestone in forging closer ties in Japan,” said Ashish Chowdhary, Executive Vice President, AMEA, Nokia Networks. “The acquisition of part of Panasonic’s wireless network business would further strengthen our mobile broadband portfolio and add significant value for Japanese operators.”

Alcatel-Lucent Ponders IPO for Submarine Networks Business

Alcatel-Lucent is  exploring a potential IPO for its Alcatel-Lucent Submarine Networks (ASN) business.  The move could help finance an expansion of its telecom submarine systems and its diversification into the Oil & Gas market.  Alcatel-Lucent plans tp retain the majority of the ownership. Subject to market
conditions, this capital opening is targeted to take place in the first half of 2015.

Alcatel-Lucent Sees Strength in Europe & China, LTE Rollouts Expand

Alcatel-Lucent reported second quarter 2014 revenues of Euro 3,279 million, growing 0.7% year-on-year at constant exchange rates and comparable perimeter. Revenues for the Group excluding Managed Services, reflecting the termination or restructuring of loss-making contracts, grew 5.0% year-on-year. The company cited a very strong quarter in wireless, notably with LTE roll-outs in China and US.

Gross margin reached 32.6% of revenues in the quarter, improving by 140 basis points year-on-year, thanks to cost savings. There was a net loss (Group share) of Euro (298) million in Q2 2014, or Euro (0.11) per share.

"I am proud of the very significant improvement achieved in the second quarter which demonstrates the fourth consecutive quarter of consistent delivery under the Shift Plan. With the upcoming reimbursement of the secured loan and the subsequent recovery of the full ownership of its patents, Alcatel-Lucent recaptures the full control of its destiny and can close the first step of its transformation. The Group can now embark on the second chapter of its turnaround story: innovate, transform and grow while keeping intact the commitment of returning to positive free cash flow in 2015," stated Michel Combes, CEO of Alcatel-Lucent.

Some highlights:

  • North America was lower by 2.6% year-over-year, while sales in Europe grew 6% (excluding Managed services)  Asia Pacific posted a solid 25.2% year-over-year growth, driven by LTE network roll-outs in China. In the rest of World, MEA declined at a mid single digit, while CALA remained challenging.
  • Core Networking segment revenues were Euro 1,369 million in Q2 2014, down 10.0% compared to Q2 2013. IP Routing revenues were Euro 561 million in Q2 2014, down 7.0% against a strong comparison base in the year-ago quarter, with continuing growth in APAC and steady performance in EMEA. There were four new customer wins for the 7950 XRS IP Core router, including Chorus in New Zealand, for a total of 28 wins to date. Nuage Networks added 3 new wins in the quarter, totaling 8 customers. Th 7450 Ethernet Service Switch was selected by NTT DoCoMo to enhance the speed and capacity of its backhaul network.
  • The 1830 Photonic Service Switch (PSS) represented 43% of terrestrial optical product revenues in the quarter, up 12 percentage points year-on-year, and now has over 480 customers. 100G shipments represented 36% of total WDM line cards shipments in Q2 2014 compared to 27% in Q2 2013.
  • Alcatel-Lucent has shipped over 15,000 100G ports lifetime-to-date.
  • IP Platforms revenues decreased 19.2% year-on-year to Euro 324 million in Q2 2014.
  • Access segment revenues were Euro 1,907 million in Q2 2014, a 9.5% increase compared to Q2 2013.
  • Wireless Access revenues were Euro 1,299 million, an increase of 28.1% year-on-year.
  • Fixed Access revenues were Euro 521 million in Q2 2014, an increase of 2.9% from Q2 2013. There were two new VDSL2 vectoring customers in the quarter, bringing the total to 22.
  • Managed Services revenues were Euro 77 million, decreasing by 62.8%, reflecting the company's strategy to terminate or restructure loss-making contracts.

France's Iliad Bids US$15 Billion for 56% Stake in T-Mobile US

Iliad submitted a proposal to T-Mobile U.S. to acquire 56.6% of the company's outstanding shares for $15 billion, or $33 per share.

Iliad said it is making the offer because the T-Mobile is a disruptive competitor in the large and attractive U.S. mobile market.  Unlike a contemplated Sprint + T-Mobile combination, Iliad does not believe there will be any regulatory hurdles to its proposal.

Iliad currently has about 8.6 million mobile subscribers under its "Free" brand in France.

New Construction in Silicon Valley - Samsung

New construction is underway for Samsung Semiconductor at corner of First Street and Tasman in San Jose, California.

The new $300 million Samsung building, which will be the tallest in the area at 10 stories, boasts 1.1 million square feet, a 7-story parking garage, a variety of employee amenities and a landscaped city plaza and open courtyard at its center. The tower will be clad in white metal and clear glass, which the company sees as evocative of its products.

Photos on 01-August-2014

New Construction in Silicon Valley - Stadium TechCenter

New construction is underway at Stadium TechCenter in Santa Clara, California.

Located on Great America Boulevard at Highway 237, the 226,500 sq. ft. project is named after the new Levi’s Stadium located nearby. A new Class A office building will adjoin the campus occupied by Dell. Other tech companies nearby include Arista, Marvell, Brocade, Ericsson, Polycom, Global Foundries, Cisco, etc.

Photos on 31-July-2014

China Telecom Colocates in CoreSite's Silicon Valley Data Center

CoreSite announced a multi-year contract with China Telecom to expand the U.S. data center footprint of one of China Telecom’s premier customers.  The deployment is located at CoreSite’s Coronado data center campus in Santa Clara, California.

CoreSite's Coronado campus is part of the larger CoreSite Silicon Valley market, which is currently comprised of five data centers and more than 860,000 square feet of data center space.

PMC Posts Q2 Revenue of $127 Million, Strength in Optical and Mobile

PMC-Sierra posted Q2 revenue of $126.8 million, an increase of 0.2 percent from $126.5 million in the first quarter of 2014, and a decrease of 1.0 percent compared to $127.6 million in the second quarter of 2013. GAAP net loss in the second quarter of 2014 totaled $3.5 million, or $0.02 per share, compared to a GAAP net loss in the first quarter of 2014 of $4.2 million, or $0.02 per share.

“We have closed another solid quarter with both revenue and non-GAAP EPS above the midpoint of our expectations. Strength in both our Optical and Mobile products more than offset lower revenue from our Storage products due to inventory consumption at two of our larger customers,” said Greg Lang, PMC president and chief executive officer. “As we look to the balance of 2014, we believe we will see four key areas contribute to growth: 12G SAS, Flash Controllers, OTN and RF products. After years of investment, we are pleased to see these product cycles take hold, fueled by the continued escalation of data traffic.”

Delloro: Core Router Market Expected to Hit $3.4 Billion by 2018

Core router product upgrades with higher speed ports and an increase in traffic in the metro will drive the worldwide Service Provider Core Router market to over $3.4 billion by 2018, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group.

With continued growth in IP traffic demand, many Service Providers are coming closer to exhausting Internet backbone capacity and scalability on their aging core router platforms.  With recently introduced products that meet these higher capacity needs, Service Providers are likely to perform a product upgrade cycle over the next couple of years after comprehensive testing and trials,” said Alam Tamboli, Business Analyst at Dell’Oro Group.  “Furthermore, the growth of traffic in metro area networks is expected to outpace that of traffic in backbone networks due to a shift in IP traffic patterns related to content delivery networks and data centers.  This shift in patterns has caused many Service Providers to install core routers into their metro networks, effectively increasing the total available market to Service Provider Core Routers,” added Tamboli.

Alcatel-Lucent Appoints Laura Quatela to Head Intellectual Property Licensing

Alcatel-Lucent appointed Laura G. Quatela as Executive Vice-President of Intellectual Property, a role where she will hold executive responsibility for leading the company’s program to monetize its substantial portfolio of patents. She brings to Alcatel-Lucent extensive experience in intellectual property management from a 15-year career at Eastman Kodak Company, where she held various executive and senior management positions in intellectual property, legal affairs and finance. Most recently, Mrs. Quatela was President and co-COO of Kodak and managed its consumer businesses.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Sprint's Spark LTE Network Now in 27 Markets

Sprint's Spark network upgrade, which aggregates the company’s 800MHz, 1.9GHz and 2.5GHz spectrum, continues to progress and is now available in 27 markets across the country.  Sprint currently has 22 devices on the market with Spark-compatible aggregation capabilities, including the recently launched Samsung Galaxy S 5 Sport, LG G3, and HTC One (M8) Harman/Kardon edition.

Sprint’s replacement of its entire 3G and voice network is largely complete and network performance metrics continue to improve. Sprint also hit its mid-year target for 4G LTE coverage, as the company now covers approximately 254 million people in 488 cities across the country including Pittsburgh and Buffalo, N.Y..

In addition, Sprint HD Voice service is also now available nationwide. Over 16 million customers currently have HD Voice-enabled devices.

In its newly released quarterly financial report, Sprint posted a net loss of 220,000 customers in the quarter, compared to a net loss of 383,000 customers last quarter and 520,000 customers in the prior year period. Sprint blamed the postpaid net losses of 181,000 on elevated churn levels related to service disruption associated with the company’s ongoing network overhaul.

Iridium Selects Radisys' T-Series ATCA for Ground Station Network

 Iridium Communications, which operates a global mobile voice and data network powered by 66 low-Earth orbiting (LEO) cross-linked satellites, is to use Radisys’ T-Series commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) platforms to upgrade its ground station infrastructure associated with its next generation global satellite constellation – Iridium NEXT.

Iridium NEXT, scheduled to begin launching in 2015, will deliver more bandwidth and higher data speeds to serve the rapidly-expanding demand for truly global mobile communications. In preparation for the launch of Iridium NEXT, the ground station upgrade is recently complete – across six global ground stations, and the gateway infrastructure.

The Radisys T-Series platform is based on an open standards-based ATCA platform architecture that utilizes merchant silicon and open source software. Radisys said it developed the T-Series platform to be in service for a minimum of seven years. The modular, high-availability platform can be used for a number of applications.

“We are delighted to be working with Iridium on this exciting global communications project,” said Keate Despain, vice president, business development and platform product line management, Radisys. “Our T-Series platforms possess all the necessary qualities to ensure that Iridium enjoys a cost effective, flexible and reliable deployment for Iridium NEXT. This will enable the next generation satellite constellation to stand up to the challenge of delivering effective mobile communications for the entire world with the latest market-leading technology.”

“Iridium NEXT will provide more services at faster speeds, substantially enhancing opportunities for our partners and customers,” said Scott Smith, Chief Operating Officer, Iridium. “Two things were important to Iridium in selecting the Radisys T-Series platform for the Iridium NEXT ground station infrastructure upgrade. First, we needed a platform that was supported by a multi-vendor open ecosystem to ensure its longevity. Being tied to one vendor’s proprietary solution simply wasn’t an option. Second, we needed a platform that provided improved price-performance to enable us to reach our technology and business objectives.”

Cavium to acquire Xpliant for Ethernet Switching Silicon for SDN

Cavium agreed to acquire Xpliant, a start-up working on high performance, high density switch silicon for approximately $90 million in cash, stock and prior equity investments. Cavium was a financial backer of Xpliant and invested $15 million in the company.

Xpliant, which is based in San Jose, California has developed a family of switching silicon solutions featuring 10G/40G/100G port speeds and port densities supporting throughput ranging from multi-hundred gigabit to multi-terabit. The company claims its innovations in switching architecture will enable increased intelligence and flexibility beyond what is available today in commodity Ethernet switch silicon while delivering market leading bandwidth, throughput and scalability along with unprecedented flexibility/programmability.

Cavium said the addition of Xpliant’s family of switching solutions, which are critical building components for next generation infrastructure, will be highly synergistic with its existing infrastructure product offerings such as ThunderX, OCTEON and LiquidIO families. This family of switching solutions will enable Cavium to significantly increase its share of BOM in the data center, service provider and enterprise markets. Additionally, these products will allow Cavium to offer complete end to end solutions for compute, networking and storage, optimized for best performance, cost and power for next generation virtualized software defined infrastructure.

“Xpliant as developed a disruptive family of switching silicon solutions for next generation software defined networks,” said Syed Ali, President and CEO, Cavium. “This product line significantly expands our addressable TAM and will be an exciting addition to our portfolio of solutions for the data center, service provider and enterprise markets. The Xpliant line of products is highly synergistic with Cavium’s existing infrastructure products and will enable Cavium to deliver highly optimized end to end solutions to our customers. We are extremely pleased with the strong customer engagements and traction which are an excellent validation of Xpliant’s technology and products”.

Australia's NBN Co Extends Managed Service Deal with Ericsson

Australia's National Broadband Network Company (NBN Co) will continue its fixed wireless managed service partnership with Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) and has expanded the partnership to include operation of the ground component of the Long Term Satellite Solution (LTSS) and customer service activation. Ericsson will continue to be responsible for the operation of the fixed wireless network, and will take on the additional responsibility of managing the satellite ground systems when launched. Financial terms were  not disclosed.

The new agreement makes Ericsson the primary service partner for both NBN Co's fixed wireless and satellite services, which are planned to cover over 1 million households.

NBN Co expects new activations for high-speed broadband services in rural Australia to reach 12,000 to 15,000 installations per month at its peak in 2016.

  • In February 2014, Australia's NBN Co awarded a key contract to Optus to operate two purpose-built satellites that aim to deliver high speed broadband across rural and remote Australia.  Under the contract Optus will provide tracking, telemetry and control services in connection with NBN’s Long Term Satellite Service. The two satellites currently under construction are scheduled to launch in 2015. The contract has a five year term, with options to extend for up to 15 years.

Inphi to Acquire Cortina's Interconnect & Transport Business

Inphi Corporation, which supplies high-speed, mixed signal semiconductor solutions for the communications, data center and computing markets, agreed to acquire Cortina Systems' High-Speed Interconnect and Optical Transport product lines for $52.5 million in cash and $73.5 million in stock. The acquisition does not include Cortina’s Access and Digital Home business, which is currently scheduled to be divested prior to the acquisition close and will continue as an independent company.

Inphi said the acquisition will solidify its position as a leading-edge supplier of optical and networking interconnect solutions while further extending its product portfolio for the fast growing enterprise and cloud data center markets. Inphi’s Networking Interconnect products with their leadership in 100G SerDes and CDR, will be complemented with 10G/15G/40G PHY interconnects, thus completing a high growth product portfolio and creating a market leader for high speed networking interconnects.

A10 Reports Revenue of $45.1 million, up 50% YoY

A10 Networks reported that total Q2 revenue grew 50 percent year-over-year to $45.1 million, compared with $30.1 million in the second quarter of 2013. A10 Networks second quarter 2014 GAAP net loss was $1.3 million compared with a net loss of $10.2 million in the second quarter of 2013.

“Our strong 50 percent year-over-year revenue growth demonstrates the progress we have made in growing our market footprint and diversifying our customer base,” said Lee Chen, president and chief executive officer of A10 Networks. “U.S. revenue more than doubled year-over-year and grew 44 percent over the first quarter, however, total revenue was slightly below our guidance as a result of lower service provider spending in Japan where several deals pushed into future quarters.

Cavium Reports Q2 Revenue of $91 Million, up 22% YoY

Cavium posted Q2 revenue of $90.7 million, an 8.9% sequential increase from the $83.2 million reported in the first quarter of 2014 and a 22.2% year-over-year increase from the $74.2 million reported in the second quarter of 2013.

Net loss (GAAP) was $11.0 million, or $(0.21) per diluted share, compared to net income attributable to the company of $2.3 million, or $0.04 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2014. Gross margins were 62.6%.

Ruckus Wireless Hits Q2 Revenue of $81 Million, up 27% YoY

Ruckus Wireless posted Q2 revenue of $81.0 million, an increase of 26.8% from the second quarter of 2013. GAAP net income was $1.4 million for the second quarter of 2014, compared with $0.7 million for the second quarter of 2013. GAAP operating income was $4.1 million for the second quarter of 2014, compared with $1.1 million for the second quarter of 2013.

"We are very pleased with our execution in the second quarter as we continue to capitalize on the market needs for carrier-class Wi-Fi. Momentum was strong across both our service provider and enterprise businesses. We delivered strong financial results, reporting revenue, gross margins and EPS above guidance," said Selina Lo, president and chief executive officer, Ruckus Wireless. "Our Smart Wi-Fi technology continues to differentiate us against our competitors, our new products are gaining traction and we are seeing new market drivers that will further our momentum."

Swisscom Marches Forward with Vectored VDSL

Swisscom announced a broadband milestone: over a million homes and businesses already connected to ultra-fast broadband network.

At the beginning of 2014, Swisscom started to roll out VDSL vectoring technology into those areas where Fibre to the Curb had been installed/  Across Switzerland, Swisscom has switched 200,000 homes and businesses over to vectoring, which makes it one of Europe's top providers. The roll-out of Fibre to the Street (FTTS) has already been completed in ten municipalities, for example Croy (VD), Wila (ZH), Iragna (TI), Prêles (BE) and Rothenthurm (SZ). The network is currently being rolled out to over 100 further municipalities.

Thanks to FTTS, broadband speeds of up to 100 Mbps can now be achieved. Swisscom is also collaborating with Huawei to develop, a successor technology to VDSL.