Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Interoute to Acquire Vtesse for UK Network and Data Center

Interoute Communications has acquired the UK Vtesse group. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Vtesse operates an extensive fiber network connecting 55 data centres and 48 major towns and cities in England, Scotland and Wales.  The company provides metropolitan and Wide Area Network (WAN) solutions to some of the largest companies in the world both directly and via leading global system integrators, such as IBM, ARUP, Redstone and Logicalis. Its enterprise customers including Lloyds TSB, Poundland, Friends Provident, Invesco, DEFRA and the AA, will now have access to Interoute’s advanced Unified ICT portfolio of services.

Vtesse also operates a Tier 3 data center, situated 25 minutes from central London, with 2,700m² space, capable of accommodating 877 racks at 5kW each via a 5MW power supply.  The companies said this is an ideal site for colocation, disaster recovery back-up for Interoute’s London City data centers.

Interoute said the acquisition enables it to bring its VDC cloud service and its Enterprise Unified ICT portfolio of advanced Computing, Connectivity and Unified Communications solutions to businesses across the UK.

“When you look at the options for European businesses wanting to take advantage of flexible, scalable cloud infrastructure, they are often limited to the public cloud providers who think Europe can be served by one European data centre location connected by the public internet. With this acquisition Interoute is adding its twelfth data centre in Europe and over 7000km of UK network to its 60,000km pan-European global Cloud services platform. This provides a highly resilient, secure low latency Cloud platform that businesses everywhere can benefit from,” stated Gareth Williams, Interoute CEO.

http://www.interoute.com/
http://www.vtesse.com/

Google Trims Cloud Compute Pricing In Step with Moore's Law

Google announced a 10% price reduction in all Google Compute Engine instances types, across all regions, effective immediately.

Earlier this year, Google said it would price cloud computing in accordance with Moore’s Law, setting a new standard for economics in the public cloud. The latest price cuts are attributed to a decrease in Google's underlying cost of hardware and efficiency gains in running its service and managing its data centers.

https://atmosphere.withgoogle.com

HP Intros 64-bit ARM-based Servers

HP introduced two ARM-based servers, including the first enterprise-class 64-bit ARM-based server, as part of its  HP ProLiant Moonshot portfolio.

HP describes the launch as a major milestone in next-generation infrastructure.

The HP ProLiant Moonshot servers deliver high-density, ARM-based systems for hyperscale, data center environments to help customers improve application performance, drive business innovation and deliver breakthrough data center economics.

“ARM technology will change the dynamics of how enterprises build IT solutions to quickly address customer challenges,” said Antonio Neri, senior vice president and general manager, Servers and Networking, HP. “HP’s history, culture of innovation and proven leadership in server technology position us as the most qualified player to empower customers with greater choice in the server marketplace.”

HP is also extending the reach of the growing ARM ecosystem to enable developers to test and port code stacks and solutions to the ARM architecture with the launch of an ProLiant Moonshot Discovery Lab.

China Huaxin Acquires Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise

China Huaxin Post & Telecommunication Economy Development Center has acquired Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise for EUR 202 million. Alcatel-Lucent will retain a 15% minority stake in the divested business, as well as maintaining a commercial relationship with it in support of its growth ambitions under new ownership.

Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise, which has its headquarters in Paris, has over 2,700 employees worldwide and operations in more than 80 countries.

Alcatel-Lucent said the divestment of this division follows The Shift Plan, launched in June 2013, to refocus itself as a specialist in IP, Cloud and Ultra-Broadband Access, while realigning its balance sheet, implementing cost savings of Euro 1 billion and generating at least Euro 1 billion through selective asset sales by the end of 2015.

China Huaxin Post & Telecommunication Economy Development Center (“China Huaxin” ) is an industrial investment company that seeks long-term commercial growth opportunities in the Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) sector.

YUAN Xin, President, China Huaxin said: “We are really excited by the acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise. Our long-term investment approach will help Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise deliver on its ambition while enabling us to strengthen our strategic position in the enterprise communications arena. Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise has very strong assets and a recognized leadership in many markets across the globe. We are looking forward to leveraging our investment capabilities and experience to bring this business to the next level, both in size and market outreach.”

http://www.sinohx.com/en/news_content.aspx?id=128
http://enterprise.alcatel-lucent.com/

Compass-EOS Introduces SDN Forwarding Plane

Compass-EOS introduces its SDN Forwarding Plane, a new networking element that aims to replace expensive and complex routers used in service provider networks.

The Compass-EOS said key attributes of its SDN Forwarding Plane include:

  • A scalable, high-capacity, low-latency, programmable secure packet forwarding  platform
  • Support for SDN/NFV-based open-standard protocol
  • The Compass-EOS AnyFLOW Architecture, a unique, hybrid SDN architecture that combines network topology resolution and packet forwarding on multiple levels
  • Compass-EOS icPhotonics technology for scalability and low-latency

Compass-EOS has also joined the Open Daylight open-source SDN community and is planning to contribute code and expertise for WAN-centric SDN applications.

Compass-EOS also disclosed a new chip on its product roadmap that will enable its routers and SDN Forwarding Plane solution to grow from its current total capacity of 1.34 Terabits/sec to higher than 10 Terabits/sec.

“With the world’s first commercial technology combining high-capacity inter-chip optical interconnect and digital processing in the same silicon chip, Compass-EOS’ icPhotonics™ technology gives us the unique opportunity to completely transform the  information and communications technology industry as we know it, unleashing a new generation of devices and innovation that disrupts the current network equipment paradigm," said Matt Bross, Compass-EOS Chairman and CEO.

“This gives birth to a new network element – an SDN Forwarding Plane that takes its instructions from processes in the cloud and defines in detail what each flow in the plane is doing in a packet-by-packet basis,” Bross continued. “This type of technology capability simply doesn’t exist in legacy platforms. The SDN Forwarding Plane is more powerful yet less complex and power hungry. More importantly, it can also incrementally scale through the simple addition of more devices, just like servers are used to scale data centers today.”

http://compass-eos.com/

Pica 8 Raises $12.5 Million for its Open-vSwitch SDN

Pica 8, a start-up based in Palo Alto, California with R&D in Beijing, China, secured $12.5 million in Series B funding for its open SDN system.

Pica 8 leverages commodity bare metal switches for its Open-vSwitch (OVS) SDN solution aimed at high-end data centers. PicOS provides extensive support for traditional switching and routing protocols.  Pica8 can provide PicOS, switching hardware or both in a fully integrated package as part of an end-to-end data center SDN solution.

The new funding came from a group of investors led by VantagePoint Capital Partners, Cross Head and Pacific Venture Partners (PVP), bringing its total funding to date to over $20 million.

http://www.pica8.com/


  • Pica 8 is headed by James Liao, who previously led product strategy for switching and data center products at original device manufacturer Quanta.



StackEngine Delivers Manageability & Automation for Docker Containers

StackEngine, a start-up based in Austin, Texas, unveiled its platform to simply and massively deploy, manage, and scale resilient Docker applications.

The company says tools like Chef and Puppet were built to automate systems, not containers.  Its solution specifically targets Docker containers, providing tools to discover, visualize, and manage small- to large-scale Docker deployments. The goal is to intelligently automate change and configuration management for containers.

StackEngine also announced $1 million in seed funding from Silverton Partners and LiveOak Venture Partners.

"We deeply believe that automation is the answer to an emergent problem in Docker and container technologies," said StackEngine CEO and Co-founder Bob Quillin. "We also believe a new and radically different approach is needed. Containerization instantly shifts the problem up the stack. StackEngine bridges that gap and gives enterprises the ability to deliver product faster, deploy more frequently, operate more reliably and run wherever is most optimal."

http://www.stackengine.com

Ericsson Acquires Ambient for Smart Grid Techologies

Ericsson has acquired Ambient Corporation, a provider of smart grid communications technology for utilities. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The Ambient smart grid communications platform, which includes hardware and software elements, features an open IP network architecture. The platform supports multiple communications technologies in parallel, including cellular, Wi-Fi, radio frequency (RF) and power line communications (PLC), and also provides serial and Ethernet connections. The platform enables the integration of various smart grid applications, such as smart metering, demand response, distribution automation and monitoring, and direct load control into a common infrastructure.

Ambient will be integrated into Ericsson's Global Services organization, which employs 64,000 services professionals based in 180 countries.

"At Ericsson we are increasingly using our experience in communications and providing managed services for networks that serve more than 1 billion subscribers worldwide to assist partners and customers in the utilities sector. We're helping utilities to adopt new types of applications and enable new business models, and I believe Ambient could make a big contribution to that effort," stated Magnus Mandersson, Executive Vice President and Head of Business Unit Global Services at Ericsson.

http://www.ericsson.com/news/1859937

Ambient was founded in 1996 and is based in Newton, Massachusetts.

In July 2014, Ambient filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Linux Foundation Launches Open Platform for NFV Project

The Linux Foundation is launching the Open Platform for NFV Project (OPNFV) with the goal of accelerating the commercial introduction of NFV products and services.

OPNFV will establish a carrier-grade, integrated, open source reference platform that industry peers will build together to advance the evolution of NFV and ensure consistency, performance and interoperability among multiple open source components. Because multiple open source NFV building blocks already exist, OPNFV will work with upstream projects to coordinate continuous integration and testing while filling development gaps.

The initial project objectives are to:

  • develop an integrated and tested open source platform that can be used to investigate and demonstrate core NFV functionality;
  • include proactive participation of leading end users to validate that OPNFV meets the needs of the end user community;
  • contribute to and participate in relevant open source projects that will be leveraged in the OPNFV reference platform;
  • establish an open ecosystem for NFV solutions based on open standards and open source software; and
  • promote OPNFV as the preferred open reference platform.

While not developing standards, OPNFV will work closely with ETSI’s NFV ISG, among others, to drive consistent implementation of standards for an open NFV reference platform. When open source software development is aligned with standards development, it can root out issues early, identify resolutions and become the de facto codebase, resulting in a far more economical approach to platform development.

OPNFV will license new components under the Apache License Version 2.0 and will work within the licensing requirements of upstream projects in order to contribute code back to these projects. A Board of Directors and Technical Steering Committee (TSC) will govern the initiative. The Board will be made up of representatives from member companies and will set the business direction and scope of the project. The TSC will also provide technical governance and leadership for the project.

Board officers for OPNFV include:

  • Prodip Sen, board chair  (HP)
  • Margaret Chiosi, president (AT&T)
  • Wenjing Chu, secretary (Dell)
  • Hui Deng, treasurer (China Mobile)

Platinum founding members of IPNFV include AT&T, Brocade, China Mobile, Cisco, Dell, Ericsson, HP, Huawei, IBM, Intel, Juniper Networks, NEC, Nokia Networks, NTT DOCOMO, Red Hat, Telecom Italia and Vodafone. Silver-level founding members include 6WIND, Alcatel-Lucent, ARM, Broadcom, CableLabs, Cavium, CenturyLink, Ciena, Citrix, ClearPath Networks, ConteXtream, Coriant, Cyan, Dorado Software, Ixia, Metaswitch Networks, Mirantis, Orange, Sandvine, Sprint and Wind River.

“Open source code has been proven to accelerate innovation and time to market for new technologies,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director at The Linux Foundation. “The Open Platform for NFV will bring together providers, cloud and infrastructure vendors, developers and users alike to define a new type of reference platform for the industry, integrating existing open source building blocks with new components and testing that accelerates development and deployment of NFV. We are excited to host this important industry initiative that will provide a common foundation for the future of networks.”

http://www.linuxfoundation.org/news-media/announcements/2014/09/telecom-industry-and-vendors-unite-build-common-open-platform

A 21-page whitepaper on OPNFV is here:
https://www.opnfv.org//sites/opnfv/files/pages/files/opnfv_whitepaper_092914.pdf

AT&T: 2 Million Connected Cars and Growing Fast

AT&T told a group of investors that it expects meaningful subscriber growth for its connected car services in the next three-to-five years. As of today, AT&T provides either wholesale or retail connectivity (“connected cars”) to nearly 2 million U.S. registered passenger vehicles with about 500,000 added in the third quarter.

In 2015, AT&T expects to connect nearly half of new wireless-connected U.S. passenger vehicles and the company expects to serve more than 10 million such vehicles by the end of 2017.

Initially, AT&T will get revenues through wholesale customer relationships with auto manufacturers.  Later, the company will have the opportunity to develop a direct retail relationship with drivers. Wholesale ARPU (average monthly revenue per subscriber), paid for by auto manufacturers, is expected to be in the low single digits and retail ARPU, paid for by the car owners, is expected to be similar to that of a tablet on an AT&T Mobile Share Value Plan.

AT&T also update some of its guidance on its wireless business:


  • For the third quarter of 2014, AT&T still expects wireless postpaid churn to be 1 percent or lower.
  • AT&T Next take rates are expected to be approximately 50 percent and to have over 400,000 postpaid smartphone gross adds from customers who “bring their own mobile devices” (commonly known as BYOD adds).
  • AT&T expects approximately 58 percent of its postpaid smartphone base to be on Mobile Share Value plans at the end of the third quarter.
  • AT&T Digital Life, the company’s home security and automation service, has approximately 140,000 subscribers at the end of the third quarter with more than half of those added in the last two quarters. 

http://www.att.com/gen/landing-pages?pid=5718

Oracle is Just Getting Started in Clouds: 19 of Top 20 SaaS Apps

Oracle is just getting started in the cloud, said Larry Ellison in a keynote address at Oracle Open World 2014 in San Francisco, but already almost every major enterprise SaaS application is built upon the Oracle database.  This includes Salesforce.com, Ariba, SuccessFactors, NetSuite and many others. This give Oracle “the largest portfolio of applications [in the cloud] of anybody".

Oracle’s cloud infrastructure consists of over 30,000 server and 400 petabytes of storage.  It currently support 62 million users a day.

For Oracle, one path to the cloud is to offer a seamless Database as a Service, enabling enterprise customers to move workloads between on-premises and public clouds via tools in the Oracle platform. To ensure security, Oracle will provide full isolation for network, VM and OS instances.  Oracle Database 12c is now available as a cloud service,

The advantage of migrating database apps to the Oracle cloud, said Ellison, include the cost advantages of multitenancy, high-speed analytics delivered by Oracle, and social & mobile capabilities that the company is rapidly developing.  Ellison showcased the speed boost from the Oracle Database In-Memory option, which delivers up to 1000x gains compared to conventional row-based searches.

Oracle also introduced an automated real-time data backup system, a Flash storage system, and the latest generation M7 SPARC chip, which incorporates memory protection and accelerators for database queries and data decompression.

http://medianetwork.oracle.com/

Windstream Cranks Up its 100G Long-haul Express Net with Infinera

Windstream has begun deployment of phase two of its 100G long-haul express network, which leverages Infinera’s optical transport platform. Windstream operates a nationwide fiber and IP network as well as 27 data centers.

Phase two of the 100G long-haul express network rollout covers about 4,100 miles and is scheduled to be complete by year’s end. It includes routes from Chicago to Omaha, Kansas City and St. Louis; Cleveland to Albany, N.Y.; Boston, New York City and Philadelphia; Atlanta to Charlotte and Ashburn, Va.; and Monroe, La., to Memphis.

Phase one of the project, announced in March, covers about 5,300 miles. It included routes from St. Louis to Chicago, Indianapolis, Lexington, Ky.; Knoxville, Tenn.; Atlanta, Memphis and Dallas; and from Chicago to Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, the District of Columbia and Ashburn, Va.

Infinera’s Intelligent Transport Network features the industry’s only commercially available single-card 500 Gb/s FlexCoherent super-channels based on Infinera's widely deployed photonic integrated circuits. This provides Windstream with a solution integrating DWDM optical transmission and non-blocking OTN switching in a single platform. Infinera's intelligent software combined with this converged platform automates manual operations to lower operational costs and enable faster service delivery. The Infinera DTN-X is designed to scale without compromise to single-card terabit super-channels and Terabit Ethernet in the future.

“Windstream, with our ‘smart solutions, personalized service’ brand promise, is committed to meeting the rapidly expanding data needs of our enterprise customers, and our high-capacity, low-latency long-haul network reflects that commitment,” said Randy Nicklas, executive vice president of engineering and chief technology officer for Windstream. “The Infinera platform we are deploying enables Windstream to rapidly provision network services that support our customers’ critical applications in a highly reliable and secure way.”

http://www.windstream.com

Alcatel-Lucent Invests in Ikanos for G.fast

Ikanos Communications announced that Tallwood Venture Capital and Alcatel-Lucent are purchasing $11.25 million and $5.0 million, or approximately 27.4 million and 12.2 million shares, of the company’s common stock, respectively, at $0.41 per share for aggregate gross proceeds of $16.25 million.

Alcatel-Lucent has committed to loan the company up to $10.0 million, subject to the terms of the loan agreement.  Tallwood has also agreed to purchase an additional $11.25 million of common stock at the same per share price.

In addition, Alcatel-Lucent has entered into a collaboration with Ikanos on the development of ultra-broadband products.

“As a world leader in ultra-broadband, we place a great deal of value in technology and innovation,” said Federico Guillen, president Fixed Networks Division at Alcatel-Lucent.  “We set a very high standard when it comes to selecting our partners.  The collaboration with Ikanos is aligned with our vision of bringing ultra-broadband to as many people as possible.”

http://www.ikanos.com

Blueprint: Carriers Set Their Sights on 1Gbps Rollouts with G.fast


By Kourosh Amiri, VP Marketing, Ikanos, Inc. Demand for high-speed broadband access by consumers has never been more intense than it is today.  Rapidly increasing numbers of connected devices inside the home and the adoption of higher-resolution (4K and 8K) television are just the tip of the iceberg.  Home automation, remote patient monitoring, and multi-player gaming – among countless other applications – are contributing to an Internet...

Ikanos Intros New High-Performance Gateway Processors


Ikanos Communications introduced a new line of Fusiv Vx500 processors for next-generation smart residential gateways. Ikanos' Vx58x vectoring xDSL gateway processors deliver an aggregate (combined upstream and downstream) data rate of up to 400Mbps with VDSL2 bonding, while providing 11GHz of offload processing for cloud access, dual-band, dual-concurrent WiFi acceleration (AC1750), LAN management and QoS, and secure content processing and distribution....

Ceragon Receives Follow-on Orders from Global Tier 1 Operator

Ceragon Networks announced the receipt of follow-on orders from a global Tier 1 operator serving 20 countries across Asia and Africa. This latest upgrade of both African and Asian subsidiaries brings the total order value to over $50 million year to date.

Ceragon said its Evolution Long-Haul solution is being used in to expand the operator’s mobile reach across eight national markets. In Asia, Ceragon’s all-out-door expertise and FibeAir solutions will be used to both expand existing 3G services and facilitate the upgrade to high-speed 4G/LTE networks.

The African mobile broadband market is growing at very fast rate. According to market research firm Ovum, mobile broadband penetration in the continent will grow from a
mere 12%, or 95 million subscribers in 2013, to over 45% or 522 million by 2017.

http://www.ceragon.com

Dell'Oro: Worldwide Carrier CAPEX to Decline $6B in 2015

Worldwide telecom carrier CAPEX is forecast to decline by $6 billion in 2015, according to a newly published Carrier Economics report by Dell'Oro Group.  The expected decline follows growth rate in the mid-single digits for 1H 2014. Double-digit growth in mobile network infrastructure significantly outpaced the low single-digit growth in service revenues.

"While we maintain our view that worldwide Capex will grow around 3% in 2014, we believe multiple factors will contribute to a decline in Capex during 2015,” said Stefan Pongratz, Dell’Oro Group’s Carrier Economics analyst. “Higher device penetration, decelerating mobile data growth rates, lack of new revenue streams, and increased competition in both the developing and developed markets have caused worldwide revenue growth to decelerate in the last couple of years.  Slower growth in service revenues coupled with the rapid network progress during 2014 in China, North America, Japan, and Europe will also put some pressure on worldwide Capex upside in 2015,” continued Pongratz.

Other Dell’Oro Group Carrier Economics Report highlights:

  • The amount of mobile Capex required to support incremental mobile data usage has declined more than 50% per year since the smartphone boom started.
  • Fiber and LTE coverage build-outs will continue to drive telecom equipment investments in 2H14 and 2015.  The proportion of Capex that will be allocated to new technology enablers and network topologies including NFV and small cells is expected to be negligible over the next six quarters.

http://www.delloro.com/news/worldwide-telecom-carrier-capex-forecast-to-decline-6-billion-in-2015

Dell’Oro: Network Security Appliance Market Grows 4% Q/Q

The Network Security Appliance market grew four percent quarter-over-quarter, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group.  Gains were recorded in both Physical and Virtual Appliances as new threats, the necessity of protecting network assets, and the priority of mitigating the risks associated with attacks continued to drive demand.

The market also saw a change in vendor rankings in the second quarter 2014 as Fortinet’s strong sales into large enterprise customers in the Unites States pushed the company’s security revenues up eight percent.  The transition to new products platforms caused some softness for vendors such as Juniper as they migrate customers to higher end SRX platforms.

“The way security policies are created and enforced has changed. The previous generation of perimeter-deployed firewalls was not equipped to address new network complexities,” explained Casey Quillin, Director of Data Center Appliance research at Dell’Oro Group.  “Application-aware new security platforms—such as those offered by Palo Alto Networks, Fortinet, Check Point, Dell (SonicWALL), Juniper, and Cisco (Sourcefire)—use deep-packet inspection to create and enforce user- or application layer policies. We believe such enterprise firewall products will continue to grow in utility and increasingly contribute to NSA growth,” Quillin explained.

http://www.delloro.com

Accenture and Alcatel-Lucent Form Customer Care Alliance

Accenture and Alcatel-Lucent announced a strategic alliance to design, build and run scalable, cost effective customer care operations for all-IP networks.

A new Accenture Alcatel-Lucent Business Group will be formed with dedicated sales and delivery resources.  The solutions will be based on Alcatel-Lucent’s Motive line of products.  The new Group will also explore small cell wireless network solutions with a focus on integrating cellular technology and WiFi between service providers and large enterprises.

Accenture will be Alcatel-Lucent’s preferred supplier for software and network integration services. Alcatel-Lucent will also be a preferred technology provider for Accenture’s customer care and small cell solutions needs.

“Consumers and businesses expect any network they are on to provide sophisticated services that support multiple devices, combined with fast, reliable access,” said Michel Combes, CEO, Alcatel-Lucent. “Our collaboration with Accenture is strategic to our growth as we work to enable our clients to deliver on those expectations. By combining our outstanding IP platforms with Accenture’s consulting, systems integration, delivery, and process optimization skills, we will be well-positioned to significantly and measurably improve the world’s communication experience.”

“We look forward to working with Alcatel-Lucent to help fulfill the increasing demand for broadband services over wireless networks,” said Pierre Nanterme, chairman and CEO, Accenture. “The collaboration is consistent with our strategy of working at the heart of the digital ecosystem and growing our network services to enable communications service providers to undergo the transformation they need to thrive.”

http://www.alcatel-lucent.com/
http://www.accenture.com

Microsoft India to Offer Local Azure and Office365 Cloud Services

Microsoft will offer commercial cloud services - Azure and Office 365, from local data centers in India by the end of 2015.

The company said local cloud facilities will ensure data sovereignty within India, lower latency and geo redundancy.

“Microsoft is deeply committed to helping people and organizations thrive in our mobile-first and cloud-first world - that’s why we are proud to offer our commercial cloud services through datacenters in India,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. “With more than 250 million Indians using Internet-connected devices today, there is incredible demand and opportunity for India with Microsoft’s cloud services.”

http://www.microsoft.com/en-in/news/Press/2014/Sep14/MicrosoftAnnouncesCo.aspx

See also