Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Orange Business Services and Tata Communications Announce NNI Agreement

Orange Business Services Tata Communications announced a Network-to-Network Interconnect (NNI) agreement that enable Orange Business Services to expand its network footprint in India.

Specifically, the NNI will enable Orange to utilize Tata Communications’ 120 points of presence (PoPs), extending Orange Business Services’ reach to tier-two and tier-three cities such as Bhopal, Kanpur and Visakhapatnam. The increased domestic footprint of the Orange network in India is particularly suited to support the expansion plans of global multinational customers looking to connect to the farthest corners of India with robust and reliable network services, featuring global service level agreements (SLA) and straightforward billing.

It also includes access to Orange Business VPN – a fully secured and managed network solution that allows data, voice and video to run on the same IP-based MPLS network – from all locations covered by this network agreement.

http://www.tatacommunications.com

http://www.orange-business.com/en

Zayo Announces Infrastructure-as-a-Service for Clouds

Following its recent acquisition of Latisys Holdings, a colocation and infrastructure as a service (“Iaas”) provider, Zayo Group unveiled its updated cloud portfolio to now include private, public and hybrid IaaS cloud services in the U.S. and Europe. This encompasses high-performance, scalable, virtualized and non-virtualized compute and storage on a compliance audit-ready platform.

Zayo said this strategic expansion builds on the Latisys assets with additional capabilities from cloud platforms obtained through the AtlantaNAP and Neo acquisitions. Zayo’s portfolio of cloud services includes a host of value-added managed services that can be layered on to custom tailored solutions for added performance, security, scalability and continuity. These services include security services such as managed firewall, threat management and log management, performance services, such as load balancing, monitoring and database management and a variety of storage and backup solutions, including fully featured disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS).

“The rapid adoption of cloud services makes Zayo's expansion into this market a natural extension of our bandwidth infrastructure business,” said Chris Morley, COO and president of Cloud and Connectivity at Zayo. “Through acquisition and investment, we have built a set of private and hybrid cloud solutions that are compelling in their own right and even more so when combined with our extensive fiber and data center facilities.”

http://www.zayo.com


In January 2015, Zayo agreed to acquire the operating units of Latisys Holdings, a colocation and infrastructure as a service (“Iaas”) provider for US$675 million.

Latisys provides colocation and IaaS services through eight datac enters across five markets – Northern Virginia, Chicago, Denver, Orange County and London. Its data centers currently total over 185,000 square feet of billable space and 33 megawatts of critical power with the ability to expand. Latisys focuses on marketing to and serving approximately 1,100 predominantly medium to large enterprise customers with large storage, compute and data connectivity needs. The combination of high quality assets, innovation and accelerating market demand has driven a strong track record of robust revenue growth and margin expansion since its founding in 2007. The company generated Adjusted EBITDA of approximately $11.0 million for the three months ended September 2014 and approximately $4.2 million for the month of November 2014.

Zayo said the deal will expand its data center portfolio to 45 facilities within the US, France and the United Kingdom. Latisys provides zColo a data center presence in four new markets. Zayo owns and operates extensive metropolitan fiber networks across all of the Latisys markets, physically connecting each of its data center facilities. This will allow Zayo to sell fiber and bandwidth services to Latisys’ core set of enterprise customers, and to market new colocation and IaaS services to Zayo’s base of carrier and content customers.

Microsoft Restructures Phone Business

Microsoft will record an impairment charge of approximately $7.6 billion related to assets associated with the acquisition of the Nokia Devices and Services (NDS) business in addition to a restructuring charge of approximately $750 million to $850 million.

The restructuring will result in the elimination of up to 7,800 jobs.

“We are moving from a strategy to grow a standalone phone business to a strategy to grow and create a vibrant Windows ecosystem including our first-party device family,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.“In the near-term, we’ll run a more effective and focused phone portfolio while retaining capability for long-term reinvention in mobility.”

https://news.microsoft.com/2015/07/08/microsoft-announces-restructuring-of-phone-hardware-business/

In September 2013, Microsoft agreed to acquire Nokia’s Devices & Services business in a deal valued at EUR 5.44 billion (US$7.1 billion) in cash. The deal included all of the Mobile Phones and Smart Devices business units as well as Nokia's design team, operations including all Nokia Devices & Services production facilities, Devices & Services-related sales and marketing activities, and related support functions.

At closing, approximately 32,000 employees were transfered to Microsoft, including approximately 4,700 people in Finland.

Network Connectivity Issue Grounds United Airlines

United Airlines suffered a network connectivity issue on Wednesday morning (July 8), forcing it to ground all of its flights across the United States.

The airline attributed the outage to a routing issue and not a cyber attack.

http://newsroom.united.com/


DigitalOcean Raises $83 Million for Cloud Hosting

DigitalOcean, a start-up based in New York City, announced $83 million in Series B funding for its cloud infrastructure for developers of websites and applications.

DigitalOcean offers simple cloud hosting with all servers built on powerful Hex Core machines with dedicated ECC Ram and RAID SSD storage. The company notes that more than 6 million Droplets (cloud servers) have been deployed on DigitalOcean by more than 500,000 developers to date.

The funding round was led by Access Industries, with participation from Andreessen Horowitz.

https://www.digitalocean.com/features/technology/

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Facebook's Latest Open Compute Project Data Center

Facebook has kicked off construction of its fifth mega data center in Fort Worth, Texas. The new site will join the other major Facebook data centers located in Prineville (Oregon), Forest City (North Carolina), Lulea (Sweden), and Altoona (Iowa).

The new Fort Worth data center will feature the latest Open Compute Project hardware designs — including Yosemite, Wedge, and 6-pack — making it one of the most advanced data centers in the world.

Notably, the data center will powered by 100% renewable energy, thanks a 200 MW contract for new wind energy that Facebook has arranged with Citigroup Energy, Alterra Power Corporation, and Starwood Energy Group.

The new data center will be cooled using outdoor air instead of energy-intensive air conditioners, even during the hot summers in Texas.

Capital investment is projected to exceed $500 million within 5 years, including building construction costs and data center equipment.

https://www.facebook.com/FortWorthDataCenter


In February, Facebook unveiled its "6-Pack" open modular switch platform designed for the flexibility, efficiency, and scale required in its massive data centers. The architecture allows Facebook to build different size switches using common line card and fabric card building blocks.

Last year, Facebook disclosed the specification of its top-of-rack network switch (code-named “Wedge”) and a Linux-based operating system for that switch (code-named “FBOSS”). It then described the modular network architecture it will use for scaling operations. The new 6-pack switch will serve as the core of this fabric.

In an engineering blog posting, Facebook said the 6-pack switch uses Wedge as its basic building block: it is a full mesh non-blocking two-stage switch that includes 12 independent switching elements. Each independent element can switch 1.28Tbps.

Facebook is currently building two configurations: One configuration exposes 16x40GE ports to the front and 640G (16x40GE) to the back, and the other is used for aggregation and exposes all 1.28T to the back. Each element runs its own operating system on the local server and is completely independent, from the switching aspects to the low-level board control and cooling system. Facebook said the advantage of this unique dual backplane design is the ability to modify any part of the system with no system-level impact, software or hardware.

Cisco to Acquire MaintenanceNet for $139 Million

Cisco will pay $139 million in cash and retention incentives to acquire MaintenanceNet, a privately held company providing a cloud-based software platform that uses data analytics and automation to manage and scale attach and renewals of recurring customer contracts.

MaintenanceNet, which is based in Carlsbad, California, operates a ServiceExchange cloud platform that helps manufacturers improve service renewals and identify uncovered product opportunities.  Cisco and MaintenanceNet have worked together since 2009.

MaintenanceNet will be joining Cisco’s Global Customer Success (GCS) organization, a group dedicated to improving customer engagement and delivering a coordinated, end to end experience to our partners and customers. This acquisition is a critical component of our strategy for GCS to simplify and digitize our business processes.

https://blogs.cisco.com/news/cisco-announces-news?_ga=1.236708033.1329855623.1391130097
http://www.maintenancenet.com/

CableLabs Details New Remote PHY Specs for DOCSIS

CableLabs posted information on several different Distributed CCAP Architectures (including Remote PHY and Remote MAC-PHY).

Last month, CableLabs publicly issued the Remote PHY family of specifications. Theses specifications are also known as MHAv2 as these are an evolution from the original Modular Headend Architecture specifications.

In a blog posting, Karthik Sundaresan, Principal Architect, CableLabs, describes how the Remote PHY technology allows for an integrated CCAP to be separated into two components: the CCAP Core and the Remote PHY Device (RPD) with interfaces between them. One of the common locations for an RPD is the optical node device that is located at the junction of the fiber and coax plants, while the CCAP Core stays at the headend. A CCAP core can control and setup data paths with multiple RPDs situated in multiple fiber nodes.

CableLabs said it will release the set of technical reports and specifications throughout this summer.

http://www.cablelabs.com/cablelabs-new-remote-phy-specifications-expand-docsis-network-deployment-options/

Ooredoo Kuwait Picks VMware vCloud for NFV Platform

Ooredoo Kuwait has deployed both Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) and IT applications on a single, unified cloud based on the VMware vCloud for NFV platform.

Specifically, VMware's professional services team partnered with Ooredoo Kuwait and their VNF vendor Huawei to design and deploy the VMware vCloud for NFV platform and virtual network functions into a test environment in less than three months.

VMware said its vCloud for NFV supported the seamless transfer of the virtualized Core IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem) from test environment to Ooredoo's production IT environment, and enabled Ooredoo to conduct its first Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) call. The deployment of Ooredoo Kuwait's new Core NFV was fully automated, leveraging VMware vCloud Director and the VMware NSX network virtualization platform. The service is expected to go live in its production service network later this year.

VMware vCloud for NFV is an integrated network functions virtualization platform that combines VMware's production-proven virtualized compute, networking, storage and management solutions, to help ensure ongoing multi-vendor virtualized network function (VNF) support and maximize the cost and agility benefits of a shared network and IT infrastructure in a secured architecture. The Ooredoo platform uses VMware's policy-based resource allocation features to maintain application service level agreement (SLA) enforcement, and software-defined networking capabilities of the VMware NSX network virtualization platform to address NFV network scalability needs, multi-tenancy with microsegmentation, capacity on demand and QoS. VMware NSX is a main pillar in segregating tenants across Ooredoo's single converged private cloud.

"Ooredoo Kuwait's strategy aligns with VMware's One Cloud, Any Application, Any Device™ strategy, and we're delighted to be working with such forward-thinking customers who understand the value of a platform-based deployment strategy for NFV," said David Wright, vice president, Telecommunications and NFV Group, VMware.

http://www.vmware.com/

Virgin America Teams with ViaSat for Ku- and Ka-Band Satellite

Virgin America announced a new technology partnership with ViaSat to bring faster satellite broadband to the airline's 10 new A320 aircraft deliveries, beginning in September of this year.  Virgin America will tap the power and economics of ViaSat-1, the highest capacity Ka-band satellite in the world, offering 140 gigabits-per-second, to deliver the fastest in-flight Wi-Fi service for high-quality video streaming.

The deal will make Virgin America the first commercial airline to offer an in-flight Wi-Fi service that can operate in both Ku- and Ka-band satellite networks on the same aircraft.

Virgin America will begin installation of ViaSat's systems immediately – with the first Ka-band antenna equipped aircraft to take flight in the continental U.S. in September 2015.  Aircraft scheduled for Hawaii flights will be outfitted with ViaSat's hybrid Ku/Ka-band antenna in early 2016.  During the beta period rollout of the ViaSat product, Virgin America will offer free Wi-Fi access on its first ViaSat equipped aircraft.  The airline will introduce pricing for the service in 2016.

"Our competitive advantage is rooted in the unique bandwidth economics of ViaSat-1 and the forthcoming ViaSat-2 satellite networks. We can empower airlines to engage all of their guests in an in-flight, online experience just like they'd get on the ground - including streaming high quality video," said Don Buchman, Vice President and General Manager, Commercial Mobility Business, ViaSat. "Virgin America is a brand that shares our love of innovation and strives to bring the best service possible to the traveler.  By leveraging our technology, Virgin America can maximize passenger engagement and increase customer loyalty."

http//www.virginamerica.com
http//www.viasat.com

Xilinx Collaborates with China Mobile on 5G Fronthaul Interface

Xilinx is working with China Mobile Research Institute (CMRI) for the development of the next generation fronthaul interface (NGFI) for 5G. Fronthaul is the link between the baseband and radio units, which are expected to be distributed in 5G architectures.

Specifically, Xilinx is contributing to the NGFI eco-system with a validated NGFI reference design on its Zynq SoC platform. The reference design, which can easily be migrated to other Zynq and Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC devices, will serve as a baseline framework for 4.5G/5G wireless network research.

"It's time to rethink current fronthaul solutions and addressing the major challenges for CRAN deployment is critical," said Dr. Chih-Lin I, chief scientist of China Mobile Research Institute. "New efficient and flexible fronthaul solutions are being worked on for the enablement of large scale CRAN deployment and our work with Xilinx will surely accelerate the delivery of such solutions."

"Current 'hard' mobile networks are plagued with a number of serious challenges including time to market, service innovation, energy efficiency, TCO and interoperability," said Sunil Kar, vice president of wireless communications at Xilinx. "Through our close collaboration with China Mobile Research Institute, we are working to address these challenges and identify the key technologies and components for highly optimized next generation fronthaul interfaces."

http://labs.chinamobile.com/cran/wp-content/uploads/White%20Paper%20of%20Next%20Generation%20Fronthaul%20Interface.PDF
http//www.xilinx.com

Comcast Boosts Residential Speeds

Comcast is increasing the speed of its Blast! tier by almost 50 percent to 150 Mbps (formerly 105 Mbps) and introducing a new Performance Pro speed tier of 75 Mbps, for customers in New England and mid-Atlantic states.

“Today, our customers simultaneously connect to the Internet through multiple smartphones, tablets and laptops, and whether it’s to stream, shop, video chat, upload photos or do homework, we’re committed to ensuring they get the best overall experience with blazing fast speeds and the most Wi-Fi coverage, all delivered over our state-of-the-art network,” said Kevin Casey, President of Comcast Cable’s Northeast Division, which includes 14 states from Maine to Virginia and the District of Columbia.

The new speeds and tiers will be available to most Comcast customers in these regions starting later this month.

http://www.comcast.com

Monday, July 6, 2015

IDC: Worldwide Cloud IT Infrastructure Spending to Grow 26% in '15

The total cloud IT infrastructure spending (server, storage, and Ethernet switch) will grow by 26.4% in 2015 and will reach $33.4 billion, accounting for a third of all IT infrastructure spending, up from 28.1% in 2014, according to IDC's  Worldwide Quarterly Cloud IT Infrastructure Tracker.

Private cloud IT infrastructure spending will grow by 16.8% year over year to $11.7 billion, while public cloud IT infrastructure spending will grow by 32.2% in 2015 to $21.7 billion. In comparison, spending on non-cloud IT infrastructure will remain flat at $67 billion.

"End users continue to evaluate various approaches to adopting cloud-based IT: some integrate public cloud service into their IT strategies, others choose to build their own private clouds or use third-party private cloud offerings, and some, seeing benefits in both, implement hybrid cloud strategies," said Natalya Yezhkova, Research Director, Storage Systems. "The breadth and width of cloud offerings only continue to grow, with an increasing universe of business- and consumer-oriented solutions being born in the cloud and/or served better by the cloud. This growing demand from the end user side and expansion of cloud-based offerings from service providers will continue to fuel growth in spending on the underlying IT infrastructure in the foreseeable future."

http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS25732415

Ooma Readies for IPO with its Consumer & SMB Communications Platform

Ooma, a start-up that provides Internet-based telephony services based on a proprietary CPE device and cloud platform, has filed a registration statement on Form S-1 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") relating to a proposed initial public offering of shares of its common stock.

Ooma has applied to list its common stock on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol OOMA. The company plans to offer 5 million shares at an expected price range of $16 to $18 per share.

In its SEC filing, Ooma, is based in Palo Alto, California, said it has 678,000 core users as of April 30, 2015, up from approximately 174,000 on January 31, 2011 and representing a compound annual growth rate of approximately 38%. The company reports total revenue of $39.2 million, $53.7 million and $72.2 million in fiscal 2013, fiscal 2014 and fiscal 2015, respectively. Its total revenue for the three months ended April 30, 2014 and 2015 was $16.3 million and $19.9 million, respectively. Subscription and services revenue, which includes the recurring portion of our total revenue, has increased as a percentage of total revenue over the last four years, from approximately 30% in fiscal 2011 to 75% in fiscal 2015. It has also increased as a percentage of our total revenue from 67% for the three months ended April 30, 2014 to 78% for the three months ended April 30, 2015.

As for competitive differentiation, Ooma says its unique hybrid SaaS connectivity platform is scalable and extensible to new services. The company says this platform will enable it to add new connected services and exploit adjacent markets, all without significant additional capital investment or high customer acquisition costs. http://www.ooma.com/

Cisco Invests in 6WIND for its SDN/NFV Software

Cisco has made an investment in 6WIND, a high-performance networking software company based in France.

The investment comes as part of Cisco's country digitization initiative announced in Paris last February to commit $100M to innovative French businesses. The announcement coincides with the visit between Cisco CEO John Chambers and CEO Designate Chuck Robbins, and French President Francois Hollande, in France this week.

6WIND's software enables the network architecture transition to SDN and NFV.  It delivers the performance, features and network hardware independence required for virtual networking on standard servers, without changing the existing software infrastructure.

"We are proud to have Cisco, the largest networking company in the world, as an investor, which is a testament to the critical technology 6WIND provides to enable the transition to NFV and SDN," said Eric Carmes, CEO and Founder of 6WIND. "With this investment, we look forward to further advancing our technology innovation and world-wide growth to accelerate the networking and telecom industry transformation."

http://www.6wind.com


AMS-IX Extends its Bay Area Presence

The AMS-IX Bay Area Internet Exchange has established a presence at Hurricane Electric’s Fremont 2 data center.

AMS-IX Bay Area is a neutral and independent Internet Exchange, distributed across four data centers in the San Francisco Bay Area. This platform is OIX certified and modeled after AMS-IX in Amsterdam, providing a professional, high-quality, non-blocking peering service for all types of IP traffic, from regular IP data to Voice over IP, mobile Internet traffic and video.

“I am very pleased that our latest expansion is with Hurricane Electric, a well-established provider of carrier-neutral colocation services,” said Job Witteman, Chief Executive Officer at AMS-IX. “Our newest point-of-presence at Hurricane Electric’s Fremont 2 data center will have significant and lasting benefits for both Hurricane Electric’s customers and the other customers of AMS-IX Bay Area.”

“This expansion helps us to improve our connectivity offering since it will give our customers the ability to directly exchange traffic with other members of the exchange, enabling lower latency and improved performance,” said Mike Leber, President of Hurricane Electric.

https://bay.ams-ix.net

Allot Lands $8 Million in Contracts from Three New Tier-1 Mobile Operators

Allot Communications announced three strategic wins totaling approximately $8 million.  These include:
  • A multi-million dollar order from a new Tier-1 mobile operator in Asia Pacific (APAC) for the Allot Service Gateway Tera and Allot ClearSee Network Analytics, to be integrated with its policy and charging systems for enabling data monetization.
  • A multi-million dollar order from a new multinational, Tier-1, mobile operator based in Latin America. The deal displaces an incumbent solution on the basis of performance and scalability and will allow the operator to drive new revenues through greater network visibility and customer engagement.
  • A multi-million dollar order from a new Tier-1 Mobile operator in EMEA for Allot Service Gateway Tera and Allot ClearSee Network Analytics for reporting and network visualization, as well as Allot Service Protector for DDoS protection.
Additionally, Allot said it received an expansion order for its Websafe Personal licenses from a Tier-1 operator in Europe, and signed a contract for an expansion order from a Tier-1 operator in North America, following a successful initial phase in Q1.

http://www.allot.com

Intersil Intros Buck-Boost Regulator for Wearables

Intersil introduced a buck-boost switching regulator that enables efficient power management of system power supplies and peripherals such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, memory cards or LCD modules in connected devices, including wearables, smartphones, smart thermostats and point-of-sale devices.  The regulator supports single-cell Li-ion or Li-polymer batteries, or 2-cell alkaline, NiCd or NiMH batteries.

Key features and specifications

  • Ultra high efficiency up to 98% reduces power drain and heat buildup
  • Accepts a wide input voltage range from 1.8V to 5.5V, works with multiple battery topologies
  • Large adjustable output voltage range from 1V to 5.2V for use with multiple power rails
  • Output current up to 800mA (Vin = 2.5V, Vout = 3.3V)
  • 2A switches supports both high and light load currents with high efficiency
  • Ultra-small footprint with 1.41mm x 1.41mm package saves board space, requires only a single inductor
  • Quiescent current of 41uA maximizes light load efficiency for low power consumption
  • Automatic and selectable forced bypass power saving mode reduces quiescent current to less than 0.5uA
  • Full protection for under-voltage, short-circuit and over-temperature

"Intersil's innovative adaptive PFM architecture addresses the most critical low power design requirements for wearables and other 4G/Wi-Fi-enabled portable products functioning as IoT connected nodes," said Andrew Cowell, senior vice president of Mobile Power Products at Intersil. "The new ISL9120 regulator's small size, industry leading efficiency, smooth transition between buck and boost modes and rapid transient response to a large load step is extremely attractive to customers."

http://www.intersil.com

See also