Tuesday, February 23, 2016

#MWC16: Telefónica Picks Ericsson for UNICA

Telefónica has selected Ericsson as a key partner of this program to provide the infrastructure and software required to launch the UNICA architecture in Telefónica Germany in 2016.

UNICA is the telecommunication cloud architecture of Telefónica which aims to virtualize NFV in an automatized fashion across its operations. It is a solution open, modular, multi-vendor, multi-site, standard, secure, flexible and extensible, designed to meet Telefonica's evolving requirements and cost efficient.

Ericsson said it will supply its new Hyperscale Datacenter System 8000, Ericsson Cloud Manager, Cloud SDN and automation, as well as systems integration and support services. In addition, Ericsson will provide systems integration and support services to deploy the certified solution in Germany. Telefónica will certify the Ericsson solution to ensure fulfillment of UNICA functionalities and roadmap during Q1 and Q2, targeting the rollout of UNICA in Germany during Q4 2016.

Telefónica said a new concept introduced in the architectural design is the "Multi-VIM" requirement, which ensures an open platform avoiding vendor lock-in and to minimize integration efforts.

Telefónica also confirmed that HPE and Huawei, which have been collaborating until now with UNICA, will continue to participate in this program as strategic partners for NFV.


#MWC16: Juniper Selected for Telefónica Fusión Network.

Telefónica has selected Juniper Networks to provide the core infrastructure for its next generation Fusión Network, which aims to transform the customer experience for mobile, residential and business services across Spain. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Specifically, Telefónica Spain will use Juniper's MX Series 3D Routers to provide a high performance, intelligent SDN control, service rich core network for the Fusión Network. The MX2020 will provide Telefónica Spain the multi-terabit IP/MPLS routing capacity and connectivity across all metro regions as traffic ingress and egress from all of Telefónica's Internet Exchange locations. The new core network is extensible to address service interconnectivity for the Internet, content providers, content delivery networks (CDNs) and data centers relying on Telefónica's national infrastructure.

Juniper's MX2020 scales up to 32Tbps of system capacity. The platform offers a fully redundant and resilient architecture, advanced Junos OS automation and analytics functionality and SDN/NFV programmability.The core rollout will begin imminently, with estimated completion by 2019.

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#MWC16: Linux Foundation Backs Open-Orchestrator Project

A new OPEN-Orchestrator Project (OPEN-O) is getting underway to develop the first open source software framework and orchestrator to enable agile software-defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV) operations. The initiative is driven by China Mobile and Huawei, with early support from Brocade, China Telecom, DynaTrace, Ericsson, F5 Networks, GigaSpaces, Infoblox, Intel, KT, Red Hat, Raisecom, Riverbed and ZTE. The project will be hosted by The Linux Foundation.

As an open source orchestration framework, OPEN-O will integrate open networking technologies and enable carriers to quickly and cost-effectively implement SDN and NFV through open source code development. The project will also aim to accelerate multi-vendor integration, service innovation and improve agility across network operations.

"China born and global in nature, OPEN-O will unite industry forces to set up the world's first SDN and NFV unified orchestrator, serving as an important step in promoting deeper convergence among SDN and NFV technologies and innovation in the networking industry,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director, The Linux Foundation.

“The Telecommunication 4.0 era features the full convergence of IT and CT; it relies on NFV and SDN as the key technical enablers for automatic deployment and agile operation. The orchestrator functions at the top part of them play the critical role. We are hoping that all partners work together to build the healthy ecosystem and accelerate the maturity of SDN and NFV. By embracing open source, China Mobile is expecting that the OPEN-O project will develop state-of-art open-source orchestrator software,” stated Li Zhengmao, executive vice president of China Mobile.


#MWC16: China Mobile Outlines Network Roadmap

At Mobile World Congress, China Mobile provided an update on its current 4G rollout and outlined next steps as it contemplates the transition to 5G.

As of the end of 2015, China Mobile had:

  • deployed 1.10 million TD-LTE base stations covering a population footprint of over 1.2 billion
  • established 4G roaming with 114 countries and regions
  • sold 300 million TD-LTE devices in 2015 - this represents the addition of more than 400 TD-LTE users every minute
  • 4G subscriber base reached 340 million, accounting for about 30% of global number
  • completed the deployment of carrier aggregation (CA) in over 300 cities and has commercialized VoLTE services in 100 cities. 

For 2016, China Mobile will speed up its 4G deployment. Plans call for:

  • increasing the number of TD-LTE base stations to 1.40 million
  • deploying CA technologies in central and hot-spot areas of all cities by the end of 2016
  • commercializing VoLTE services in over 260 cities in the first half of 2016
  • launching Rich Communication Service (RCS) in the second half of the year
  • accelerating the uptake of VoLTE/CA-enabled devices by selling 330 million 4G devices and 
  • expanding the 4G user base to over 500 million in 2016.     

China Mobile also confirmed plans for dedicated networks for the Internet of Things. It aims to develop 100 million IoT connections in 2016.

In addition,China Mobile, together with the representatives of the first 11 partners, jointly launched the China Mobile 5G Joint Innovation Center, which will collaboratively develop applications and products in such areas as basic communications, IoT, telematics, industrial Internet, cloud robotics and virtual/augmented reality. Early partners include Huawei, ZTE, Ericsson, Nokia, Qualcomm, Datang, Intel, Keysight, Beijing Shougang Automation Information Technology Co., Ltd., Haier, and Hisense.

China Mobile also introduced cost-effective VoLTE/CA devices and chip solutions during the summit, including its self-branded VoLTE/CA devices. Together with Samsung, China Mobile introduced 5 new customized VoLTE devices; in partnership with Qualcomm and MTK, China Mobile launched VoLTE+ down-link and up-link CA chip solutions at the price point of $100; jointly with Spreadtrum and Leadcore, China Mobile released VoLTE chip solutions at the price point of $50.


#MWC16: AT&T Highlights Business Agility, IoT, Connected Car

AT&T outlined its plans to invest nearly US$10 billion in 2016 to deliver our integrated solutions for businesses worldwide. The company's guidance for overall capital investment in 2016 remains unchanged to be in the US$22 billion range.

Some highlights:
  • In Mexico, AT&T plans to integrate more than 6,000 kilometers of fiber currently supporting the wireless operations into the AT&T wireline network; enhance these assets by investing in more AT&T global network nodes and add hundreds of sellers focused on selling business solutions in Mexico. This is in addition to the US$3 billion announced in 2015 to extend its high-speed, mobile Internet service to Mexico, covering 100 million consumers and businesses in Mexico by year-end 2018.
  • Connectivity – Bring high-speed, highly secure wireline and wireless network connectivity to more cities around the world.
  • Network on Demand – Continue to software-enable the AT&T global network.
  • Internet of Things (IoT) – Expand dedicated IoT networks in Europe and the U.S. to connect assets in different industries, like connected cars, fleets, shipping containers, utility meters, air cargo and heavy equipment.
  • AT&T NetBond – Roll out additional features, extend highly secure connections to more leading cloud providers and expand in Asia-Pac, EMEA, U.S. and Canada.
  • Security – Launch additional features and consulting services globally, while enhancing our security capabilities and alliances and simplifying the customer experience.
  • Collaboration Solutions – Deliver integrated communications tools that help businesses of all sizes collaborate across platforms and over geographical boundaries to colleagues, collaborators, suppliers and customers around the world.

At Mobile World Congress, AT&T also announced:

  • a proof of concept IoT solution that helps Red Bull monitor their network of beverage coolers. 
  • an expanded, multi-year agreement with Audi for the connected car. Audi will be providing next-generation technology, featuring new safety, security and infotainment features, such as remote lock and unlock, stolen vehicle locator, online roadside assistance and service requests over the AT&T network. 
  •  a connected car agreement with Porsche covering certain 2017 models 
  • a deal with Ericsson to deploy CAT-M and NB-IoT 3GPP standards-based technologies to support the millions of IoT devices coming to market. 
  • an expansion of its SmartCities framework, including a strategic alliance with Southern Company, a utility company based in Atlanta. 
  • a collaboration with Intel to test Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). The AT&T Internet of Things (IoT) team and the AT&T Foundry innovation center in Palo Alto, Calif., will be working with Intel to evaluate performance of the LTE network at higher altitudes. They will be testing to see how it affects video streaming, transmitting telematics and flight information. 
  •  a program to integrate AT&T IoT Services with Cisco, Intel and Microsoft technologies. Developers using the AT&T Global SIM, AT&T Control Center and AT&T IoT Services now have access to Cisco’s Fog computing solutions. Developers that connect their devices through the AT&T Global SIM and AT&T Control Center will be able to store their data in the Microsoft Azure cloud. They will be able to use AT&T M2X and AT&T Flow Designer and access Microsoft Azure, big data, BI, advanced analytics and machine learning tools to transform their data into intelligent action. 

“Business is moving faster than ever and companies around the world need to be agile to quickly adapt to changing markets,” said Ralph de la Vega, vice chairman of AT&T Inc. and CEO of Business Solutions & International. “Our industry-leading network and innovative platforms give them the tools to do just that — where they want it and how they want it—around the globe.”


#MWC16: Orange Rolls out VoLTE and WiFi Calling in Europe

Orange confirmed the rollout of VoLTE and WiFi calling across its European footprint. VoLTE will facilitate dramatically reduced connection times (falling from approximately eight to two seconds) and improved simultaneous use of voice and high speed data.

VoLTE is already available for Orange customers in Romania. Orange plans to activate VoLTE in its remaining European operations over the course of 2016 and early 2017. WiFi Calling will launch across Orange’s remaining European footprint over the course of 2016 and early 2017.

Orange also announces the launch of its first own-branded device to support both technologies – the Orange Neva 80. Retailing at under €200, the smartphone is Orange’s first own-branded ‘category 6’ device. Tt offers 300Mbps download speeds, making it the fastest device in the range and makes use of the very latest Android 6.0 Marshmallow software. In addition, responding to customers’ demands for durable screens, the smartphone will feature Dragontrail glass making it scratch and crack-resistant - also a first for Orange’s own-branded device range. At 5.2 inches with full HD, 143g and Orange’s slimmest own-branded phone ever at 7.6mm, the premium Orange Neva 80 is a sleek addition to the range. It also packs in a Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 octo-core processor, 16 GB of memory and 2G of RAM. And features a high-quality 5 mega pixel front camera with face-detection and 13 mega pixel rear camera.  The Orange Neva 80 also comes with NFC and is pre-embedded with Orange Cash in the markets where the service is available including France, Poland and Spain.


#MWC16: Orange Signs with Google for Africa & Middle East

Orange announced a content partnership with Google to bring the best of mobile Internet across its full African and Middle Eastern (Orange MEA) footprint. The deal includes popular content covering fashion, sport and music, as well as everyday tools such as Google Search, YouTube and Google Maps.

Customers will receive one of the most competitively priced tariff plans in the region starting at $40, which will consist of a high-specification smartphone and a communication bundle with voice, SMS and data. Orange said the offer will be delivered in a phased approach and will start to roll-out across the full Orange MEA footprint in Q2 this year. The device will launch with the native set of Google services and the goal of the partnership is to develop local services and content over time.

“As the first pan-Africa and Middle East mobile partnership with Google on this scale, we are able to bring direct value to our customers by offering the best access and services to ensure they get the most out of the mobile internet,” says Yves Maitre, Executive Vice President of Connected Objects and Partnerships, Orange. “Through this all-inclusive digital communications package, we are proud to continue our promise to deliver affordable internet access across the region and connect people to what is essential in their lives.”


#MWC16: Cisco, Ericsson and Intel Develop 5G Router

Cisco is collaborating with Ericsson and Intel to develop a 5G router. The companies are partnering with Verizon within an ecosystem to accelerate the pace of critical 5G innovations.

The solution is expected to offer Gigabit-per-second speeds.

“Verizon continues to accelerate innovation around 5G technology by working closely with our partners,” said Ed Chan, Senior Vice President, Technology Strategy & Planning at Verizon. “We were the first to launch 4G nationwide. With 5G, we will again drive innovation across the technology landscape.”


#MWC16: Radisys Expands its FlowEngine for #SDN

Radisys is expanding its FlowEngine product portfolio, which brings together switching, load balancing and routing functionality under open SDN policy control.

Radisys’ FlowEngine portfolio delivers up to 1.2 Tbps of traffic distribution performance, enabling service providers to support millions of concurrent subscribers and flows. The new additions include:

  • the TDE-200 - targeted as a cost-effective, intelligent front end traffic distributor that regulates traffic flows with very high throughput and low latency. 
  • the TDE-500 platform - offers maximum SDN and NFV deployment flexibility for either distributed edge sites or core data center networks. It also provides the option to fuse together on-board SDN controller technology and value-added virtualized network services like network analytics. 

“Radisys’ expertise in integrating software and hardware technologies to deliver the right solution to our customers is what sets us apart from the competition,” said Bryan Sadowski, vice president, FlowEngine Product Marketing, Radisys. “The addition of the TDE-500 and TDE-200 to our FlowEngine portfolio, along with our world-class Professional Services capabilities, provides our customers with a robust SDN-enabled platform combined with unmatched industry expertise to accelerate their SDN and NFV deployments.”


Video: Building Scalable SDN and NFV Deployments with Radisys’ FlowEngine

Key members of the Radisys FlowEngine team: Bryan Sadowski, VP of FlowEngine Marketing; Andrew Alleman, CTO; and Joseph Sulistyo, Director – Product Strategy and Management describe how the FlowEngine allows operators to innovate and deliver new services with agility and speed. https://youtu.be/l_xU2upv07w...

Skyport Offers Hardened Servers for Microsoft Active Directory.

Skyport Systems announced a turnkey solution to deliver a hardened implementation of Microsoft Active Directory.

Through a partnership with Ascent Solutions, Skyport SkySecure delivers bundles for data center Active Directory production forests, highly secure ‘Red Forest’ administrative zones and cloud access DMZ authentication services.  Skyport said this provides a clean source computing platform with secure boot and ongoing malware and rootkit prevention and detection.

As part of this solution, Skyport Systems is announcing new SkySecure capabilities specifically designed to help secure the Active Directory environment. These include:

  • Kerberos ticket inspection to mitigate fraudulent administrator log-ins, ‘golden ticket’ attacks, and unacceptable use of older NTLM protocol versions
  • Authorized/unauthorized administrative access enforcement and accounting of all logon sessions and attempted sessions into and out of secure administrative environments
  • Application-layer microsegmentation that enables secured communications only between participating servers in the architecture
  • Active audit reports to validate the on-going operation and continuous monitoring of the architecture and its consistency with ongoing best practices evolution
  • Continuous validation of the clean source status for the computing platform including all components, software and updates that are admitted into the secure enclave

“Working with Ascent Solutions will greatly simplify a critical area of enterprise security for our customers,” said Art Gilliland, CEO of Skyport Systems. “Skyport Systems’ clean source, zero-trust infrastructure makes critical IT assets such as credential management systems secure by default, making it an ideal system to use for implementing Microsoft’s most recent guidance on securing privileged access.”


Docker Datacenter Delivers On-Premise Containers-as-a-Service

Docker introduced a software platform that enables enterprises to deploy an on-premises Containers-as-a Service (CaaS).

Docker Datacenter (DDC) manages the application lifecycle of Dockerized applications. It is comprised of Docker Universal Control Plane, Docker Trusted Registry and embedded support for Docker Engine.

The integrations among them are tested and validated configurations with enterprise-class support. Docker said it guarantees the interoperability and full support of the Docker API across the stack for a seamless transition in taking applications in development to production.

“Docker Datacenter leverages our years of innovation in the Docker open source projects and ecosystem, and the feedback and experience of early adopters running Docker in production,” said Solomon Hykes, Founder and CTO of Docker. “Through Docker Datacenter, we ship an integrated, commercially-supported production environment for container workloads, bringing developers the agility they’ve come to expect from Docker-based applications, with a Docker-native application lifecycle where what they build is what runs in production. This provides IT Pros with the level of control and security they need to manage an enterprise-class Container-as-a-Service platform, portable across any infrastructure, both on premises and in the cloud.”


Nimble Unveils Predictive All Flash Arrays

Nimble Storage introduced a series of Predictive All Flash arrays, combining fast flash performance with InfoSight Predictive Analytics.

The company said its new AF-Series All Flash arrays deliver a total cost of ownership (TCO) that is up to 33 to 66 percent lower than competitive arrays. The arrays use 10-30X less memory than competing all flash arrays by providing memory-efficient metadata to deliver unparalleled flash scalability and lower per array cost, while also reducing the total number of controllers required. The products support the cost-effective 3D V-NAND innovations of Samsung PM863 Series SSDs, and use advanced flash endurance management and integrated hot sparing to extend flash lifespan to seven years, while providing 20 percent more usable capacity, all at half the footprint and cost of competing eMLC-based all flash arrays.

The flagship Nimble AF9000 All Flash array delivers performance of up to 350,000 IOPS at sub-millisecond latency and scales effective capacity to over 2PB in just 12U. In scale-out four-node cluster configurations, the AF9000 can non-disruptively and independently scale performance up to 1.2M IOPS and effective capacity to over 8PBs.

“Our All Flash array delivers absolute speed for performance sensitive applications and workloads. It accelerates, scales, and delivers lower TCO than competing All Flash arrays,” said Ajay Singh, vice president of product management, Nimble. “Our engineers are so confident in the readiness of our All Flash arrays that we’ve been powering core Nimble production engineering infrastructure services on an AF7000 array for several weeks and have experienced flawless service.”


Gogo Leases Capacity on SES Next Gen Satellites

Gogo has contracted major High Throughput Satellite (HTS) spot beam and wide beam capacity aboard two SES next-generation HTS satellites, SES-14 and SES-15, which are set for launch in 2017.

The deal will enable Gogo to address the growing demand for high-speed inflight connectivity on travel routes over North America, including Alaska, Hawaii, Mexico and Canada, as well as Central America and the Caribbean. Gogo will also have access to HTS capacity on an additional satellite, SES-12, which is set to be launched in 2017 with high-powered spot beam and wide beam coverage over Asia, the Middle East, North Africa and Russia.

"SES is pleased to extend our longstanding relationship with Gogo, a leading provider of inflight connectivity," said Elias Zaccack, SES Senior Vice President, Commercial, Americas. "On board two new satellites, SES-14 and SES-15, we have one of the best hybrid HTS solutions in the world. It is ideally placed to meet the dynamic demands of airlines and their passengers, who expect high-performing connectivity anywhere they go. We offer the necessary global connectivity, from Hawaii to Rome and the Arctic Circle to Patagonia. We offer a fully redundant network at a competitive cost, using low weight and backwards compatible onboard equipment. We offer high quality gate-to-gate service with the best possible availability. Our HTS satellite constellation and customer solution thus offers unique features for aeronautical connectivity."

Aqua Comms' New AE Cable Plugs into euNetworks Fiber Network

Aqua Comms an euNetworks announced a commercial partnership that enables Aqua Comms’ to extend its America Europe Connect (“AE Connect”) subsea system across Europe on euNetworks’ footprint.

euNetworks owns and operates 13 fibre based metro networks across the region, connected with a long haul fibre network spanning 45 cities across 10 countries. This footprint offers direct fibre connectivity to more than 280 data centres in major European markets, delivering a strong bandwidth solution for Aqua Comms. This mutually beneficial partnership extends Aqua Comms’ 10Gbps and 100Gbps Wavelengths services to additional facilities in Ireland, the UK, France, Germany and the Netherlands.

AEConnect is a 100G compliant, coherent optimised system that utilises innovative optical technologies, including the latest technology of 130 x 100 Gbps per fibre pair.


Toshiba Samples SSDs Using 15nm MLC NAND Flash Memory

Toshiba has begun production of its first enterprise SSDs integrating 15nm MLC NAND flash memory. The line-up includes products with double the capacity of conventional Toshiba products. The SSDs are equipped with Toshiba’s proprietary QSBC (Quadruple Swing-By Code) error correction technology, a highly efficient error correction code (ECC). Along with the power loss protection and data protection features, it helps strengthen the protection of customer data and
enhances reliability.

The new products include:

  • the HK4R Series with capacities up to 1920GB - targeted at enterprise applications such as web servers, files servers, media streaming, video-on-demand, search engines and warm data storage.
  • the HK4E Series of value-endurance drives - offering an endurance level of three DWPD and capacities up to 1600GB. It is suited for e-mail servers and data centers.


Monday, February 22, 2016

#MWC16: NGENA Targets Multicarrier NFV Services Enabled by Cisco

A new Next Generation Enterprise Network Alliance (“ngena”) plans to launch international network services for business customers in the first half of 2017. Founding members include CenturyLink, Deutsche Telekom, Reliance and SK Telecom. The alliance envisions more than 20 additional service provider partners at full global deployment.

Ngena will provide a global service catalogue to its alliance partners, enabling them to deliver a unique network service experience for enterprise customers – a high performance service in terms of speed, flexibility, security and quality. The alliance will leverage NFV for network efficiency and end-to-end service automation. The alliance partners will be able to deliver full international VPN functionality, Application Performance Management (APM), WAN/LAN management and optimization up to additional built in services such as Unified Communication & Collaboration (UCC), advanced security services, platform APIs for adoption of industry-specific use cases (e.g. WLAN analytics for retail).

Alliance partners will use Cisco's cloud and virtualization technologies.

“Complex individual contracts and ordering processes have no place in a digitized world. Services based alone on the public Internet are not secure or reliable enough for real-time applications such as logistics, manufacturing and telemedicine. A network without sufficient service quality is a risk that customers do not want to take. That’s why our alliance aims to provide multinational enterprise customers with a secure, powerful, global network service faster than before,” said Timotheus Höttges, CEO Deutsche Telekom AG.

“In today’s digital economy, strategic partnerships are more critical than ever to drive fast innovation. NGENA is a pioneering alliance among leading Service Providers to deliver globally consistent, cost-effective and flexible services, allowing them to deliver better experiences at a faster pace. Cisco is committed to the success of our Service Provider customers and is honored to play a part in connecting them across global boundaries, which will allow businesses and their customers to capitalize on the unprecedented opportunities in the digitized world,” said Chuck Robbins, CEO Cisco.


#MWC16: LTE Hits One Billion Connections

The number of 4G connections has passed the one billion milestone and is on track to account for a third of all mobile connections by 2020, according to a new study by the GSMA.

The 2016 global edition of the GSMA’s ‘Mobile Economy’ series of reports points to an accelerating technology shift to 3G/4G mobile broadband networks across both developed and developing markets, which is fuelling digital innovation, smartphone adoption and mobile data growth. The study calculates that the mobile industry made a $3.1 trillion contribution to the world economy last year, equivalent to 4.2 per cent of global GDP.

Some highlights:

  • 4G accounted for one billion of the 7.3 billion mobile connections reached by the end of 2015. 
  • The number of 4G connections doubled in 2015, largely as a result of the increase in 4G network deployments in the developing world. 
  • At the end of 2015, there were 451 live 4G (LTE) networks available in 151 countries, with almost half of these in the developing world. 4G is forecast to account for around a third of the almost nine billion mobile connections expected by 2020. 
  • Mobile broadband networks (3G and 4G) accounted for 50 per cent of connections in 2015, a figure set to rise to 70 per cent by 2020.    
  • Smartphones accounted for 45 per cent of mobile connections in 2015 (up from just 8 per cent in 2010) and a further 2.6 billion smartphone connections are expected to be added over the next five years. 
  • Mobile data volumes are forecast to grow at a CAGR of 49 per cent over the next five years – a more than seven-fold increase – approaching 40 exabytes per month by 20202. This will be equivalent to a global average of 7 gigabytes per subscriber per month.
  • The number of unique mobile subscribers worldwide stood at 4.7 billion at the end of 2015, equivalent to 63 per cent of the world’s population. 
  • Unique subscribers are forecast to reach 5.6 billion by 2020, by which point more than 70 per cent of the global population are expected to have a mobile subscription. 
  • More than 90 per cent of subscriber growth over the next five years is forecast to come from developing world markets.  

“Our new report reveals that mobile broadband is now a truly global phenomenon, extending high-speed connectivity and services to citizens in all corners of the world,” said Mats Granryd, Director General of the GSMA.


#MWC16: Facebook's Telecom Infra Project Brings OCP Model to Infrastructure

Facebook is launching a "Telecom Infra Project", "an engineering-focused initiative that is bringing operators, infrastructure providers, system integrators, and other technology companies together to collaborate on the development of new technologies and reimagine traditional approaches to building and deploying telecom network infrastructure."

The idea is to take the principles of the Open Compute Project (OCP) model and apply them to software systems and components involved in access, backhaul, and core networks.  The OCP model has been successful in spurring change in the data center.  Now, Facebook believes the same can be done for carrier networks.

Facebook said the initial focus of TIP will be on disaggregating the components of network infrastructure that are traditionally bundled together and vendor-specific.

TIP members will participate by contributing specs for network hardware or software, working together to develop and define new specs, designing new network topologies to solve for specific connectivity challenges, and adopting and deploying the technologies that emerge from these efforts.

At launch, several TIP members have agreed to contribute an initial set of reference designs focusing on access. Planned contributions include a reference design for a network-in-a-box–compatible hardware platform that is configurable as either a 2G or an LTE cellular access point or as a network node that is compatible with local power and networking infrastructures, as well as a network-in-a-box software reference code that includes both traditional access functionality as well as services typically found in the central data center, which will help simplify the network architecture and reduce cost. Facebook also plans to contribute a software solution to address challenges in wireless backhaul for an L3 mesh network, focusing on scalability, fast convergence, ease of configuration, and extensibility.

Major launch partners include Intel, Nokia, Deutsche Telekom and SK Telecom.


Nokia Incorporates Open Compute Designs into AirFrame Portfolio

Nokia plans to incorporate Open Compute Project (OCP) designs into its AirFrame Data Center Portfolio, aiming to offer greater efficiency, density, cooling and power usage effectiveness.

OCP-based variants for computing, network and storage will be developed in line with OCP specifications, but taking into account the specific needs of the telco domain such as regulatory requirements, Direct Current (DC) power feeding and electromagnetic shielding.

Nokia said it plans to offer a full end-to-end data center solution for telco, IT and enterprise customers, with cloud wise services supporting design and deployment. The OCP-based variants will complement the already available AirFrame rackmount servers launched in June 2015, offering complete flexibility, scalability and reliability for smaller and more distributed data center deployments.

#MWC16: Four Top Operators Push for 5G Open Trial Specs

A new 5G Open Trial Specification Alliance has been formed by KT, NTT DOCOMO, SK Telecom and Verizon to develop an aligned 5G trial specification that would serve as a common, extendable platform for different 5G trial activity around the world. The work will be focused on technical fundamentals and promoting a more inclusive, open, and collaborative approach to the development of 5G trial networks.

Specifically, The 5G Open Trial Specification Alliance will focus on 5G radio interface trial activities and aims to provide the wireless industry with the ability to test and validate key technical components. Coordination is already underway, with technical trials occurring in the 2016-2018 timeframe. The development of the trial specification will allow a variety of different industry partners (network vendors, chipset/device vendors, operators, test equipment vendors, etc.) to join and contribute.

Some key points:

  • The trial specification will be neutral and is not intended to limit on-going standardization discussions and decisions that will be happening in 3GPP. 
  • The trial specification will cover multiple spectrum bands, including bands above and below 6 GHz.
  • Key suppliers to these operators have committed to this initiative
  • Other key industry participants are expected to join the alliance in the future. 


#MWC16: Ericsson Announces a Cloud Connect Alliance with AWS

Ericsson announced  a global business, technology and services alliance with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to accelerate cloud transformation for telecoms service providers.

Specifically, Ericsson is creating a global team of experts focused on the AWS Cloud and opening cloud innovation centers with customers, and AWS is supporting Ericsson in this effort.

Telstra is the first Ericsson customer to agree to host a joint cloud innovation center with Ericsson.  The center will be hosted at Telstra's Gurrowa Innovation Lab in Melbourne, Australia.

Ericsson cited several examples of how service providers could use AWS services and expertise :

  • End-to-end security and data traffic management from mobile networks and on-premises infrastructure to the AWS Cloud
  • Trusted cloud and workload management across on-premises infrastructure and the AWS Cloud
  • Gateway services for AWS storage services resident at communications service providers, that help maintain local regulation and compliance requirements

"Service providers are seeing explosive growth due to the rapid adoption of mobile applications and IoT, which is driving the need to think differently about infrastructure and ecosystems. Communications service providers are uniquely positioned to capture the upsides of the cloud adoption wave going on in the market. Ericsson's new Cloud Innovation Centers, leveraging AWS service and expertise, are designed to empower communications service providers to accelerate innovation within their organizations and rapidly achieve the agility and cost optimization benefits of using AWS," stated Terry Wise, Vice President of Worldwide Partner Ecosystem, Amazon Web Services, Inc.

"AWS is the world's leader in cloud computing with a highly-reliable, scalable, and secure global infrastructure. Ericsson has always taken great ideas, industrialized them, and made them available in every country. Building upon AWS' platform, we will drive new growth opportunities across the service provider industry," stated Anders Lindblad, Head of Business Unit Cloud & IP, Ericsson.