Thursday, August 11, 2016

China Mobile Hits 51% 4G Adoption - Data Traffic Explodes

As of mid-year 2016, China Mobile was serving 837 million customers (up 2.4% YoY), of whom 51% were on 4G LTE. Total handset data traffic for the first half of the year reached 2,327.9 PB, up 134%.

In its mid-year financial report, China Mobile cited steady progress in the 4G, data traffic, wireline broadband and digital services business lines.  Some highlights:

  • Operating revenue of RMB370.4 billion, up by 7.1%, of which revenue from telecommunications services was RMB325.4 billion, up by 6.9%
  • EBITDA was RMB134.4 billion, up by 2.9%
  • Profit attributable to equity shareholders was RMB60.6 billion, up by 5.6%
  • 1.32 million 4G base stations online
  • Nearly 430 million 4G customers
  • Wireless data traffic revenue has for the first time exceeded traditional business and is now the biggest revenue source
  • Wireline broadband customers increased by 10.81 million and the total number of customers reaching 65.84 million
  • Handset data traffic increased by 133.9% year-on-year, while wireless data traffic revenue increased by 39.7%


Mr. Shang Bing, Chairman of China Mobile, stated: “Our current strategy has the dual aspects of consolidation and future growth. For consolidation, we will be further building on our 4G advantages and increasing our 4G customers proportion. Our high-end approach with regards to wireline broadband will be maintained. We will challenge ourselves to obtain a one-third market share in the ICT business through expansion of our corporate customer base. In terms of future growth, we will take a longer-term perspective, looking towards our digital services segment and increasing the revenue by understanding the important role that this business line will play for the Company in the future. As we have always done, we will take a level-headed approach to market competition. Our ultimate goal is to strike a balance between the interests of our customers, our shareholders and the public, as well as regulatory requirements when we are striving to meet our short-term goals and formulating long-term plans."

http://www.chinamobileltd.com/en/ir/webcasts/pre160811.pdf

Alibaba Rack Up 156% Revenue Growth for AliCloud

Alibaba cited 156% YoY revenue for Aliyun, its cloud division, where the segment adjusted EBITA narrowed to $(24) million.  The figure puts Aliyun on a faster growth trajectory than AWS or Azure, which also reported strong growth numbers during the first half of 2016. However, Aliyun remains much smaller, with Q2 revenue of US$187 million.

Cloud computing paying customers increased 119% YoY to 577k.  Aliyun launched 319 new products and features during the quarter.

The company said Aliyun's adjusted EBITA margin significantly improved YoY due to robust revenue growth and economies of scale.

http://www.alibabagroup.com/en/ir/presentations/pre160811.pdf

Acacia Posts Revenue of $116.2M, up 101% YoY

In its first financial report as a public company, Acacia Communications posted Q2 revenue of $116.2 million, up 101% year-over-year. GAAP gross margin came in at 46.4% of revenue and GAAP net income was $17.6 million.

“Our record second quarter results exceeded our expectations across the board and reflect the success of our disruptive technology in transforming cloud, content and communications networks.  These results are a testament to our strategy and demonstrate our leadership position in the high-growth 100G plus optical networking market,” said Raj Shanmugaraj, President and CEO of Acacia Communications, “We continue to see strong global demand for our products, driven by metro and inter-data center network infrastructure buildouts.”

Acacia, which was founded in 2009, develops  high-speed coherent optical interconnect products, including a series of low-power coherent DSP ASICs and silicon PICs.  The company has integrated into families of optical interconnect modules with transmission speeds ranging from 40 to 400 Gbps for use in long-haul, metro and inter-data center markets. Acacia’s coherent DSP ASICs and silicon PICs are manufactured using CMOS and CMOS-compatible processes. The company completed its IPO during Q2.

Ixia Adds High-density, Inline Bypass Switch

Ixia introduced a modular, high-density, inline bypass switch designed to help ensure that security tools have continuous visibility into network traffic.

The new iBypass VHD switch joins the company’s expanding portfolio of bypass switches.

Ixia said its iBypass VHD is the first bypass switch to support both active-standby and active-active network/security architectures. Active-standby offers improved security resilience with a primary and secondary tool that helps ensure ongoing network monitoring. Active–active enables a diverse deployment of security tools to maximize existing and new IT investments.

It supports up to twelve 10G bypass switches in one unit, three times more than previous versions. iBypass VHD is currently available via authorized Ixia channel partners at a starting US List price of $21,000.

Ixia iBypass VHD offers centralized and simplified management, leveraging Indigo Pro -- a central management tool for bypass switches that simplifies and speeds configuration and management of tens to hundreds of devices.

http://www.ixiacom.com

Rackspace's OpenStack Milestone: 6 Years, One Billion Server Hours

Rackspace announced a huge milestone: reaching one billion server hours operating production-ready OpenStack clouds for many of the world's largest and most recognized companies.

Rackspace collaborated with NASA to develop OpenStack in 2010.

"Over the past six years, Rackspace has gained more experience building, operating and improving OpenStack clouds than any other company," said Scott Crenshaw, senior vice president of strategy and product at Rackspace. "The one billion managed server hour milestone is an exciting accomplishment and further validates that we are ahead of competition in OpenStack leadership and expertise."

Rackspace also announced early access for a managed security service for Microsoft Azure. 

http://www.rackspace.com

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

IDC: Worldwide Public Cloud Services to Hit $195 Billion by 2020

Worldwide revenues from public cloud services reaching more than $195 billion in 2020 -- more than double the $96.5 billion in revenues forecast for 2016, according to an updated Worldwide Semiannual Public Cloud Services Spending Guide from International Data Corporation (IDC).  This represents a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20.4% over the 2015-2020 forecast period. The study quantifies public cloud computing purchases by cloud type for 20 industries across eight regions and 54 countries.

Cloud software – the service enablement of products in all three primary software markets: applications as a service, system infrastructure software (SIS) as a service (which combine to form SaaS), and application development and deployment (AD&D) or platform as a service (PaaS) – was responsible for 83.7% of all public cloud revenue in 2015, with the remaining 16.3% belonging to infrastructure as a service (IaaS). However, Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) revenues are forecast to grow at a faster rate than SaaS, expanding their share of overall revenues in the process.

The United States will be the largest market for public cloud services, generating nearly two thirds of total worldwide revenues throughout the forecast, followed by Western Europe and Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan)(APeJ). Latin America and APeJ will experience the greatest revenue growth over the forecast period, while all eight regions are forecast to see revenue growth greater than 100% over the next five years.

"Cloud software will significantly outpace traditional software product delivery over the next five years, growing nearly three times faster than the software market as a whole and becoming the significant growth driver to all functional software markets," said Benjamin McGrath, senior research analyst, SaaS and Business Models. "By 2020, about half of all new business software purchases will be of service-enabled software, and cloud software will constitute more than a quarter of all software sold."

http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=IDC_P33214

Samsung Intros 4th Gen, 64-layer Triple-Level-Cell Flash Technology

Samsung introduced its 4th generation, 64-layer triple-level-cell V-NAND flash memory at this week's Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara, California.

By stacking 64 layers of cell-arrays, Samsung said it is now able to increase its single-die density to 512Gb and its IO speed to 800Mbps.

This makes possible 1 TB Flash in a device weighing less than 1g, weighing less than half of a U.S. dime. The Samsung 1TB BGA SSD will use an extremely compact, ball grid array (BGA) package design that contains all essential SSD components including triple-level-cell V-NAND flash chips, LPDDR4 mobile DRAM and a state-of-the-art Samsung controller.  It will deliver unprecedented performance, reading sequentially at 1,500MB/s and writing sequentially at 900MB/s.

Samsung's 4th generation V-NAND debut continues its trend of yearly performance bumps. Starting in August 2013, Samsung has previously introduced three generations of “industry-first” V-NAND products with 24, 32 and 48-layer vertical cell-array stacking technologies. Commercial production is expected in Q4.

Samsung also announced its latest Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) SSD -- 32 TB -- the world largest single drive introduced to date.  This is also based on 512-gigabit (Gb) V-NAND chips. A total of 512 V-NAND chips are stacked in 16 layers to form a 1-terabyte (TB) package and the 32-terabyte (TB) SSD contains 32 of those packages.

https://news.samsung.com/global/samsung-showcases-industry-leading-flash-technologies-to-address-growing-requirements-of-storage-systems

Seagate Demos 60TB SSD

Seagate demonstrated a 60 terabyte (TB) Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) solid-state-drive (SSD) — the largest SSD to date — at this week's Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara, California.

The 60TB SAS SSD uses the standard 3.5 inch storage form factor, eliminating the added step of separating out different types of data for near-term availability versus long-term storage. Seagate said it anticipates increasing the capacity to 100TB or more in the near future in this same form factor.

Seagate also announced its 8TB Nytro XP7200 NVMe SSD aimed at the hyperscale needs of today’s data centers. It features a single PCIe interface for high-speed data transfers and four separate controllers, providing processing power up to four times faster than comparable drives, but without the higher cost, power levels and latency required from a PCIe switch or bridge. Applications can process more transactions faster using the industry’s highest bandwidth through one PCIe slot.

Future availability of the 60TB SAS SSD, currently a demonstration technology, is anticipated for some time in 2017.

“Given the demands on today’s data centers, optimal technologies are those that can accommodate an immense amount of data as needed—and without taking up too much space. As such, we are constantly seeking new ways to provide the highest density possible in our all-flash data center configurations,” said Mike Vildibill, vice president, Advanced Technologies and Big Data, Hewlett Packard Enterprise. “Seagate’s new 60TB SAS SSD offers an exciting possibility for customers to achieve higher server storage performance and capacity configurations never seen before.”

http://www.seagate.com

Nimble Offers Aggressive Pricing for Predictive, All-Flash Array


Nimble Storage introduced a full-featured, all-flash array that can scale non-disruptively up to 8PB. The company also introduced a new generation of Adaptive Flash arrays with significantly improved price-performance and price-capacity benefits across the portfolio.

The starting point for an AF1000 has up to 20TB effective capacity and is expandable up to 165TB effective capacity in 4U. It can also scale-up and scale-out non-disruptively to achieve over 1.2M IOPS and 8PB of all-flash capacity.  Nimble said pricing starts at under $40K.

The new portfolio consists of the CS1000, CS3000, CS5000 and CS7000 and delivers up to 2X performance improvement and 40% lower cost of capacity over the previous generation of Adaptive Flash arrays. The new high-end CS7000 array achieves up to 230K IOPS and scales to over 2.4 PB of effective capacity. 

Nimble arrays include InfoSight Predictive Analytics to predict and prevent storage and non-storage issues across the infrastructure stack.

http://www.nimblestorage.com

Level 3 Deploys Cisco Network Service Orchestrator

Level 3 Communications is using Cisco’s Network Services Orchestrator (NSO), enabled by Tail-f, to deliver on-demand Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) solutions.

Level 3 developed a programmable wide area network (WAN) that enables it to automate a range of data services and multivendor devices in its markets around the world. The company can also orchestrate the entire service lifecycle—including activation, testing and ongoing service-level assurance—through a single data model.

Level 3’s Adaptive Network Control Solutions suite, leverages network automation and SDN, which provides its customers with:
  • Agile Hybrid Cloud Connectivity: Customers can order Ethernet services such as E-Line, E-Access and E-Lynk, Level 3’s public cloud connection service, with flexible bandwidth options.
  • Level 3’s Dynamic Capacity: When customers order Level 3 Adaptive Network Control Solutions with Dynamic Capacity, the system can scale bandwidth up to 300 percent on demand, scheduled in advance or automatically based on configurable network threshold triggers.
  • Optimized Data Backup and Recovery: Customers can schedule Dynamic Capacity for regular or ad-hoc events such as data replication. Level 3’s system can schedule additional capacity in advance on an hourly basis to ensure that the workload happens within the required time window.
  • Accelerated time-to-market for new applications: With cloud connectivity between public and private infrastructure domains, Level 3 customers can quickly move applications from development to production.
  • End-to-end visibility through Level 3’s Enhanced Management: Level 3 administrators and their customers can view granular real-time information about the performance and utilization of networks and services.
Level 3 noted that it now manages more than 75,000 different network devices around the world, and that it now supports the same automated services, with the same scalability, high availability and redundancy across geographies, regardless of the underlying infrastructure.

"The power of agility in today’s competitive marketplace is not overstated,” said Travis Ewert, senior vice president of network software development at Level 3. “Global businesses need network resources that are flexible enough to be leveraged as a service, with the reliability and security they can rely on to deliver critical business applications. With Cisco NSO, Level 3 is making the once-distant dream of full lifecycle service automation a reality for enterprises around the world."

“Network resources on-demand represents a huge opportunity for service providers like Level 3 to remain innovative for their customers and competitive in the market,” said Yvette Kanouff, senior vice president, general manager, service provider business, Cisco. “This transition to network automation using NSO, is a significant step for offering new opportunities and entering new markets.”

http://www.cisco.com
http://www.netrounds.com

  • Netrounds provides software-based network performance and service assurance solutions that help telecom operators to enhance the end-user experience of IP-based services such as Internet, TV, voice and other quality-demanding business services.  The company is based in Lulea, Sweden.
  • In May, Netrounds announced that its Netrounds Control Center and active Test Agents have successfully achieved Cisco compatibility certification with Network Services Orchestrator (NSO 4.1) and Elastic Services Controller (ESC 2.0).





Zayo Picked for 100G Wavelengths between Paris and Marseille

Zayo has been selected by a large global carrier for 100G wavelength services between Paris and Marseille. The upgrade leverages the Viatel network, which Zayo acquired in 2015, and will provide backhaul capabilities for subsea cables AAE-1 and SEA-ME-WE-5.

“This new 100G capable route will provide backhaul capabilities for the subsea cables landing in Marseille this year, providing customers with seamless service across Europe, North America and around the globe,” said Alastair Kane, managing director of Northern Europe at Zayo. “Zayo can connect customers from Marseille to Milan, London, Dublin, New York, Toronto, Los Angeles and back around the world. With the upgrade, we are well-positioned to capture global traffic growth.”

http://www.zayo.com

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Open vSwitch (OVS) Moves to Linux Foundation

Open vSwitch (OVS), which is an open source virtual switch designed to enable network automation while supporting standard management interfaces and protocols, is now a Linux Foundation Project.

OVS was developed to address the rapidly growing needs of SDN and virtual networking use cases. It has been ported to multiple virtualization platforms, switching chipsets, and networking hardware accelerators. OVS works on a wide variety of systems, including Linux, DPDK, Hyper-V, and FreeBSD. It is used in a variety of SDN applications, including NFV and network virtualization; it is the most widely used networking back-end in OpenStack.

“OVS is a great example of how open source software has enabled the networking industry to match the pace of cloud computing and help advance virtualized technologies,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director, The Linux Foundation. “Hosting OVS as a Linux Foundation Project will serve to further collaboration across users and vendors and aid in open technology development throughout the networking stack.”

Contributions to OVS span more than 300 individuals across companies including Cisco, Ericsson, Huawei, HP, IBM, Intel, Red Hat and VMware. The governance is managed by a group of the top committers to the project with a variety of backgrounds and affiliations.

As a project hosted at The Linux Foundation, Open vSwitch will continue its operations under an open governance model and continue accepting contributions from all interested companies and developers.

https://www.linuxfoundation.org/announcements/open-vswitch-joins-linux-foundation-open-networking-ecosystem

http://openvswitch.org/

Momentum Builds for Central Office Re-architected as a Data Center Project (CORD)


The Central Office Re-architected as a Data Center (CORD) initiative, which was initially developed by ON.Lab as a use case for the ONOS open source SDN operating system, will now be managed as an independent open source project under The Linux Foundation. CORD aims to utilize merchant silicon and  the elasticity of commodity clouds to enable data center economics and cloud agility in the central office environment. Google, Radisys and Samsung...


Facebook Pursues Hierarchical Flash Storage Strategy

Building data center infrastructure at Facebook is all about understanding engagement, said Vijay Rao, Director Technology, Strategy Facebook, speaking at Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara, California.

Facebook's growth metrics are well known - whether in posts, comments, likes, photos, messages, videos -- the curve moves strongly in the upward and to the right direction.

Designing infrastructure for this type of runaway engagement means planning for spikes, such as Mother's Day.  In terms of raw power, Rao estimated Facebook's overall compute power at about 7.5 quadrillion instructions per second. Facebook engineers now have seven types of servers to choose from depending on the application they are supporting.


On the storage side, Facebook is pursuing a hierarchical storage model -- various technologies are employed depending on the "temperature" of the data.  Hot data resides in DRAM or NVM-based DIMMs while warm data is stored in PCIe NVM Flash. User content grows colder over time, so archival photos and posts eventually will move to cold storage systems.

Facebook's overall strategy is to pursue a "disaggregated rack" architecture with designs contributed to the Open Compute Project.

Earlier this year at Open Compute Project Summit, Facebook introduced its "Lightning"- a flexible, NVMe JBOF (just a bunch of flash) box. It is designed to provide a PCIe gen 3 connection from end to end (CPU to SSD). It leverages the existing Open Vault (Knox) SAS JBOD infrastructure to provide a faster time to market, maintain a common look and feel, enable modularity in PCIe switch solutions, and enable flexibility in SSD form factors.

Rao highlighted three other solid storage innovations.

Next gen Non-Volatile Memory (NVM), which promise significant boosts in performance and scalability using 3D technologies and other breakthroughs.

Facebook's own AVA card, which puts four M.2 modules on a card.

WORM, which promises very large capacities (>100TB) with low endurance (150 write cycles) for low-cost, long-term storage.

http://www.flashmemorysummit.com/English/Conference/Keynotes.html

Intel to Acquire Nervana for AI

Intel agreed to acquire Nervana Systems, a start-up based in San Diego, California, for their work in machine learning. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Nervana, which was founded in 2014, developed a software and hardware stack for deep learning.

Intel said the Nervana technology would help optimize the Intel Math Kernel Library and its integration into industry standard frameworks, advancing the deep learning performance and TCO of the Intel Xeon and Intel Xeon Phi processors.

http://www.intel.com

Nervana is headed by Naveen Rao.

Netronome's 25GbE Adapters Accelerate OpenStack Firewalls and Open vSwitch

Netronome unveiled its the Agilio CX dual-port 25GbE intelligent server adapter (ISA) and Agilio OVS Firewall software integrated with the Mirantis OpenStack solution for seamless cloud-based provisioning.

Netronome said its Agilio 25GbE platform delivers up to 4X higher performance and scale when implementing OpenStack and Linux Firewall-based stateful and zero trust security compared with other 25GbE server adapter solutions in the market.  Agilio also promises up to 5X higher performance for OpenStack and Open vSwitch (OVS)-based acceleration. The Agilio 25GbE platform is capable of delivering up to 25Gb/s of throughput for OVS and Linux Firewall-based OpenStack deployments while consuming only one CPU core. With 2GB of on-board adapter memory, the Agilio platform can support up to two million flows for security policy rules, delivering micro-segmentation-based zero trust security.

“More than 60 percent of OpenStack-based cloud deployments today are based on OVS and Linux Firewall, which are well known to consume too many CPU cycles at 10/25GbE and higher networking speeds, starving VMs and applications,” said Sujal Das, senior vice president and general manager of marketing and strategy at Netronome. “Netronome is the first in the industry to offer a holistic 25GbE platform that not only delivers economies in the area of speeds and feeds but also improves overall server efficiency when running modern and secure data center applications.”

“Zero-trust security implemented using OpenStack security groups fills many holes in traditional perimeter-based firewalling exacerbated by increasing east-west traffic,” said Kamesh Pemmaraju, vice president of product marketing at Mirantis. “The integration of the Agilio CX 25GbE and Linux Firewall platform with Mirantis OpenStack solves this multi-dimensional challenge by improving performance, scale and economies for both east-west traffic and servers implementing zero-trust security.”

http://www.netronome.com

Cisco Contributes Full Duplex DOCSIS Chip Design

Cisco is contributing a silicon reference design for Full Duplex DOCSIS to the cable industry on a royalty-free basis.

Specifically, Cisco is offering a validated reference design for a digital echo canceler that maximizes the use of HFC capacity. Over the past 2 year, a team of Cisco engineers have defined a multi-slice scalable echo canceler (EC) for the Full Duplex DOCSIS specification that seamlessly integrates with the Cable Modem Termination System (CMTS) architecture. The technology is scalable for a return path from 200 MHz (1.7 Gbps) to 1.2 GHz (10 Gbps).

“By making this royalty-free design available to the industry, we can help our cable customers evolve to more rapidly deploy virtualized, fiber-deep, and all-IP infrastructures,” said John Chapman, Cisco fellow and CTO, Cable Access Business. “We hope to accelerate the transformation of the cable industry to deliver multi-gigabit speeds and new high bandwidth services and products, and in the near future, customers can begin to enjoy the benefits of Full Duplex DOCSIS technology.”

“DOCSIS 3.1 Full Duplex with up to 50 times more upstream capacity than today and echo cancellation technology, is further evidence that DOCSIS and the cable network itself has a long, useful life ahead,” said Jeff Finkelstein, executive director, Network Strategy, Cox Communications. “The work being done on Full Duplex by the MSO, vendor and CableLabs team shows that the cable network will continue to evolve and deliver high bandwidth services for many years, enabling our customers to enjoy the services most important to them to meet their future needs.”

https://newsroom.cisco.com/press-release-content?type=press-release&articleId=1783429

NEC Debuts 10 Gbps E-band Radio with Adaptive Modulation

NEC Corporation of America launched its new iPASOLINK EX Advanced radio, featuring Adaptive Modulation for 10 Gbps wireless throughput capacity in a single channel.

NEC said its new radio operates in E-band millimeter wave frequency range (71-86GHz), achieves low latency and high transmission capacity of 10Gbps within a single channel, more than three times higher than NEC's previous iPASOLINK EX model.

The new product's Adaptive Modulation and Bandwidth Radio (AMBR) feature enables dynamic adjustment of its modulation method and communication bandwidth according to the particular application, weather conditions and link distance, allowing it to maintain high quality network connections even in severe weather conditions.

The new iPASOLINK EX Advanced is approximately 30% smaller than the previous iPASOLINK EX model, improving site acquisition and installation costs. The integrated 10GbE interfaces allows it to efficiently transmit high capacity data via optical fiber to core networks.

"As data demands have increased, capacity has become a significant concern for network planners who need to ensure throughput, security and availability,” said Matt Engelmann, vice president for NEC Corporation of America. “These concerns apply to all transport mediums and I am pleased to confirm our new radios like iPASOLINK EX Advanced meet these demands and help transport network operators deliver higher quality network services for enhanced user experience. These enhancements are industry leading and indicative of NEC’s continued investment in radio technology.”

Western Digital Achieves First 64 Layer 3D NAND

Western Digital has achieved pilot production of 3D NAND technology in 64 layers.

The technology, which WD is calling BiCS3, was developed jointly with Toshiba, its manufacturing partner. It will be initially deployed in 256 gigabit capacity and will be available in a range of capacities up to half a terabit on a single chip.

WD expects commercial volumes of BiCS3 in the first half of calendar 2017.

"The launch of the next generation 3D NAND technology based on our industry-leading 64 layer architecture reinforces our leadership in NAND flash technology," said Dr. Siva Sivaram, executive vice president, memory technology, Western Digital. "BiCS3 will feature the use of 3-bits-per-cell technology along with advances in high aspect ratio semiconductor processing to deliver higher capacity, superior performance and reliability at an attractive cost. Together with BiCS2, our 3D NAND portfolio has broadened significantly, enhancing our ability to address a full spectrum of customer applications in retail, mobile and data center."

http://www.wd.com

See also