Saturday, February 4, 2017

Qualcomm and TDK Joint Venture Targets RF Front-end Modules

Qualcomm and TDK have established a joint venture named RF360 Holdings Singapore PTE. Ltd. that will enable Qualcomm’s RFFE Business Unit to deliver RF front-end (RFFE) modules and RF filters into fully integrated systems for mobile devices and fast-growing business segments, such as Internet of Things (IoT), automotive applications, connected computing, and more. The business being transferred constitutes a part of the TDK SAW Business Group activities.

RF360 Holdings will have a comprehensive set of filters and filter technologies, including surface acoustic wave (SAW), temperature-compensated surface acoustic wave (TC-SAW) and bulk acoustic wave (BAW), to support the wide range of frequency bands being deployed in networks across the globe. Moreover, RF360 Holdings will enable the delivery of RFFE modules from QTI that will include front-end components designed and developed by QTI. These components include CMOS, SOI and GaAs Power Amplifiers, a broad portfolio of Switches, Antenna Tuning, Low Noise Amplifiers (LNAs) and the industry’s leading Envelope Tracking solution.

“The ongoing expansion of mobile communication across multiple industries, and the unprecedented deployment of multi-carrier 4G technologies now reaching over sixty-five 3GPP frequency bands are driving manufacturers of wireless solutions to higher levels of miniaturization, integration and performance, especially for the RFFE in these devices,” said Cristiano Amon, executive vice president, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., and president, QCT. “Further, 5G will increase the level of complexity even more. To that end, the ability to provide the ecosystem a truly complete solution is essential to enabling our customers to deliver mobile solutions at scale and on time.”

http://www.qualcomm.com

Friday, February 3, 2017

FCC Ends Investigation into Mobile Free Data Programs

The FCC's  Wireless Telecommunications Bureau has ended its investigation into wireless carriers' free data offerings.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai issued the following statement: “Today, the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau is closing its investigation into wireless carriers' free-data offerings. These free-data plans have proven to be popular among consumers, particularly low-income Americans, and have enhanced competition in the wireless marketplace. Going forward, the Federal Communications Commission will not focus on denying Americans free data. Instead, we will concentrate on expanding broadband deployment and encouraging innovative service offerings.”

http://www.fcc.gov

Openreach Appoints Two Members to Board

Openreach, the wholly owned and independently governed division of the BT Group, appointed Sir Brendan Barber and Edward Astle as independent members of a newly formed Board to oversee strategy, investment and service delivery at the UK’s leading digital infrastructure company. The company said that establishing the new Board is central to governance reforms that Openreach has been implementing to become a more transparent and autonomous business.

Sir Brendan Barber is former General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress and current chair of Acas.

Edward Astle is a former Board member of National Grid.

Mike McTighe was appointed independent Chairman of Openreach in December 2016. A fourth independent non-executive is due to be announced imminently with a specific focus on customer service.

http://www.btplc.com/news/#/pressreleases/openreach-appoints-independent-board-members-1776414


Ofcom, the official regulator for the telecom market in the UK, will seek the legal separation of Openreach from BT.  Openreach is the division of BT Group that develops and maintains the UK’s main telecoms network used by providers such as Sky, TalkTalk, Vodafone and BT’s retail business. Ofcom said the decision follows after BT failed to offer voluntary proposals that address competition concerns. Ofcom believes BT has the incentive and ability...


Thursday, February 2, 2017

Infomart: Expanding & Improving Carrier-Neutral Colocation



Infomart Data Centers is a rapidly growing builder, operator and owner of carrier-neutral, wholesale data centers, with locations in Dallas, Portland (Oregon), Silicon Valley and Ashburn (Virginia).

In this video, Scott Mitchell, Senior VP of Sales at Infomart, gives us an update on the company's progress, including its cutting- edge work with LinkedIn.

Filmed at PTC'17 in Honolulu, Hawaii.

https://youtu.be/16L_mgHOOyU



AWS Sales Rocketed 47% YoY in Q4 2016

In its financial report for Q4 2016, Amazon noted that sales for AWS rose 47% YoY to reach #3.546 billion.  Operating income rose 60% YoY to reach $923 million.

Some AWS highlights for the quarter:

  • AWS accelerated its infrastructure expansion in 2016, opening eleven Availability Zones across five geographic regions in the U.S., Korea, India, and most recently, Canada and the U.K. AWS now operates 42 Availability Zones across 16 infrastructure regions globally and plans to open an additional five Availability Zones in two regions (France and a second region in China) in the coming months.
  • AWS announced that customers migrated more than 18,000 databases using the AWS Database Migration Service in 2016.
  • AWS continues to accelerate its pace of innovation with the release of 308 significant new services and features in the fourth quarter, bringing the total number of launches in 2016 to 1,017.
  • AWS announced three Artificial Intelligence (AI) services that make it easy for any developer to build apps that can understand natural language, turn text into lifelike speech, have conversations using voice or text, analyze images and recognize faces, objects, and scenes. Amazon Lex, Amazon Polly, and Amazon Rekognition are based on the same proven, highly scalable AI technology built by the thousands of deep learning and machine learning experts across Amazon. AWS also announced a significant investment in MXNet, an open source distributed deep learning framework. AWS will contribute code and improve the MXNet developer experience to enable machine learning scientists to build scalable deep learning models that can significantly reduce the training time for their applications.
  • AWS announced Amazon Athena, a pay-as-you-go, interactive query service that makes it easy for customers to analyze data directly in Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) using standard SQL. With a few clicks in the AWS Management Console, customers can point Amazon Athena at their data stored in Amazon S3 and begin using standard SQL to run queries and get results in seconds. With Amazon Athena there are no clusters to manage and tune, no infrastructure to setup or manage, and customers pay only for the queries they run.
  • AWS announced AWS Greengrass and AWS Snowball Edge, hybrid services that help customers extend the power of the AWS Cloud to connected devices and other environments that exist beyond the network edge.
  • AWS announced AWS Snowmobile, an Exabyte-scale data transfer service that customers can use to move extremely large amounts of data to AWS. Each Snowmobile is a 45-foot long ruggedized shipping container pulled by a semi-trailer truck that is capable of moving up to 100 PB of data — from video libraries and image repositories to entire data centers — to the AWS Cloud in as little as a few weeks.
  • AWS announced seven new compute services and capabilities to support an even wider range of applications, introducing the next generations of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) Memory Optimized, Compute Optimized, and High input/output (I/O) instances, adding a way for customers to get started quickly with virtual private servers (VPS) through Amazon Lightsail, and delivering hardware acceleration with Elastic GPUs and Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA)-enabled F1 instances.
  • AWS announced the expansion of Amazon Aurora to include full PostgreSQL compatibility. With Amazon Aurora’s new PostgreSQL support, customers can get up to several times better performance than the typical PostgreSQL database and take advantage of the scalability, durability, and security capabilities of Amazon Aurora — all for one-tenth the cost of commercial grade databases.
  • AWS announced the general availability of Amazon QuickSight, a very fast, cloud-powered business analytics service that makes it easy for all employees, regardless of their technical skill, to build visualizations, perform ad-hoc analysis, and quickly get business insights from their data at one-tenth the cost of traditional solutions.


http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=97664&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=2241835

Facebook Passes 1.2 Billion Daily Active Users, up 18% YoY

Facebook is now serving over 1.227 billion daily active users, up from 1.038 billion DAUs a year earlier.

Some other metrics:

  • Mobile DAUs – Mobile DAUs were 1.15 billion on average for December 2016, an increase of 23% yearover
    -year.
  • Monthly active users (MAUs) – MAUs were 1.86 billion as of December 31, 2016, an increase of 17% year-over-year.
  • Mobile MAUs – Mobile MAUs were 1.74 billion as of December 31, 2016, an increase of 21% year-overyear.
  • Capital expenditures for the full year 2016 were $4.49 billion, up from $2.25 billion for 2015.


http://www.facebook.com

Mellanox Says Infiniband Continues to Grow

Mellanox Technologies reported Q4 sales of $221.7 million and $857.5 million in fiscal year 2016. GAAP gross margins were 66.8 percent in the fourth quarter, and 64.8 percent in fiscal year 2016.

“During the fourth quarter we saw continued sequential growth in our InfiniBand business, driven by robust customer adoption of our 100 Gigabit EDR solutions into artificial intelligence, machine learning, high-performance computing, storage, database and more. Our quarterly, and full-year 2016 results, highlight InfiniBand’s continued leadership in high-performance interconnects,” said Eyal Waldman, president and CEO of Mellanox Technologies. “Customer adoption of our 25, 50, and 100 gigabit Ethernet solutions continued to grow in the fourth quarter. Adoption of Spectrum Ethernet switches by customers worldwide generated positive momentum exiting 2016. Our fourth quarter and full-year 2016 results demonstrate Mellanox’s diversification, and leadership in both Ethernet and InfiniBand. We anticipate growth in 2017 from all Mellanox product lines.”

http://www.mellanox.com


HPE Acquires Niara for User and Entity Behavioral Analytics

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has acquired Niara, a start-up based in Sunnyvale, California that specializes in the emerging User and Entity Behavior Analytics (UEBA) security market segment. The technology seeks to identify next-generation security threats that have penetrated traditional firewalls and other perimeter systems.Financial terms were not disclosed.

After an incident is discovered by Niara, a ClearPass network access policy can be automatically triggered to isolate or disconnect the user or device from the network to prevent access to sensitive information such as credit cards or other customer and corporate information.

Niara will operate within HPE Aruba to enhance the company’s ClearPass network security portfolio for wired and wireless network infrastructure. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“With this transaction, we are continuing to innovate at the Intelligent Edge with software-defined solutions to better protect our customers’ business and IoT data,” said Keerti Melkote, Senior Vice President and General Manager, HPE Aruba. “With over 20 billion IoT devices expected to be connected to networks by 2020, security is the number one concern for our customers. Combining Niara’s next-generation behavior analytics software with Aruba’s ClearPass network security portfolio will deliver the industry’s most complete visibility and attack detection system.”

http://www.hpe.com

OIF Approves Polarized Multiplexed Quadrature Modulator for 400G

The Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) approved an Implementation Agreement (IA) for an optical integrated Polarization Multiplexed (PM) quadrature modulator for coherent applications with nominal symbol rates up to 64GBaud. The agreement supports the 16QAM modulation format for 400G applications.

“As we go to higher data rates, we need higher performing optical components that maintain a reasonable level of complexity,” said Karl Gass of Qorvo and the OIF’s PLL Working Group – Optical Vice Chair. “These components are targeted for 400G applications. RF bandwidth is the highest priority for this project.”

The forum members also started the CEI-112G in MCM project to support interconnect within Multi-Chip-Modules (MCMs). In addition to the CEI-112G-VSR specification that is being developed, there is a need to support high rate interconnect amongst large logic devices as well as to small driver devices within an MCM.

Members have also started a maintenance project to produce amendments to the User Network Interface (UNI) 2.0 and External Network to Network Interface (E-NNI) 2.0 specification documenting the extensions for support of OTN rates higher than 100G. Adding these extensions to UNI 2.0 and E-NNI 2.0 will facilitate vendor interoperability. The project seeks to assist the IETF as it develops the required routing and signaling extension by providing a description of the Byond100G data-plane and the operations to be controlled by GMPLS.

http://www.oiforum.com

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Network Visibility 2017 - AT&T



Carriers around the globe are embracing SDN and NFV to enhance the experience of their customers while also increasing their organizational agility and driving down operational costs, says Paul Hooper, CEO of Gigamon.

AT&T really started with the customer experience , says Josh Goodell, VP, Network on Demand, AT&T. Customers want control and flexibility in the network. He discusses how AT&T has reengineered the core fabric of its network to enhance the customer experience.

Series produced by Converge! Network Digest and sponsored by Gigamon.

https://youtu.be/rWw5ZV6gztA


What is AT&T's Indigo?



What is AT&T's Indigo?

Indigo is the convergence of software-defined networking, artificial intelligence, 5G and other new access technologies, says Steve McGaw, Chief Marketing Officer for AT&T Business Solutions.

First unveiled in January 2017 at the AT&T Developer Summit, Indigo is a "Network 3.0" initiative to create a trusted environment where organizations can share data and collaborate on analytics.

See video:  https://youtu.be/vTDKfaqQrL8


AT&T Develops its Indigo Platform, Moves ECOMP to Linux Foundation

AT&T is pushing ahead with its Network 3.0 Indigo (“Indigo”) framework, which aims to integrate technologies like Big Data, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, cybersecurity and software-defined networking (SDN).

“We see Indigo as the third generation of modern networking,” said John Donovan, chief strategy officer and group president, Technology and Operations. “Indigo is our term for a world where it isn’t just your connection speeds that are accelerating, but every element of the network becomes more seamless, efficient and capable. It is a living, evolving, upgradeable platform. Think of Indigo like the operating system on your phone. We’re taking that model to the network.”

At an event in San Francisco, AT&T laid out several elements of its network innovation that are helping the company drive to Indigo:

5G Evolution – AT&T plans to launch its first “5G Evolution Markets” in the coming months in Austin and Indianapolis, with a goal of theoretical peak speeds of 400 Mbps or higher.  As its continue densifying the network and deploying technologies, like carrier aggregation and LTE-License Assisted Access (LAA), AT&T expects to enable theoretical peak speeds up to 1Gbps in some areas in 2017.

Software-defined networking – Data on the AT&T mobile network has increased about 250,000% since 2007, and most of that traffic is video. AT&T has already converted 34% of its network functionality to SDN and is on the way to 75% by 2020. AT&T is announcing a network virtualization goal for year end 2017 of 55%.

Open sourcing ECOMP – ECOMP (Enhanced Control, Orchestration, Management and Policy) is the orchestration platform created to power AT&T's software-defined network. AT&T is officially announcing that ECOMP will be part of an open source project, hosted by the Linux Foundation. The code is built in a CI/CD environment and consists of 11 different modules, all set up as separate virtual machines filled with code in 1 or more containers.

Data Platform – AT&T aims to create a trusted environment where organizations can share data and collaborate on analytics in a secure environment. One where privacy choices and requirements are respected.

“Indigo is unique because it will be data powered and software controlled,” said Andre Fuetsch, president AT&T Labs and chief technology officer. “Those are powerful tools, but they also require a unique level of collaboration with software developers and other third parties. In particular, we think the open source community has a huge role. Open source ECOMP is part of that. We’re also heavy users and developers of OpenStack, Open Contrail and other open source software tools. We encourage developers and other innovators to get involved. We need their input as much as we need the expertise of the big, traditional vendors.”

http://about.att.com/story/indigo_redefining_connectivity.html

AT&T to Acquire FiberTower for 24 and 39 GHz Spectrum

AT&T confirmed its intention to acquire FiberTower, a privately-held company that holds an extensive spectrum footprint in 24 GHz and 39 GHz bands. Financial terms were not disclosed.

At the AT&T Innovation Summit in San Francisco, John Donovan, Chief Strategy Officer and Group President at AT&T, said the acquired spectrum assets will have advance the company's 5G plans.

http://www.att.com
http://www.fibertower.com

AT&T Brings NetBond Connectivity to IoT Control Center

AT&T's IOT solutions are now part its NetBond Ecosystem, which brings IP/MPLS VPN connectivity to cloud services.

Enterprise customers will now be able use AT&T NetBond connectivity to reach the cloud-based AT&T Control Center, powered by Cisco Jasper, which helps businesses launch, manage and monetize IoT services.

The solution will give businesses highly secure connectivity to leading cloud service providers and to their own data centers. The connection travels through the AT&T Virtual Private Network (VPN), isolated from public internet risks. It also saves costs through work resources on demand, and consistent and predictable performance.

“The industry is growing rapidly with analysts forecasting there will be tens of billions of connected devices by 2020.  This acceleration will introduce new risks for businesses,” said Chris Penrose, President, Internet of Things Solutions, AT&T. “By integrating AT&T Control Center and AT&T NetBond, we can give businesses a robust and highly secure solution to address those risks.”

“AT&T NetBond isn’t just about connecting customers to their clouds. It offers simple, scalable, and highly secure software-defined connections for all businesses,” said Mo Katibeh, Senior Vice President, AT&T Advanced Solutions.  “Bringing our IoT solutions into AT&T NetBond keeps businesses’ critical IoT devices, workloads and information off of the public internet and on a private network. That brings inherent security and latency benefits at an incredibly affordable price.”

http://www.att.com/netbond

Verizon Completes XO Acquisition

Verizon completed its $1.8 billion purchase of XO Communications’ fiber-optic network business. The deal was first announced in February 2016. Network integration work begins immediately.

"This transaction with XO will bring significant benefits in how we deliver superior services to our customers," said John Stratton, Verizon executive vice president and president of Operations.  "XO’s fiber network will add ever greater capacity and reach to Verizon’s networks, a combination that will lead to enhanced capabilities, better services and faster rollout of next generation communication networks."

Separately, Verizon will simultaneously lease available XO wireless spectrum, with an option to buy XO’s entity that holds its spectrum by year-end 2018.

http://www.verizon.com
http://fios.verizon.com

Nokia's Network Sales Down 14% in Q4

Nokia posted non-IFRS net sales in Q4 2016 of EUR 6.7bn (reported: EUR 6.6bn), down from the year-ago quarter when non-IFRS net sales would have been EUR 7.7bn on a comparable combined company basis (reported: EUR 3.6bn on a Nokia stand-alone basis).

Nokia's networks business declined 14% year-on-year net sales decrease in Q4 2016, reflecting challenging market conditions in Q4 2016 and the difficult comparison against the strong performance by Alcatel-Lucent in Q4 2015.

Nokia Technologies experienced a 25% year-on-year net sales decrease and 49% operating profit decrease in Q4 2016, primarily due to the absence of the Samsung arbitration award, which benefited Q4 2015.

Alcatel Submarine Networks posted strong sales in Q4.

Rajeev Suri, President and CEO of Nokia, stated: "At the start of the year, Nokia was focused primarily on mobile networks.  We ended the year as a company with a complete portfolio spanning mobile, fixed, routing, optical, stand-alone software and more; with solid opportunities to drive higher returns through expansion into new customer segments; with emerging businesses in digital health and digital media; and with greatly expanded patent and brand licensing activities."

"Pleasingly, we saw growing customer support for Nokia's strategy. Our sales pipeline with customers beyond our traditional communication service provider base accelerated over the course of the year, we saw an increasing share of our Networks pipeline coming from opportunities covering products and services from two or more of our business groups, and the potential of cross-selling started to become a reality."

"We also ended the year having successfully concluded the integration of Alcatel-Lucent faster than anticipated, allowing us to shift our full focus to cost savings, continuous improvement programs and the execution of our strategy."

http://www.nokia.co

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Network Visibility 2017 - CenturyLink



To really understand how your application is performing it is critical to gain end-to-end visibility across the network, says Andy Huckridge, Director of Service Provider Solutions at Gigamon. You have to be able to measure performance across multiple layers and network boundaries.

Customers are more demanding these days, says Drew Flechsig, Director of Network Policy, Traffic and Security for CenturyLink.  Customers want visibility at Layer 2, 3 and up through the OSI stack.

Series produced by Converge! Network Digest and sponsored by Gigamon.

See video: https://youtu.be/juZgYIrw2xM


Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF – Automating Carrier Networks



Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF provides an update on key MEF initiatives to enable orchestrated Third Network services over automated networks.  He notes that MEF is seeing “huge demand” to develop “East-West” APIs  for orchestration across multiple providers. MEF also is working on “North-South” APIs to orchestrate services over multiple technology domains within a single operator.  Stay tuned for news in the coming months about MEF’s expanded certification programs centered on orchestrated services and open APIs.

Filmed at PTC'17 in Honolulu, Hawaii.

See video:  https://youtu.be/oVYvbaq4djA


See also