Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Italy's TIM Eyes 5G Rollout in Turin

TIM (Telecom Italia Mobile) has announced that Turin will become the first Italian city and amongst the first in Europe to have a new 5G mobile network, following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between TIM and the municipality of Turin.

TIM stated that by 2018 Turin, where its innovation and development centre is based, will be the site of its first 5G technology trial in a metropolitan area, designed to support the development of a new generation mobile network. The Turin 5G project will include the gradual extension of the new mobile broadband infrastructure to the municipal urban area, with the objective of covering the entire city by 2020.

Through the new MoU, TIM plans to install starting in 2017 more than 100 small cells in key areas of the city, including Via Roma, Via Po, Via Garibaldi, Via Lagrange and Piazza Vittorio, in the Quadrilatero Romano, and in the areas where the Polytechnic University and University of Turin are located. The new small cells will be in addition to the 200 mobile ultra-broadband sites that TIM will use to enhance radio coverage in the city, and the new network will be supported by its fibre infrastructure that already covers most of the city.

As part of this initiative, Turin has been nominated by TIM as the Italian 5G city to serve as the preferred location for activities envisaged in the 5G Action Plan of the European Commission, which aims to speed up development through launching trials and subsequently public use of the new technology, commencing with the main metropolitan areas. As such, Turin is expected to form part of the first pan-European network of 5G interconnected cities.

The planned trial in Turin will involve up to 3,000 users, who will be able to utilise the high performances and transmission speeds, as well as new experimental services and applications, provided by the city administration over TIM's 5G network. Specifically, TIM will provide the city of Turin with new smart city services in the areas of public security, transport management and information services.

Earlier in March, TIM and Ericsson announced they would strengthen their cooperation relating to the development of 5G technology via a MoU designed to accelerate the evolution towards 5G. The agreement will focus on the design and testing of access infrastructure, antenna systems and network virtualisation, in particular through joint participation in Italian and European research projects and integration of service platforms for testing in the field. The agreement is part of the 5G for Italy initiative launched by TIM and Ericsson last year.

Regarding the initiative, Giuseppe Recchi, executive chairman of TIM, said, "(TIM's) business plan includes Euro 11 billion of investments in 3 years, Euro 5 billion of which will be dedicated to developing the new ultra-broadband networks… (to support) future fast connections and the development of cities".

Inphi Intros 64 Gbaud SMT Driver

Inphi, a supplier of high-speed data transfer interconnects, announced sampling of its IN6417SZ device, claimed to be the first 64 Gbaud quad linear differential to single-ended Mach-Zehnder modulator driver delivered in a 14 x 9 mm SMT package.

The new 64 Gbaud SMT quad linear driver, which follows the companies announcement at ECOC 2016 of 64 Gbaud TIAs, extends Inphi's 64 Gbaud product portfolio that targets next-generation 400/600 Gbit/s coherent, long haul and metro optical interconnect applications.

Inphi noted that with growing demand for bandwidth, service providers and data centre operators are demanding more efficient technologies, such as flexible coherent DWDM transmission, which require components capable of supporting multiple modulation formats and baud rates. The new IN6417SZ product is designed to work with higher order modulation schemes for a range of data rates up to 600 Gbit/s on a single wavelength.

Inphi previously announced sampling of the IN6450TA 64 Gbaud dual channel linear TIA/VGA amplifier at ECOC in September 2016. The device supports data rates up to 600 Gbit/s per wavelength for long haul, metro and data centre interconnect networks using coherent technology.

In November 2016, Inphi announced a definitive agreement to acquire ClariPhy Communications, a provider of ultra-high-speed systems-on-chip (SoCs) for multi-terabit data, long haul and metro networking markets. ClariPhy specifically offered coherent DSP technology for long and short reach DWDM applications.

Inphi noted at the time that the acquired technology would enable it to offer coherent DSP, TIA and drivers for long haul and metro markets, direct-detect PAM DSP-based solutions for DCI edge applications and NRZ and PAM short reach solutions for inside the data centre. In addition, in components it stated that ClariPhy would bring TIA, driver, silicon photonics, coherent DSP, PAM and NRZ physical layer technology.


Tata Power selects Nokia IP/MPLS network in Delhi

Nokia announced that it has provided major Indian power utility Tata Power Delhi Distribution (TATA Power-DDL) with an advanced IP/MPLS network to support the management of its electrical grid in its area of operation across north and north-west Delhi.

The deployment is designed to enable TATA Power-DDL to support both mission-critical operational services and traditional business and IT services leveraging a single communications network. Leveraging the new IP/MPLS network, TATA Power-DDL can support most of its operational and business services using a single network for enhanced operational efficiency.

The IP/MPLS network features Nokia's 7210 Service Access Switch and 7705 Service Aggregation Router portfolios and is designed to support the applications required by utilities, for example Asymmetric Delay Control, a feature developed by Nokia to help ensure network stability for critical teleprotection services. The network is managed by Nokia's 5620 Service Aware Manager system.

For the project, Nokia also provided professional services including network design, installation, commissioning and integration, and will provide ongoing maintenance services and support.

Nokia noted that TATA Power-DDL is the first power utility in India to implement teleprotection service utilising Line-Differential Relay (LDR) over an IP/MPLS network. This capability is a key requirement for operating and maintaining a reliable and safe electric grid. Teleprotection enables fault detection and trip breakers for isolation of specific sections of the grid to contain the affects of a fault to a localised region.

Additional mission-critical services supported by the new network include supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA), integrated surveillance system, distribution management system and distribution automation. The network will also enable TATA Power-DDL to support emerging smart grid applications such as distributed energy resources, mobile workforce management systems and automated demand response.

In October 2016, Nokia announced it had delivered a solution with IP/MPLS and optical technology to Swiss electricity transmission system operator Swissgrid as part of its Grid Control Network to enable the management of its electricity grid and specifically support monitoring and switching for electricity transmission.

The project included Nokia's 7705 Service Aggregation Router and 7750 Service Router portfolio, with the xWDM network layer based on the 1830 Photonic Service Switch.

Vodafone teams with Huawei for 10G over fibre in Spain

Vodafone and Huawei announced that at Mobile World Congress they demonstrated an ultra-fast fibre broadband connection delivering a download speed of nearly 10 Gbit/s designed to support services such as ultra HD (UHD) 8K video, big data, virtual reality (VR) and 3D augmented reality (AR), remote healthcare and online gaming.

At MWC, Vodafone demonstrated simultaneous support for viewing of UHD 4K video and data download at gigabit speeds.

Vodafone Spain announced in January that it planned to upgrade its hybrid fibre-coaxial (HFC) network to enable symmetrical data rates of more than 1 Gbit/s upstream and downstream. In addition, the operator noted that in addition to upgrading its existing network to DOCSIS 3.1, it planned to implement a new distributed architecture involving extending fibre closer to optical sites to deliver higher bandwidth for end users.

For the project, Vodafone Spain has adopted Huawei's DOCSIS 3.1-based distributed converged cable access platform (D-CCAP) solution as part of a DOCSIS 3.1 network deployment designed to offer advantages including: increased bandwidth per user by expanding the spectrum range and improving modulation efficiency; improved operation and enhanced network quality; greater flexibility and scalability, with the ability to upgrade the HFC network or deploy a full FTTH network.

Vodafone noted that work to modernise the network has commenced in the main cities in Spain, and will extend to the whole country over the forthcoming months.

In mid-2016, Huawei and Vodafone Spain announced the launch of Madrid Tech City, a project intended to position Madrid as a leading global technology city. The companies noted that the initiative had already provided access to 4G+ mobile network with peak data rates of 600 Mbit/s. Vodafone and Huawei also planned to implement NB-IoT (narrowband - Internet of Things) technology to connect devices and sensors and enable the launch of new services such as: intelligent parking.


Finisar reports Q3 revenue of $380.59m, up 23.1% yr/yr

Finisar, a global provider of subsystems and components for fibre optic communications, announced financial results for its third quarter of fiscal year 2017, ended January 29, 2017, as follows.

1. Revenue for the third quarter of 2017 of $380.59 million, up 2.9% compared with $369.86 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2017 and up 23.1% from $309.21 million in the third quarter of 2016.

2. Gross profit for the third quarter of $136.64 million, up 2.2% compared with $133.68 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2017 and up 55.8% from $87.74 million in the third quarter of 2016.

3. R&D expenditure for the third quarter of $54.59 million, up 2.6% compared with $53.24 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2017 and up 9.6% from $49.84 million in the third quarter of 2016.

4. SG&A expenditure for the third quarter of $26.33 million, down 2.3% compared with $26.94 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2017 and down 1.6% from $26.77 million in the third quarter of 2016.

5. Total operating expenditure for t
he third quarter of $81.73 million, up 1.5% compared with $80.53 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2017 and up 5.7% from $77.28 million in the third quarter of 2016.

6. On a GAAP basis, net income for the third quarter of $46.39 million, compared with net income of $48.76 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2017 and net income of $12.08 million in the third quarter of 2016.

On a non-GAAP basis, net income for the third quarter of $67.20 million, compared with net income of $65.15 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2017 and net income of $26.60 million in the third quarter of 2016.

7. Cash and cash equivalents as of January 31, 2017 of $240.59 million, compared with $282.96 million as at October 30, 2016 and $280.41 million as at July 31, 2016.

Additional results and notes

Finisar noted that in the third quarter, sales of datacom products increased by $7.3 million (2.8%) compared to the second quarter, due primarily to growth in demand for 100 Gbit/s transceivers, with sales of 100 Gbit/s transceivers for datacom applications up approximately 9% compared to the second quarter, and over 110% compared to the third quarter of the prior year.
Sales of telecom products in the third quarter increased by $3.5 million (3.2%) compared to the second quarter, based primarily on higher sales of wavelength selective switch and ROADM line card products, driven by demand from Chinese OEM customers.


For the fourth quarter of fiscal 2017, Finisar currently expects revenue in the range $360 to $380 million, representing a sequential decline of 2.8% at the midpoint. http://www.finisar.com

Monday, March 13, 2017

Intel to Acquire Mobileye for $15.3 Billion - Automated Driving

Intel agreed to acquire Mobileye, a developer of machine vision systems for automated driving, for $63.54 per share in cash, representing a fully-diluted equity value of approximately $15.3 billion and an enterprise value of $14.7 billion. The acquisition will couple the best-in-class technologies from both companies, including Intel’s high-performance computing and connectivity expertise and Mobileye’s leading computer vision expertise to create automated driving solutions from the cloud through the network to the car.

Mobileye, which is based in Israel, claims the leading market position in computer vision for Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). Its portfolio includes surround vision, sensor fusion, mapping, and driving policy products. Mobileye's EyeQ chips are already installed in ~16M vehicles as of 2016. Its upcoming EyeQ4 and EyeQ5 chips for Level 3/4 autonomous driving programs go into production in 2018 and 2020 respectively. Mobileye currently has OEM relationships with GM, VW, Honda, BMW, PSA, Audi, Kia, Nissan, Volvo, Ford, Renault, Chrysler, SAIC and Hyundai. Mobileye reported 2016 revenue of $358 million and gross margin of 76%.  The company has approximately 660 employees.

Intel said the merger will accelerate innovation for the automotive industry and position Intel as a leading technology provider in the fast-growing market for highly and fully autonomous vehicles.  Intel estimates the vehicle systems, data and services market opportunity to be up to $70 billion by 2030.

“This acquisition is a great step forward for our shareholders, the automotive industry and consumers,” said Brian Krzanich, Intel CEO. “Intel provides critical foundational technologies for autonomous driving including plotting the car’s path and making real-time driving decisions. Mobileye brings the industry’s best automotive-grade computer vision and strong momentum with automakers and suppliers. Together, we can accelerate the future of autonomous driving with improved performance in a cloud-to-car solution at a lower cost for automakers."

Intel also noted that it expects by 2020 autonomous vehicles will generate 4,000 GB of data per day.


New QSFP-DD MSA Targets 400G

The Quad Small Form Factor Pluggable Double Density (QSFP-DD) Multi Source Agreement (MSA) group has released a specification for the new QSFP-DD form factor, which is a next generation high-density, high-speed pluggable module with a QSFP28 compatible double-density interface. QSFP-DD pluggable modules can quadruple the bandwidth of networking equipment while remaining backwards compatible with existing QSFP form factors used across Ethernet, Fibre Channel and InfiniBand for 40 Gbps and 100 Gbps network applications.

Specifically, the new QSFP-DD form factor expands the standard QSFP four-lane interface by adding a row of contacts providing for an eight-lane electrical interface, each operating up to 25 Gbps with Non-Return-to-Zero (NRZ) modulation or 50 Gbps with Pulse Amplitude Modulation (PAM4). This adaptation allows the QSFP-DD form factor to address solutions up to 400 Gbps aggregate per QSFP-DD port, while providing backward compatibility to 40 Gbps and 100 Gbps. A single switch slot can support up to 36 QSFP-DD modules providing up to 14.4 Tbps aggregate capacity. With an advanced thermal design, the new QSFP-DD solution can support modules up to 12W, providing significant system design flexibility.

In total, 52 companies came together in support of the QSFP-DD MSA to address the industry need for high-density, high-speed networking solutions.

QSFP-DD MSA founder-promoters include Broadcom, Brocade, Cisco, Corning, Finisar, Foxconn Interconnect Technology, Huawei, Intel, Juniper Networks, Lumentum, Luxtera, Mellanox Technologies, Molex, Oclaro, and TE Connectivity.

Contributors include Amphenol, Applied Optoelectronics, APRESIA Systems, Celestica, Ciena, ColorChip, Dell EMC, Delta, Fujitsu Optical Components, Genesis, H3C, Innovium, Inphi, Ixia, Kaiam, LEONI, Lorom, Luxshare, MACOM, MaxLinear, MultiLane, NeoPhotonics, Nokia, Panduit, PHY-SI, Ranovus, Samtec, Senko, Semtech, Sicoya, Siemon, Skorpios Technologies, Source Photonics, Spirent, Sumitomo Electric, Xilinx, and Yamaichi Electronics.


Jonathan Davidson Jumps Back to Cisco from Juniper

Jonathan Davidson is joining Cisco to lead its Service Provider Networking organization as senior vice president and general manager, service provider networking. He will report to Yvette Kanouff, the senior vice president and general manager of Cisco’s service provider business unit.

Davidson previously served as executive vice president and general manager of Juniper Development and Innovation, and earlier as SVP/GM for Juniper’s Security, Switching and Solutions.  Earlier in his career he was at Cisco.


  • Last week, Juniper announced an organization reshuffle and the appointment of Kevin Hutchins to the newly created position Senior Vice President of Strategy and Product Line Management. Juniper's engineering organization will now report into chief development officer, Andy Athreya. Both of these positions will report into chief executive officer, Rami Rahim.

ABI Reports 16.5m LTE-A Pro subs in 2016 and Forecasts 641m by 2021

ABI Research finds in its report, LTE-Advanced Pro/4.5G: Bridging the Gap to 5G, that as LTE-Advanced Pro deployments gain momentum the technology, which offers an upgrade from current LTE-Advanced networks, can enable the transition to 5G for mobile operators.

ABI estimates that global subscribers for LTE-Advanced Pro high-speed downlink services totalled 16.5 million at the end of 2016 and forecasts that global subscribers to high-speed data services will exceed 641 million by 2021, with 87% of the total in Asia Pacific, North America and Western Europe region,

The research firm notes that delivering downlink speeds of between 450 Mbit/s and up to 1.2 Gbit/s utilising LTE-Advanced Pro is dependent on a number of technology enhancements, namely a minimum of 3-component carrier aggregation (CA), 4 x 4 MIMO antennae and 256QAM downlink combined with 16QAM uplink modulation. The use of these technologies allows high speed user access as well as freeing up limited network resources and optimising the spectral efficiency of the mobile network.

ABI estimates that there are currently approximately 120 LTE-Advanced Pro trials or commercial deployments in place. Notably, Australia's Telstra launched its Gigabit-class LTE service in January 2017, while other operators with projects underway include AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile in the U.S., NTT DOCOMO in Japan and SK Telecom in South Korea.

The research firm adds that while current smartphones are not yet capable of supporting gigabit LTE speeds, it expects that mass device production will begin later this year based on early announcements of flagship gigabit LTE smartphones by several established OEMs during the recent Mobile World Congress 2017.

Commenting on the report, Jake Saunders, VP at ABI Research, said, "LTE-Advanced Pro gives mobile network operators a capex-friendly option to continue upgrading their networks… 5G may be still out of the reach for many operators, but through incremental investment LTE-Advanced Pro guarantees features that will generate new business cases for operators and better user experience for end users, while preparing for 5G deployment".


Nokia Extends managed services Deal with Chorus New Zealand

Nokia announced that it has renewed the managed services agreement originally signed in 2014 with Chorus of New Zealand, the country's largest telecommunications infrastructure company that serves around 1.7 million fixed lines, including 1.2 million broadband connections, for a further three years.

Under the renewed contract, Nokia will continue to provide longstanding customer Chorus with fully managed end-to-end operations services to help enhance the services delivered to customers, as well as improve operational efficiency and quality of the national fixed line network. Chorus will also leverage Nokia's technical capabilities and global services expertise.

The agreement specifically encompasses managed services provision including end-to-end operations and network management utilising Nokia's global delivery centre in India, and real-time service management based on performance data and proactive correlation of network events to help prevent faults and improve network availability, as well as to reduce the number of incidents.

In June of last year, Nokia announced an agreement with Chorus for a three-year extension of their technology partnership to support the continued roll-out of the ultra high speed broadband program in New Zealand. As part of the deal Nokia was to deploy broadband access, including GPON and VDSL2 technology, IP routing and optical transport solutions. The agreement included Nokia's 7330 ISAM FTTN access node, 7360 ISAM FX fibre platform and 7367 ISAM SX-16 VDSL2 micro-node.

Additionally, to expand Chorus' backbone network capacity across the North and South Islands, Nokia was to deliver its 7750 Service Router, 7950 Extensible Routing System (XRS) routing technology, 1830 Photonic Service Switch (PSS), and 5620 Service Aware Manager.

Recently, Chorus reported results for the six months ended December 31, 2016, noting that during the period it had upgraded nearly 100 rural broadband cabinets with fibre optic and VDSL, improving broadband service for around 7,000 mostly rural customers, while in urban areas it had reached a total of 681,000 customers with its fibre-based UFB network, meaning the UFB build was around 61% complete.

In January 2017, Chorus announced an agreement with the government to extend the UFB network to a further 169 areas to make fibre broadband available to a further 200,000 homes and businesses in addition to the 1.1 million customers in the existing UFB program areas.


Sprint Teams with Qualcomm, Motorola to launch Gigabit-class LTE

Sprint, which serves nearly 60 million connections in the U.S., together with partners Qualcomm Technologies and Motorola Mobility, a Lenovo company, have announced the debut of what they claims is the first U.S. deployment of Gigabit-class LTE on a commercial network using a forthcoming flagship smartphone.

The new gigabit class LTE service from Sprint employs three-channel carrier aggregation (CA) and 60 MHz of 2.5 GHz spectrum in combination with 4 x 4 MIMO and 256QAM higher order modulation technology to deliver Category 16 LTE download data speeds on a TDD network.

As part of the launch, Motorola showcased the high-bandwidth capability of its forthcoming smartphone that is based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 mobile platform with an integrated Snapdragon X16 LTE modem to enable support for gigabit LTE capability.

Sprint stated that it plans to utilise its 2.5 GHz spectrum to offer gigabit LTE service in high-traffic locations across the U.S. as part of its strategy to provide a foundation for 5G by 'densifying' its network via the addition of small cells and smart antennas. The strategy is intended to enable Sprint to offer 5G-like services with gigabit-level performance over its LTE Plus network and to meet future demand for mobile broadband services.

Sprint claims that with 204 MHz of spectrum in the U.S. and more than 160 MHz of 2.5 GHz spectrum in the top 100 markets nationwide, it holds more licensed spectrum capacity to support gigabit-class LTE than any other U.S. carrier. In addition, it noted that licensed spectrum enables a more reliable and higher quality service for LTE Plus customers through not relying on unlicensed resources.

The roll-out of Sprint's gigabit class LTE over the LTE Plus network will require a series of incremental upgrades, starting with three-channel CA, which is currently available in over 100 markets. The next stage will be implementation of Category 16 devices enabling support for 4 x 4 MIMO and 256QAM.

Sprint also plans to utilise Massive MIMO, a key element of 5G, to further enhance capacity and coverage for its 2.5 GHz TDD-LTE spectrum. Leveraging massive MIMO radios using 64T64R, Sprint expects to be able to increase capacity to beyond the 1 Gbit/s rate and deliver capacity of 3 to 6 Gbit/s per sector.

Sprint noted that working with Ericsson, at MWC 2017 it demonstrated 1 Gbit/s performance over 60 MHz of 2.5 GHz spectrum, while in collaboration with Nokia it demonstrated how massive MIMO can be used to increase cell capacity up to 8x compared to 4G LTE using 2.5 GHz TDD-LTE spectrum with 64T64R.


Andorra Telecom selects Huawei to upgrade to GPON

Huawei announced that Andorra Telecom has selected it as the sole vendor for the FTTH project designed to provide ultra-high speed Internet access service to end users through an upgrade of the existing FTTH network, with deployments scheduled to start in March this year and completion due around January 2018.

Huawei noted that Andorra is one of the most fibre-enabled nations in the world, and the leader in European fibre broadband development, becoming the first country to achieve 100% fibre coverage and to eliminate the use of xDSL technology in 2016. The operator announced in February that it had reached full fibre coverage, claiming that it had 38,000 fibre-based customers. Andorra Telecom serves a total of around 45,000 fixed lines, and over 71,000 mobile subscribers.

To meet the growing demand for ultra-broadband services, Andorra Telecom has selected Huawei to deploy a national FTTH network that will enable it to transition from EPON to GPON technology and to provide up to 300 Mbit/s Internet access to its residential and enterprise users in the initial phase.

The project will utilise Huawei's new flagship distributed OLT MA5800, which is designed to support not only GPON Internet access but also allow an evolution to NG-PON (XGS-PON and TWDM-PON) technology, which can deliver bandwidth of up to 10 Gbit/s and help the operator meet bandwidth requirements over the next 10 to 15 years.

Huawei noted the solution for Andorra Telecom will reuse existing ODN (optical distribution network) infrastructure to reduce costs, and for the end user will adopt its advanced ONT and high throughput WiFi router systems.


Aricent unveils ConvergedOS Open Hardware Operating System

Aricent, a global design and engineering company, announced the introduction of its intelligent network operating system, Aricent ConvergedOS, designed to provide network equipment and technology system providers with a ready-to-deploy, open hardware and Open Compute Project (OCP)-compatible software solution.

In addition, through its established partnership with Inventec, Aricent is introducing the new network operating system on the Inventec D7032Q28B 100 Gigabit Ethernet spine switch targeting data centre applications and enterprise and service provider network deployments.

The Aricent ConvergedOS provides support for a total of 32 x 100 Gigabit Ethernet QSFP28 interfaces with line-rate Layer 2/3 performance of up to 3.2 Tbit/s in a PHY-less design to meet growing traffic demands in data centres.

ConvergedOS is based on Aricent's Intelligent Switching Solution (ISS), a switching, routing and network optimisation software platform designed to enable connectivity in the data centre for storage area networking, 100 Gbit/s links and distribution of workloads across data centres via Ethernet VPN services.

Key features of Aricent's ConvergedOS solution include:

1. Data centre networking, with support for L2 switching VLAN, L2 multicast IGMP/MLD snooping, IGMP/MLD proxy, link aggregation, LLDP-MED, data centre bridging (DCB)-PFC, ETS, QCN and DCBX, LLDP.
2. BGP spine life architecture, enabling support for a faster convergence, cloud-ready management interface.
3. Support for L3 (IPv4/v6) unicast and multicast routing RIP, OSPFv, IS-IS, BGP4, IGMP (v1/v2/v3), MLD, router, PIM-SM, PIM-DM, PIM-Bidirectional, DVMRP and MSDP.
4. Platform protection via hot redundancy, VRRP (IPv4/v6), uplink failure detection (UFD), multi-chassis LAG, split horizon.
5. Data centre virtualisation and overlay, with VxLAN gateways, Ethernet VPN (VxLAN), edge virtualisation via 802.1Qbg, S-channel, MPLS VPN.
6. Data centre convergence, with support for Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE), FIP snooping, FC direct attach.
7. Data centre telemetry with Broadview and agent software for collecting ASIC stats and counter for diagnosis.

Aricent recently announced new capabilities for its Autonomous Network Solution (ANS) for the automation of next-generation virtualised networks with new components based on standards including ETSI NFV, ETSI AFI GANA, MEF LSO and TM-Forum's Zoom.


ZTE and Turkcell extend Cooperation to GPON, DWDM, 5G

ZTE announced that it has entered into a strategic cooperation Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) agreement with Turkcell of Turkey, which serves around 34 million mobile customers in Turkey and a total of over 66 million subscribers across its 9-country footprint.

ZTE noted that it has been working with Turkcell on developing the T-series of mobile phones for several years, and under the new MoU will build on the existing cooperation and extend it into other areas including GPON, DWDM and 5G. The new agreement is designed to strengthen the existing relationship between the two companies as well as extending it to fields including fixed network and wireless products such as CPE, GPON and 5G networks.

The MoU between Turkcell and ZTE was signed during the recent Mobile World Congress by Dr. Zhao Xianming, CEO of ZTE and Turkcell CEO Kaan Terzioğlu.

In July last year, Turkcell fixed-line subsidiary Turkcell Superonline, Vodafone Turkey, TurkSAT and members of TELKODER (Telecommunication Operators Association) began negotiations to establish a JV designed to enable more effective investment in fixed broadband infrastructure in Turkey. Turkcell stated that the aim was to make FTTH networks available to a further 21 million households.

Turkcell Superonline is the largest alternative ISP and the leading provider of FTTH in terms of customers, at that time claiming around 965,000 fibre-connected subscribers and around 2.5 million home passes with fibre.

Earlier in 2106, Turkcell announced it had achieved mobile broadband speeds of 1.2 Gbit/s based utilising 4.5G technology with the aggregation of five carriers in a demonstration carried out at its Istanbul headquarters. Turkcell utilised 79.8 MHz of frequency consisting of 29.8 MHz (20 plus 9.8 MHz) in the 1800 MHz band, 30 MHz (20 plus 10 MHz) in the 2100 MHz band, and 20 MHz in the 2600 MHz band. The demonstration was based on equipment from Huawei.

At the time, Turkcell stated it planned to launch 4.5G mobile networks in Turkey from April 2016 offering mobile data rates up to 375 Mbit/s using 3 carrier aggregation, and was aiming to offer speeds of 1 Gbit/s by the end of 2016.

Turkcell had previously announced a MoU with Ericsson to collaborate on 5G research and development.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Switch Opens its Massive Data Center in Michigan

Switch, which runs the SUPERNAP data centers in Nevada, officially opened the first Phase of the 1.8 million-square-foot data center campus in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

The iconic building, which is an adaptive reuse of the Steelcase Pyramid, is the center piece of what is intended to become the largest, most advanced data center campus in the eastern U.S.. The entire campus is powered by 100-percent green energy.

“Rob Roy’s vision has turned one of the most iconic buildings in the country into the foundation of what we believe will be the most advanced technology ecosystem campus in the eastern U.S.,” said Switch Executive Vice President for Strategy Adam Kramer.  “Since the announcement of Switch’s expansion into Michigan, the state has been attracting the tech world’s attention, defining the region and the state as an epicenter for technology that runs the internet of absolutely everything.”


Openreach to become Separate Company from BT

BT and UK regulator Ofcom announced that they have reached agreement on a long-term regulatory settlement based on voluntary commitments submitted by BT that address Ofcom's competition concerns through which Openreach will become a distinct, legally separate company with its own board within the BT Group.

Once implemented, the agreement stipulates that:

1. Approximately 32,000 employees will transfer to the new Openreach Limited, following TUPE consultation, and once pension arrangements are in place.

2. Openreach will manage and operate its assets and trading, but ownership of the assets and trading will remain with BT.

3. The new Openreach will have its own branding that will not feature the BT logo.

4. The Openreach CEO will report to the Openreach chairman, with accountability to the BT Group chief executive with regards to certain legal and fiduciary duties consistent with BT's responsibilities as a listed company.

5. Openreach, which builds and maintains the millions of copper and fibre access lines from telephone exchanges to homes and businesses and currently delivers fibre connections to around 26 million premises, will gain greater independence under its own board of directors.

The agreement, once implemented, is designed to provide BT and other companies with greater regulatory clarity and certainty and to encourage investment. The new agreement builds on recent changes made by BT relating to the governance of Openreach, which include the creation of an Openreach board with a majority of independent members.

The new Openreach board will define the businesses medium term and annual operating plans and determine which technologies are deployed within line a strategic and financial framework defined by BT. Openreach will be free to explore alternative co-investment models with third parties.

BT stated that implementation of the agreement is subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions, including the drawing up of new legislation relating to the BT pension scheme. In addition, formal approval of the agreement is required by the BT board.

IDC: Worldwide Ethernet Switch Market up in Q4

The worldwide Ethernet switch market (Layer 2/3) recorded $6.7 billion in revenue in the fourth quarter of 2016 (4Q16), an increase of 3.5% year over year, according to  the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Ethernet Switch Tracker and Worldwide Quarterly Router Tracker.

Some highlights from IDC:

  • For the full year 2016, the market recorded $24.4 billion in revenue, for a full year growth rate of 2.4%. 
  • The worldwide total enterprise and service provider (SP) router market recorded $3.87 billion in revenue in 4Q16, increasing 1.5% on a year-over-year basis. 
  • For the full year 2016, this market finished at $14.58 billion, an increase of 1.3% over 2015. These growth rates are according to results published in
  • 10Gb Ethernet switch (Layer 2/3) revenue increased 3.4% year over year in 4Q16, coming in at $2.42 billion, while 10Gb Ethernet switch port shipments grew 18.9% year over year with over 11.7 million ports shipped in 4Q16. For the full year 2016, 10Gb Ethernet revenues increased 1.5% over 2015, with port shipments increasing 19.4%. '
  • 40Gb Ethernet revenue came in at $696.6 million in 4Q16, the same as in 4Q15, while port shipments fell just below 1.4 million, representing a decrease of 1.0% year over year. For the full year 2016, 40Gb Ethernet revenues grew 19.6% over 2015, with shipments increasing by 59.0%. 
  • The worldwide enterprise and service provider router market grew 1.5% on a year-over-year basis in 4Q16 based on a 2.0% increase in the larger service provider segment and a 0.3% decrease in enterprise routing. For the full year, the combined market increased 1.3%, upon a 0.9% increase in the SP segment and 2.4% growth in the enterprise segment. 

"As the Ethernet switching market reaches a greater level of maturity from 1GbE to 10GbE, it is increasingly characterized by customers moving more quickly to higher speeds at lower port costs, especially in the datacenter," said Rohit Mehra, vice president, Network Infrastructure at IDC. "While overall port shipments continue to grow, it is the revenues from the fastest speeds that continue to buoy the market."


ECI introduces Layer 1 optical encryption as-a-service solution supporting 200 Gbit/s

ECI, a global provider of Elastic Network solutions for service providers, critical infrastructure and data centre operators, has announced the introduction of its first optical encryption as-a-service solution, which supports per-service encryption at rates up to 100 Gbit/s and line rates of up to 200 Gbit/s.

The new ECI optical encryption service is designed to meet interoperability, scalability and flexibility requirements and targets service providers, the financial sector, medical and government institutions. The company noted that optical encryption provides no information about underlying services to a potential hacker, introduces minimal latency and can be used to encrypt any type of service.

ECI's solution offers encryption on a per-service basis at up to 200 Gbit/s, which is claimed to make it one of the fastest encryption solutions available. The solution also enables service providers and other institutions to offer Layer 1 encryption as-a-service. The new offering expands ECI's security portfolio for service providers that was launched earlier in 2017.

ECI noted that its encryption method is certified FIPS 140-2 Security Level 2. Additionally, the Layer 1 encryption can be delivered as an alien lambda over other optical networks, thereby providing a more flexible and economical solution.

In February, ECI announced enhancements to its LightSEC cyber security solution that enable service providers to utilise their infrastructure to deliver managed security services to customers, in addition to consolidating their security and connectivity operations. The NFV-based cybersecurity suite LightSEC, featuring technology from partner Check Point Software Technologies, was launched in 2014.

Also in February this year, ECI introduced LightCARE, a proactive network maintenance app, to its LightAPPS family of applications. LightCARE continuously and proactively monitors the health of the network and is designed to pre-empt potential failures and ensure network reliability.


Centec enhances 10 GBE whitebox switch solution with support for Microsoft SONiC

Centec Networks of Suzhou, China, a supplier of IP/Ethernet switching silicon and whitebox solutions for SDN, announced it has extended the open-networking operating system options for its 10 Gigabit Ethernet whitebox switch solution via support for Microsoft's Software for Open Networking in the Cloud (SONiC) collection of open-sourced software networking components.

The latest integration is based on the Open Compute Project (OCP) Switch Abstraction Interface (SAI), which is designed to allow network infrastructure providers to select the best combination of hardware and software for their specific requirements.

The first product to be introduced incorporating SONiC, which was launched in 2016, with Centec's switching silicon is the ExSwitch6400 series whitebox solution from ODM partner EmbedWay. The platform features Centec's Golden Gate CTC8096 switch chip and utilises SONiC to enable network operators to share the software stack across hardware from multiple switch vendors.

Centec's ExSwitch6400 series is a typical top of rack (ToR) switch that uses its Golden Gate switch chip and supports up to 48 x 10 Gigabit Ethernet downlinks with 40 Gigabit Ethernet and native 100 Gigabit Ethernet (4 x 25 Gbit/s) uplink interfaces. The solution offers support for OCP hardware design guidelines, including Open Network Install Environment (ONIE) to allow applications with ODM and other bare metal switches.

The Golden Gate silicon is designed to enable low latency and power performance for the ExSwitch6400 whitebox solution, and the switch can be optionally extended with an Intel CPU card for applications such as network functions virtualisation (NFV), hyper-convergence and security appliance applications.

Centec announced in November 2016 that it had partnered with EmbedWay, a provider of intelligent infrastructure products and solutions, to introduce the ExSwitch6400 series 10 Gigabit Ethernet SDN whitebox solution, 10/40 Gigabit Ethernet open-networking platform offering native 100 Gigabit Ethernet (4 x 25 Gbit/s SerDes) uplinks.

Alaska Comm Extends with Quintillion Subsea Cable

Alaska Communications announced that leveraging Anchorage-based infrastructure company Quintillion's new submarine optical cable it is bringing new services to Alaska's northernmost communities, including Utqiaġvik (formerly known as Barrow), Nome, Kotzebue, Point Hope and Wainwright.

Through the project, corporations, government agencies, healthcare and education institutions in the northwest region of Alaska will gain access to reliable high-speed broadband and managed IT services for the first time.

Quintillion's infrastructure will enable the provision of commercial high-speed connectivity in areas where previously only costly microwave and satellite communications were available from a single provider. The new fibre network will support lower cost, high-speed access to the communities in northwest Alaska.

Alaska Communications, the leading broadband and managed IT services provider in the state, noted that when the new network becomes available later in 2017 it will act as a reseller to select telecom carriers, as well as serving business customers using the expanded network. In addition, as part of the agreement Quintillion will purchase capacity services for its new terrestrial system linking the oil fields of the North Slope on Alaska Communications' fibre network from Fairbanks to the U.S.

Alaska Communications noted that it first partnered with Quintillion in 2015 when it acquired a fibre network from ConocoPhillips in the part of Alaska's North Slope where most recent oil and gas exploration is occurring. The new agreement allows Alaska Communications to connect the original fibre to its existing network via Quintillion's new terrestrial network, providing redundancy and extending broadband and managed IT services to more oil and gas companies on the North Slope.

Quintillion is aiming to deliver affordable, carrier-class broadband services in Alaska, and with partners is specifically seeking to develop Alaska's middle-mile capabilities via the construction of new cable systems.

In May 2016 Quintillion announced it had acquired the assets of Arctic Fibre as part of a plan to build a submarine fibre optic cable from Asia to Europe, with the first phase in Alaska. Arctic Fibre is planning to deploy a Europe-Asia submarine cable system linking Nome to Prudhoe Bay in Alaska, Nome to Tokyo, Japan and form Prudhoe Bay to England, with additional spurs to Arctic Canada.