Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Sequans opens 5G design center in Israel

Paris-based Sequans Communications S.A. announced the expansion of its research and development resources in Israel with the opening of a new design center for the purpose of accelerating Sequans’ 5G new product development.

Sequans' new team is mainly focused on the development of 5G broadband and critical IoT products that will complement its existing massive IoT products, including the company’s flagship Monarch and Calliope platforms. The 5G products Sequans is readying for production include its 5G-compliant Monarch 2 LTE-M/NB-IoT chip announced in 2019 that will address the massive IoT market, and the coming new Taurus 5G chip that will address the broadband and critical IoT markets.

“Our new R&D center in Israel has been established to accelerate our ongoing 5G development and is a reflection of our commitment to keep our IoT products at the leading edge with best-in-class performance and lowest cost,” said Georges Karam, Sequans CEO. “Our 5G knowledge will be leveraged and augmented by this new team of experts who will ensure that we get across the goal line and get our new 5G products to market according to plan.”

SK Telecom expands Project xCloud

SK Telecom is expanding support for Project xCloud, which is Microsoft’s game streaming technology that allows gamers to play Xbox games directly from the cloud on mobile devices while connected to the internet.

Specifically, SK Telecom and Microsoft will increase the number of games for Project xCloud preview in Korea from 29 (as of November 2019) to 85 titles, including homegrown Korea-developed favorites such as “Black Desert” and “Tera.” And around 40 of these games will provide Korean subtitles or voice-overs, and more games that support the Korean language will be added to the preview over time.

As an exclusive business operating partner of Project xCloud, SK Telecom launched the public preview for Project xCloud in Korea in October 2019 for its selected customers. At present, public previews for Project xCloud are being provided in the United States, United Kingdom and Korea. According to Microsoft, Project xCloud preview participants in Korea are on average spending 1.75 times more time gaming and revisiting three times more compared to the participants in the United States and United Kingdom.

“Our partnership with SK Telecom has played a valuable role in helping Microsoft reach new, mobile-first gamers while also learning more about delivering high-quality game streaming through 5G networks,” said Kareem Choudhry, Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President of Project xCloud. “As we enter the next phase of our preview in Korea, it is critical for us to have a strong partnership with a respected company like SK Telecom to push the technology forward.”

Dr. Omar Ishrak elected Chairman of Intel

Dr. Omar Ishrak was elected independent chairman of Intel's Board of Directors, replacing Andy D. Bryant, who Bryant will remain on the board through the end of Intel’s 2020 annual stockholders’ meeting. He had previously notified the board in March 2019 that he did not intend to stand for re-election at this year’s meeting.

Intel also announced that Alyssa Henry was elected to Intel’s board. Her election marks the seventh new independent director added to Intel’s board since the beginning of 2016.

“I want to thank and congratulate Andy for over seven years’ service as chairman of the board,” said Intel CEO Bob Swan. “Andy has been a rudder for Intel during a time of change and transformation. He has led the board with integrity and always with Intel’s best interest in mind.”

Vantage Data Centers added 41MW capacity in 2019

In 2019, Vantage Data Centers added 41MW of capacity into operation across North America.

Vantage opened new facilities in Northern Virginia, Santa Clara, California, and Quebec City, in addition to its expansion in Montreal. The company also purchased land outside of Phoenix in Goodyear, Arizona, where it is developing the company’s largest campus to date.

“Our growth in 2019 was extraordinary, fulfilling the goals we set early in the year,” said Sureel Choksi, president and CEO, Vantage Data Centers. “Not only did we expand outside of the U.S. for the first time, we also opened three new facilities and entered four new markets. This tremendous growth has been fueled by demand from hyperscalers, cloud providers and large enterprises and powered by an innovative funding strategy.”

In addition, over the course of 2019, Vantage raised $1.6 billion in capital to support its expansion across North America. In addition, Vantage opened a second headquarters in Denver to facilitate the growth of its employee base.

Monday, January 20, 2020

BRUSA subsea cable carries 550 Gbps channel speeds across 10,200km

Telxius’ BRUSA cable, which links Virginia Beach to Rio de Janeiro, successfully reached record 550 Gbps single-wavelength channel speeds during an advanced trial leveraging Ciena's WaveLogic 5 Extreme (WL5e) coherent optical solution. The companies verified a commercially deployable solution for a total capacity of more than 20 Tbps on a single fiber pair, which would give the BRUSA cable a total transmission capacity of more than 160 Tbps.

BRUSA is the highest capacity submarine cable connecting the Americas. It was opened for business in August 2018 and stretches approximately 10,200 kilometers between the United States and Brazil.

“WaveLogic 5 Extreme opens the door to a more scalable submarine network, which can support our customers as they continue to embrace new technologies that require unprecedented levels of bandwidth. This remarkable achievement is another example of how our collaboration with Ciena enables us to not only visualize what’s possible for our network, but to turn those possibilities into reality,” stated Carlos Dasi, Telxius’ Cable CTO.

“Completing this trial showcases how WaveLogic 5 Extreme, which is an integral part of Ciena’s GeoMesh Extreme network solution, raises the bar in coherent optical technology and demonstrates how Telxius’ current network can be transformed to provide an even more superior digital experience for their customers,” said Rodolfo Vigliano, Ciena’s Senior Managing Director of Sales.

Aligned Energy data centers implements PacketFabric

Aligned Energy will implement PacketFabric's Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) platform to expand connectivity options at its Ashburn, Dallas, Phoenix, and Salt Lake City data centers. Specifically, PacketFabric will provide Aligned customers with private, direct access to major cloud service providers, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud; connectivity to 160-plus Points of Presence (PoPs) in the U.S., Europe and Asia-Pacific; and interconnectivity to internet exchanges, network and XaaS providers.

“Aligned’s data center campuses are all strategically located and positioned to provide the robust, high-speed connectivity our customers require,” states Andrew Schaap, CEO of Aligned. “With the deployment of PacketFabric’s software-defined networking platform at Aligned’s facilities, our customers can now take advantage of instant, highly scalable and secure connectivity between any two or more points on its expansive global network, and at capacities ranging from one to 100 Gigabits per second.”

“We are excited to bring our fully-automated network-as-a-service platform to Aligned’s data center campuses, enabling their customers to quickly and easily connect to the cloud or anywhere on our platform,” comments Chad Milam, President and Chief Executive Officer at PacketFabric.

http://www.alignedenergy.com
http://www.packetfabric.com

NTT DOCOMO tests 5G transparent metasurface

NTT DOCOMO is testing a prototype transparent dynamic metasurface using 28 GHz 5G radio signals.

The new metasurface, which was developed in collaboration with global glass manufacturer AGC Inc., achieves dynamic manipulation of radio-wave reflection and penetration in a highly transparent package suitable for unobtrusive use in the windows of buildings and vehicles as well as on billboards. AGC manufactured the optically transparent metasurface using microfabrication techniques, based on a theoretical model proposed and designed by DOCOMO.

NTT DOCOMO said the metasurface can manipulate radio waves in accordance with the specific installation environment, particularly in locations not suited to the installation of base stations, such as built-up areas or in indoor areas where reception needs to be blocked selectively, such as in high-security areas.

The metasurface consists of a large number of sub-wavelength unit cells placed in a periodic arrangement on a two-dimensional surface covered with a glass substrate. Moving the glass substrate slightly enables dynamic control of radio waves in three modes: full penetration of incident radio waves, partial reflection of incident radio waves and full reflection of all radio waves. Compared to conventional methods using semiconductors, this new design offers two advantages: it allows dynamic control while maintaining transparency of the window and it facilitates enlargement of the substrate.

The prototype transparent dynamic metasurface will be presented during DOCOMO Open House 2020, which will take place in the Tokyo Big Sight exhibition complex in Tokyo this week.

https://www.nttdocomo.co.jp/english/info/media_center/pr/2020/0117_00.html

Windstream adds to long-haul with Infinera’s FlexILS Line System

Windstream Wholesale will add over 1,000 miles to its Next Gen flexible ultra-long-haul fiber network using Infinera’s FlexILS line system.

The route from Salt Lake City to Portland and Seattle will provide diverse, low-latency connectivity to markets in the Pacific Northwest.

Windstream also announced that, as part of an ongoing program to enhance its long-haul network, it has increased the capacity of several major routes to 48 Tbps.

The overlay is powered by Infinera’s FlexILS line system. The flexible grid-compliant open optical line system features C+L-band support and colorless-directionless-contentionless (CDC) ROADM.

“Our new route to the Pacific Northwest, along with the overlay of existing routes with Infinera’s FlexILS technology, is a response to increasing customer demand for bandwidth,” said Joe Scattareggia, executive vice president of Windstream Wholesale. “These ongoing initiatives pave the way for Windstream Wholesale to meet customers’ needs for high-quality, low-latency services across our most popular routes for years to come.”

“We are delighted to support Windstream with solutions that enable them to meet their customers’ evolving need for high-bandwidth, low-latency services,” said Nick Walden, senior vice president, worldwide sales, Infinera. “Infinera’s uniquely scalable C+L solution is an ideal fit to meet Windstream’s initiatives for future bandwidth needs by significantly increasing and, in some cases, more than doubling capacity on its existing fiber links.

Windstream Wholesale previously announced an overlay of its Dallas to Atlanta route.

Windstream signs its largest wavelengths deal

Windstream Wholesale signed its largest capacity wavelengths deal to date. A major hyperscale customer (unnamed) will purchase wavelengths to interconnect data centers in key cities in the United States.

Windstream said this deal, combined with additional wave capacity contracted in October, represents 5.7 terabits of capacity – the most sold in any single month at Windstream Wholesale.

Windstream Wholesale’s coast-to-coast long-haul and regional express fiber-optic network provides high-speed optical Wavelengths to support today’s massive data demands stemming from cloud computing, multimedia and bandwidth intensive applications. Our optical Wavelengths service features unique, diverse routes with high-speed connections from attractive Tier 2 and Tier 3 markets back to the most popular carrier hotels, data centers, cable landing stations and 1,200+ 1G to 100G capable POPs in Tier 1 markets in the country.

“Our flexibility and customer tailored routes coupled with our unique domestic network density in Tiers 1, 2 and 3 cities have positioned us as the ‘go-to’ provider for international carriers, content providers, fiber operators and others needing domestic diversity and redundancy,” said Joe Scattareggia, executive vice president for Wholesale Sales at Windstream. “Our Wholesale business has been on a steady growth trajectory for some time. Hitting our single highest month of capacity sold is a great accomplishment and reflects the inflection point of marketplace bandwidth demand and our network solutions designed to meet this demand.”

Seaborn extends Seabras-1 IP Network to key data centers

Seaborn Networks announced new high capacity connectivity from their Seabras-1 IP Network directly into key global IX locations;

  • Amsterdam - AMS-IX now live (January 6, 2020)
  • Frankfurt - DE-CIX now live (January 6, 2020)
  • London - LINX now live (January 6, 2020)
  • San Jose - Equinix IX (SV1) live by end of January 2020
  • Los Angeles - CoreSite Any2 IX (LA1) live by end January 2020
  • Ashburn - Equinix IX (DC4) live by end January 2020

“We continue to see tremendous growth across our high-quality IP Network as we develop new and innovative connectivity options for our customers through our transit and peering fabric or by enabling direct, high capacity connectivity to our IX partners,” said Seaborn COO Andy Bax. “Through these high capacity IX connections, we want our customers to enjoy remote peering services across an ever-growing number of strategic global exchanges. January is just the start of this exciting expansion of our IP network and we look forward to announcing more global exchanges for Seabras-1 being on-net for Seaborn shortly.”

Seaborn Networks is the developer-owner-operator of submarine fiber optic cable systems, including Seabras-1 between São Paulo and New York.

Verizon reaffirms committment to be carbon neutral by 2035

Verizon restated its commitment to being carbon neutral in its operations by 2035

The company said it plans to achieve this goal through a combination of reducing emissions and investing in renewable energy and carbon offsets. The company is also working toward sourcing or generating renewable energy equivalent to 50 percent of its total annual electricity consumption by 2025, through on- and off-site renewable investments.

Additionally, Verizon has pledged to set a Science-Based emissions reduction Target (SBT) by September 2021 to further its commitment to emissions reductions in line with the Paris Agreement.


Verizon sets 2035 target for carbon neutrality

Verizon announced a commitment to go carbon neutral by 2035.

“Sustainability and social responsibility are part of Verizon’s DNA,” said James Gowen, Chief Sustainability Officer and Vice President of Supply Chain Operations at Verizon.  “As an emerging leader in sustainability, Verizon understands its responsibility to continuously evolve and innovate to meet new challenges and expectations.”

Verizon highlights the following milestones and commitments

  • A 28% Carbon Intensity reduction since 2016 with the goal set for a 50% carbon intensity reduction by 2025
  • A green energy initiative which has offset 20,000 metric tons of CO2
  • A 2025 commitment to source renewable energy equivalent to 50% of Verizon's total electricity usage
  • Carbon abatement will enable customers to also reduce their carbon footprint
  • Verizon solutions have enabled the avoidance of 8.2 million metric tons of CO2 emissions, the equivalent to removing 1.6 million cars off the road for one year
  • 278 ENERGY STAR-certified buildings and 22 onsite renewable energy installations
  • 28,000 Green Team employees in 44 countries
  • Two million trees planted by 2030 with more than 700,000 planted already

Verizon raises $1 billion "Green Bond"

Verizon Communications has closed a $1 billion "Green Bond" to fund a variety of new and existing green investments. The company expects to allocate a majority of the funds within three years to support its long-term commitment to minimize its environmental impact, drive operating efficiencies and benefit the communities it serves.

Investments will focus on renewable energy, energy efficiency, green buildings, sustainable water management, and biodiversity and conservation,

“Verizon is committed to reducing the environmental impact of its operations, and this funding will support those efforts,” said Chief Sustainability Officer Jim Gowen. “As good corporate citizens, we have made it a priority to deploy more green energy resources, such as solar and fuel cell technology, into our facilities.”

Verizon launched its first formal sustainability program in 2009. The company has committed to source renewable energy equivalent to 50 percent of its total electricity usage by 2025.

NTT Ltd. creates Global Data Centers division

NTT Ltd.has created a new Global Data Centers division that ranks as data center platforms in the world, now with over 160 data centers spanning more than 20 countries and regions. The new business unit incorporates e-shelter, Gyron, Netmagic, NTT Indonesia Nexcenter, RagingWire and other data center companies that formerly sat under the NTT Communications brand.

The new Global Data Centers division, under the leadership of Ryuichi Matsuo, consists of four regions that cover Americas, APAC, EMEA and India. The leaders who will run the regional data center affiliate companies are Doug Adams (Americas), Takahiro Nagata (APAC), Florian Winkler (EMEA) and Sharad Sanghi (India). The global function leadership team members are Takahiro Wada (Business Management), Kevin Dalton (Construction and Engineering), Kei Ito (Data Center Asset co.), Adam Tamburini (Hyperscale Sales), Bob Woolley (Operations), Naoyuki Inoue (Product Management), Junichiro Akanuma (Retail Sales), John Eland (Strategy and Corporate Development) and Masayuki Inoue (System Development).

NTT Ltd. said it will provide clients will have access to full-stack technology solutions (from data center and network infrastructure to applications) and full-lifecycle services (from consultancy to fit-out services to ongoing management) with end-to-end managed services.

“We understand the core challenges our clients grapple with today as they move along the road of digital transformation,” said Ryuichi Matsuo, Executive Vice President for NTT Ltd.’s Global Data Centers division. “Having one data center partner covering their global requirements makes it easier for clients to reach their business objectives, in a time where huge growth in cloud and data usage is creating a growing demand for data center capacity. So, we are bringing together our global data center businesses into one entity, offering a comprehensive end-to-end stack of data center solutions and services to support our clients’ demands.”

In the U.S., the global data centers platform has operations in key markets such as Ashburn (VA), Sacramento (CA) and Dallas (TX), with expansion plans already in place for Silicon Valley (CA), Chicago (IL) and Hillsboro (OR). In APAC, the platform locations include Tokyo, Osaka, Hong Kong, Singapore, Cyberjaya, Bangkok and Jakarta. In EMEA, locations include London, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Berlin, Munich, Vienna, Zurich, Madrid, and Johannesburg. In India, NTT Ltd. has significant data center operations in Mumbai, Bangalore, Noida, and Chennai.



NTT Ltd l

Sunday, January 19, 2020

BT and Google enter cloud gaming pact

BT is the first European distribution partner for Stadia, Google’s new cloud gaming platform.

BT is launching a unique Google Stadia offer to celebrate the partnership. Customers taking out either BT’s Superfast Fibre 2, Ultrafast Fibre 100 or Ultrafast Fibre 250, with prices starting from just £39.99 per month, can choose to receive a free Google Stadia Premiere Edition. The Stadia Premiere Edition includes a Stadia controller, Chromecast Ultra and three months access to Stadia Pro, which offers the ability to play in up to 4K/60FPS with HDR and 5.1 surround sound, as well as claim games, and discounts on a la carte purchases.

Marc Allera, CEO of BT’s Consumer Division, said: “We continually look to provide our customers with the most exciting products and experiences, and by partnering with Google on Stadia, we’re able to help them push the limits of gaming. We’re also investing in the UK’s fastest 4G, 5G and fibre networks, so our superfast home broadband service is the perfect accompaniment for those wanting to make the most from this innovative streaming gaming platform”.

Michiel van Eldik, General Manager & VP, Devices & Services, EMEA, said: “We’re excited to continue our cross-product partnership with BT in the UK to further drive the cloud gaming industry forward. BT has an established track record of leading the industry in delivering next-generation services and products to their customers. Through today’s announcement, we are able to make the best gaming content even more accessible, and to continue to change the way people access, play and enjoy their favourite games”.

Arianespace orbits Eutelsat KONNECT and India's GSAT-30

Arianespace successfully conducted a dual-satellite Ariane 5 launch from French Guiana placing the EUTELSAT KONNECT and GSAT-30 satellites into geostationary transfer orbits.

EUTELSAT KONNECT, which was produced by Thales Alenia Space and is the first satellite to use Thales Alenia Space’s Spacebus NEO platform,– will deliver broadband Internet across 40 countries in Africa and 15 countries across Europe. The satellite uses all-electric propulsion and is configured for operation in Ka-band.

GSAT-30 was produced by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) using an I-3K platform, and is to provide high-quality television, telecommunications and broadcasting services.

Friday, January 17, 2020

MTN Uganda demos 5G Stand Alone with ZTE

MTN Uganda launched the first 5G Stand-Alone (SA) network in East Africa in partnership with ZTE.

MTN Uganda showcased a high-speed 5G SA network under the 60 MHz spectrum bandwidth with an actual rate of more than 1.494 Gbps.

The set-up uses ZTE’s end-to-end 5G equipment, including Common Core, to achieve the complete separation of the signaling plane and the data plane without relying on the existing LTE core network EPC. Furthermore, the network can further support typical 5G applications, including uRLLC and mMTC, through a smooth upgrade.

In addition, ZTE also presented its end-to-end commercialized 5G solutions, including the 5G Common Core, Beyond 100G Transmission, 5G Flexhaul, 5G New Radio and Big Video, as well as its 5G terminal devices, such as Axon 10 Pro 5G smartphones, 5G indoor and outdoor routers.

"ZTE is very keen on sharing new technologies with MTN,” said Bill Yi, Vice President at ZTE. “We have been constantly enhancing our 5G capabilities and have become a core supplier of end-to-end solutions in the global ICT industry.”

ZTE notes that it has obtained 35 commercial 5G contracts to date.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

5G Americas highlights latest 3GPP Release 16 and 17

5G Americas, which is an industry trade organization composed of leading telecommunications service providers and manufacturers, highlighted key advancements in 3GPP Releases 16-17 - the next steps in the evolution of 5G.

Release 16 is an evolutionary development that will positively impact multiple industries and is expected to be finalized in March 2020. Release 17 provides additional improved radio flexibility and will be 3GPP’s focus in 2020 and 2021 with target standard finalization in July 2021.


3GPP Release 16 enhancements include:

  • Radio access technology improvements include enhancements for LTE-MTC, NarrowBand-IoT, Downlink Multi-In Multi-Out (DL “MIMO”) efficiency, mobility, performance in high speed scenarios and 5G terrestrial broadcasts. Features of Release 16 boast enhanced capacity and improvement of operation efficiency including: MIMO enhancements, Integrated Access and Backhaul, Cross Link Interference/Remote Interference Management, User Equipment (UE) Power Savings, Mobility Enhancements, Multi-Radio Access Technology (“Multi-RAT”) dual connectivity and Carrier Aggregation enhancements, Ultra-Reliable Low Latency Communications (URLLC), NR Unlicensed, NR Positioning, and 2-Step Random Access Channel (“2-Step RACH”).
  • Network core architecture enhancements include Service-Based Architecture, improved flexible deployments of Session Management Control Function (SMF) and User Plane Function (UPF), support for commercial services using location-based service architecture, enhancements to UE capability signaling, RAN Self-Organizing Networks, and Dual Connectivity and Carrier Aggregation improvements.

3GPP Release 17 improvements include:

  • Radio access technology improvements that add more capabilities, including NR Beyond 52.6 GHz spectrum, Dynamic Spectrum Sharing improvements, Integrated Access and Backhaul (IAB) enhancements, NR-Light (Reduced Capability NR devices), Small Data Enhancements, more V2X enhancements and General Sidelink Communication, NR Broadcast and Multicast, and Multi-SIM support.
  • Network system upgrades include support for new services for asset tracking, audio-visual service production, communication service requirements for critical medical applications, service requirements on enhancements for cyber-physical control applications in vertical domains, multimedia priority services (phase 2), support for Multi-SIM devices, enhanced relays for energy efficiency and extensive coverage, and others.
  • Erik Dahlman, Senior Expert at Ericsson Research and leader for the project, said: “The evolution and revolution in wireless continues with new standardized technical features at 3GPP as the mobile wireless industry connects more people and things in existing and new markets. The defined cellular technology roadmap and success of the wireless industry is a demonstration of 3GPP’s well-defined approach to structure and consensus process.”


A whitepaper outlining these specifications is on the 5G America's website.

In addition, 5G Americas noted that there were approximately five million 5G subscriptions at the end of 2019, a number forecast to increase to 1.9 billion by 2024, according to data from Ovum. Additionally, the number of IoT connections is expected to quadruple from one billion to over four billion during the same time frame.

Chris Pearson, President of 5G Americas said, “The age of smartly connecting everything is here. The rapid increase in 5G-connected devices will be largely due to increased technical capabilities of networks and devices standardized by 3GPP for commercial roll outs.”

2020 5G Outlook



2020 is going to be a huge year for 5G, predicts Chris Pearson, President of 5G Americas. This 2-minute video highlights some key ingredients necessary for the success of 5G, including the need for more spectrum, network densification, and the move to 5G Stand Alone architecture.

https://youtu.be/dVL_OsKRD8k



  • 5G Americas is an industry trade organization composed of leading telecommunications service providers and manufacturers. The organization’s mission is to advocate for and foster the advancement and full capabilities of LTE wireless technologies and their evolution to 5G, throughout the ecosystem’s networks, services, applications and wirelessly connected devices in the Americas. 5G Americas is invested in developing a connected wireless community while leading 5G development for all the Americas. 
  • 5G Americas is headquartered in Bellevue, Washington. More information is available at 5G Americas Website and Twitter. 5G Americas’ Board of Governors members include AT&T, Cable & Wireless, Ciena, Cisco, CommScope, Ericsson, Intel, Mavenir, Nokia, Qualcomm Incorporated, Samsung, Shaw Communications Inc., Sprint, T-Mobile US, Inc., Telefónica and WOM.


Akraino Edge Stack R2 enables Connected Car, AR/VR, AI Edge

by Benedict Chua, Assistant Editor

LF Edge announced the availability of Akraino Edge Stack Release 2 featuring 6 blueprint families and 14 blueprints, all tested and validated on real hardware labs supported by users and community members. This release enhances the edge stacks delivered in R1 for cross-disciplinary edge use cases as well as new edge stacks to support connected vehicles, AR/VR, NFV, Telco Access, integration with SDN solutions and project promotions to maturity, with rigorous community standards.

The 14 “ready and proven” blueprints, include both updates to existing R1 blueprints, and the introduction of five new blueprints:
  • Connected Vehicle: This blueprint establishes an open source MEC platform to enable use cases such as accuracy of location, smarter navigation with real-time traffic updates, driver safety improvements, and traffic rule alerts. 
  • IEC type 4: AR/VR-oriented Edge Stack: Focused on focused on AR/ VR applications running on the edge, the blueprint builds the AR/VR infrastructure and introduces  a virtual classroom application, which improves online education experiences for teachers and students through a virtual classroom simulation. 
  • Integrated Cloud Native NFV/Application Stack (ICN): ICN addresses the overall challenges of edge deployments in a single deployment model that enables Edge Providers for Zero Touch Provisioning support in multi-cloud, multi-edge and multi-party orchestration. It integrates Kubernetes and ONAP4K8s for container run times and service orchestration and supports bare metal and virtual deployments. 
  • Network Cloud and Tungsten Fabric: This blueprint implements the Network Cloud with LF Networking’s Tungsten Fabric as an SDN Controller supporting cloud native integration for Kubernetes as well as the Neutron plugin for OpenStack, allowing operators to leverage Tungsten Fabric as a deployment tool and control infrastructure. 
  • SDN-Enabled Broadband Access (SEBA): Part of the the Telco Appliance blueprint family, SEBA provides an appliance tuned to support the SDN-enabled Broadband Access (SEBA) platform. The blueprint utilizes a reusable set of modules introduced by the Radio Edge Cloud (REC), introduced in Akraino R1.
Akraino Edge Stack is creating an open source software stack that supports a high-availability cloud stack optimized for edge computing systems and applications. The first release of Akraino was accomplished in June 2019.

“The Akraino community has grown rapidly in the past year, and now includes contributions from 70 percent of LF Edge Premium member companies and countless other ecosystem partners beginning to deploy the blueprints across the globe,” said Arpit Joshipura, general manager, Networking, Automation, Edge and IoT, the Linux Foundation. “With R2, strong community collaboration brings even more blueprints to the ecosystem that support current and future technology at the open source edge.”

In September, LF Edge announced two new projects:  Baetyl, an existing project contributed by Baidu and previously known as “OpenEdge,” extends cloud computing, data and services seamlessly to edge devices, including 5G and IoT; and Fledge, an existing project contributed by Dianomic and previously known as “Fog Lamp.” Fledge is an open source framework and community for the industrial edge focused on critical operations. Baetyl and Fledge join the organization’s founding projects: Akraino Edge Stack, EdgeX Foundry, Home Edge, Open Glossary of Edge Computing, and Project EVE. Concurrently, IOTA Foundation, SAIC Foundation (TESRA), Thunder Software, and Zenlayer join as General members.

https://www.lfedge.org

2020 SPIE Startup Challenge draws 42 companies

Forty-two photonics business startups from 14 countries will participate in the 2020 SPIE Startup Challenge semi-finals held during SPIE Photonics West on 4 February. Forty-two photonics business startups from 14 countries will participate in the 2020 SPIE Startup Challenge semi-finals held during SPIE Photonics West on 4 February. On 5 February, 12 finalists will compete for cash prizes from Jenoptik as well as for business support from Challenge partners and sponsors. Prizes include $10,000 for first place as well as $5,000 in products from Edmund Optics; $5,000 for second place; and $2,500 for third place. In addition, Early-stage Entrepreneurship travel grants have been awarded to three of the semi-finalists.

On 5 February, 12 finalists will compete for cash prizes from Jenoptik as well as for business support from Challenge partners and sponsors. Prizes include $10,000 for first place as well as $5,000 in products from Edmund Optics; $5,000 for second place; and $2,500 for third place. In addition, Early-stage Entrepreneurship travel grants have been awarded to three of the semi-finalists.

https://spie.org/industry-resources/industry-events/spie-startup-challenge/2020-semi-finalists?SSO=1

Telstra's Programmable Network integrates with Equinix ECX Fabric

Telstra's Programmable Network (TPN) is leveraging Equinix Cloud Exchange Fabric (ECX Fabric) to enable customers to create private multicloud network connections to cloud providers. The on-demand multicloud network connectivity to more than 170 service providers will be available in 38 Equinix markets globally.

The Equinix ECX Fabric is a software-defined interconnection service that enables any business to connect between its own distributed infrastructure and that of any other business, including the world's largest network service and cloud providers, on Platform Equinix. Telstra's API integration with ECX Fabric enables streamlined access to the world's largest cloud providers, including Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure and Google Cloud on Platform Equinix via global, software-defined interconnection.

Telstra's TPN is a software-defined network service platform designed to help businesses embrace digital transformation and quickly respond to customers and changing market dynamics with next-generation agility, flexible consumption of services and automated provisioning of network services. Telstra provides a wide range of network, security, cloud and application services that can be managed via a customer portal with a single unified view or customer systems interfaced via APIs.

"As customers scale delivery of their enterprise applications by leveraging leading cloud providers across new markets, the deeper integration of Telstra Programmable Network (TPN)—our SDN platform—with Platform Equinix provides our customers a unique ability to provision cloud connectivity services within minutes to 170 providers across 38 locations globally. TPN allows our customers to build secure, reliable and predictable performance for their applications, which in turn drives acceleration of business outcomes through improved employee productivity," states Sanjay Nayak, Product and Service Design Director, Global Connectivity and Platforms, Product and Technology, Telstra.

Outages on West African Cable System (WACS) & SAT3 cables

Internet service in central and southern Africa is impacted by simultaneous outages on the West African Cable System (WACS) & the SAT3 cable.

The break in the WACS system is believed to have occurred near Libreville, Gabon, while the break in the SAT3 cable reportedly happened near Luanda, Angola.



West Africa Cable System upgraded to 32X100G

The West Africa Cable System (WACS) has been successfully upgraded to 32*100G wavelengths configured on the longest optically amplified single fiber span stretching 11500km from South Africa to Portugal.  WACS has two network operation centers and 15 landing points in 14 countries spanning West Africa and Europe.
Huawei Marine, which was the contractor, said the upgrade employed Flex Grid and Optical pass-through technologies, and now represents the world's longest 100G system.

ALU Completes SAT-3/WASC Undersea Cable Upgrade

Alcatel-Lucent completed the fourth upgrade of the SAT-3/WASC undersea cable system, which now offers 40 Gbps connections, full in-system protection, and one of the lowest latency routes between Europe, West Coast of Africa and Southern Africa.

The SAT-3/WASC cable system was upgraded from 420 Gbps to 920 Gbps in the northern segments, north of Ghana, and from 340 Gbps to 800 Gbps in the southern segments. Overall, this fourth upgrade enables a sevenfold increase in SAT-3/WASC’s original design capacity through the use of Alcatel-Lucent’s advanced coherent technology.

This latest upgrade went live during the first half of 2014.

The SAFE cable provides on-going connections via the shortest route and therefore lowest latency between Southern Africa and Asia with connectivity via South Africa, Mauritius, Reunion, India and Malaysia.