Sunday, May 10, 2020

MIPI RFFE v3.0 offers tighter timing precision for 5G

The MIPI Alliance released an updated version of its standard interface for control of radio frequency (RF) front-end (FE) subsystems.

MIPI RFFE v3.0 is designed to deliver tighter timing precision and reduced latencies need for 5G.

The MIPI Alliance said that since its initial release a decade ago, RFFE has been deployed in billions of devices—in virtually every device with cellular connectivity—including handsets, smartwatches and automobiles, to name a few.

MIPI RFFE simplifies the design, configuration and integration of the increasingly complex RF front end—which encompasses the power amplifiers, antenna tuners, filters, low-noise amplifiers (LNAs) and switches—connecting with the modem baseband and/or RF integrated circuit (RFIC) transceiver. As the number of RF bands involved in both uplink and downlink communications has exploded in the rollout of 5G, the subcarrier spacing (SCS) windows among RF packets have narrowed. MIPI RFFE v3.0 addresses the decreased reconfiguration windows and lower-latency switching among various bands and band combinations demanded in the 3GPP 5G standard by delivering enhanced triggering features and functionality, which results in fast, agile, semi-automated and comprehensive control of individual RFFE subsystems.

MIPI RFFE v3.0 utilizes multiple, complementary triggers to synchronize and schedule changes in register settings, either within a slave device or across multiple devices:

  • Timed triggers—Allows for tighter, synchronized timing control of multiple carrier aggregation configurations
  • Mappable triggers—Enables groups of control functions to be remapped to other triggers quickly and easily
  • Extended triggers—Boosts the number of unique triggers available in the RF control system and accommodates increasingly complex radio architectures
  • With the enhanced triggering functions, MIPI RFFE v3.0 improves throughput efficiencies and reduces packet latency, while also improving the precision in trigger placement. For back-to-back triggering operations, for example, the specification delivers a 20x improvement in timing precision.

“The new version of the specification expands its applicability to 5G use cases beyond mobile, such as for automotive, industrial and the Internet of Things (IoT),” said Joel Huloux, chairman of MIPI Alliance. “Development of MIPI RFFE v3.0 was laser focused on satisfying the unprecedented requirements for tight timing precision and low latency in the 3GPP 5G standard today. In this way, the specification helps ensure that manufacturers’ 5G devices deliver the high-performance RF capabilities necessary to enable critical consumer and business features in emerging 5G application spaces.”

“With MIPI RFFE v3.0, the specification has been streamlined and optimized to deliver the specific capabilities required to thrive in today’s 5G rollout across the Frequency Range 1 (FR1) of traditional sub-6 GHz cellular bands,” said Jim Ross, MIPI RF Front End Control Working Group Chair. “The working group is always looking to refine the specification to continue differentiating and benefitting our user community, and we welcome engagement in requirements gathering for Frequency Range 2 (FR2) and the ongoing evolution of the next-generation MIPI RFFE for the subsequent stages of 5G deployment.”

http://www.mipi.org

Windstream Wholesale expands to Equinix NY5 Secaucus

Windstream Wholesale is establishing a presence at the Equinix NY5 International Business Exchange (IBX) data center in Secaucus, New Jersey.

Windstream Wholesale will offer fully diverse 10 and 100 Gig Waves to the ecosystem of companies operating within Equinix’s New York metro data center campus, which offers a highly scalable platform with more than 90 network service providers.

Windstream Wholesale said expects to be built into the Equinix facility by July. However, urgent network capacity needs continue to grow, so, in the meantime, Windstream has provided a creative temporary solution for one of its established partners, Seaborn Networks, a leading developer-owner-operator of subsea fiber optic cable systems. Windstream delivered four 100-Gig waves from Ashburn, Va., to the international landing station in Wall Township, N.J., to meet Seaborn’s immediate expansion needs. When Windstream’s build is complete at the NY5 IBX, it will move two of those waves to Secaucus.

“We are pleased with Windstream Wholesale’s new presence at Equinix’s New York area data center campus. We have been partnering for some time and this new, diverse route between Secaucus and Ashburn will enhance and enrich our ability to serve our customers through Windstream’s network in U.S.,” said Michel Marcelino, senior vice president and head of Latin America for Seaborn. “I look forward to expanding our connectivity together, offering resilient services for our customers both domestically and internationally.”

“Windstream Wholesale continues to expand our data center portfolio with our presence at the Equinix NY5 IBX, which provides diverse, low-latency access to a massive electronic trading ecosystem and major cloud service providers,” said Joe Scattareggia, executive vice president of Windstream Wholesale. “We’re excited that this location has enabled us to enhance our partnership with Seaborn Networks, and our ability to meet their expansion needs even before our build is complete speaks to the creativity that we bring to client relationships.”

“Windstream Wholesale is a valued participant in the ecosystem of world-class providers offering their services on Platform Equinix®,” said Adam Janota, senior director of business development at Equinix. “Windstream’s 100 Gbps Wavelength service offers a strong option for the core backbone capacity needs of Equinix customers seeking low latency connectivity between our Secaucus, N.J., and Ashburn, Va., data center campuses, providing a diverse path between the New York and Washington, D.C., metros that avoids Manhattan data centers. The more than 500 businesses operating at Equinix’s Secaucus data center campus will also benefit from Windstream’s direct access to Seaborn Networks’ sub-sea capacity.”

Nutanix gains FedRAMP designation for its Government Cloud

Nutanix's Xi Government Cloud has achieved the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) Authorized designation at the Moderate security impact level. Xi Government Cloud has successfully completed a full security assessment and authorization at a moderate security impact level of 325 controls. The FedRAMP Moderate control baseline equates to a DoD Impact Level 2.

The Nutanix Xi Government Cloud, which is purpose-built for U.S. Federal government customers, includes Xi Frame, a multi-cloud Desktop as a Service (DaaS) platform, and Xi Beam, a Hybrid Cloud Cost Governance tool on the market. The platform could be used by federal agencies efficiently and securely offer telework capabilities to more employees, over an extended period of time.

The Xi Government Cloud is operated by Nutanix in compliance with United States International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR). As part of this, Xi Frame is a DaaS platform that supports high-performance remote desktops running in AWS GovCloud, Azure Government, and Google Cloud FedRAMP regions, as well as on premises desktops using Nutanix AHV. Additionally, Xi Beam, a multi-cloud cost optimization and governance service, supports consolidated resource management, spend visibility and cost optimization for agencies of all sizes on both public and private clouds.

“Achieving the FedRAMP authorization for our Xi Government Cloud offerings, Xi Frame and Xi Beam, allows us to deliver new solutions to federal agencies that need to quickly and securely expand telework capabilities, while also managing the costs and governance of their cloud resources,” said Chris Howard, Vice President of U.S. Federal Sales at Nutanix. “With federal agencies adjusting to remote work environments, they will be able to access the same seamless hybrid cloud environments and security provided by internal networks from remote locations.”

Cal.net to build CBRS network for rural California

Cal.net, a wireless internet service provider based in Northern California, has contracted with network partner ExteNet Systems build a CBRS network serving rural areas of the state.

Nokia is the primary supplier of equipment deployed in the Cal.net network, including microwave radios, IP routers and the AirScale RAN solution. ExteNetis responsible for the design, build and operations of Cal.net’s CBRS network while also providing a hosted IP core service.

The new Cal.net network buildout is underway with most of the work planned for completion in the first four years of the agreement. The network is expected to be one of the first deployments of CBRS technology in the U.S.

Tim Mahoney, National Director of Sales – U.S. Regionals, Nokia, said: “Nokia believes in bringing connectivity to everyone, whether they live in large urban cities, or in counties such as those in Northern California where Cal.net is staking its claim as the leading service provider in the region with this new network design and build. During this critical time where people are operating under ‘stay at home’ protocols, it’s more important than ever that we solve internet traffic overload issues due to COVID-19 and ensure we keep people connected with their communities. This Cal.net buildout is strategically planned over the next 10 years with the majority of work completed up front. As such, we are committed to our long-term partnership with Cal.net and ExteNet Systems to put the enormous benefits of access to high-speed internet for education, commerce, healthcare and more into the hands of the people.”

Jason Osborne, VP of Strategic Solutions, ExteNet Systems, said: “The combination of Nokia equipment with our Infrastructure-as-a-Service offering proved to be the right fit for Cal.net. We have worked with Cal.net for many years and selected Nokia RAN and microwave radio as an integrated offering with our distributed evolved packet core (EPC) solution for the CBRS network build. Cal.net benefits from our carrier-class network assurance, including 24/7 monitoring and maintenance. Nokia is our trusted partner and we look forward to working closely together on this important network buildout for Cal.net.”

Nick Sekulich, Director of Operations, Cal.net, said: “In the rural regions that we serve, we needed a wireless solution that can deliver the same performance as fiber, and we needed a trusted partner in wireless infrastructure to help bring our vision of a highly reliable wireless network to life. We chose to build our new network exclusively with Nokia equipment given the company’s decades-long reputation for quality in telecom and our mutual commitment to bridging the digital divide for underserved communities.”

https://www.cal.net/

Airgain’s antenna-modem brings FirstNet LTE to public safety vehicles

Airgain introduced an antenna-modem that includes an integrated FirstNet Ready high-power LTE modem supporting the 3GPP Band 14 High Power UE output power functionality.

Band 14 spectrum is the nationwide, high-quality spectrum set aside by the U.S. government specifically for FirstNet.

The rugged vehicle antenna-modem solution tightly couples essential LTE radio components to meet the most demanding needs of public safety and fleet vehicles.

Airgain said its new AC-HPUE product ensures transmission of the maximum allowable radiated power directly to the LTE antenna elements. AirgainConnect’s patented technology eliminates the signal loss over coax cables that run from mobile routers mounted in vehicle compartments to roof-mounted antennas, which combined with HPUE capability provides up to ten times the transmit power at the antenna when compared to the router’s conventional modem and antenna. The result is a dramatic increase in the coverage area and higher data rates.

Airgain has partnered with Assured Wireless Corporation to utilize the industry’s first FirstNet Ready™ certified Band 14 HPUE modem module in the AirgainConnect platform.

“AirgainConnect is a breakthrough new platform that integrates high-power mobile modem technology with an antenna into the same package, enabling superior performance for 4G and 5G communications,” said Jacob Suen, President and CEO of Airgain. “Through our new partnership with Assured Wireless we are proud to announce AirgainConnect AC-HPUE, the first AirgainConnect product. Powered by Assured Wireless’ HPUE modem module, the AirgainConnect AC-HPUE enables more reliable connections, wider coverage, and greater performance. We are thrilled to announce this new platform, which for Airgain represents a new level of advanced product solutions, enabling improved connectivity to those who need it most, our first responders.”

GTT posts Q1 revenue of $399 million

GTT reported recurring revenue of $399.4 million for the 1st quarter 2020, an increase of 0.6% as compared to the 4th quarter 2019, and a decrease of 4.4% compared to the 1st quarter 2019. Recurring revenue represents 94% of total revenue for the 1st quarter 2020 compared to 94% and 93% for the 4th quarter 2019 and the 1st quarter 2019, respectively. Non-recurring revenue of $25.3 million for the 1st quarter 2020 decreased 5.2% compared to the 4th quarter 2019, and decreased 21.9% compared to the 1st quarter 2019. Net loss qA $83.3 million for the 1st quarter 2020 compared to a net loss of $19.1 million for the 4th quarter 2019, and a net loss of $27.3 million for the 1st quarter 2019. The net losses in all periods include non-recurring costs, including exit, transaction and integration costs of $4.3 million for the 1st quarter 2020, $7.5 million for the 4th quarter 2019, and $12.0 million for the 1st quarter 2019.

GTT said it continues to explore the monetization of its Infrastructure Division, which is expected to include the company’s highly differentiated pan-European fiber assets, subsea transatlantic fiber and data center infrastructure, which GTT acquired as part of the Interoute and Hibernia acquisitions.

https://www.gtt.net/media/2585/gtt-investor-presentation-may-20.pdf

Thursday, May 7, 2020

GSA: 30 operators now offer 5G-based Fixed Wireless Access

The Global mobile Suppliers Association (GSA) has established a Fixed Wireless Access Working Group to coordinate industry initiatives to deliver fixed wireless broadband services based on LTE and 5G access networks.

The founding members of the FWA Working Group are Ericsson, Huawei, Nokia, Samsung and ZTE.

To support the activities of the new Working Group, GSA has undertaken a study to determine the extent and nature of fixed wireless access broadband service availability based on LTE or 5G around the world. GSA analysed 927 companies including all known existing LTE operators, plus companies that are known to be investing in or have previously announced plans to invest in LTE networks (including trials, companies with licences, and those planning or involved in deployments), in 232 countries and territories.

Some highlights

  • Fixed wireless access broadband based on LTE is available worldwide, although is much more prevalent in some regions than others. 
  • GSA identified 395 operators in 164 countries selling FWA services based on LTE. 
  • In addition, of the 73 operators that have announced 5G launches worldwide, GSA counted 37 operators that have announced the launch of either home or business 5G broadband using routers. 
  • Of these 37, GSA identified 30 operators selling 5G-based FWA services.  

“As technology has improved, operators have been turning to mobile networks to deliver home and office broadband services, in some cases offering mobile-based services as an alternative to fixed-line broadband technologies,” said Joe Barrett, President, Global mobile Suppliers Association. “The home/office broadband services on offer are no longer limited to mobile data subscriptions associated with mobile phones, dongles, or even MiFi devices. They now include use of mobile technology to provide the main broadband connection for a home or business in the form of a fixed wireless access services. In a relatively short space of time, fixed wireless broadband access has become a mainstream service offer and the formation of this new GSA Working Group is testament to the acceleration in industry activity in Fixed Wireless Access.”

The full data set collected is available to GSA Members through its first Fixed Wireless Access Member Report.

https://gsacom.com/

Liberty's Virgin Media to merge with Telefónica's O2

Liberty Global plc and Telefónica SA will merge their operating businesses in the U.K. to form a 50:50 joint venture focused on broadband + mobile + video + entertainment consumer services. O2 is the largest mobile platform in the UK, while Virgin Media claims to be the nation's fastest broadband network.

The "fully-converged" JV is also expected to become a leading challenger in the B2B space as the combination will accelerate the adoption of converged fixed-mobile services to Virgin Media’s and O2’s existing business customers.

The JV will have an approximate annual turnover of £11 billion, and 46 million mobile, home, and business connections.

The companies cite significant operating benefits for the JV, with estimated run-rate cost, CAPEX and revenue synergies of £540 million on an annual basis by the fifth full year post closing, equivalent to a net present value of approximately £6.2 billion post tax and net of integration costs, as well as significant synergies from the accelerated usage of existing tax assets. The vast majority of the benefits relate to demonstrable cost and CAPEX synergies, with an annual run-rate of approximately £430 million out of which approximately 80% are expected to be achieved by the third full year after the closing.

CAPEX synergies:

  • Use of existing infrastructure to provide services for each entity’s customers at lower cost compared to standalone / wholesale capabilities;
  • Migration of Virgin Media mobile traffic to Telefonica UK’s network;
  • Combination of regional and national network infrastructures and IT systems;
  • Reduction in combined marketing expenditures;
  • Potential to reduce general and administration costs; and 
  • Site rationalization

Telefónica's Chief Executive Officer, Jose Maria Alvarez-Pallete, said, “Combining O2’s number one mobile business with Virgin Media’s superfast broadband network and entertainment services will be a game-changer in the U.K., at a time when demand for connectivity has never been greater or more critical. We are creating a strong competitor with significant scale and financial strength to invest in UK digital infrastructure and give millions of consumer, business and public sector customers more choice and value.  This is a proud and exciting moment for our organisations, as we create a leading integrated communications provider in the U.K.”

Mike Fries, Chief Executive Officer of Liberty Global, said, “We couldn’t be more excited about this combination. Virgin Media has redefined broadband and entertainment in the U.K. with lightning fast speeds and the most innovative video platform. And O2 is widely recognized as the most reliable and admired mobile operator in the U.K., always putting the customer first. With Virgin Media and O2 together, the future of convergence is here today. We’ve seen the benefit of FMC first-hand in Belgium and the Netherlands. When the power of 5G meets 1 gig broadband, U.K. consumers and businesses will never look back. We’re committed to this market and are right behind the Government’s digital and connectivity goals.”

https://www.nationalconnectivitychampion.co.uk/

Zoom acquires Keybase for messaging encryption

Zoom Video Communications as acquired Keybase, a start-up offering a  secure messaging and file-sharing service. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Keybase, which is based in New York City, is a key directory that maps social media identities to encryption keys in a publicly auditable manner. Additionally, it offers an end-to-end encrypted chat and cloud storage system, called Keybase Chat and the Keybase Filesystem respectively.  The company was founded in 2014 by Chris Coyne and Maxwell Krohn. Investors included Andreessen Horowitz.

Zoom said the deal accelerates its plan to build end-to-end encryption that can reach current Zoom scalability.

“There are end-to-end encrypted communications platforms. There are communications platforms with easily deployable security. There are enterprise-scale communications platforms. We believe that no current platform offers all of these. This is what Zoom plans to build, giving our users security, ease of use, and scale, all at once,” said Eric S. Yuan, CEO of Zoom. “The first step is getting the right team together. Keybase brings deep encryption and security expertise to Zoom, and we’re thrilled to welcome Max and his team. Bringing on a cohesive group of security engineers like this significantly advances our 90-day plan to enhance our security efforts.”

“Keybase is thrilled to join Team Zoom!” said Max Krohn, Keybase.io co-founder and developer. “Our team is passionate about security and privacy, and it is an honor to be able to bring our encryption expertise to a platform used by hundreds of millions of participants a day.”


ADVA upgrades its Oscilloquartz timing technology

ADVA launched a major new software upgrade and introduced additional hardware cards for its high-capacity core Oscilloquartz synchronization solutions, the OSA 5430 and 5440, to help mobile network operators (MNOs) meet stringent 5G sync requirements while supporting all existing mobile technologies.

ADVA said the enhancements to the OSA 5420 edge device and the OSA 5430 and 5440 core solutions enable a seamless transition to ePRTC and emerging PRTC-B specifications while supporting legacy interfaces for frequency synchronization. In addition, transparent and boundary clocks with tighter specifications assure precise timing delivery to base stations.

The new solutions, as well as the OSA 5420 Series, feature firmware that supports the ITU-T’s newly specified boundary clocks, class C and D. With their enhanced timestamping capabilities, the devices distribute time with accuracy better than 5 nanoseconds. The new line cards enable operators to achieve precise synchronization of legacy network architectures based on PRCs, SSUs, composite clocks and NTP. The OSA 5430 and 5440 also support highly accurate multi-band, multi-constellation GNSS receivers, engineered to overcome inaccuracy caused by ionospheric delay variation.

“These new features give communication service providers exactly what they need. Now there’s a truly risk-free route to the new breed of mobile services. With our technology, network operators can keep their legacy services up and running while cost-effectively achieving the extremely stringent timing requirements of 5G,” said Gil Biran, general manager, Oscilloquartz, ADVA. “MNOs rely on their existing applications and we don’t expect them to be phased out any time soon. Yet it’s also important to stay ahead of the curve and ensure that 5G connectivity is ready to go. That’s why we’ve enhanced our modular devices to both protect and future-proof legacy synchronization architectures. With our technology, it’s easy to maintain existing revenue streams while preparing to meet the strict new ePRTC/PRTC-B specifications needed to support tomorrow’s phase and time synchronization.”

https://adva.li/5g-sync-solution-brief

NTT West picks Fortinet Secure SD-WAN and SD-Branch

NTT West has selected Fortinet’s Secure SD-WAN and SD-Branch solutions as the foundation of its "FLET’S SDx" subscription service.

NTT West's service, which enables centralized management of both WAN and LAN, comes with built-in security features enabled by Fortinet’s FortiGate Next-Generation Firewall (NGFW) to provide customers with a flexible, secure network environment that adapts rapidly to change.

Fortinet cited the following advantages to its platform:


  • Centralized management for the entire branch: Organizations can manage both their WAN Edge and LAN from a central location, which consolidates the entire branch operations and improves visibility, control, and operational efficiency.
  • Automation-driven operations: As part of its Secure SD-WAN solution, Fortinet offers zero-touch provisioning, which eliminates the need for local configuration even at remote office locations, reducing the need for additional IT personnel.
  • Integrated Security: Advanced security features such as next-generation firewall, antivirus, web filtering, intrusion prevention and application control are integrated into the FLET’s SDx service to protect enterprise networks.

“Through our Secure SD-WAN and SD-Branch solutions, Fortinet is positioned to support NTT West as it delivers a flexible, agile solution to customers,” said John Maddison, EVP of Products and CMO of Fortinet. “By leveraging a security-driven networking approach, Fortinet’s solution addresses multiple uses cases and can grow with businesses as they require further connectivity to multiple clouds, open new branch offices, and adapt to digital innovation requirements.”

Fortinet reports Q1 sales of $576.9 million, up 22% YoY

Fortinet reported Q1 2020 total revenue of $576.9 million, an increase of 22.1% compared to $472.6 million for the same quarter of 2019. GAAP net income was $104.0 million for the first quarter of 2020, including $28.3 million from gain on intellectual property matter, net of tax, compared to GAAP net income of $58.8 million for the same quarter of 2019. Non-GAAP net income was $104.4 million for the first quarter of 2020, compared to non-GAAP net income of $80.8 million for the same quarter of 2019.

“Our strong first quarter performance is the result of strategic internal investments we made to deliver industry-leading products and services, expand into adjacent addressable markets, grow our global sales force and invest in the channel,” said Ken Xie, Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Fortinet is an important strategic partner to our customers. Our proprietary FortiASIC security processing unit (SPU) can deliver 10 times the VPN throughput capacity of comparable competitor solutions to support teleworkers. This significant competitive advantage is one reason we believe we will continue to gain market share during a period of tougher economic conditions. We believe our industry-validated teleworker and secure SD-WAN offerings, along with our SPU-driven FortiGates, Security Fabric platform and hybrid- and multi-cloud offerings, provide companies with more cost-effective solutions across their entire digital infrastructure.”

Some highlights:

  • Product revenue was $192.3 million for the first quarter of 2020, an increase of 18.2% compared to $162.7 million for the same quarter of 2019.
  • Service revenue was $384.6 million for the first quarter of 2020, an increase of 24.1% compared to $309.9 million for the same quarter of 2019.


NETSCOUT reports flat revenue of $229 million

NETSCOUT reported total revenue (GAAP) for its fourth quarter of fiscal year 2020 of $229.4 million, compared with $235.0 million in the same quarter one year ago. Non-GAAP total revenue for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2020 was $229.4 million versus $235.2 million in the same quarter one year ago.

Product revenue (GAAP and non-GAAP) for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2020 was $116.5 million, which was approximately 51% of total revenue. This compares with fourth-quarter fiscal year 2019 product revenue (GAAP and non-GAAP) of $125.5 million, which was approximately 53% of total revenue.

Service revenue (GAAP) for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2020 was $112.8 million, or approximately 49% of total revenue versus service revenue (GAAP) of $109.5 million, or approximately 47% of total revenue, for the same period one year ago. On a non-GAAP basis, service revenue for fiscal year 2020’s fourth quarter was $112.9 million, or approximately 49% of total non-GAAP revenue, versus non-GAAP service revenue of $109.8 million, or approximately 47% of total non-GAAP revenue, for the same quarter one year ago.

NETSCOUT’s income from operations (GAAP) was $12.6 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2020, compared with income from operations (GAAP) of $29.2 million in the comparable quarter one year ago. Fourth-quarter fiscal year 2020 non-GAAP EBITDA from operations was $54.9 million, or 24.0% of non-GAAP quarterly revenue, which compares with $76.0 million, or 32.3% of non-GAAP quarterly revenue in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019. The Company’s fourth-quarter fiscal year 2020 (GAAP) operating margin was 5.5% versus 12.4% in the prior fiscal year’s fourth quarter. Fourth-quarter fiscal year 2020 non-GAAP income from operations was $48.7 million with a non-GAAP operating margin of 21.2%. This compares with fourth-quarter fiscal year 2019 non-GAAP income from operations of $68.7 million and a non-GAAP operating margin of 29.2%.

Net income (GAAP) for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2020 was $7.3 million, or $0.10 per share (diluted) versus net income (GAAP) of $19.2 million, or $0.24 per share (diluted), for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019. On a non-GAAP basis, net income for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2020 was $37.4 million, or $0.50 per share (diluted), which compares with $52.0 million, or $0.66 per share (diluted), for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019.

“For fiscal year 2020, we delivered solid earnings per share growth on relatively flat revenue compared with fiscal year 2019, excluding the divested HNT Tools business, despite some order delays in our fourth quarter related to the COVID-19 global pandemic. These delays occurred in one of our historically stronger quarters, as customers were focused on adjusting their operations to react to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation,” stated Anil Singhal, NETSCOUT’s president and CEO.

Inphi posts strong Q1 revenue of $139 million

Inphi reported Q1 2020 revenue $139.4 million, up 69.6% year-over-year, compared with $82.2 million in the first quarter of 2019. The increase was due to higher demand for Cloud and Telecommunications products as well as the inclusion of eSilicon revenues as a result of the acquisition that closed on January 10, 2020.

Gross margin under GAAP in the first quarter of 2020 was 52.9%, compared with 57.9% in the first quarter of 2019. The decrease was mainly due to amortization of intangibles, step up value of inventories related to the eSilicon acquisition and product mix.

GAAP net loss for the first quarter of 2020 was $20.3 million or ($0.44) per diluted common share, compared with $22.7 million or ($0.51) per diluted common share in the first quarter of 2019.

Non-GAAP net income in the first quarter of 2020 was $31.5 million, or $0.62 per diluted common share. This compares with non-GAAP net income of $15.4 million, or $0.33 per diluted common share in the first quarter of 2019.

“As the global health crisis continues to be a challenge, the demand for bandwidth remains solid, as detailed in our April 22 blog on Inphi’s website,” said Ford Tamer, President and CEO of Inphi Corporation.  “Prior to the crisis, we were already delivering on new product cycles for our cloud and telecom customers.  These included upgrades of data center, 5G, metro and long-haul networks to PAM and Coherent technologies, designed to increase available bandwidth.  Now, we believe the significant paradigm shifts brought on by ‘work from home’, electronic commerce, distance learning, streaming and other remote usage activities may result in further acceleration of bandwidth upgrades. While we remain cautiously optimistic for continued growth, we will also work to verify the sustainability of this new demand.”

Business Outlook
  • Revenue in Q2 2020 is expected to be in the range of $147.8 million to $152.0 million.   
  • GAAP gross margin is expected to be approximately 51.6% to 53.9%.
  • Non-GAAP gross margin is expected to be approximately 63.5% to 65.5%.
  • Stock-based compensation expense is expected to be in the range of $26 million to $28 million.
  • GAAP net loss is expected to be in range between $15.0 million to $21. 5 million, or ($0.31) to ($0.45) per basic share, based on 47.8 million estimated weighted average basic shares outstanding.
  • Non-GAAP net income, excluding stock-based compensation expense, acquisition expenses, amortization of intangibles and inventory fair value step up related to acquisitions and noncash interest on convertible debt, is expected to be in the range of $33.15 million to $36.35 million, or $0.62 to $0.68 per weighted average diluted share, based on 53.1 million estimated non-GAAP weighted average diluted shares outstanding. 

CommScope posts Q1 2020 revenue of $2.03 billion

CommScope reported that net sales in the first quarter of 2020 increased 84.9% year over year to $2.03 billion primarily due to the contribution of $1.03 billion from the ARRIS acquisition. On a combined company basis, net sales decreased 18.0% year over year to $2.03 billion. The company estimates that first-quarter 2020 net sales were negatively impacted by approximately $70 million related to supply chain disruptions as a result of COVID-19, as well as certain other COVID-19 related disruptions.

CommScope generated a net loss of $(159.9) million, or $(0.89) per basic share, in the first quarter, a decrease from the prior year period's net loss of $(2.3) million, or $(0.01) per basic share. Non-GAAP adjusted net income for the first quarter was $27.2 million, or $0.12 per diluted share, versus $93.0 million, or $0.48 per diluted share, in the first quarter of 2019.

Due to the evolving and significant uncertainties related to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, CommScope is withdrawing its full-year 2020 outlook.

CommScope President and CEO Eddie Edwards states: "I am incredibly proud of our team and how resilient our business model is. We quickly mobilized across the company to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic; supporting the phenomenal and sudden increase in demand for broadband and connectivity by everyone: our emergency services, businesses, remote workers and everyone sheltering-in-place at home. On behalf of the Board and management team, I thank our employees for their fortitude, creativity, innovation, positive spirit and resilience in providing essential services.”


Ribbon posts Q1 sales of $158 million

Ribbon Communications reported Q1 2020 revenue of $158 million compared with $119 million in first quarter of 2019, an increase of 33%. Approximately $30 million of the year-over-year revenue increase was attributable to the acquisition of ECI Telecom, which closed on March 3, 2020. There was a GAAP net loss of $33 million, and a non-GAAP loss of $1 million.

"We are pleased with our first quarter sales results.  In the face of very difficult global conditions for our customers and employees arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, we achieved organic revenue growth of eight percent compared with the first quarter of last year, driven by strong demand for our communications software as our customers responded to increased traffic on their networks," said Bruce McClelland, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ribbon Communications.  "We saw an increase in session software deployments to facilitate remote work and Ribbon's multi-year investments in fully virtualized software and cloud products allowed us to rapidly deploy solutions for our Service Provider and Enterprise customers."

Mr. McClelland added, "During March we successfully completed the merger with ECI.  Although the ongoing pandemic has impacted demand in certain regions and created supply chain challenges for our Packet Optical Network products, we are excited about the opportunities this merger provides, with an impressive breadth of products to serve our combined global customer base."

ECI's Darryl Edwards steps down following Ribbon acquisition

Darryl Edwards, President and CEO of ECI Telecom, has stepped down as planned following the recent acquisition of the company by Ribbon.

Edwards joined ECI in June 2012, with the goal of re-establishing ECI's reputation for innovation and breaking boundaries in the telecommunications industry. Under his leadership, ECI has made significant investments in research and development and refreshed its product portfolio with new packet and optical product lines, making the transition to SDN and NFV.

"We're immensely grateful for the great work that Darryl has done in cementing ECI's place as an innovation leader in the packet and optical networking space," said Bruce McClelland, CEO and President of Ribbon.  "We are now very focused on executing on our strategy to significantly scale the ECI business by leveraging the strong foundation that Ribbon has with major Service Providers and Enterprise customers around the world, particularly as we enter the 5G networking era."

"It has been a great pleasure to lead ECI for the past eight years. During this time, the industry has changed dramatically, and so did ECI," added Mr. Edwards. "When I became CEO of ECI, we had to re-assert ECI's innovation and put it back at the heart of the company. We've since become a pioneer in the industry, supporting a large number of customers, helping them realize their ambitions with our unique elastic network philosophy and approach. The merger with Ribbon is a natural and positive next step for ECI as it looks to continue to expand its global presence."

Ribbon completes merger with ECI Telecom

Ribbon Communications completed its previously announced acquisition of ECI Telecom Group, which supplies packet-optical transport and SDN/NFV solutions for service providers, enterprises, and data center operators.

The newly combined company will offer an extensive portfolio of advanced voice, security, data and optical networking solutions. In addition to extending the company’s solutions portfolio into adjacent markets, the merger advances Ribbon’s strategy of expanding into the service provider 5G data domain with bundled network analytics, intelligence and security offerings. The newly combined company allows Ribbon to enhance and broaden its existing customer offerings with ECI’s industry-leading packet optical transport solutions.

"We are thrilled to welcome ECI to the Ribbon family,” said Bruce McClelland, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ribbon. “Our expanded product offering combines ECI’s leadership in packet optical networking with our existing proven portfolio of software-based, real-time communications security, analytics and digital transformation solutions. Our new organization will leverage the strength and presence of our global sales force to create a very formidable market leader in the communications industry.”

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Whitepaper: 7 Principles of AT&T’s Network Transformation

AT&T published a nine-page whitepaper outlining seven tenets of its network transformation.

In a blog post, Scott Mair, President, AT&T Technology & Operations, says the company's network carried an average of 335 petabytes of data per day during Q4 2019. This jumped 20% because of the COVID-19 response. AT&T is on track to hit is its 75% SDN and automation goal this year, to deliver nationwide 5G this summer, and to expand its 400G deployment.

The whitepaper discusses the following “7 Principles of AT&T’s Network Transformation”:

  1. Network growth necessitates economies of scale that can only be achieved from interoperability and open disaggregation
  2. White Box hardware/software disaggregation using open dNOS, such as AT&T’s Vyatta NOS, is proliferating from the network edge to the core
  3. Network edge densification is critical for low latency, near-real time connections, highspeed requirements for 5G and low latency enterprise applications
  4. AT&T’s Mobility Core and IP Communication Core are pivoting to be cloud native
  5. ONAP and AT&T’s ECOMP SDN platform are evolving for diverse NFV instantiation orchestration models - APIs not GUIs
  6. Cloud-Based Data Warehouse, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, and policy-driven SDN-control are a powerful combination 
  7. AT&T network security paradigm is rapidly changing from the customer premise, to the network edge, and at its core 

The full whitepaper is here:
https://about.att.com/content/dam/snrdocs/7_Tenets_of_ATTs_Network_Transformation_White_Paper.pdf

Fujitsu supplies Open ROADM planning tool to Tier 1 operator

Fujitsu Network Communications confirmed that its Virtuora PD multi-vendor network design and planning tool for Open ROADM networks has been selected by a Tier One service provider.

The Fujitsu Network Virtuora PD, an SDN-based application, optimizes and simplifies planning, design, and testing of optical networks that conform to Open ROADM specifications.

Virtuora PD accesses a set of common network characteristics from multiple vendors’ equipment to align with service provider business processes. As a result, service providers can speed up the overall process of network design and deployment; reduce errors with zero touch provisioning; and drive out operational inefficiencies with tightly integrated Operations Support Systems (OSS) tools.

“As a contributing member of the Open ROADM Multi-Source Agreement (MSA), Fujitsu is committed to the core principles of multi-vendor, software-enabled Open ROADM ecosystems,” said Francois Lafontaine, vice president and head of the software business at Fujitsu Network Communications, Inc. “Virtuora PD is a key component in enabling open networks, helping providers overcome the disadvantages of proprietary architectures.”

https://www.fujitsu.com/us/products/network/

Open RAN Policy Coalition seeks to diversify supply chain

A new Open RAN Policy Coalition has been formed to promote policies that will advance the adoption of open and interoperable solutions in the Radio Access Network (RAN) as a means to create innovation, spur competition and expand the supply chain for advanced wireless technologies including 5G.

The coalition believes that the U.S. Federal Government has an important role to play in facilitating and fostering an open, diverse and secure supply chain for advanced wireless technologies, including 5G, such as by funding research and development, and testing open and interoperable networks and solutions, and incentivizing supply chain diversity.

As evidenced by the current global pandemic, vendor choice and flexibility in next-generation network deployments are necessary from a security and performance standpoint,” said Diane Rinaldo, Executive Director, Open RAN Policy Coalition.  “By promoting policies that standardize and develop open interfaces, we can ensure interoperability and security across different players and potentially lower the barrier to entry for new innovators.”

Open RAN Policy Coalition founding members include Airspan, Altiostar, AT&T, AWS, Cisco, CommScope, Dell, DISH Network, Facebook, Fujitsu, Google, IBM, Intel, Juniper Networks, Mavenir, Microsoft, NEC Corporation, NewEdge Signal Solutions, NTT, Oracle, Parallel Wireless, Qualcomm, Rakuten Mobile, Samsung Electronics America, Telefónica, US Ignite, Verizon, VMWare, Vodafone, World Wide Technology, and XCOM-Labs.

http://www.openRANpolicy.org