Sunday, December 20, 2020

Network predictions 2021: Ciena's Steve Alexander

by Steve Alexander, CTO, Ciena

2021 will take investment to the edge

5G networks are primed to deliver faster web browsing and video streaming with reduced latency, both very appealing for consumers. But 5G can do so much more once networks have matured. Advanced 5G services like rich AR and VR, cloud gaming, telemedicine, and Industry 4.0 (the connected manufacturing revolution), all require highly reliable networks that can deliver low latency as well as higher bandwidth – but also high levels of intelligence.

For these services to take off, networks must continue to get faster, closer and smarter, utilizing automation intelligence and software to deliver on the hype of these exciting services. A part of building faster, closer and smarter networks is to build out the edge, where we need up to five times more data centres than are available today.

There is already heavy investment in building out edge data center sites to bring the cloud closer to users and this investment will continue at pace in 2021. The carriers know they need to continue to focus on building out their edge infrastructure in these smaller data center sites, leveraging edge cloud capabilities which will mean that services can be processed closer to users, improving user experience and delivering on the bold promises of 5G.

Hitting new network requirements will become automatic

Carriers know the demands we are placing on networks show no signs of slowing as our lives become more digital and distributed. That means network rollout will continue at pace, but networks must now be built to adapt on their own. Carriers have already taken steps to make this happen, but in 2021, we will start to see even more use of software and analytics to improve the way optical networks function.

Advanced software capabilities will redefine how network providers engineer, operate and monetize their optical networks. These software solutions were originally focused on extracting more value from existing network assets. In 2021 will see these software solutions play a key role in new network builds, giving CSPs the ability to fine-tune, control and dynamically adjust optical connectivity and capacity.

Software will also give greater visibility into the health of the network via real-time link performance metrics and increased, end-to-end photonic layer automation. By utilizing the latest advanced software solutions, providers can monitor and mine all available network assets to be able to instantly respond to new and unexpected bandwidth demands and allocate capacity across any path in real time – a function which will become increasingly important year-on-year.

Increasing Digital Inclusion will be key to continued remote working

This year has demonstrated how important connectivity is for people to stay in touch, shop and work remotely to keep our economy moving.  It has also proven crucial to the continued education of students. There is a growing desire to maintain this flexibility even once Covid restrictions are lifted, but this is only possible if you have the connectivity and capacity.

In 2021, we’ll see rural connectivity and digital inclusion initiatives move higher up the political agenda, and solutions like low-orbit satellite connectivity will come to greater prominence. The solution that maximizes ultimate capacity is still scaling fiber based broadband, but we know this can be a challenge in rural areas, so will require a nudge from policy makers to get things moving.

If countries want to stay at the forefront of the digital economy, they must break down the barriers to rural connectivity and invest in fixing the last-mile problem. They must also continue supporting digital inclusion programmes that grant students access to technology and tools. Incentives and initiatives from the government, and an ongoing review to ensure that networks are using the most effective equipment suppliers, are certainly ways to help.

Enhanced reality will step forward as the first killer use case for 5G 

Almost as soon as talk of 5G networks first started, so too did questions about what the killer app for the new standard will be. 2021 might not be the year we get the definitive answer to that question, but it will be the year in which enhanced reality (AR and VR) applications take a step forward. However, it may not be consumer-centric services that light the path, but instead, enterprise use cases could lead the way. 

I think it’s safe to say that all of us have grown weary of online team meetings this year, and ‘zoom fatigue’ has become a very real thing. Next year I predict we will see more instances of AR and VR being used as collaboration tools, helping remote teams regain some of the ‘live’ element of working together. These services will initially need to run over combinations of home broadband, in building Wi-Fi, 4G and 5G networks.  They will ultimately open the door to more commercial AR and VR services over 5G networks and WiFi 6 further down the road. The quality of those networks will take these enhanced reality applications beyond a fun, short-term gimmick into being a viable and valuable service offering.

WebScalers and telcos expand their collaborations to improve our cloud experience

One of the biggest trends of 2020 has been the partnerships that have been forged between telecoms carriers and some of the the hyperscalers. There’s no doubt this will continue and grow well beyond 2021, but as networks become increasingly more software centric there is an opportunity to improve the delivery of new services and applications to the users.

From the perspective of a WebScale operator, service provider networks often appear to be a patchwork quilt of various vendors and technologies. The suite of Internet protocols allows this complexity to be abstracted up to a set of globally uniform IP addresses and this has served us fantastically well. At the same time, service provider networks look largely opaque to the cloud and consequently it is hard to guarantee a user the cloud experience that is desired. To deliver next generation service more collaboration between cloud and network is required.  Making the network adaptive through the use of intelligent software allow coordination between service provider networks and the cloud and will enable a generation of AR and VR-based immersive services and applications.

Steve Alexander is Ciena’s Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. He has held a number of positions since joining the Company in 1994, including General Manager of Ciena's Transport & Switching and Data Networking business units, Vice President of Transport Products and Director of Lightwave Systems.

Palo Alto Networks responds to SolarStorm

In a company blog post, Nikesh Arora, CEO of Palo Alto Networks, writes: "We will soon be talking about this as one of the most serious cyberattacks in history. Tainted updates to SolarWinds Orion software were distributed for months before they were identified, positioning attackers to obtain administrative privileges and establish long-term network access – potential for a complete compromise of an organization by malicious actors. We must come together to defend against an attack of this magnitude."

Also discussed in the posting:

  • Palo Alto Networks itself experienced an attempt to download Cobalt Strike on one of its IT SolarWinds servers, but its Cortex XDR instantly blocked the attempt with our Behavioral Threat Prevention capability and our SOC isolated the server.
  • Due to the disclosures on December 13, the company has reanalyzed its entire infrastructure extensively one more time to ensure that it has not been compromised.
  • Arora remains confident that Palo Alto Networks continues to be secure.
  • Palo Alto Networks is now offering a free SolarStorm rapid assessment to determine if customers have been compromised by this threat actor.

NTT Ltd. opens London 1 Data Center

 NTT Ltd. opened its new London 1 Data Center, more than tripling its data center footprint in the UK and making the company the third largest data center company globally. NTT also expects 100 people with technical and operational skills will be employed at London 1 Data Center when it is fully operational with clients. The new data center is located in Dagenham, East London. The location was chosen due to its proximity to the Docklands, which is established as the UK’s internet hub and backbone for the global internet network that facilitates the majority of the London Internet Exchange's (LINX) infrastructure. 

London 1 Data Center opens as part of NTT’s ongoing £500 million data center investment plan and highlights its commitment to the UK ICT industry. Further sites will include the opening of Hemel Hempstead 4 Data Center, NTT’s seventh data center in the UK.

Minister for Investment, Gerry Grimstone said: “World-class digital infrastructure projects are fundamental to our wider digital and investment strategies. Businesses are increasingly demanding infrastructure like this to operate innovatively, securely and efficiently. NTT’s continued commitment to the UK will help us to build and solidify our reputation as a leader in technological innovation in the industries of the future that will help us build back better.”

London 1 Data Center, when fully operational, will have 25,600 sqm of IT space and a maximum IT load of 64 MW. It will provide businesses with the best possible physical and technical infrastructure supported by N+1 UPS systems, generator backup, as well as highly redundant cooling systems. 

NTT Ltd. expects the new facility to have  power usage effectiveness of 1.2, which is aligned with industry best practice.

Masaaki Moribayashi, Senior Executive Vice President, Services for NTT Ltd. comments, “The London 1 Data Center is the latest addition to our NTT global portfolio. Offering flexible, scalable and secure infrastructure along with customizable solutions, London 1 Data Center has been designed to accommodate a wide range of NTT clients and partners, from large scale cloud/SaaS providers to enterprise clients who require full-stack services such as managed hybrid cloud solutions with global network services delivered from an industry leading and carrier-neutral colocation facility. It is a great advantage that we can provide a variety of cloud infrastructure services such as private cloud, public cloud, and colocation within the same data center.”

https://datacenter.hello.global.ntt/location/london/london-1-data-center

Vantage Data Centers on track with Zurich data center

Vantage Data Centers completed construction a concrete shell and is on schedule to deliver its first greenfield European hyperscale data center in 2021. 

The new facility, which is located just 25 kilometers northeast of Zurich, will offer 40MW capacity. The seven-acre (three-hectare) campus will be home to four multi-story, state-of-the-art data centers totaling more than 400,000 square feet (37,000 square meters) once fully developed. Vantage is constructing the shell of the initial facility with 8MW of capacity as part of its standard design practice.

The new data center is part of the company’s US$2B European expansion and will provide customers with large scale, sustainable data center facilities built for the unique needs of hyperscalers, cloud providers and large enterprises. 

“Vantage recently achieved two major milestones in our fast-track European expansion, including the completion of our first greenfield data center shell near Zurich along with the grand opening of our flagship Frankfurt campus,” said Wolfgang Zepf, Vantage’s managing director of Switzerland. “We look forward to welcoming customers to this highly secure and connectivity-rich facility in the third quarter of next year.”

https://vantage-dc.com/data-center-locations/europe/zurich-switzerland/

  • In February 2020, Vantage entered the European market with the acquisition of Etix Everywhere and greenfield developments in Berlin, Frankfurt, Milan, Warsaw and Zurich. In July, the company acquired Next Generation Data in the U.K., Europe’s largest data center campus.



Nokia appoints Nishant Batra as Chief Strategy and Technology Officer

Nokia appointed Nishant Batra as Chief Strategy and Technology Officer and member of the Group Leadership team.


Batra joins Nokia from Veoneer in Sweden, a worldwide leader in automotive technology, where he was Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. Prior this role he held several positions at Ericsson over twelve years in Sweden, India and the US, most recently as Head of Product Area Networks. 

Batra holds an MBA from INSEAD, a master’s degree in telecommunications and a master’s degree in computer science from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, and a bachelor’s degree in computer applications from Devi Ahilya University in India.

“I am delighted to welcome Nishant to Nokia at a pivotal time for our company," says Pekka Lundmark, President and Chief Executive Officer of Nokia. "He is a proven leader bringing with him a wealth of experience from technology to telecoms, as well as deep knowledge of our core CSP customers, the enterprise sector, and the emerging trends in the global market. His track record of developing innovative new products and successfully taking them to market make him a fantastic addition to our team.”

Singtel installs Ericsson 5G gear

Singel is deploying Ericsson's 5G New Radio (NR) Standalone and dual-mode 5G core network products and solutions, including real-time rating and policy control.

The energy-efficient, end-to-end 5G network will operate on Singtel’s 3.5GHz and 28GHz spectrum bands, spanning outdoor and indoor 5G coverage. Millimeter wave (mmWave) connectivity will also be deployed in hotspots across the city state.

Ericsson said the 5G contract award takes the partnership between Ericsson and Singtel to new levels, as Industry 4.0 gathers pace globally. 

Mark Chong, Group Chief Technology Officer, Singtel, says: “As the leading telco in Singapore, Singtel is committed to building a secure, resilient, world-class 5G network that will serve as the backbone of Singapore’s digital economy. We are pleased to be working with Ericsson, leveraging on its industry-leading 5G capabilities and to deliver innovative applications and transformative customer experiences for our consumers and enterprise customers.”

Martin Wiktorin, Head of Ericsson Singapore, Brunei and Philippines, says: “Singtel is determined to play a leading role in keeping Singapore at the cutting edge of technology innovation and to ensure that the whole nation benefits from 5G.

Singtel boosts 5G with 28 Ghz mmWave rollout

Singtel is tapping on 28 Ghz mmWave in addition to 3.5Ghz and 2100Mhz frequencies to boost its 5G rollout in Singapore.

Singtel said customers with 5G plans can expect to enjoy mobile speeds of up to 3 Gbps speeds when mmWave-enabled handsets arrive in Singapore next year.

The initial mmWave rollout locations include Orchard Road, the Padang area and Marina Bay Sands Expo. More are planned.

Mr Mark Chong, Group Chief Technology Officer, Singtel, said, “We are progressing our 5G deployment and boosting our capabilities to meet increasing demand for advanced mobile connectivity in the consumer and enterprise sectors. mmWave 5G’s super-fast speeds and low latency will bring about a striking change in the way we communicate and work. On the consumer front, we are tapping the power of 5G to transform applications such as cloud gaming and augmented reality. We are also working with enterprise customers in key industries to develop 5G solutions in areas such as autonomous guided vehicles, mixed reality and location-based services.”


NTT Ltd. names Abhijit Dubey as next CEO

Abhijit Dubey will succeed Jason Goodall as Global Chief Executive Officer for NTT Ltd. 


Abhijit takes the role following over 20 years with global advisory firm McKinsey & Company.  He will be based at NTT Ltd.’s headquarters in London. Following a three month handover period, Jason Goodall will retire from his executive role on 30 June 2021 and will remain as a Board Director for NTT Ltd, and Dimension Data, as well as act as a strategic advisor for the NTT Venture Capital business

Jason Goodall, current Global CEO for NTT Ltd. commented, “We are looking forward to welcoming Abhijit to the NTT family in 2021 to lead the next generation of our business. He shares our passion for the technology industry and the role that technology can play in helping make the world a better place. He brings many years’ experience of our industry and context, as well as a strong track record in delivering high performance and profitability in organizations having advised clients on a range of strategic, operational, and go-to-market challenges. I am confident that we have solid foundations in place following our successful integration last year and am delighted to work with Abhijit in the first half of next year to ensure a smooth handover.”

Commenting on his appointment, Abhijit said, “I’m excited about the opportunity to lead this next chapter for NTT Ltd. NTT is privileged to be a critical technology services partner for many of the world’s leading companies and public sector organizations, with employees in over 73 countries around the world. With many NTT clients accelerating their digital transformation because of the global pandemic, there has never been a more important time for the technology industry to deliver for the world. I am passionate about NTT’s purpose, strategy, and part it will play to help clients, employees and communities leverage technology for good. I am very much looking forward to working with the team.”


Friday, December 18, 2020

U.S. restricts exports of 10nm technology to China's SMIC

Citing national security, the U.S. Department of Commerce's Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) officially added Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC) of China to the Entity List.  BIS said the action stems from China’s military-civil fusion (MCF) doctrine and evidence of activities between SMIC and entities of concern in the Chinese military industrial complex. 

“We will not allow advanced U.S. technology to help build the military of an increasingly belligerent adversary.  Between SMIC’s relationships of concern with the military industrial complex, China’s aggressive application of military civil fusion mandates and state-directed subsidies, SMIC perfectly illustrates the risks of China’s leverage of U.S. technology to support its military modernization,” said Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. 

The Entity List designation limits SMIC’s ability to acquire certain U.S. technology by requiring U.S. exporters to apply for a license to sell to the company.  Items uniquely required to produce semiconductors at advanced technology nodes—10 nanometers or below—will be subject to a presumption of denial to prevent such key enabling technology from supporting China’s military-civil fusion efforts.

BIS also added more than sixty other entities to the Entity List for actions deemed contrary to the national security or foreign policy interest of the United States.

https://www.commerce.gov/news/press-releases/2020/12/commerce-adds-chinas-smic-entity-list-restricting-access-key-enabling

Thursday, December 17, 2020

U.S. scrambles to assess damage from nation-state cyberattack

U.S. government officials warned that the cyberattack identified earlier this week has compromised dozens of federal government networks and likely thousands of private networks globally.

The FBI, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) announced a Cyber Unified Coordination Group (UCG) to coordinate a whole-of-government response to the infiltration of U.S. government networks arising from the SolarWinds backdoor hack.

CISA issued an Emergency Directive instructing federal civilian agencies to immediately disconnect or power down affected SolarWinds Orion products from their network.

CISA said the infiltration "poses a grave risk to the Federal Government and state, local, tribal, and territorial governments as well as critical infrastructure entities and other private sector organizations."

Some notes from CISA about the attack:

  • Compromises began at least as early as March 2020
  • This is a patient, well-resourced, and focused adversary that has sustained long duration activity on victim networks.
  • The SolarWinds Orion supply chain compromise is not the only initial infection vector this APT actor leveraged.
  • Not all organizations that have the backdoor delivered through SolarWinds Orion have been targeted by the adversary with follow-on actions.
  • Organizations with suspected compromises need to be highly conscious of operational security, including when engaging in incident response activities and planning and implementing remediation plans. 
  • The adversary is making extensive use of obfuscation to hide their C2 communications. 
  • CISA has observed the threat actor adding authentication tokens and credentials to highly privileged Active Directory domain accounts as a persistence and escalation mechanism. In many instances, the tokens enable access to both on-premise and hosted resources.

Some recommendations from CISA:

  • Out-of-band communications guidance for staff and leadership;
  • An outline of what “normal business” is acceptable to be conducted on the suspect network;
  • A call tree for critical contacts and decision making; and
  • Considerations for external communications to stakeholders and media.

https://www.cisa.gov/ 

https://us-cert.cisa.gov/ncas/alerts/aa20-352a

Microsoft President Brad Smith stated "this latest cyber-assault is effectively an attack on the United States and its government and other critical institutions, including security firms." 

Microsoft also noted that the initial list of victims includes not only government agencies, but security and other technology firms as well as non-governmental organizations.

https://blogs.microsoft.com/on-the-issues/2020/12/17/cyberattacks-cybersecurity-solarwinds-fireeye/




  • On December 13, FireEye discovered a supply chain attack trojanizing SolarWinds Orion business software updates in order to distribute malware. The attacker is using multiple techniques to evade detection and obscure their activity, which includes espionage and data theft. FireEye has released signatures to detect this threat actor and supply chain attack in the wild. 
https://www.fireeye.com/blog/threat-research/2020/12/evasive-attacker-leverages-solarwinds-supply-chain-compromises-with-sunburst-backdoor.html

Linux Foundation marks first release of DENT Network OS

 The Linux Foundation announced the first code release of DENT, a  Network Operating System (NOS) for Disaggregated Network Switches in campus and remote enterprise locations. The project aims to address the specific needs of distributed enterprise edge networking, such as a simplified networking OS stack that is low cost and Linux-based. DENT enables an open community to build this solution without complicated abstractions. It also promises to treat ASICs and switching silicon as any other hardware.

Initial supports of DENT include Innovium, Arcadyan, Aviz Netorks, Alpha Networks, Amazon, Delta Electronics, Marvell, NVIDIA, Edgecore Networks, and Wistron NeWeb (WNC).

The Arthur release – aptly named after Arthur Dent, the protagonist character of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy– uses the recently released Linux 5.6 Kernel and leverages SwitchDev to simplify integrations, eliminate complex abstractions and SDK change management, and support existing Linux tool chains. 

“With the Arthur release, we’re witnessing the makings of an open network operating system, control plane and management plane that will transform how enterprises address their distributed edge challenges,” said Arpit Joshipura, general manager, Networking, Edge and IoT, at The Linux Foundation. “The DENT community has grown quickly and executed on this first major code release at a time when the entire industry is rethinking the future of retail and campus environments.”

https://dent.dev/

Intel and Samsung achieve 5G SA Core capacity of 305 Gbps / server

Samsung and Intel achieved a record 5G SA Core data processing capacity of 305 Gbps per server – equivalent to hosting more than 200,000 users simultaneously live-streaming standard definition videos – as well as latency improvement in a mobile network environment with commercial features enabled. 

To achieve this result, Samsung’s 5G SA Core used the 2nd generation Intel Xeon Scalable processor and the Intel Ethernet Network Adapter E810 with Enhanced Dynamic Device Personalization (DDP). The companies said the Intel Ethernet Network Adapter E810 with Enhanced DDP is capable of optimizing data distribution and transmission functions across the network adapter and the CPU cores, resulting in higher performance. Samsung and Intel were able to implement a simplified system configuration and boost packet processing and overall network performance.

“Through close collaboration with Intel, we were able to achieve an industry-leading performance with our 5G SA Core,” said Sohyong Chong, Senior Vice President and Head of Core Software R&D, Networks Business at Samsung Electronics. “Samsung’s cloud-native 5G SA Core, through its highly flexible and scalable design, will enable our customers to launch 5G services more swiftly and cost-effectively.”

“The transition to 5G Standalone Core is essential to achieve the full potential of 5G,” said Alex Quach, Vice President and General Manager, Wireline and Core Network Division, Intel Corporation. “This milestone achieved with Samsung is a verification of how strong industry collaboration and the use of innovative technologies can enhance performance to accelerate this transition and pave the way to new network and edge services.”

https://news.samsung.com/us/samsung-achieves-305gbps-5g-sa-core/

T-Mobile rolls out Location-Based Routing and Next Gen 911

 T-Mobile US is rolling out  Location-Based Routing and Next Generation 911 connectivity over IP – two critical advancements for pinpointing the location of callers, reducing the need for call transfers, and enabling a more efficient and effective 911 communication system.


Location-Based Routing (LBR) significantly cuts the need for 911 call transfers by leveraging low latency device-based location technology that at allows the network to connect more 911 callers directly to the appropriate 911 call center. T-Mobile says some areas with LBR enabled have experienced up to 40 percent fewer call transfers. LBR is currently enabled in parts of Texas and Washington State, and T-Mobile is working with 911 authorities to expand the capability nationwide.

Next Generation 911 (NG911) transitions 911 to an all-IP-based system. This is expected to improve the system’s ability to manage call overload, natural disaster response, and interoperability between jurisdictions. NG911 also paves the way for future forms of communications. Alert systems like crash detection will become more effective, sending notifications and actionable data directly to 911 dispatchers instead of third parties. T-Mobile has established some level of NG911 connectivity in all or part of Delaware, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, and Washington state, with plans to expand both NG911 connectivity and capability nationwide as public safety networks are ready.

"As the Un-carrier we innovate and push the wireless industry forward with technology firsts like this for the sake of consumers everywhere. Nowhere is that more important than driving improvements in public safety,” said Neville Ray, President of Technology at T-Mobile. 


T-Systems enters strategic collaboration agreement with AWS

T-Systems and Amazon Web Services (AWS) announced a multi-year Strategic Collaboration Agreement to manage the digital transformation of companies more quickly, efficiently and securely. 

T-Systems said the agreement will spur it to build out capacity in both solutions and people through a strong training and enablement program. The ICT service provider intends to train 3,000 additional AWS experts as part of the new collaboration.

Regarding security, AWS and T-Systems agreed to closely collaborate to achieve the targets recently set by the European regulation.

“Since the beginning of our relationship with AWS, we have built up expertise in AWS technology and combined it with our extensive experience from major transformation projects. Our customers appreciate this,” explained Adel Al-Saleh, member of the Deutsche Telekom Board of Management and CEO T-Systems.

https://www.t-systems.com/us/en/about-t-systems/news/t-systems-and-aws-expand-collaboration-365120

Deutsche Telekom aligns with Microsoft Azure

Deutsche Telekom and Microsoft announced a seven-year strategic agreement to help customers of all sizes accelerate their cloud transformation initiatives. 

"We have agreed on the framework for joint strategic growth with our long-term partner Microsoft. We are delighted," said Adel Al-Saleh, member of the Deutsche Telekom Board of Management and CEO of T-Systems. "This partnership will enable us to enhance services for our customers. We will also be supporting each other with digitalization and network build-out." 

Highlights

  • Telekom plans to migrate the majority of its internal IT workloads to the public cloud by 2025 and Azure is a central part of that strategy. Through a companywide training program, thousands of Telekom employees will learn how to maximize the benefits of Azure. 
  • Telekom will also offer its customers direct access to the Microsoft cloud through Azure ExpressRoute. 
  • Telekom will offer Microsoft 365, including Microsoft Teams. As part of this, the companies have started a project for German schools to reimagine traditional approaches to education, enabling remote learning through cloud-based IT infrastructure, modern devices and the cloud productivity and collaboration applications within Microsoft 365. 
  • Telekom will help its customers with moving their SAP environments to Azure. SAP solutions on Azure offer enterprise-grade security, and business continuity and reduce hardware expenses, making it easier for start-ups and smaller organizations to get started. 

Singapore's StarHub leverages ADVA’ s Layer 1 encryption

StarHub is using ADVA's FSP 3000 ConnectGuard Optical Layer 1 encryption technology to power a fully-managed service enables local enterprises, government agencies and multinational corporations to harness telco-grade encrypted connectivity for their users and systems across multiple locations.

The StarHub SDS Secured Service delivers highly-reliable and robustly protected enterprise connectivity on protocols including Ethernet, Fibre Channel and Synchronous Digital Hierarchy (SDH), and with a choice of speeds ranging from 1Gbit/s to 100Gbit/s. Physical layer encryption throughout the network ensures all customer data has the most rigorous defense available. Key security features for customers include protocol-agnostic hardware-based encryption with the lowest latency possible and 100% throughput. Security is also enhanced through simple certificate enrolment protocol-based automation and manual operations, as well as a strictly separated encryption domain manager. What’s more, the solution features automated procedures for authentication, services creation and regular key generation. As the only technology of its kind cleared to transport NATO-restricted data, the ADVA FSP 3000 ConnectGuard Optical encryption solution meets the most stringent international standards and regulatory requirements.

“We’re excited to be StarHub’s technology partner as it takes this key step. The StarHub SDS Secured Service offers a major boost to the business community in Singapore, providing the protection as well as the speed and guaranteed uptime needed for the most sensitive and critical data transport,” commented Erik Lindberg, VP, sales, APAC, ADVA.


SPIE 2021 Photonics West will be virtual, March 6-11

SPIE Photonics West, which normally convenes in San Francisco, will be held as an interactive, virtual conference 6-11 March 2021.


“The SPIE Digital Forum platform was developed to help people share results and make connections during the pandemic, and we’ve continued to fine-tune our virtual platform and digital offerings throughout this year,” says SPIE CEO Kent Rochford. “We’ll be implementing the latest improvements during Photonics West and are excited to release them to our attendees, presenters, and exhibitors. These forums, as always, ensure the professional discussion, innovation sharing, and networking opportunities that the SPIE community values and relies on to advance its research, product development, and engineering collaborations.”

"It's been a challenging year for our entire community, and I know that I am not alone in my desire to meet in person to exchange ideas, research, technological advances, and new products," says 2020 SPIE President John Greivenkamp. "We are hopeful of being able to gather in person later in 2021. In the meantime, I invite you to join us online at one or more of these dynamic conferences and look forward to seeing you there."

Molex acquires Fiberguide Industries

Molex has acquired Fiberguide Industries, a manufacturer of customized optical fiber solutions based in Caldwell, Idaho. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Molex said Fiberguide will help it address the stringent needs of medical applications, including high-power laser surgery, DNA sequencing and flow cytometry. Both Molex and Fiberguide bring extensive expertise in optical fibers, analytical probes and fully packaged assemblies to support  increasing demands for minimally invasive medical procedures. Additionally, a complementary portfolio of design capabilities provides customer-centric solutions for industrial monitoring and sensing as well as datacom applications that require reliable performance in extremely harsh environments. 


Fiberguide will join Molex's Polymicro business, a Phoenix-based provider of specialty optical fiber and fluidic-based products tailored for medical, industrial and datacom applications.

"Today, Molex is setting a new standard of excellence in the industry while fulfilling our vision of becoming the leading provider of specialty optical fiber products," said Jim Clarkin, GM of Polymicro. "Our combined capabilities give global customers a full array of products and complete solutions to meet emerging requirements for innovative laser-based optical systems."

  • Polymicro was acquired by Molex in 2007. 

RIP: Norman Abramson, co-founder of ALOHAnet

Norman Abramson, one of the founders of the ALOHAnet, passed away on December 1, 2020, at the age of 88.

In 1971, Abramson, who was a professor of electrical engineering at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, teamed up with faculty member Franklin Kuo, other colleagues and graduate students, to lauch ALOHAnet, the first wireless packet data network. ALOHAnet pioneered the use of medium access (ALOHA random access) and experimental ultra high frequency (UHF) for its operation. The concept of random access, allowing clients to transmit data when ready and allowing for packet collisions, was later adopted as the basis of Ethernet.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

The Secret of Cloud-First WANs

As CIOs plan for the post-pandemic era, there’s more focus on Cloud-First architectures that can better manage change, increase business agility and lower costs. 

Shashi Kiran, Chief Marketing Officer at Aryaka, draws from conversations with customers and partners to share his insights on key SD-WAN and SASE architecture attributes required for next-generation infrastructure deployments.

https://youtu.be/5p_Ce8QsgG0

Nokia further outlines strategy

Pekka Lundmark, who was appointed President and CEO of Nokia earlier this year, outlined further updates to the company's strategy and operating model. A first look at the new strategy was provided on October 29 - see below). Nokia’s previously provided outlook for 2020 and 2021 remains unchanged. In connection with its Q3 2020 results, Nokia expects comparable* operating margin of 7-10% in 2021.

“We are positioning Nokia to lead in a changing world,” says Pekka Lundmark, President and CEO of Nokia. “The world faces big problems: environmental issues, resource scarcity, inequality and stalling productivity. Technology will be an essential part of the solution. As a result, we will see an increase in critical networks, which will extend to all corners of society...”

“We are well positioned to be a trusted partner for critical networks. We are experienced in creating both carrier-grade performance networks and working with the world’s most demanding webscales. We have a strong position in technologies that are important for critical networks, such as open and virtualized radio access networks and we are on course for a 100% cloud-native software portfolio,” says Lundmark.

Some highlights from the presentation:

Mobile Networks’ immediate focus will be on executing its turnaround and regaining 5G leadership. It will focus on leadership in ORAN and vRAN, maintaining scale with CSP customers and growing its enterprise-dedicated Private Wireless Networks business. It is expected to deliver comparable* operating margin of around zero percent in 2021, and significant improvement over the longer term.



Network Infrastructure (previously IP and Fixed Networks) will focus on the building blocks and essential solutions of critical networks, using its technology leadership in IP Networks, Optical Networks, Fixed Networks, and Alcatel Submarine Networks to drive digitalization across all industries. It is expected to deliver comparable operating margin in the high single digit range in 2021, and gradual improvement over the longer term.



Cloud and Network Services creates value for both service providers and enterprise customers as demand for critical networks accelerates, leading the transition to cloud-native software and as-a-service delivery models. It is expected to deliver comparable operating margin in the mid-single digit range in 2021, and significant improvement over the longer term.

Nokia Technologies will continue to monetize and grow the value of Nokia’s intellectual property and licensing revenue by investing in innovation and its world-leading patent portfolio as well as pursuing other licensing opportunities. It is expected to deliver a slight improvement in comparable* operating profit in 2021, relative to 2020, and stable performance over the longer term.

Group Common and Other, which predominately consists of corporate costs, is expected to be run in a lean manner, with costs directly embedded into the business groups whenever possible. Group Common and Other is expected to deliver a comparable* operating loss of approximately €200 million in 2021.


Nokia's corporate re-organization focuses on four business groups


Nokia announced a corporate re-organization that focuses on four business groups: 

  • Mobile Networks, which will include mobile network products, network deployment and technical support services, and related network management. This business group will offer the full portfolio for customers wanting to buy mobile access networks. It will target leadership in key technologies such as 5G, ORAN and vRAN. The net sales of Mobile Networks in the last four quarters were approximately €10 billion. Tommi Uitto has been appointed as President of this business group.
  • IP and Fixed Networks, which will include IP Routing, Optical Networks and Fixed Networks, as well as Alcatel Submarine Networks business, currently reported under “Group Common.” This business group will respond to the ever-increasing demand for higher capacity, greater reliability, faster speeds and lower costs. The net sales of IP and Fixed Networks in the last four quarters were approximately €7 billion. Federico Guillén has been appointed as President of this business group.
  • Cloud and Network Services, which will include the existing Nokia Software business (excluding Mobile Networks network management), Nokia’s enterprise solutions, core network solutions including both voice and packet core, and managed and advanced services from its current Global Services unit. This unit will also act as a delivery channel of certain products from other business groups to enterprise customers. Cloud and Network Services will target growth by leveraging the industry transition to cloud-based delivery, network-as-a-service business models, and software-led value creation. The net sales of Cloud and Network Services in the last four quarters were approximately €3 billion. Raghav Sahgal has been appointed as President of this business group.
  • Nokia Technologies, which will remain largely unchanged. The net sales of this business group in the last four quarters were approximately €1.4 billion. Jenni Lukander continues as President of this business group.

A new Customer Experience organization will also be formed to strengthen customer relationships across all businesses.

“Our industry is undergoing profound changes. Industrial automation and digitalization are increasing customer demand for high-performance networks, with a trend towards open interfaces, virtualization, and cloud native software. This will revolutionize how we design, deploy, manage and sell our products and solutions,” said Pekka Lundmark, President and CEO. “As we work to renew our strategy, we will ensure we are well positioned to leverage these trends, improve our performance and position the company for long-term value creation.”

Telia Carrier plugs Acacia's 400G coherent modules into Cisco routers

Telia Carrier is preparing to converge their IP and optical networking layers by plugging Acacia's 400G coherent modules directly into Cisco routers.

In preparation for this new solution, Telia Carrier has already deployed open line systems and terminal equipment that can support new 400G pluggable technology. 

Telia Carrier said it is one of the first network operators to perform full end-to-end validation of the solution. Leveraging Acacia's 400G QSFP-DD coherent modules with OIF 400ZR and OpenZR+ operating modes, the solution can support data rates from 100G to 400G depending on the desired reach. The modules also support client n x 100GbE multiplexing functionality as well as 400GE transport.

"Conventional architectures and technologies built on decades of accumulated complexity and yesterday's truths fall short in helping us keep up with customer demands for more, consistent bandwidth and a high-quality experience. Starting in the metro, standardized coherent pluggable modules are the next natural step in evolving cost structures, efficiency and scaling capabilities. This follows our global deployments of open optical line-systems and bandwidth-optimized switch-router silicon already powering thousands of 400GE capable ports in the network," said Staffan Göjeryd, CEO at Telia Carrier.

"Pluggable 400G coherent optical transceiver modules are important to enable service providers such as Telia Carrier to migrate to a more converged network architecture capable of enabling OpEx and CapEx savings, as well as a pay as you grow business model," said Fenghai Liu, Vice President of Product Line Management at Acacia Communications. 

https://www.teliacarrier.com/about-us/press-releases/tc-pluggables-using-acacias-modules-cisco.html