Monday, January 11, 2021

Mavenir extends its cloud-native approach

Mavenir, which has embraced a cloud-centric approach of moving applications to Commercial Off-The-Shelf (COTS) computing servers whether private, hybrid or public, announced four new additions to its portfolio:


Webscale Platform: Suresh Somasundaram, SVP of 5G Cloud Platforms at Mavenir explains, “Mobile networks require digital transformation towards webscale platform technology that utilizes open source, Kubernetes platform as a service (PaaS). While a Kubernetes-based platform (PaaS) provides the foundation for fully automated life cycle management, it is built for mainly IT and enterprise applications and requires additional and specialized functions to support telecom and specifically, mobile workloads. To support those types of workloads, Mavenir has developed a common software extending standard opensource PaaS components to support telco needs for webscale deployment and to provide agile delivery of new applications expanding to Performance, Monitoring, Legal Intercept and Security. Mavenir’s WebScale Platform is the solution to give Mobile Operators the webscale agility of the Internet players.”

AI-powered Analytics: Kuntal Chowdhury, GM, AI & Analytics at Mavenir said, “With the cloudification and automation of the telecom networks, it becomes essential to utilize AI & Analytics solutions in a scalable platform combining real-time and big data analytics based on advanced Machine Learning algorithms. Mavenir’s AI & Analytics platform delivers extensive insights that are mandatory for WebScale network automation, slice management, security and many other use cases defined for the MEC (EdgeAI), RAN intelligence, traffic optimization and security. The AI/ML algorithms are defined with Mavenir’s deep telecom domain expertise, while keeping the interfaces standards-compliant & the platform open for collaborative innovation.”

Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC): Ashok Khuntia, GM Cloud Packet Computing says, “Delivering low latency and high bandwidth at the edge of the network promises many exciting applications in 5G. Mavenir's optimized low-footprint data processing 5G Core platform enables mission critical MEC applications in the areas of Industrial automation, Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality, Gaming, Video surveillance, Autonomous driving and others. The additional focus on Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC) will accelerate such applications for many different industries and sectors.”

Digital Enablement: Sandeep Singh, GM, Digital Enablement at Mavenir noted, “Mavenir enables Operators and Enterprises to launch innovative value-based services faster to market with lower upfront investments in capital and time. Mavenir’s Digital Enablement Platform unlocks any network data, sources partner data, and serves up a value-added offering enriched through the platform’s flexible business control functions like Partner/Customer Management, Order Journey-Experience builder, Subscription/Usage Billing, Charging and Settlement. With the design focus on ‘adaptability’, the platform provides customers the agility and flexibility to experiment iteratively and deliver enhanced subscriber engagement experiences, ultimately benefitting in increased market reach and customer stickiness through new revenue-generating services.”

Tele2 picks Nokia for cloud core

Tele2 will deploy Nokia's Standalone (SA) 5G Core and Voice over 5G (Vo5G) to enhance its cloud infrastructure and improve data and voice connectivity for Tele2’s subscribers in Sweden, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. Deployment is expected to start in 2021.

The deployment encompasses cloud and network management products from Nokia's CloudBand, Network Services Platform (NSP) and NetAct product portfolios to further secure, automate and scale network management operations. Nokia solutions will be deployed across Nokia Container Services, a cloud-native solution that integrates multi-vendor and multi-technology environments.


Nokia core offers near zero-touch automation capabilities that drive greater scale and reliability, allowing Tele2 to cost-effectively lay the foundation for 5G and enable faster time to market with new services. Nokia’s open architecture also provides the flexibility to be responsive to market demands while controlling costs at a time of growing network complexity. As part of Tele2’s core evolution, Nokia will deploy its Cloud Packet Core products to support both 4G and 5G core network functions and enhance network scale, performance and reliability.

Nokia’s further enhancements include deploying new Subscriber Data Management software to streamline Tele2’s network operations. To support Tele2’s strategy of delivering Voice over 5G (Vo5G), Nokia will further deliver Vo5G services to support connectivity and reduce operating expenses for both 5G and 4G. Nokia is leading the market in CSP core network deployments with 25 of the top 40 service providers relying on Nokia Core Network products.


Sunday, January 10, 2021

Network predictions 2021: Cisco's Scott Harrell

 by Scott Harrell, SVP and GM, Intent-Based Networking Group at Cisco

Connected Workplaces for the Return to Work

In 2021, workers will increasingly return to the workplace, but it will be very different for everyone, depending on city, region or country policies, among other factors. For those workers who will return to the office full time, new networking standards, procedures, and space reconfiguration will need to be in place to create a safe work environment. 

Reconfiguring the workplace will be essential to adapt to new health safeguards and new working styles. Monitoring space usage and density can help limit the number of people inside the office and adhere to good safety practices while maximizing in-person productivity and regaining office camaraderie. 

In 2021 and beyond, the office will need to be utilized for moments that matter. It’s likely that video conferencing will replace in-person, group conference room meetings. To ensure higher efficiency, video to every device and desktop, remote or in person, will require rethinking Wi-Fi coverage and capacity. 

Next Gen Wireless Will Enable Business Processes to be Reinvented 

5G and Wi-Fi 6 are being deployed across the globe. History has shown every new generation of wireless drives new use cases and rapid innovation. The combination of 5G and Wi-Fi 6 will provide fast, low-latency connections anywhere, with no need for manual network selection or authentication. This foundation becomes an accelerant for the deployment of other next generation technologies and will quicken disruptions across industries. 

In 2020, IT teams proved they can move amazingly fast as they restructured their infrastructure to facilitate moving workers to a home office. In 2021, they will look to apply the same speed to deploy next generation wirelessly ubiquitously across their offices. Video communications will be a primary driver of Wi-Fi 6 deployments as organizations look to enable video to every desktop to mimic the rich video-powered meeting style employees have gotten used to from home. Additionally, the increased speed, capacity, security, and availability enabled by 5G and Wi-Fi 6 will create a richer platform for innovation, and we’ll see entirely new business models start to develop by leveraging these capabilities.

Smart Buildings to Improve Energy Efficiency and Safety 

In the coming years, the U.S. – along with other world governments – will demand and promote smarter, safer, and more energy-efficient buildings for both new construction and existing structures. Next year, we expect companies to add more sensors and IoT devices to current networks to not only improve energy efficiency and safety within buildings, but to provide more connectivity. 

With the addition of new devices and sensors comes increased Wi-Fi congestion and interference within the smart building systems. The availability of more spectrum with Wi-Fi 6e will help IT adapt to the increases in device density and streaming applications, with private 5G filling in the spaces where Wi-Fi is impractical. 

Unmanaged Devices Will Increasingly Be Used for Cyberattacks

In 2020, as many as 20.4 billion IoT devices came online. As IoT devices continue to grow, we can expect that they will increasingly be used for cyberattacks. In 2019 alone, the number of cyberattacks on IoT devices surged by more than 300%.

Industrial IoT and OT systems need additional protection to keep critical infrastructure running even while under attack. To prevent attacks from spreading, industries will use end-point analytics to identify IoT and other endpoints and add them to security groups using intelligent segmentation to automatically quarantine devices when unusual behavior is detected.

Automated and Secure Interconnections

While new applications will be primarily built as cloud-native, the business case often does not justify re-platforming existing applications. Therefore, a hybrid environment will exist for the foreseeable future. Network and data center automation will be key in 2021 as businesses need to provision infrastructure and run a continuous development pipeline to orchestrate multiple public cloud and hybrid environments. Infrastructure teams want to retain control over the IT environment and choose which APIs they expose to development teams. The goal in 2021 will be to build an automated and secure interconnect between on-premises and cloud data centers for ease of provisioning and monitoring at scale in a hybrid environment.

Accelerating Day2 Operations

As more IoT devices, cloud services, hybrid workstyles, and personal devices become the norm in the workplace, IT must be able to manage the increasing complexity even as expectations for uptime and availability grow in parallel. Therefore, in 2021 we can expect the need for advanced network analytics will continue to accelerate but also begin to be utilized by more and more teams within IT. AIOps teams will drive the rapid rise in the utilization of these tools within and across NetOps, SecOps, and DevOps teams. These tools will enable the effective upskilling of first and second-line support, empower end users with increased visibility and self-remediation capabilities, and provide disparate teams with shared perspectives and common sources of truth. 

Common sources of truth can be exceptionally powerful. To enable this, sharing data and linking automation workflows across systems will become increasingly common. This will enable rapid resolution of issues across teams. The ability to link the automation layer with the analytics layer will enable IT to begin to move increasingly in machine time versus human time. 

Security has been and will continue to be a key driver for the transition to machine time. Detected threats need to be acted on rapidly and pervasively across the infrastructure. Since attackers are already leveraging large scale automation to attack businesses, IT must increasingly do the same in their response, bridging detection via SecOps with automation via NetOps to counteract the range of constantly evolving threats. For example, linking identity services and management resources with security detection tools creates dynamic access control and segmentation policies that limit fast-spreading malware as the systems detect and respond in real time — all without human intervention. 

These changes will of course benefit the line of business, the workforce, and customers. But they will also provide welcome help to the overstretched and under-appreciated professionals staffing help desks and maintaining critical infrastructure across the world.

Acacia calls off merger with Cisco


Acacia Communications terminated its merger agreement with Cisco Systems, Inc., effective immediately. 

The company said it was not able to obtain approval from the Chinese government’s State Administration for Market Regulation within the timeframe contemplated by the merger agreement.

Acacia also advised that Cisco may dispute Acacia’s right to have terminated the merger agreement. 

http://ir.acacia-inc.com/news-releases/news-release-details/acacia-communications-terminates-merger-agreement

Cisco to acquire Acacia for Coherent Optics

Cisco agreed to acquire Acacia Communications for $70.00 per share in cash, or for approximately $2.6 billion on a fully diluted basis, net of cash and marketable securities. The deal is expected to close during the second half of Cisco's FY2020. Acacia employees will join Cisco's Optical Systems and Optics business within the networking and security business under David Goeckeler.

Acacia, which is headquartered in Maynard, Massachusetts and is publicly traded ((NASDAQ: ACIA), develops, manufactures and sells high-speed coherent optical interconnect products, including digital signal processing / photonic integrated circuit modules, and transceivers.



http://ir.acacia-inc.com/static-files/3364e03b-6e70-4933-8c93-84b6fe4c74df

Nikhef and SURF activate 400G between Amsterdam and CERN

Nikhef and SURF activated their first 400G connection between Amsterdam and CERN in Switzerland, a distance of 1650 kilometres. This connection builds on the successful pilot project in the Randstad conurbation in 2020.

CERN plans to bring back the LHC particle accelerator slowly over the course of 2021, reaching full production status by 2022. The data generated by the LHC will then be distributed worldwide via Nikhef. 

https://www.surf.nl/en/news/new-400-gbit-dataline-tested-for-future-cern-link

Researchers in China test quantum communications

Researchers in China are testing Quantum key distribution (QKD) over a large-scale fibre network consisting of more than 700 fibre QKD links and two high-speed satellite-to-ground free-space QKD links.

The research is led by Jianwei Pan, Yuao Chen, Chengzhi Peng from the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei.

An article on the topic is published in Nature.

https://phys.org/news/2021-01-world-quantum-network.html

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-020-03093-8

Lenovo's Smart Glasses powered by Qualcomm

Lenovo will introduce a family of "ThinkReality A3" lightweight smart glasses designed for business applications.

The ThinkReality A3 tethers to a PC or select Motorola smartphones1 via a USB-C cable. The smart glasses are powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon XR1 Platform and can provide stereoscopic 1080p displays presenting the user with up to 5 virtual displays. An 8MP RGB camera provides 1080p video for remote expert use cases while the dual fish-eye cameras provide room-scale tracking.

“The A3 is a next generation augmented reality solution – light, powerful and versatile. The smart glasses are part of a comprehensive integrated digital solution from Lenovo that includes the advanced AR device, ThinkReality software, and Motorola mobile phones. Whether working in virtual spaces or supporting remote assistance, the ThinkReality A3 enhances workers’ abilities to do more wherever they are,” said Jon Pershke, Lenovo Vice President of Strategy and Emerging Business, Intelligent Device Group.


MaxLinear selected for Wi-Fi 6E test bed

Wi-Fi Alliance has selected the MaxLinear WAV664 as an official Wi-Fi 6E test bed device. 

The WAV664 delivers speeds up to 4.8Gbps in the 6GHz band enabling routers and gateways to deliver multi-gigabit Wi-Fi speeds and provide higher-quality user experiences for applications in Ultra HD, 4k and 8k video streaming especially in dense environments. In addition, the WAV664 SoC supports up to 256 clients simultaneously and optimizes transmission on each device for enhanced total network efficiency allowing access points to meet the accelerating demand for high bandwidth and low latency.

Wi-Fi 6E is a new certification from Wi-Fi Alliance for Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 devices that support the new 6GHz spectrum. Wi-Fi 6E certification enables worldwide interoperability of Wi-Fi 6E devices. The 6GHz band adds 1.2GHz of spectrum, a threefold increase in capacity over combined spectrum available in 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands. It enables support of up to seven contiguous 160MHz channels for bandwidth-intensive applications. Wi-Fi 6E enables better user experience with reduced latency for gaming, video conferencing and time sensitive applications while improving the aggregate network performance.

“As the unencumbered 6GHz spectrum becomes available, MaxLinear is proud to be an ecosystem enabler of this new Wi-Fi technology,” said Doron Tal, General Manager of Broadband Access at MaxLinear. “As part of the WAV600 series of products, the WAV664 is the next advanced building block that enables the full potential of high data rates and low latency our customers need to extend their solutions into new applications.”

RIP: Narinder Kapany, father of fiber optics

Dr. Narinder Singh Kapany, who is credited with introducing the term "fiber optics" in a 1960 article in Scientific American, died on Thursday, December 3, at age 94.

Over a long career, Kapany earned over 120 patents instrumental in fiber-optics communications, lasers, biomedical instrumentation, solar energy, and pollution monitoring. He was a Regents Professor at UC Santa Cruz from 1977 to 1983. In 2008, he was honored with the UC Santa Cruz Foundation’s Fiat Lux Award in recognition of his outstanding achievement, dedication, and service in support of the university’s programs and goals.

Kapany founded Optics Technology Inc., taking it public in 1967, as well as Kaptron, which was later acquired by AMP Inc.

https://news.ucsc.edu/2020/12/narinder-kapany-in-memoriam.html

http://www.sikhfoundation.org/dr-narinder-s-kapany-120320/

Thursday, January 7, 2021

F5 to acquire Volterra for its open edge platform

 F5 Networks agreed to acquire Volterra, a start-up developing a universal edge-as-a-service platform, for approximately $440 million in cash and approximately $60 million in deferred consideration and assumed unvested incentive compensation to founders and employees. 

F5 said the addition of Volterra will give it an edge platform built for enterprises and service providers that will be security-first and app-driven with unlimited scale.

Volterra, which is based in Santa Clara, California, offers a distributed cloud service for deploying and managing applications at the edge. The cloud-native environment can be deployed across multiple public clouds and edge sites.


“Current edge solutions are simply inadequate for today’s enterprise customers. It’s time to break out of closed edge systems that only perpetuate the pain of building, running, and securing apps,” said François Locoh-Donou, President and CEO, F5. “With Volterra, we advance our Adaptive Applications vision with an Edge 2.0 platform that solves the complex multi-cloud reality enterprise customers confront. Our platform will create a SaaS solution that solves our customers’ biggest pain points. The success of F5’s software transformation has put us in a position to deliver on the potential of Edge 2.0 and redefine our competitive position.”

“I am excited to work closely alongside François and the F5 team to help pioneer the evolution of the edge to deliver more adaptive, dynamic application experiences for all of our customers,” said Ankur Singla, Founder and CEO, Volterra. “With our platform, we will extend F5’s application security leadership to the edge, thereby expanding our combined reach in the fastest growing segment of F5’s $28 billion 2023 total addressable market.”

In connection with the transaction, F5 raised its Horizon 2 (fiscal years 2021 and 2022) and long-term revenue outlook, and reiterated its Horizon 2 operating targets, including its commitment to achieving double-digit non-GAAP earnings per share growth. The company also reiterated its commitment to return $1 billion of capital over the next two years, including the initiation of a $500 million accelerated share repurchase in fiscal year 2021. 

In addition, F5 released a preview of its first quarter fiscal year 2021 financial results stating it expects GAAP and non-GAAP revenue in a range of $623 to $626 million, driven in part, by approximately 68% GAAP, and 70% non-GAAP, software revenue growth.

  • Volterra is headed by Ankur Singla, Founder & CEO, who previously was the founder and CEO of Contrail Systems, a pioneer in telco NFV and SDN technologies that was acquired by Juniper Networks in 2012. Prior to Contrail, Ankur was the CTO and VP Engineering at Aruba Networks, a global leader in wireless solutions. 

Volterra unveils distributed cloud platform for apps

Volterra​, a start-up based in Santa Clara, California, emerged from stealth to unveil its distributed cloud platform for deploying and managing applications. The SaaS-based offering integrates a broad range of services that have normally been siloed across many point products and network or cloud providers.

Volterra has raised over $50 million in funding to date from Khosla Ventures, Mayfield and M12 (Microsoft’s venture fund), as well as a growing set of strategic investors/partners including Itochu Technology Ventures and Samsung NEXT. Volterra said it now has 100+ engineers and 30+ global customers.

The cloud-native environment can be deployed across multiple public clouds and edge sites. Key capabilities include:

  • Fleet-wide management of distributed applications and data across heterogeneous infrastructure
  • Globally distributed control plane with Kubernetes APIs for application orchestration and multi-layer security for workloads and data
  • Comprehensive compute, storage, networking and security for distributed edge locations
  • Secure, high-performance global connectivity across edge sites, private clouds and multi-cloud
Key elements of the offering are:

  • VoltStack deploys and manages distributed applications across multiple clouds or edge sites using industry standard Kubernetes APIs
  • VoltMesh delivers high performance networking and zero-trust security between multiple clouds and edge sites
  • Volterra Console​ is a management console for deploying and operating distributed applications at a global scale with centralized control and observability
http://www.volterra.io​

Red Hat to acquire StackRox for Kubernetes-native security

Red Hat agreed to acquire StackRox, a start-up specializing in container and Kubernetes-native security. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Unlike first-generation container security platforms, which were often container-centric offerings, StackRox differentiates with a Kubernetes-native security platform. The StackRox software provides visibility across all Kubernetes clusters, by directly deploying components for enforcement and deep data collection into the Kubernetes cluster infrastructure, reducing the time and effort needed to implement security, and streamlining security analysis, investigation and remediation. The StackRox policy engine includes hundreds of built-in controls to enforce security best practices, industry standards such as CIS Benchmarks and NIST, and configuration management of both containers and Kubernetes, and runtime security.

StackRox’s Kubernetes-native security capabilities will be integrated into the Red Hat OpenShift enterprise Kubernetes platform. In addition to Red Hat OpenShift, StackRox will continue to support multiple Kubernetes platforms, including Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS), Microsoft Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS), and Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE).


“Securing Kubernetes workloads and infrastructure cannot be done in a piecemeal manner; security must be an integrated part of every deployment, not an afterthought. Red Hat adds StackRox's Kubernetes-native capabilities to OpenShift's layered security approach, furthering our mission to bring product-ready open innovation to every organization across the open hybrid cloud across IT footprints,” stated Paul Cormier, president and CEO, Red Hat.

"We're thrilled to join forces with Red Hat, coupling the industry’s first Kubernetes-native security platform with the leading Kubernetes platform for hybrid cloud, multicloud, and edge deployments. This is a tremendous validation of our innovative approach to container and Kubernetes security. Red Hat is an ideal partner to accelerate our vision of enabling organizations to securely build, deploy and run their cloud-native applications anywhere,” said Kamal Shah, CEO, StackRox.

  • StackRox, which is based in Mountain View, California, was founded in 2014 by Ali Golshan and Wei Lien Dang. Golshan previous was the founder & CTO of Cyphort, which was acquired by Juniper Networks. Dang previously held senior product management roles for security and cloud infrastructure at Amazon Web Services, Splunk, and Bracket Computing. StackRox is headed by Kamal Shah (CEO), who previously was SVP of products and marketing at Skyhigh Networks, a leading Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) acquired by McAfee in January 2018. 


Telecom Egypt signs cable capacity contract with Google

Telecom Egypt will provide Google with a layer 3, meshed connectivity solution on multiple cable systems crossing Egyptian territory. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Telecom Egypt said the mesh project will connect several cable landing stations in the Red Sea and the Mediterranean Sea. Rapid re-routing capabilities will add to the resiliency of Google's international traffic.

As part of the deal, Google will gain capacity on TE North, a new cable expected to enter service this year.

http://ircp.te.eg/IRMedia/Corporate_News/2021/Corporate_News015eb0e7-d5d1-4fa4-9392-00c9a37c2c02.pdf


Airgain acquires NimbeLink for cellular-based edge devices

Airgain, which specializes in advanced antenna technologies, has acquired privately-held NimbeLink Corp., a developer of cellular industrial Internet of Things solutions and services. 

Headquartered in Plymouth, MN, and founded in 2013, NimbeLink is a trusted partner for edge-based cellular connectivity Industrial IoT solutions. 

NimbeLink’s certified Skywire cellular modems enable original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to  reduce their cellular development time. NimbeLink develops and markets complete edge-to-enterprise asset tracking solutions that are precisely configured to customers’ use cases and applications such as location tracking, inventory management, and resource optimization. Established in 2013, NimbeLink has sold more than 400,000 units over the last two years and its patented products have been deployed for thousands of end customers through multiple partner relationships. 

“We are proud to welcome NimbeLink to the Airgain team and look forward to strengthening our enterprise offering with proven edge-based cellular connectivity solutions for Industrial IoT and M2M applications,” said Jacob Suen, Airgain’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “NimbeLink is an excellent fit with our business and will play an important role in our overall growth strategy to broaden market diversification and extend the development of the AirgainConnect antenna-modem platform. The sum of the parts is truly greater than the individual pieces and together, we believe the combined company significantly advances our strategic mission to deliver higher levels of integrated wireless system solutions globally.”

Scott Schwalbe, NimbeLink’s Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, commented: “We are very excited about what the combined strength of Airgain and NimbeLink will bring to our cellular connectivity and asset tracking customers. Airgain’s high performance antenna technology complements NimbeLink’s portfolio of cellular technology and will provide our customers with the benefit of enhanced product performance and a broader reach into global markets. Together, we will build upon our core competencies and advance forward-thinking Industrial IoT development and design at the network edge.”

Based on preliminary, unaudited results, NimbeLink expects to report $12.5 million in revenue and $0.1 million in adjusted EBITDA for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020.


ADVA posts Q4 revenue of EUR 140.6 million, record profitability

ADVA reported preliminary revenues for Q4 2020 of EUR 140.6 million and down by 7.0% from the year-ago quarter (Q4 2019: EUR 151.1 million). 

“The fourth quarter of 2020 was an extraordinary finish to an extraordinary year,” said Uli Dopfer, CFO, ADVA. “Just like the beginning of the year, when the first wave of the pandemic hit, we encountered supply chain bottlenecks in Q4 caused by renewed lockdown regulations. As a result, we could not fulfill all orders as planned and revenue recognition for some projects moved to Q1 2021. In addition, the continuing depreciation of the US dollar against the euro reduced the revenue contributions from the dollar-denominated regions. On the other hand, this exchange rate shift was beneficial for our margins. Thanks to an advantageous customer and product mix and continued tight cost management, we can report today one of the most profitable quarters in our company’s history.”


“We look back with pride on a challenging but also very successful fiscal year,” commented Brian Protiva, CEO, ADVA. “In times of chaos, economic turbulence and global uncertainty, we held course and exceeded some of our ambitious goals. The cost reduction measures we introduced in 2019 continue to deliver sustainable results. In the fourth quarter of 2020, our profitability was well above analyst expectations, our cash generation was outstanding, and our order entry was very good in all regions. We’re starting the new financial year with well-filled order books and a strong tailwind. We are confident about our ability to drive continued profitable growth in the first quarter of 2021.”

Additional preliminary results for Q4 2020

  • The preliminary pro forma operating income of EUR 14.4 million was up by 39.1% compared to Q4 2019 (Q4 2019: EUR 10.3 million)
  • The preliminary pro forma operating income margin of 10.2% increased by 3.4 percentage points compared to the year-ago quarter (Q4 2019: 6.8%)

Preliminary results for the fiscal year 2020

  • Preliminary revenues were EUR 565.0 million up by 1.5% compared to the previous year(2019: EUR 556.8 million)
  • The preliminary pro forma operating income of EUR 33.8 million was up by 36.4% compared to the previous year(2019: EUR 24.8 million)
  • The preliminary pro forma operating income margin of 6.0% increased by 1.5 percentage points compared to the previous year (2019: 4.5%)

Openreach turns to EXFO for Full Fibre monitoring

Openreach has awarded EXFO a contract to supply optical test heads and test access switching for its Full Fibre initiative. With its cloud-based Nova Fiber solution, EXFO will equip Openreach to assure its build, thereby accelerating the programme and avoiding costly return visits to fix connection problems—additional “truck rolls” more than double operators testing costs.1 Following installation, Openreach will be able to remotely monitor its fibre infrastructure supporting the in-life operations of its Full Fibre service.


This announcement comes as Openreach hit a record build rate for its Full Fibre broadband programme. Openreach engineers are now delivering faster, more reliable connectivity to another 40,000 homes and businesses every week, or the equivalent of a home every 15 seconds.

Peter Bell, Director, Network Technology, Openreach: “We know that now more than ever that being connected matters. We’re convinced that our new Full Fibre network can play a crucial role in keeping the nation connected. This year, our build has been gathering pace and momentum, and we’re determined to match that rapid speed of deployment with the highest standards of build quality build and customer service.

https://www.exfo.com/

WeLink raises $185M for 5G wireless mesh broadband service

WeLink, a new wireless broadband provider offering service in the Las Vegas metro area, announced a $185 million investment from Digital Alpha Advisors to expand to new markets across the United States. 

WeLink is building a network based on a neighborhood 5G mesh architecture designed for gigabit-class service.

WeLink is led by Kevin Ross, former co-founder of Vivint Wireless and Smartrove and Luke Langford, former co-founder of Vivint Wireless. 

https://welink.com/

Verizon expands 5G Home fixed wireless access


Verizon will begin offering its 5G Home Internet service in parts of Arlington, TX; Miami, FL; Anaheim, CA; San Francisco, CA and St. Louis, MO, and Phoenix, AZ. The service offers max download speeds of up to 1 Gbps, depending on location, with typical download speeds of 300 Mbps.

“We ended 2020 with 2,700 cities with Nationwide 5G service serving 230 million people, 61 cities with Ultra Wideband service, and 12 cities with access to our 5G Home service; and we’re not slowing down,” said Kyle Malady, Chief Technology Officer for Verizon. “We're rolling out new services to more customers continuing the digital transformation Verizon has been driving.”

https://www.verizon.com/coverage-map


Pivotal Commware intros 5G Smart Network Repeater

Pivotal Commware, a privately-held company based in Kirkland, Washington, introduced a 5G smart network repeater that redirects, extends and shapes service coverage outdoors

The new Pivot 5G repeater is one component of Pivotal Commware’s mmWave ecosystem based on its Holographic Beam Forming technology for mmWave. The entire ecosystem can be planned by WaveScape, a network modeling tool that provides network operators with precise placement of network elements, such as repeaters and 5G base stations, to optimize network connectivity for subscribers and to minimize total cost of ownership for the operator. 

The company also offers its Echo 5G smart indoor repeater, which floods mmWave indoors to provide subscribers with superior connectivity speeds. Finally, Pivotal’s cloud-native Intelligent Beam Management System (IBMS) uses machine learning to extract intelligent insights and optimize the network in real time.

“The Pivot 5G significantly closes the mmWave coverage gap by giving operators a new way to position coverage on specific clusters of subscribers, rather than a general geography,” said Brian Deutsch, CEO of Pivotal Commware. “Pivot is a key player in the mmWave ecosystem we designed to support our claim of ‘mmWave solved.’ We are helping to deliver on the promise of 5G by enabling operators to cost-effectively accelerate their mmWave network rollouts and deliver a superior 5G user experience with the gigabit speeds their customers expect.”

https://pivotalcommware.com/

Cisco adds John D. Harris II to its Board - former Raytheon exec


 Cisco announced the appointment of John D. Harris II to its board of directors.

“We are very pleased to welcome John to the Cisco Board,” said Chuck Robbins, chairman and CEO, Cisco. “John is known for his strong leadership and results-oriented approach. His depth of experience operating a global business at scale, and commitment to excellence will positively impact Cisco’s strategy and enhance our trusted relationships with customers as they increase their digital agility.”

Harris previously served as vice president of Business Development for Raytheon Company and chief executive officer of Raytheon International. 


L-com intros passive CWDM Mux/Demux products

L-com introduced a new series of passive, coarse wave division multiplexing (CWDM) cassettes and barrel filters to address the multiplexing and de-multiplexing of optical signals over fiber.

The new passive CWDM product line consists of 4, 8 and 16 channel mux/demux cassettes as well as barrel filters which add a single channel to a composite signal or remove a single channel from a composite signal.

The PCW1-series cassettes are designed for inside plant (ISP) use and feature either 4 or 8 channels, LC connectors with a UPC polish and 20nm channel spacing. Additionally, a 19" 1U rack-mount unit with 16 channels is available with a monitor port option.

The PCWXX-series cassettes consist of 4 and 8 channel mux and demux units that are designed for outside plant (OSP) applications. For higher fiber count applications, 16 channel mux and demux units are available. The products in the PCWXX-series feature 1-meter 900um fiber leads and 20nm channel spacing.

Lastly, the PCW5A-series are single-channel, barrel-style units that feature 20nm channel spacing, 2-meter, 250um colored bare fibers and pass fiber for unused CWDM channels. These units are designed for outside plant (OSP) applications and feature an operating temperature range of -40°C to +85°C.

"Our new passive CWDM products address a wide range of applications that call for the aggregation and separation of fiber channels found in telecommunications, R&D, test lab, research and mil/aero installations. By offering these CWDM mux/demux units as in-stock items, we are able to meet our customers urgent requirements," said Paul Hospodar, Product Line Manager.