Monday, February 22, 2021

Telefónica tests Huawei's 600G and 800G WDM

Telefónica has completed a trial of single-wavelength 600G and 800G transmission using equipment from Huawei.

The testing used Huawei OSN 9800 devices on Telefónica's photonic mesh network in Madrid spanning 47 km. 


Juan José Marfil, the director of transport and IP connectivity at Telefonica, pointed out: "These pilots on the photonic meshes, in which signals are transmitted over optical channels without the need to switch to the electrical domain, are important milestones that build on the 400G speed that was achieved in 2019, also in Madrid. The goal is to begin implementing the 400G speed this year and subsequently optimize the Fusion IP Network to meet the needs for higher capacity and speed in view of the exponential growth of both connected devices and data transmission."

https://www.huawei.com/en/news/2021/2/telefonica-600g-800g-osn9800-madrid

Rosenworcel structures $3.2 billion Emergency Broadband Program

FCC Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel circulated a proposal to establigh the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program, a $3.2 billion federal initiative to provide qualifying households discounts on their Internet service bills and an opportunity to receive a discount on a computer or tablet.  

The Emergency Broadband Benefit Program was created by Congress in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021.  Eligible households may receive a discount off the cost of broadband service (up to $50.00 per month and, on Tribal lands, the monthly discount may be up to $75.00 per month) and certain connected devices during an emergency period relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. 


“As we work our way through a pandemic that has upended so much in our day-to-day life, we have been asked to migrate so many of the things we do online.  From work to healthcare to education, this crisis has made it clear that without an internet connection too many households are locked out of modern life.  It’s more apparent than ever that broadband is no longer nice-to-have.  It’s need-to-have,” said Rosenworcel.  “But too many of us are struggling to afford this critical service.  Late last year Congress directed the FCC to establish a new Emergency Broadband Benefit Program to assist families struggling to pay for internet service during the pandemic.  Today I’m proud to advance a proposal to my colleagues to implement this program so we can help as many eligible households as possible.  No one should have to choose between paying their internet bill or paying to put food on the table.  With the help of the Emergency Broadband Benefit, we have a new way for households to access virtual learning, for patients to connect to telehealth providers, and for those struggling in this pandemic to learn new online skills and seek their next job.” 


CommScope supplies 10G-EPON Remote OLT for Japan's J:COM

Jupiter Telecommunications (J:COM), Japan’s leading cable broadband and multi channels video provider, has selected CommScope's XE4202 10G-EPON Remote OLT fiber node module to deliver 10Gbps broadband to residential and business broadband customers in Japan’s highly-competitive Kansai region.

CommScope says the deployment of 10G EPON with Remote OLT allows J:COM to leverage its existing hybrid fiber coaxial (HFC) network and fiber nodes to offer 10G EPON which enables groundbreaking 10Gbps symmetrical speeds using CommScope’s NC4000 Optical Node and CH3000 Headend Optics Platform.

CommScope’s unique combination of headend, node, and optics solutions paves the way to further strengthen J:COM’s HFC and Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) networks. The capability to support 10G EPON along with fiber deep upgrades allows J:COM to take immediate advantage of broadband spectrum expansions, virtualized and distributed access architectures, and to reduce capital and operating expenditures. The remote OLT system will also enable the use of centralized network management that can be located in the data center.

“This milestone deployment highlights the strength of our partnership with J:COM as well as our focus on Japan as a priority growth market,” said Morgan Kurk, executive vice president, chief technology officer and segment leader, Broadband Networks at CommScope. “J:COM’s ‘network of the future’ showcases our portfolio’s versatility in facilitating the migration to FTTH, providing more network capacity and reliability for end users. Together, we’re delivering the fastest speeds and the most advanced broadband services for millions of consumers across Japan.”

“J:COM is offering the ‘J:COM NET Hikari 10G Course /Hikari 5G Course /Hikari 1G Course’ ultra-high speed data service to Kansai area to meet the growing needs in high-speed, large capacity communication due to video consumption and the growth of IoT in home devices,” said Shigenari Saito, managing corporate officer and GM of Technology Unit, J:COM. “Working with our trusted partner CommScope on delivering a high performance and high quality network, we aspire to continue to provide valued services that would resonate with our customers.”

Dell’Oro: Ericsson and Nokia gain in RAN market

Preliminary estimates suggest that the 2G-5G radio access network (RAN) market ended the year on a high note, with the full year 2020 revenues marking a new record since we started tracking the program in the year 2000, according to a newly published report from Dell'Oro Group.

Additional highlights from the 4Q 2020 RAN report:

  • Initial estimates suggest that vendor rankings remained stable between 2019 and 2020, while revenue shares were impacted to some degree by the state of the 5G rollouts in China and North America.
  • Ericsson and Nokia maintained their No. 1 and No. 2 RAN revenues rankings excluding China. Both suppliers improved their RAN revenue shares outside of China, accounting for 35 percent to 40 percent and 25 percent to 30 percent of the overall RAN market, respectively.
  • Huawei maintained its No. 1 ranking for the global RAN market, reflecting share gains in China.

“While we correctly identified the overall trajectory of the market going into the year and maintained the positive outlook even as the pandemic intensified and economists adjusted their GDP projections sharply downward,” said Stefan Pongratz, Vice President and analyst with the Dell’Oro Group. “We also need to recognize that we completely underestimated the magnitude and the breadth of the ascent in the fourth quarter and for the full year 2020, reflecting stronger than expected results in multiple regions,” continued Pongratz.


Keysight acquires Sanjole for wireless protocol decoding

Keysight Technologies has acquired Sanjole, a privately-held company offering protocol decoding and interoperability of 4G, 5G and other wireless technologies. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Sanjole provides problem solving capabilities from inside the wireless network through over the air analysis tools that provide visibility into events spanning multiple layers of the protocol stack. The company has worked extensively with the 3GPP community. Sanjole is based in Honolulu, Hawaii.

“As the 5G ecosystem and deployments scale, Keysight remains committed to enabling customers with end-to-end design and test solutions. We are happy to announce the addition of Sanjole to our portfolio, providing unique capabilities for solving complex interoperability challenges,” said Satish Dhanasekaran, Keysight chief operating officer. “The talented Sanjole team will be a valuable addition to Keysight, and will further our mission to accelerate innovation to connect and secure the world.”

https://www.sanjole.com/


T-Mobile US offers unlimited 5G data with premium plan

T-Mobile introduced a new Magenta MAX smartphone plan with unlimited premium data over 4G and 5G.

The service tier offer video streaming with UHD (ultra-high definition) streaming up to 4K resolution and Netflix. The Magenta MAX plan also include 40 GB of smartphone mobile hotspot connectivity. 

T-Mobile is also upgrading the core Magenta plan with double the Premium Data, from 50GB to 100GB, and nearly double the high-speed smartphone mobile hotspot data, from 3GB to 5GB. 

“We just joined forces with Sprint, and we’re already America’s 5G coverage and speed leader. Magenta MAX is just a first taste of what our network capacity allows us to do!” said T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert. “When you’re a heavy data user with a super-fast 5G smartphone, you don’t want to be hit with speed bumps. It’s like having a Ferrari and being forced to drive it in the school zone. Well, now it’s time to open ‘er up on the wide open magenta road! And we are just getting started. Buckle up!”

Unitas Global builds edge to cloud access network

Unitas Global introduced a software-defined network built for interconnecting cloud providers, carrier-neutral data centers, SaaS applications, and edge access networks to form a multi-service global interconnection fabric.

Unitas Reach delivers automated ubiquitous edge access to any cloud location, including access from 900 carrier neutral data centers and 30 million enterprise locations in over 85 countries.

"Organizations today need flexible, proven, and secure infrastructure to run their enterprise applications and multi-cloud solutions," shares Patrick Shutt, CEO of Unitas Global. "With Unitas Reach, our clients achieve cost-optimized network connectivity with the agility needed to scale quickly and support the growing demands of applications on network architectures, performance, and costs."

"We designed Unitas Reach™ in response to the dynamic networking requirements that today's businesses require and have yet to experience," comments Grant Kirkwood, Founder and CTO of Unitas Global. "Providers and enterprises can easily add connectivity to dynamically support their ever changing network strategies, and customize capabilities to their unique set of service delivery, operations, access and configuration requirements.”

https://unitasglobal.com/


United Arab Emirates’ du picks Ericsson 5G RAN

United Arab Emirates’ du, from Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (EITC), has selected Ericsson's 5G radio access network (RAN) products and solutions. 

Following the 2021 deployment, which includes Ericsson AI-powered 5G network optimization services utilizing Cognitive Software, du and its customers will benefit from a 5G RAN network that will enhance versatility, improve capacity, increase cost efficiency and future-proof technology developments.


Fahad Al Hassawi, Acting CEO, du, says: “Utilizing the full power of 5G to support industries and empowering our customers to reap the full rewards of this technology is among our top priorities at du. The technological evolution continues to accelerate at unprecedented speed, and it is our responsibility to ensure those we serve can capitalize on every related benefit and opportunity. du has always enjoyed an excellent relationship with Ericsson. As such, we are delighted to be joined by the organization as we pursue 5G radio network expansion and attempt to harness the full power of 5G. With a next-generation 5G radio network, du will deliver newfound capabilities and further support the UAE’s digital transformation agenda.”

Fadi Pharaon, President of Ericsson Middle East and Africa, says: “The path to a digital future is paved through the power of transformative technologies such as 5G. Our new partnership with du will deliver on that promise and enable an ecosystem of possibilities. We are pleased to work with du on 5G technology as their new network infrastructure partner, gaining us new market position to further contribute to the development of the UAE digital society vision, empowering new services and use cases for consumers, enterprises and society at large.”


 

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Blueprint column: Rise of cognitive self-organizing networks

by Yatin Dharamshi, Head of Digital Operations - Orchestration and Fulfilment Engineering, Nokia

For many communications service providers (CSPs), self-organizing networks (SON) have been the golden key to efficiently configure and optimize booming mobile networks with closed-loop automation. SON has brought tremendous value for earlier-generation mobile technologies. And if they were not already essential back then, they are undoubtedly going to be crucial for CSPs to manage the complexity that comes with the adoption of 5G technology.

So why does 5G make self-organizing networks more exciting in the next decade compared to the last? To start, 5G is a wireless technology that promises to cut the cord – untethering people and objects from certain locations or places. To achieve this promise, 5G has introduced a slew of new capabilities and deployment options to wireless networks. These emerging technologies include network slicing, dynamic spectrum sharing, beamforming, edge cloud, orchestration and more.

On its own, these technologies already pose difficulties for humans to manage individually. And if these technologies were united, the challenges that arise are becoming more difficult for humans to control and manage with the current toolset at our disposal. Further, 5G offers multiple frequency bands, which combined with network slicing would unleash a myriad of use cases. But with growing number of use cases (and technologies), complexity increases. This is where closed-loop automation comes in, and where SON will shine. Now more than ever, self-organizing networks will be a critical element in the shift toward autonomous operations, which will push current-generation SON to its limits.

A snapshot of SON and its capabilities

Most common self-organizing networks today have five key abilities. First, it drives automation and reduces the reliance on manual operational applications starting from network configurations during rollout to keeping networks optimized thereafter. 

Second, SON can conduct rapid, real-time detection of cell outages or degraded performance. This is crucial for network operators and CSPs to ensure that their networks can efficiently cope with unprecedented loads, as well as calibrate nearby cells to balance out the lost coverage.

The third capability of SON is that it allows for seamless connectivity, which helps network operators achieve optimal performances and overcome challenges around insufficient capacity or coverage and mobility robustness. 

Fourth, self-organizing networks can carry out ongoing network monitoring and healing. A typical example is identification of “sleeping cells,” or cells performing sub-optimally, and instinctively reset it to improve network reliability.

Lastly, SON is great for cost management as it enables network operators to manage and control costs. For e.g., by optimizing a network’s energy consumption. This is done through the active monitoring of cell loads so that traffic cells can be switched on or off automatically when needed.

Upgrading with cognitive SON

Today, many higher-order self-organizing network functions require a human expert touch. By this, I mean the involvement by experienced — and at times, hard to come by — optimization engineers in the following tasks:

  • Identify and place network performance objectives
  • Evaluate network conditions across individual regions and parameters, such as rural vs. urban, high-volume vs. low-volume, and so on
  • Analyze and correct problems, while also determining if those corrections were effective

While having the eyes of a human expert on SON functions is great, the dependency can also create bottlenecks in the dynamic and radically complex 5G environment. Besides, as humans, we are naturally prone to errors. Thus, shifting from human-led automation to fully machine-led autonomous operations is key.

This is where the next generation of self-organizing networks with cognitive abilities come into play. Cognitive SON is ideal because it brings in machine learning to take over manually driven SON functions. To do this, a mobile operator simply sets the objectives, and cognitive SON will do the rest: understanding network context, identifying problems, applying and orchestrating the right actions, and evaluating their efficacy. Machine learning is truly the secret ingredient to cognitive SON’s effectiveness. Its intelligence allows for predictive analytics, so cognitive SON can characterize networks, label different cells based on the deployment area and problems present, and instinctively invoke proper algorithms that provide solutions to reach an objective – all without the need for human intervention.

To take your cognitive SON to the next level, moving certain functions to the edge cloud will be key as it reduces latencies. Mobile operators understand that common networks today require a long time to collect data, and it’s often not real-time or near-real-time. But on the edge cloud, real-time data collection becomes a reality, which allows for faster changes in controls or functions, thus achieving swifter reaction times to problems that may arise. Combine this capability with the predictive analytics brought forth by machine learning, and cognitive SON becomes an extremely powerful tool.

Take a leap of faith in cognitive SON

The benefits of cognitive self-organizing networks are abundant. Its intelligent automation capabilities deliver improved, more consistent customer experiences, while also ensuring timely and automatic problem detection so issues can be mitigated in digital-time.

It’s understandable that not every CSP will be ready or comfortable to leap from their current human-led network optimization operations to trusting a fully machine-led autonomous system overnight. So, to ease CSPs into this new mode of working, cognitive SON offers extensive visibility and open controls so that experts can have a strong hand in influencing its operation’s journey while gradually adopting a fully autonomous system.

As we move deeper into the 5G era and CSPs continue on their journey to digitization, cognitive SON will be the key step for enabling autonomous intelligent closed-loop systems, and therefore achieving successful 5G operations.


Microsoft outlines Azure for Operators service stack

In September 2020, Microsoft announced its Azure for Operators initiative promising to offer core infrastructure to both fixed and mobile network operators.

Microsoft Azure for Operators is built on the company's recent acquisition of Affirmed Networks and Metaswitch, as well as on its development of Azure Edge Zones, which are local extensions of Azure, deployed with carriers or as private infrastructure.

In a blog post, Yousef Khalidi Corporate Vice President, Azure Networking, describes the engagement with operators as a partnership and a journey. Microsoft endeavors to work with providers of radio access network (RAN), core, cloud-native functions (CNFs), and operations support systems (OSS) or business support systems (BSS) to integrate and innovate.

Kalidi says Azure for Operators will grow to encompass the full service stack, including global transport, edge platforms, network functions, business intelligence, and cloud solutions. However, Azure for Operators will allow elements to be selected individually, including products and solutions from Microsoft and its ecosystem partners. 


https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/futureproof-your-network-with-azure-for-operators/

Microsoft launches Azure for Operators

 Microsoft launched an initiative called "Azure for Operators" that will provide core infrastructure to network operators.The strategy aims to harness the power of the intelligent edge, connected by high-bandwidth fiber or 5G, to create new opportunities and better efficiencies for communication service providers.Microsoft Azure for Operators is built on the company's recent acquisitio of Affirmed Networks and Metaswitch, as well as on its development...

Microsoft to acquire Metaswitch, extending its reach into telco cloud

Microsoft agreed to acquire Metaswitch Networks, a long-time leader in providing high-performance software to the communications industry. Financial terms were not disclosed. Metaswitch has been a pioneer in cloud-native solutions for telecom operators. Its range of solutions include: VoIP softswitches and gateways VoLTE/VoWiFi Voice and VoLTE interconnect IMS core deployments Session Border Control Robocall blocking Converged voice and data messaging Group...


Microsoft Azure enhances its global CDN

Microsoft is consolidating the capabilities of Azure Front Door, Azure Content Delivery Network (CDN) standard, and Azure Web Application Firewall (WAF) into a single secure cloud CDN platform with intelligent threat protection and a simplified pricing model.

Azure Front Door standard is a content delivery service that offers both static and dynamic content acceleration, global load balancing, SSL offload, domain and certificate management, enhanced traffic analytics, and basic security capabilities. Azure Front Door premium adds extensive security capabilities, BOT protection, Azure Private Link support, integration with Microsoft Threat Intelligence, and security analytics. 

The service will also move to a simplified pricing structure based on a fixed monthly fee, tiered egress (data transfer outbound),  requests per seconds (RPS), and ingress (data transfer inbound) fees. 

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/azure-front-door-enhances-secure-cloud-cdn-with-intelligent-threat-protection/

Google Cloud improves VMware Engine for migrating from on-premise to cloud

Google Cloud released a series of improvements to its VMware Engine, which lets user migrate  VMware workloads from on-premises data centers directly into Google Cloud. New features include:

  • Improved networking support: Multi-region networking, connectivity from multiple VPCs, Cloud DNS for management across global deployments, end-to-end dynamic routing, and support for reserved blocks as well as non-private addresses.
  • Improved scalability and support for the VMware platform: vSphere/vSAN version 7.0 and NSX-T 3.0, larger clusters, HCX migration support, ESXi host configuration retention, and enhanced password management.
  • Improved reach: regional presence in two new regions: Montreal and São Paulo

Regarding the multi-region networking, Google Cloud enables VMware environments deployed in multiple geographies to communicate without first building a VPN-based tunnel over the WAN to ensure uniform network addressing. Google Cloud solves this problem in a unique way. VPCs support global routing, which allows a VPC’s subnets to be deployed in any region worldwide. VMware Engine now also supports this capability. 



FCC seeks expedited removal of Huawei and ZTE gear

Seeking to expedite the removal of equipment from Huawei and FCC from U.S. communications neteworks, the FCC is looking to modify its Secure and Trusted Network Reimbursement Program rules to align with the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, which appropriated $1.895 billion to remove, replace, and dispose of communications equipment and services that pose a national security threat. 

The FCC is seeking to raise the cap on eligibility for participation in the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Reimbursement Program to providers of advanced communications service with 10 million or fewer customers.  The FCC also seeks comment on rules regarding the acceptable uses of reimbursement program disbursements, eligibility of certain equipment and services, and modifications to the prioritization scheme in the event that requests for reimbursement exceed the $1.895 billion appropriation. 


Another proposed change would allow recipients to use reimbursement funding to remove or replace Huawei or ZTE equipment and services obtained on or before June 30, 2020.

FCC Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel writes "I am committed to working with our federal partners and the private sector to increase the security and resiliency of our nation’s communications networks.  Moreover, I am guided by the conviction that working with our allies and multilateral institutions can multiply our strength across the globe.  I believe it is time for this agency to revitalize its approach to network security because it is an essential part of our national security, our economic recovery, and our leadership in a post-pandemic world."  

A1 Austria awards 5G radio and core contract to Nokia

A1 Austria awarded a multi-year contract to Nokia to provide comprehensive 5G coverage across the country. Nokia will supply 5G radio access and core network services with its AirScale portfolio including 5G RAN, AirScale base stations, and Nokia AirScale radio access products. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The deployment of products and services is underway with the core element expected to be rolled out in the first half of 2021. Fin


A1 will also launch 4G and 5G network slicing commercially following a successful pilot. The solution will support connectivity from 4G and 5G devices over the sliced network to applications running in private and public clouds. The slicing continuity between the networks allows operators to maximize their network coverage for new mobile connectivity services and deliver new value and business opportunities.  

Nokia has a long-standing partnership with A1 which has included the successful expansion of 3G and 4G mobile networks and the rollout of Austria's largest fiber-optic network. Nokia and A1 Austria have also successfully deployed a number of private wireless campus networks in Austria, including installations at Magna Steyr, Vienna Airport, and 5G Playground Carinthia. 

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Orange creates a European TowerCo called TOTEM

Orange has chosen TOTEM as the name of its European tower company.

TOTEM will be run by a fully independent and dedicated management team that will be appointed in the first half of this year with a view to launching operations by the end of the year.

Highlights

  • At the outset, TOTEM's portfolio of towers will consist of around 25.5 thousand sites in France and Spain, the two largest countries where Orange is present. Beyond France and Spain, the Orange Group will explore the possibility of integrating other passive mobile infrastructure assets from within Orange’s European footprint that could create value for the TowerCo.
  • In France, TOTEM will operate around 17,000 macro sites with an attractive mix of approximately 55% towers and 45% rooftops. Given the strong co-location demand, which has been constant for several years, and the high proportion of towers in the portfolio, there is clear potential to increase co-location rates.  
  • In Spain, the TowerCo will operate around 8,000 macro sites, split equally between towers and rooftops. The Spanish operations will benefit from the network-sharing agreement between Orange and Vodafone, guaranteeing the future stability of the hosting activity.
  • Based on the scope of sites and the terms of the Master Service Agreement (MSA), in 2020 the TowerCo’s revenues would have exceeded 500 million euros with EBITDAaL of close to 300 million euros, approximately two thirds of which would have been generated in France. This represents a margin of about 57%, including maintenance costs of about 5% of the TowerCo’s revenues.
  • The framework agreement provides for an initial 15-year contract with Orange with a tacit renewal of 2 x 10 years providing long-term revenue visibility for TOTEM with its main customer, Orange. The renewal would necessarily cover the entire portfolio of sites. Rent applicable to Orange would conform to market practice, indexed to inflation with no cap and a floor of 0%. Finally, the number of strategic sites will be limited and will be less than 5% of the existing French portfolio of sites.


      “Passive mobile infrastructure is a core asset for Orange, benefitting from exceptional operational expertise in the areas of deployment, hosting and maintenance. We are determined to keep these strategic assets within the scope of the Group. They represent a long-term industrial view and are an essential asset in guaranteeing Orange’s independence as well as its ability to foster sustainable economic performance.


Arista returns to growth with Q4 revenue of $648.5 million, up 17% yoy

Arista Networks reported Q4 2020 revenue of $648.5 million, an increase of 7.1% compared to the third quarter of 2020, and an increase of 17.4% from the fourth quarter of 2019. 

GAAP gross margin was 63.9%. Non-GAAP net income was $197.7 million, or $2.49 per diluted share, compared to non-GAAP net income of $183.4 million, or $2.29 per diluted share in the fourth quarter of 2019.


“I am pleased with Arista's return to growth in Q4 2020. With our laser focus on customer success, pristine financials and transformative innovations, Arista is well positioned to continue our momentum in the post pandemic era,” stated Jayshree Ullal, President and CEO of Arista Networks.

Commenting on the company’s financial results, Ita Brennan, Arista’s CFO said, “The Arista team showed great resilience and flexibility throughout 2020, maintaining operational excellence, while executing well on our market and product diversification initiatives.”

https://investors.arista.com/Home/default.aspx

Verizon Business expands SD-WAN options with Cisco

Verizon Business announced the addition of three new SD-WAN managed services offerings powered by Cisco:

  • Co-managed Cisco SD-WAN powered by Viptela that provides customers the option to control and self-manage SD-WAN security and application policies, while relying on the robust Verizon managed service support for fault, performance, and configuration management. This co-managed capability is now available to Verizon customers and provides them with the flexibility to relieve their IT team of the deployment and day-to-day running of the network yet have the ability to make changes themselves to SD-WAN policies and configurations when necessary. 
  • Managed SD-WAN powered by Viptela for the Cisco ISR1100 Series platform that is ideal for smaller branch office deployments, providing customers highly secure SD-WAN services on a high-performance, low-cost branch appliance. 
  • The introduction of new managed service tiers for Cisco SD-WAN powered by Meraki, which complements Verizon’s complete Cisco Meraki cloud-first platform managed services to deliver seamless, secure connectivity, as well as global deployment support including mainland China. Verizon has also added a new capability for management of the Cisco Meraki MV smart cameras to help enable faster deployment, management, and troubleshooting from a single pane of glass.

“Global enterprises are taking a hard look at their digital transformation agendas to find ways to win coming off one of the more challenging years in recent history,” said Aamir Hussain, Senior Vice President of Business Products at Verizon Business.   


"Our strategic relationship with Verizon continues to create value for businesses supporting a growing distributed mobile workforce and the accelerated adoption of cloud services," said Scott Harrell, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Cisco’s Intent-Based Networking Group. "As businesses modernize their networks to enable the best user application experiences, Verizon’s new Cisco SD-WAN managed services can help them quickly and easily transition to SD-WAN with flexible options to help deliver business agility and secure connectivity to applications across multiple clouds.”

Caribbean Express subsea cable to use Space Division Multiplexing

Ocean Networks (ONI) announced plans for an 18-fiber subsea cable system linking West Palm Beach (Florida) to Balboa (Panama), with branches to Cancun (Mexico) and Cartagena (Colombia).

The Caribbean Express (CX) project will use Space Division Multiplexing (SDM) technology.

Investment in the project is estimated at $300 million. The planned Ready for Service date is Q1 2024.

https://www.oceannetworks.com/copy-of-projects 


Kioxia and WD introduce 6th gen, 162-layer Flash memory

Kioxia (formerly Toshiba Memory) and Western Digital announced their sixth-generation, 162-layer 3D flash memory technology, increasing the manufactured bits per wafer by 70 percent and I/O performance by 66%. 

Kioxia's sixth-generation 3D flash memory moves beyond conventional eight-stagger memory hole array and achieves up to 10 percent greater lateral cell array density compared to the fifth-generation technology. This lateral scaling advancement, in combination with 162 layers of stacked vertical memory, enables a 40 percent reduction in die size compared to the 112-layer stacking technology, optimizing cost.

The Kioxia and Western Digital teams also applied Circuit Under Array CMOS placement and four-plane operation, which together deliver nearly 2.4 times improvement in program performance and 10 percent improvement in read latency compared to the previous generation. I/O performance also improves by 66 percent, enabling the next-generation interface to support the ever-increasing need for faster transfer rates.

“As Moore’s Law reaches its physical limits across the semiconductor industry, there’s one place where Moore’s Law continues its relevancy — that’s in flash,” said Dr. Siva Sivaram, President of Technology & Strategy, Western Digital. “To continue these advances and meet the world’s growing data demands, a new approach to 3D flash memory scaling is critical. With this new generation, Kioxia and Western Digital are introducing innovations in vertical as well as lateral scaling to achieve greater capacity in a smaller die with fewer layers. This innovation ultimately delivers the performance, reliability and cost that customers need.”

“Through our strong partnership that has spanned two decades, Kioxia and Western Digital have successfully created unrivaled capabilities in manufacturing and R&D,” said Masaki Momodomi, Chief Technology Officer, Kioxia. “Together, we produce over 30 percent1 of the world’s flash memory bits and are steadfast in our mission to provide exceptional capacity, performance and reliability at a compelling cost. We each deliver this value proposition across a range of data-centric applications from personal electronics to data centers as well as emerging applications enabled by 5G networks, artificial intelligence and autonomous systems.”


O-RAN Alliance hosts virtual demos at MWC Shanghai 2021

The O-RAN ALLIANCE is hosting a virtual O-RAN Open Summit and demos at next week's MWC Shanghai 2021.

Two O-RAN demonstrations are planned to be presented at the MWC Shanghai 2021:

  • Sageran is demonstrating a complete O-RAN white-box small cell solution based on an x86 platform with an FPGA Accelerator card that showcases a stand-alone end-to-end use case using white box hardware for an indoor cell which supports MIMO with 4T4R. T
  • VIAVI and Rohde & Schwarz are jointly demonstrating validation of open fronthaul performance. As network operators adopt disaggregated, multi-vendor networks, rigorous testing of performance and interoperability must accompany conformance testing. This demo showcases generation and delivery of typical standards based testcase IQ data to the O-RU utilizing the Lower Layer Split Option 7.2x fronthaul interface with the VIAVI TM500 O-RU Tester. Moreover, uplink and downlink fronthaul logs are captured, and RF signal generation and capture are performed using the Rohde & Schwarz VSG and VSA hardware with VSE Software for RF and IQ signal analysis. Testcase workflow is simplified for the end user utilizing the VIAVI O-RU Test Manager, providing a single point of test control. 


5 more virtual demos for MWC Shanghai 2021 have enriched the O-RAN Virtual Exhibition:

  • ITRI is demonstrating traffic steering xApps and Near-Real-Time Radio Intelligent Controller platform utilizing E2 procedures to monitor cell and UE metrics generated by RAN simulator and to offload some UE to neighbor cells such that the A1 policy is guaranteed.
  • NVIDIA and VMWare are jointly demonstrating PoC of Aerial 5G gNB Layer-1 orchestration on VMWare telco cloud platform. This demo showcases NVIDIA Aerial SDK as cloud native function, with docker containers and Kubernetes manifests. Aerial cuBB onboarded to VMWare telco cloud platform offers service agility, operational efficiency and reduced CAPEX/OPEX through MANO.
  • Viettel is demonstrating an end-to-end-solution based on Intel server (Xeon-D) with NIC (XXV710-DA2T) that is integrated with an outdoor micro O-RU via an Open Fronthaul Interface. The base station connects with EPC and Viettel’s eNB perform a complete NSA (Option 3X) white-box base station solution and ready for Commercial Deployment. The integrated system is verified using a commercial UE through the attach and speed test.
  • Altiostar has teamed up with Airtel and NEC to demonstrate interoperability testing and integration of massive MIMO radio units (O-RU) and virtualized distributed units (O-DU) running on commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) servers. The demonstration features a commercial end-to-end Open Fronthaul interface based on O-RAN specifications.
  • Parallel Wireless is demonstrating 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G O-RAN based macro Open RAN to expand and modernize cellular networks with reduced TCO & simplified maintenance. It’s been proven in rural in 50+ networks globally and is now scalable for urban 2G 3G 4G while unleashing the full 5G potential.

The O-RAN alliance also welcomed LG U+ as its 28th operator member.