Monday, March 22, 2021

Inphi ramps shipments of 400ZR and ZR+ QSFP-DD transceivers

Inphi announced the commercial availability and production ramp of its COLORZ II 400ZR QSFP-DD pluggable coherent transceivers for cloud data center interconnects (DCIs). Inphi also confirmed that a longer reach variant, COLORZ II 400G ZR+, which extends the reach of COLORZ II from 120km to about 400km, is in final stages of qualification and expected to be commercially available starting next month.

COLORZ II 400ZR and 400ZR+ enable a dramatic increase in switch rack capacity while reducing power consumption by up to 80%. COLORZ II delivers up to 14.4Tb of capacity per rack unit, compared to 2.4Tb or 3.6Tb per RU for competing solutions, representing a 4-6x increase in throughput per chassis. COLORZ II ZR and ZR+ achieve drastically improved density through higher levels of silicon photonics integration as well as much lower power consumption across all coherent transceiver elements.

“COLORZ II 400G ZR and ZR+ are the enabling technology for next-gen data center interconnects,” said Josef Berger, AVP, Product Marketing, Optical Interconnect at Inphi. “This is an important step in realizing our vision of 'The Cloud is the Network™'. The commercial availability and production ramp of COLORZ II 400G ZR and ZR+ demonstrates Inphi's industry leadership as we continue to create solutions that dramatically increase the speed of data movement, while keeping the power and cost low.”

According to market research firm Cignal AI, shipments of 400G ZR and ZR+ modules will expand at a >100% Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) and provide one-third of worldwide WDM connectivity in 2025.

“The commercial availability of COLORZ II 400ZR makes IP over DWDM viable for network operators,” said Andrew Schmitt, Directing Analyst. “This enables an entirely new type of distributed data center architecture for the cloud and is the first step towards broad adoption in both cloud and traditional service provider networks.”

Inphi said its COLORZ II represents the culmination of several important industry firsts:

  • First 400G single-chip, coherent silicon PIC to include all transmit and receive functions
  • First low-cost, passive alignment of fiber to the PIC using traditional optics, eliminating the need for complex active alignment
  • First low-power, high-performance 7nm CMOS-based coherent DSP enabling 400ZR and 400ZR+ extended reach 100/200/300/400G modes
  • First integrated, industry-standard firmware management interface enabling full performance monitoring of DCI or transport systems without direct optical module support

OIF published the Implementation Agreement (IA) for a low-cost, 400ZR coherent optical interface. OIF launched the 400ZR project in response to requests from large-scale data center operators and their suppliers for an interoperable coherent interface that transports 400 Gigabit Ethernet over longer distances. Traditional network operators also became interested in 400ZR for their metro needs. Based on their different requirements, OIF developed...


NeoPhotonics cover 800km reach with 400ZR+ QSFP-DD transceiver

NeoPhotonics demonstrated that its 400ZR+ QSFP-DD coherent pluggable transceiver can effectively transmit at a 400 Gbps data rate over a distance of 800 km in a 75GHz-spaced DWDM system with more than 3.5 dB of OSNR margin in the optical signal. 

This 400ZR+ coherent pluggable transceiver module is based on NeoPhotonics high performance coherent optics and its ultra-pure color tunable laser, and achieves a reach of 800 km while staying within the power consumption envelope of the QSFP-DD module’s power specification. 


  • This 800 km transmission demonstration was carried out on NeoPhotonics Transmission System Testbed and utilized 75 GHz spaced channels. 
  • The QSFP-DD uses NeoPhotonics Silicon Photonics based Coherent Optical Subassembly (COSA) and its ultra-narrow linewidth Nano-ITLA tunable laser. 

NeoPhotonics said the longer reach was enabled by the superior performance of these optical components along with a commercial digital signal processor (DSP) using proprietary forward error correction (FEC). The COSA exhibits low insertion loss and low impairments, making efficient use of the optical signal. The Nano-ITLA tunable laser exhibits ultra-low phase noise and low power consumption. Additionally, these components allow NeoPhotonics 400ZR+ QSFP-DD transceiver module to operate at a case temperature of up to 80 degrees Celsius, which is ten degrees higher than conventional telecom modules, thereby reducing air flow requirements resulting in lower fan speeds and reduced power for cooling in data centers.

NeoPhotonics QSFP-DD modules are in the final stages of qualification and have passed 2000 hours of High Temperature Operating Life (HTOL) and other critical tests per Telcordia requirements. The Company expects these modules to be at General Availability (GA) within the second quarter of 2021.

NeoPhotonics 400ZR+ QSFP-DD transceivers are designed to operate in 75 GHz spaced DWDM systems using 64 Channel Arrayed Waveguide Grating MUX and DMUX filters, such as those made by NeoPhotonics. In this case, a fully loaded fiber operating in the C-Band would provide a total of 25.6 Terabits per second (Tbps) capacity. To further maximize the data capacity of optical fibers, NeoPhotonics has developed an enhanced version of its ultra-low noise laser in a C++ LASERTM module, which has a tuning range of 6 THz, enabling a total fiber capacity of 32 Tbps using 400Gbps transceivers and 75 GHz channel spacing.

“We are excited to extend the operation of our QSFP-DD Coherent transceiver into metro and regional applications in this 400ZR+ configuration,” said Tim Jenks, Chairman and CEO of NeoPhotonics. “Advances in our ultra-pure light tunable laser, our silicon photonics integrated COSA and electronic DSPs have inexorably decreased the size, power and cost of coherent transmission such that a coherent transceiver capable of up to long haul distances can fit in the same form factor as a current generation high density client side pluggable module, such as a QSFP-DD. This has been a sea change for Data Center Interconnect networks, and we believe it will also bring fundamental changes to metro and regional networks,” concluded Mr. Jenks.

NeoPhotonics ships QSFP-DD 400G ZR modules

NeoPhotonics announced the availability of its extended case temperature QSFP-DD 400G ZR modules.

NeoPhotonics said the new 400G ZR modules leverage its Silicon Photonics Coherent Optical Subassembly (COSA) and low power consumption, ultra-narrow linewidth Nano-ITLA tunable laser.  Each of these components can be operated over a wide module case temperature range up to 80C. This enables the Neophotonics 400G ZR modules to be deployed in extended temperature data center environments while reducing cooling requirements and fan power.

“The ability of 400G ZR vendors to offer thermally-optimized designs capable of supporting higher case temperatures will significantly help reduce system cooling requirements,” said Dr. Hacene Chaouch, Distinguished Engineer at Arista Networks. “This is an important consideration for implementing power efficient data center interconnect architectures.” 

“We are pleased to support customers with high-performance 400G ZR modules that operate across a wide thermal envelope, without sacrificing optical performance.” said Tim Jenks, Chairman and CEO of NeoPhotonics.  “By utilizing our leading high-speed coherent components technology and optimizing the entire optics suite through in-house design, we are able to favorably benefit data centers need to reduce power consumption and improve environmental sustainability,” concluded Mr. Jenks.

NTT DOCOMO selects Samsung as 5G supplier

NTT DOCOMO has selected Samsung Electronics as a 5G network solution provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Samsung's range of solutions will include O-RAN-compliant solutions.

“As a leading mobile operator, our goal is to provide our customers the best possible services for creating innovative, fun and exciting experiences and finding solutions to social issues,” said Sadayuki Abeta, General Manager of the Radio Access Network Development Department at NTT DOCOMO. “We are excited to collaborate with Samsung for the next phase of 5G Open RAN and accelerate the expansion of our ‘Lightning Speed 5G’ coverage in the nation.”

“We are pleased to be part of DOCOMO’s 5G networks and look forward to continued collaboration in advancing 5G innovation for their customers,” said Satoshi Iwao, Vice President and Head of Network Division at Samsung Electronics Japan. “Our goal is to leverage Samsung’s technical leadership to bring the best network solutions to mobile operators around the world, so they can deliver the next generation of transformative 5G services and electrifying user experiences.”

Samsung wins huge 5G contract with Verizon

Samsung Electronics America has won a contract valued at approximately US$6.6 billion (7.9 trillion won) to supply network infrastructure to Verizon. The announcement was made in a financial disclosure posted by Samsung in Korea. The contract runs through 2025. The contract is likely the largest 5G infrastructure deal to date for Samsung and likely comes as a loss to one of Verizon's European suppliers. Samsung...

Samsung claims biggest share of Korea's 5G rollout

Equipment from Samsung Electronics Co. represents the largest share the recent 5G network rollouts from all three mobile operates in Korea. Korean operators have been transmitting 5G signals in Seoul and metropolitan areas since December 1, 2018 using 5G base station radios and 5G core solutions from Samsung’s Networks Business unit. Specifically, Samsung has supplied 5G core solutions and more than 53,000 5G radio base stations to Korea’s three...

NEC and Samsung Electronics are close to announcing a strategic alliance in 5G base stations, according to numerous sources over the weekend. Samsung is already a key supplier of network infrastructure to KDDI.  An alliance with NEC could help open doors to NTT Docomo. KDDI and Samsung prove 5G mmWave works at 190 kmh Tuesday, September 12, 2017  5G, KDDI, Korea, MmWave, Samsung   KDDI and Samsung...

Connected2Fiber raises $12 million

Connected2Fiber, a start-up offering a location engagement platform for network buyers and sellers, announced $12 million in Series B financing led by Harbert Growth Partners as well as current investors Ascent Venture Partners, Nauta Capital, and Osage Venture Partners. Connected2Fiber’s previous equity rounds total $15 million, bringing total funding to date to $27 million in equity.

The company will use the new funding to invest in the organization’s go-to-market operations across sales, marketing, and customer success teams as well as accelerate the product roadmap for its platform, The Connected World. Product investments will deliver new ecosystem integrations, buyer and seller capabilities that will include additional APIs, and build out of the next phase of location truth within the platform. Connected2Fiber will also introduce new AI and analytic capabilities as well as real-time data connectors that feed The Connected World’s application and analytic suite.

“Buying and selling network in today’s fragmented environment is complex and slow, leading to missed opportunities, challenging customer experiences and lower profits on all sides of the equation,” comments Ben Edmond, Founder and CEO at Connected2Fiber. “Our platform continues to solve the most difficult challenges associated with network transactions by providing buyers and sellers with a location-specific, data-driven blueprint of their addressable market and then automating critical processes, resulting in smarter and faster decisions for both parties. Our success and growth within both the buyer and seller community has produced an ever-expanding platform ecosystem and, with this new investment, we’ll not only be able to scale our selling efforts but continue to innovate to provide additional analytical insight and global reach.”

Recent Connected2Fiber growth metrics include:

  • Serving the top 10 fiber infrastructure providers and MSOs in the United States
  • Serving 4 out of the top 5 LECs and network-oriented managed service providers in the United States
  • 108% jump in platform users over the past year
  • 390% year-over-year increase in locations managed by customers
  • Over 5,800 network operators profiled around the world and growing
  • 213% year-over-year increase in unique entity locations tracked globally

Ecuador plans subsea cable to Galapagos with Xtera

Ecuador announced a 1,280 km submarine cable system to the Galapagos Islands. 

The cable, which is expected to be ready for service in 2022, will offer a full design capacity of 20 Tbps. The system will connect Manta-Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, in St. Cristobal; Port Ayora, in Santa Cruz and Port General Villamil in the Isabela Island, enabling the development of scientific research, commerce, tourism and education. 

Xtera will perform the design and construction works on a turnkey basis utilising their innovative SDM repeater, cable supplied by Prysmian/NSW and marine installation activities performed by IT International Telecom. Xtera’s innovative offering combines turnkey project management and system integration expertise with solid industry partnerships to deliver high capacity and flexible networks.

MACOM announces proposed offering of $400M of convertible senior notes

MACOM Technology Solutions Holdings intends to offer, subject to market and other conditions, $400 million aggregate principal amount of convertible senior notes due 2026. 

MACOM intends to use the net proceeds for partial repayment of outstanding term loans.

The notes will be senior unsecured obligations of MACOM and will mature on March 15, 2026, unless earlier repurchased, redeemed or converted. 

Separately, MACOM announced that it will be utilizing $100 million of its available cash and cash equivalents and short-term investments to paydown a portion of its outstanding term loans. The term loans are secured and have an original maturity date of May 2024.