Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Google collaborates on Intel's ASIC-based infrastructure processor

Intel and Google Cloud announced a deep collaboration to develop an ASIC P4-programmable infrastructure processing unit (IPU).

Code-named “Mount Evans,” this open solution supports open source standards, including an infrastructure programmer development kit (IPDK) to simplify developer access to the technology in Google Cloud data centers. 

Machine learning, large-scale data processing and analytics, media processing, and high-performance computing are all workloads that can benefit from the IPU. Another key design ambition is to separate infrastructure management functions from client workloads, thereby ensuring true bare-metal performance. Google and Intel also agreed to collaborate on open standards for transport and on P4 for programmable packet processing.

Intel said its goal is to enable developers to create an end-to-end programmable network based on Intel Xeon Scalable processors and next-generation Intel Xeon D processors, IPUs, and its new, P4-programmable Intel Tofino intelligent fabric processor (IFP) switch.

AT&T, supported by an established ecosystem of solution providers, will use Intel as a silicon provider for deployment of its forthcoming virtualized radio access network (vRAN), giving it the flexibility to bring automation and cloud-like capabilities into its network, along with optimizations for performance, cost and operational efficiency.

An archived webcast of the Intel Innovation 2021 event is posted.

Discussion of the IPU between Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger and Google Fellow Amin Vahdat begins around 1:37:00

Intel rolls FPGA-based Infrastructure Processing Unit (IPU)

Intel outlined its vision for the infrastructure processing unit (IPU), a programmable network device that intelligently manages system-level infrastructure resources by securely accelerating those functions in a data center.

In a video, Guido Appenzeller, chief technology officer with Intel's Data Platforms Group says the idea is to cleanly separate the processing of client workloads from workloads of the cloud service provider.

Intel cites several advantages for an IPU architecture. First, cloud service providers will be able to process their workloads very efficiently on silicon designed for the tasks. The cloud service provider will be able to rent out 100% of available CPU resources to the clients. The clients are now able to fully control the CPUs including with their own hypervisors. In addition, local disk storage can be enhanced or replaced with virtual storage connected to the network. 

The first instances of Intel's FPGA-based IPU platforms are already shipping. Intel will be rolling out additional FPGA-based IPUs and integrated ASICs as well. "As a result of Intel’s collaboration with a majority of hyperscalers, Intel is already the volume leader in the IPU market with our Xeon-D, FPGA and Ethernet components,” said Patty Kummrow, vice president in the Data Platforms Group and general manager of Ethernet Products Group at Intel. “The first of Intel’s FPGA-based IPU platforms are deployed at multiple cloud service providers and our first ASIC IPU is under test.”

12th Gen Intel Core brings DDR5, PCIe 5.0, Wi-Fi 6E, Thunderbolt 4

Intel launched the first products in the 12th Gen Intel Core family, boasting faster processing and the latest connectivity standards.  The family includes six new unlocked desktop processors offering a max turbo boost of up to 5.2 GHz and as many as 16 cores and 24 threads. 

The full 12th Gen Intel Core family will include 60 processors, set to power more than 500 designs from a broad set of partners. The 12th gen chips are the first built on Intel 7 process.

“The performance hybrid architecture of 12th Gen Intel Core processors is an architectural shift made possible by close co-engineering of software and hardware that will deliver new levels of leadership performance for generations,” said Gregory Bryant, executive vice president and general manager of the Client Computing Group at Intel. “This begins with the arrival of our flagship Core i9-12900K – the world’s best gaming processor – and you will see even more incredible experiences as we ship the rest of the 12th Gen family and beyond.”

Key platform advancements include:

  • The first processors in the industry to offer DDR5 memory for up to 4800MT/s.
  • The first processors in the industry to offer PCIe 5.0 (up to 16 lanes), which offers up to 2X I/O throughput over PCIe 4.0, with up to an additional four lanes of PCIe 4.0 support.
  • Up to 30MB Intel Smart Cache (L3) and 14MB L2 cache for increased memory capacity with reduced latency.
  • Integrated high-speed wireless with Intel Killer Wi-Fi 6E, which combines industry-leading Wi-Fi 6E connectivity with powerful gaming network technology to minimize lag, latency, and packet loss.
  • Discrete Thunderbolt 4 universal cable connectivity for external device expansion.

Ciena and Samsung partner on mobile solutions

Samsung Electronics will offer Ciena’s xHaul solutions with its own 5G solutions to support 5G networks.

The companies agreed to collaborate on hardware and software solutions to telecom operators.  The arrangement combines Samsung’s 5G RAN and Core, including vRAN solutions, baseband units and radios, with Ciena’s xHaul Routing and Switching portfolio and next-generation Manage, Control and Plan (MCP) domain controller.

“As 5G proliferates, immersive services like AR/VR and HD video streaming are becoming the center of our daily mobile lives. In order to deliver more powerful 5G services, the current network architecture needs to evolve,” said Wonil Roh, Senior Vice President and Head of Product Strategy, Networks Business at Samsung Electronics. “Samsung’s ability to couple our best-in-class 5G solutions with a leader in transport technologies like Ciena will give customers a solution to address this need, and do so with the confidence to scale and evolve their networks to support the future of 5G.”

“Together with Samsung, we’re fueling the next generation of mobile connectivity to unleash the full potential of 5G,” said Matt Cook, Vice President, Global Partner Organization, Ciena. “As both companies are leading innovators in our respective spaces with strong customer bases for these portfolios, this powerful collaboration leverages our collective leadership to create best-in-breed 5G networks that are open, scalable and adaptive.”

CyrusOne says data center leasing remains strong

CyrusOne reported Q3 2021 revenue of $304.1 million, up 16% compared to a year earlier.  The increase in revenue was driven primarily by a 13% increase in occupied CSF and higher metered power reimbursements.

Net income was $6.7 million for the third quarter, compared to net loss of $(37.3) million in the same period in 2020. Net income for the third quarter included a $14.4 million gain associated with a change in fair value on the undesignated portion of the Company’s net investment hedge compared to a $(22.9) million loss in the third quarter of 2020. 

“We had strong financial results and another good bookings quarter, including a significant contribution from our European markets and healthy pricing across the leases,” said David Ferdman, interim president and chief executive officer of CyrusOne. “The demand environment remains strong, we continue to have productive discussions with our customers, and we are well positioned with capacity across the portfolio and more than $2 billion of available liquidity to support our growth.”

Some highlights:

  • CyrusOne leased approximately 20 MW of power and 100,000 CSF in the third quarter, representing approximately $3.2 million in monthly recurring rent, inclusive of the monthly impact of installation charges. 
  • The leasing for the quarter represents approximately $37.8 million in annualized GAAP revenue, excluding estimates for pass-through power. 
  • The weighted average lease term of the new leases, based on square footage, is 108 months (9.0 years), and the weighted average remaining lease term of CyrusOne’s portfolio is 51 months (taking into consideration the impact of the backlog). 
  • Recurring rent churn percentage for the third quarter was 0.5%, compared to 0.6% for the same period in 2020.
  • In the third quarter, the Company completed construction on 161,000 CSF and 38 MW of power capacity across Phoenix, Northern Virginia, the New York Metro area, Cincinnati, Paris and Frankfurt. 
  • Percentage CSF leased as of the end of the third quarter was 86% for stabilized properties and 84% overall. 
  • In addition, the company has development projects underway in London, Frankfurt, Northern Virginia and San Antonio that are expected to add approximately 211,000 CSF and 49 MW of power capacity plus 469,000 square feet of powered shell.

MaxLinear reports solid Q3 growth, supply chain constraints

MaxLinear posted Q3 2021 revenue of $229.8 million, up 12% sequentially and up 47% year-over-year. GAAP gross margin was 56.5%, compared to 54.8% in the prior quarter, and 42.3% in the year-ago quarter.

Non-GAAP diluted earnings per share was $0.75, compared to diluted earnings per share of $0.53 in the prior quarter, and diluted earnings per share of $0.32 in the year-ago quarter.

“In the third quarter, revenue was up 12% sequentially and up 47% year-over-year, driven by growth across our broadband, connectivity and industrial and multi-market markets. Solid demand for our broadband access and connectivity and high-performance analog products was due to a combination of end-market strength and company-specific drivers, including platform-level silicon content increases and market share gains. Non-GAAP gross margin for Q3 of 61.3% is ahead of our original plan, as product mix shift towards higher value products continues to accelerate across broadband, connectivity, infrastructure, and high-performance analog end markets. We remain focused on improving the supply chain constraints to meet the strong and growing market demand for our connectivity, broadband, and infrastructure products in the short and long term,” commented Kishore Seendripu, Ph.D., Chairman and CEO.

Renesas acquires Celeno for Wi-Fi 6 & 6E silicon

Renesas Electronics agreed to acquire Celeno Communications, a start-up providing Wi-Fi solutions, for approximately US$315 million (approximately 35.9 billion yen at an exchange rate of 114 yen to the dollar) in cash. 

Celeno, which is headquartered in Israel, offers advanced Wi-Fi chipsets and software solutions, for high-performance home networks, smart buildings, enterprise and industrial markets. Its compact chipset offerings for Wi-Fi 6 and 6E deliver exceptional Wi-Fi network performance and increased security with low latency and low power consumption. Celeno’s breakthrough Wi-Fi Doppler Imaging technology, a Wi-Fi based, high-resolution imaging technology, is ideal for home elderly care and assisted living, home security, safe driving and digital and connected factories. It depicts, tracks and analyzes the motion, behavior and location of people and objects using standard Wi-Fi, eliminating the need for multiple cameras or sensors in home environments and commercial buildings.

As the world’s No.1 embedded processor supplier, Renesas offers a breadth of low-power MCU/MPU/SoC processors, wireless ICs, sensors and power management technologies. Celeno’s field-proven Wi-Fi and software capabilities are highly complementary to Renesas. The combination creates comprehensive, end-to-end embedded solutions for addressing the fast-growing markets for low-power connectivity in IoT, infrastructure, industrial and automotive applications.

“The transaction announced today underscores our continuous commitment to improve performance and efficiency in electronic systems,” said Hidetoshi Shibata, President and CEO of Renesas. “Building on our recently-expanded connectivity portfolio following the Dialog acquisition, the addition of Celeno provides us with more advanced Wi-Fi connectivity capabilities to deliver end-to-end connectivity solutions for both clients and access points. Renesas is now strongly positioned to capitalize on the growing opportunities from the massive rise in connectivity and requirements created by today’s increasingly connected world.”

“This is a compelling transaction for both our customers and employees. Our depth and strength in connectivity combined with Renesas’ industry leading portfolio of embedded solutions will allow us, together, to open up new growth areas we can target,” said Gilad Rozen, President and CEO of Celeno. “Renesas will also provide us with the go-to-market capabilities to bring Celeno to a broader range of customers.”

Verizon Business adds Fortinet to its SD-WAN portfolio

Verizon Business has added Fortinet Secure SD WAN to its global SD WAN offering.

“The quick transition to hybrid and/or remote working models opened new avenues for cyber threat actors,” said Sampath Sowmyanarayan, Chief Revenue Officer for Verizon Business. “Solutions like Verizon’s Software Defined Secure Branch with Fortinet add those layers of security that help safeguard your employees, your business and ultimately your customers against cyberattacks.”

 Fortinet Secure SD WAN, which integrates SD WAN, firewall, and advanced routing, works with many types of network transports including MPLS, broadband, and wireless.

“Fortinet is committed to supporting our partners and customers with innovative Secure SD WAN technology based on a security-driven networking approach that tightly integrates an organization’s network infrastructure and security architecture,” said John Maddison, EVP of products and CMO at Fortinet. “By leveraging Fortinet Secure SD WAN, Verizon enables organizations to take a ‘work from anywhere’ approach to their network and security to support remote and hybrid workforces.”


Iraq's ScopeSky picks Nokia'sNuage SD-WAN

ScopeSky, a leading internet service provider in Iraq, has selected Nokia’s Nuage Networks Virtualized Network Services (VNS) SD-WAN solution to deliver greater network automation, enhanced security and visibility to its enterprise customers.

Mohamed Faisal, Head of Customer Business Team for Iraq at Nokia, said: "Nokia’s Nuage Networks has become a leader in helping service providers harness the full potential of cloud and network automation and extend that to its enterprise customers’ branch locations. Our technology provides a flexible and open SD-WAN infrastructure that will serve as a foundation for ScopeSky to enhance network connectivity and deliver cloud-based services to customers across Iraq."