Thursday, January 20, 2022

Telenor teams with AWS, implements a mobile core in the cloud

Telenor and AWS announced a collaboration agreement focused on new 5G and edge services.

The companies plan joint go-to-market activities in select industries—such as manufacturing, supply chain and logistics, and automotive.

Telenor, which becomes a member of the AWS Partner Network, plans to scale its cloud footprint while innovating to develop new services that use a combination of the most advanced and secure cloud technologies from AWS.

Working with AWS, Telenor has already implemented an entire mobile core, running in the cloud, for Vimla—Telenor’s virtual mobile network operator brand in Sweden. Vimla uses a wide range of AWS services, including Amazon ElastiCache, AWS Lambda, AWS Transit Gateway, and others . The new cloud-based mobile core at Vimla is developed and managed as-a-service by Working Group Two, a company incubated by Telenor. 

“Working with AWS, we are continuing to advance and modernise the telecommunications industry—digitalising and expanding our offerings beyond connectivity. Together, we are building on our individual strengths and scaling secure, robust, and advanced cloud services, alongside the latest networking technology, for our customers much faster than we could ever do before. Our shared ambition is to use scalable and flexible building blocks from AWS to continuously raise the bar for what’s possible,” says Sigve Brekke, President and CEO of Telenor Group.

“Telenor is pushing the boundaries of innovation by running their Vimla core on AWS. Cloud technology is allowing Telenor to scale their network in a way that was not possible before and is allowing them to experiment and develop new experiences for customers to keep them engaged, entertained, and online. We are pleased to collaborate with Telenor as they continue to expand this innovative work to other parts of their business,” says Adam Selipsky, CEO of AWS.

Amazon previews AWS Private 5G

Amazon Web Services (AWS) announced a new managed service that helps enterprises set up and scale private 5G mobile networks using license-free CBRS spectrum.

Customers of the forthcoming AWS Private 5G service will be able to use the AWS console to specify where they want to build a mobile network and the network capacity needed for their devices. AWS will then deliver and maintain the small cell radio units, servers, 5G core and radio access network (RAN) software, and subscriber identity modules (SIM cards) required to set up a private 5G network and connect devices. AWS Private 5G automates the setup and deployment of the network and scales capacity on demand to support additional devices and increased network traffic. Pricing is based on network capacity and throughput. There are no upfront fees or per-device costs. 

“Many of our customers want to leverage the power of 5G to establish their own private networks on premises, but they tell us that the current approaches make it time-consuming, difficult, and expensive to set up and deploy private networks,” said David Brown, Vice President, EC2 at AWS. “With AWS Private 5G, we’re extending hybrid infrastructure to customers’ 5G networks to make it simple, quick, and inexpensive to set up a private 5G network. Customers can start small and scale on-demand, pay as they go, and monitor and manage their network from the AWS console.”

BT to implement Rackspace Fabric for multi-cloud services

BT and Rackspace Technology announced a partnership focused on multicloud management and optimization. 

Under the terms of the agreement, BT hybrid cloud services will be based on Rackspace Technology’s solutions, including its Rackspace Fabric management layer.

Rackspace supports four primary technology stacks: AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform and VMware. Rackspace Fabric is a single platform for consistent, automated cloud services, uniting security, billing, operations and management.

BT said its multinational customers will benefit from the integration of Rackspace Technology’s cloud management expertise and automation, analytics, and AI tools with BT’s network and security capabilities.

Bas Burger, CEO of BT’s Global unit, said: “This innovative partnership with Rackspace Technology accelerates our plans to build a world-class hybrid cloud portfolio. It will deliver outstanding experiences for our customers and ensure they benefit from the best services, backed by our partner’s leadership in cloud.”

Kevin Jones, CEO of Rackspace Technology, said, “This exciting partnership with BT validates Rackspace Technology’s expertise in helping large, multinational enterprises in their cloud transformation journey and provides both companies with unique industry positioning. It highlights the enduring long-term value of a hybrid cloud model, as BT customers will now have access to the best of public cloud, private cloud, and traditional hosted environments alongside the speed, security, and resilience of BT’s worldwide networks.”

BT forms new ‘Division X’ unit within its Enterprise business

BT has appointed Marc Overton as Managing Director of a newly created ‘Division X’ unit, which forms part of its Enterprise business. 

Division X aims to "scale up and commercialise the development of unique customer solutions incorporating components such as 5G Private Networks, IoT, and Edge Computing, amongst others." Division X will also manage BT’s portfolio of specialised businesses.

Overton joins BT from Sierra Wireless, were he was Chief Solutions Officer & Senior Vice President for EMEA & APAC. Prior to that he was Managing Director, Global Innovation and Sales for West Coast start-up, Cisco Jasper, the world’s largest IoT platform. Earlier in his career, Marc ran EMEA for First Data (now Fiserv) helping it transform from the world’s largest payment processing company into a merchant solutions business. He also held a variety of roles at EE and Orange UK, where he built their MVNO and IoT businesses.

Commenting on his appointment, Overton said: “Division X is set to be a key growth engine for BT’s Enterprise business, moving it from a telco to a tech co by expanding into adjacent services which go beyond traditional calls and lines. I’m really excited to be leading a unit which will act as an innovation hub for our Enterprise customers. We’ll be focused on turning emerging tech like 5G, IoT, Edge and AI into solutions that we can scale, sell, and which will drive sustainable growth.”

Dell'Oro: Optical transport equipment market to teach $18B by 2026

Demand for Optical Transport equipment is expected to increase to $18 billion by 2026. All of the market growth will be from sales of DWDM system that deliver wavelength speeds in excess of 200 Gbps, according to Dell'Oro Group. However, IPoDWDM is expected to lower the overall demand for DWDM systems.

"I am excited to see how the Optical Transport market unfolds in the next few years," said Jimmy Yu, Vice President at Dell'Oro Group. "We are predicting that demand will continue to increase for the next five years, and that the market will reach $18 billion by 2026. Drivers of our growth prediction include the growing global economy, government initiatives to fund the reach of broadband to rural areas, and overall network upgrades to align with customer demand for more bandwidth. There will, however, be some bumps in the road."

"It will be interesting to watch how new technologies such as 400ZR and 1.2 Tbps-capable wavelengths change the market dynamics. Will 400ZR really drive the adoption of IPoDWDM, an architectural concept that originally came out over a decade ago? If it does, will it change the demand profile for new generations of coherent technology such as 1.2 Tbps-capable modules scheduled to be released in a year? For the first question, I think it will. For the second question, I think it might," added Jimmy Yu.

Additional highlights from the Optical Transport 5-Year Forecast Report:

  • Optical Transport market is forecast to grow at a 3 percent compounded annual growth rate (CAGR), driven by higher demand in all major regions.
  • Coherent wavelength shipments on DWDM systems are forecast to grow at a 12 percent CAGR.
  • The ZR optics market comprised of 400ZR and 800ZR is forecast to surpass $600 million by 2026.

Fujitsu debuts 100G QSFP28 ZR4 transceiver

Fujitsu Optical Components (FOC) introduced a low-power 100G QSFP28 ZR4 optical transceiver designed with an 80-km reach.

The transceiver enables direct connection between routers/switches without the use of optical amplifiers, thereby contributing to the reduction of overall network equipment costs and energy savings. 

Key features

  • Supports high optical output power, accommodates OTU4 signal.  Optical output power (Tx Power [OMA]) was increased to + 2.5 dBm. In addition, while maintaining the same power consumption (5.5W), FOC added the high optical output power + 3.5 dBm specification to the product lineup, making it possible to support more optical networks. 
  • FOC has also specified a 100G OTU4 signal (111.8 Gbps), which is faster than 100G Ethernet signals (103.1 Gbps transmission data rate), and added this dual-rate variant to the product lineup so as to enable the provisioning of services based on the OTN standards.
  • Complies with standards for form factor, electrical interface, and support functions. The 100G QSFP28 ZR4 transceiver has a common platform design with the 100G QSFP28 ER4 for 40 km transmission and conforms to the SFF-8661, 8679 and IEEE 100GBASE-ER4 standard for 40 km transmission and the ITU-T G. 959.1 OTU4 standard (4L1-9 C1F).

Lumen wins $1.2 billion network contract with USDA

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded Lumen Technologies a task order worth more than $1.2 billion to deliver a fully integrated wide area data transport service with secure remote access, contact center and cloud connectivity solutions to more than 9,500 USDA locations across the country and abroad. 

"One of America's largest cabinet agencies chose Lumen to securely modernize its network and IT services. We're excited to help the USDA benefit from today's digital technologies that are transforming farming into precision agriculture," said Zain Ahmed, senior vice president, Lumen public sector. "Lumen is bringing modern technology solutions that will make it easier for the USDA to accomplish its mission of promoting the production of nutritious food that nourishes our people, providing economic opportunity to rural Americans, and preserving our nation's natural resources through smart forest and watershed conservation."


The 11-year task order, which has an initial term through September 30, 2022, with 10 one-year options, was awarded to Lumen under the General Services Administration's 15-year, $50 billion Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions (EIS) program.

Lumen will provide the USDA with managed network, managed security and voice solutions that support speeds up to 100 Gbps including:

  • SD-WAN;
  • managed trusted internet protocol services (MTIPS);
  • zero-trust networking solutions;
  • edge computing and remote access solutions;
  • virtual private network services;
  • cloud connectivity;
  • unified communications and collaboration solutions;
  • contact center solutions;
  • voice over internet protocol (VoIP), wireless and satellite services;
  • Ethernet transport;
  • optical wavelength solutions;
  • related equipment and engineering services.

Lumen enters edge partnership with Microsoft Azure

 Lumen Technologies announced a strategic relationship with Microsoft Azure focused on the next generation of enterprise application delivery at the network edge. The companies cited several go-to-market efforts to support mutual customers worldwide:A certified Azure deployment which will be able to run in Lumen Edge Computing nodes worldwide, unlocking more low latency and high bandwidth use cases for customers of Azure service platform.Communication...

Lumen to sell ILEC operations in 20 states for $7.5 billion

Lumen Technologies (formerly CenturyLink) agreed to sell its ILEC (incumbent local exchange carrier) business, including its consumer, small business, wholesale and mostly copper-served enterprise customers and assets, in 20 states to funds managed by affiliates of Apollo Global Management for $7.5 billion, including debt assumption of approximately $1.4 billion. Lumen will retain its ILEC assets in 16 states, as well as its national fiber routes...

CenturyLink is now Lumen

CenturyLink changed its name to Lumen Technologies.The company's mission statement is "to help lead enterprises through the challenges and opportunities of the 4th Industrial Revolution – a time when smart, connective devices are everywhere.""Our people are dedicated to furthering human progress through technology. Lumen is all about enabling the amazing potential of our customers, by utilizing our technology platform, our people, and our relationships...

Lumen launches Edge Private Cloud

Lumen Technologies introduced a fully-managed Lumen Edge Private Cloud service that provides pre-built infrastructure for high-performance private computing connected to a global fiber network. Lumen Edge Private Cloud is a completely managed Infrastructure-as-a-Service that brings together a private cloud platform with the Lumen global fiber network, edge facilities, security, and managed services to help bridge clouds, IT infrastructure, and...

Gogo builds 7-tower 5G testbed for its Air-to-Ground network

Gogo Business Aviation has completed a seven-tower 5G testbed as part of the deployment of its nationwide 5G Air-to-Ground (ATG) network.

Gogo’s 5G ATG network is powered by Airspan’s OpenRANGE Air5G Sub-6 GHZ Radio Unit (RU) macros, fully virtualized OpenRANGE vCU (Centralized Unit) and vDU (Distributed Unit) software, and massive MIMO antennas. 

Gogo said it is on track to launch its 5G ATG network in the second half of the year, leveraging Airspan’s portfolio of 5G advanced 5G infrastructure, Open RAN virtualized software and hardware, and 5G antennas. Gogo 5G is expected to deliver ~25 Mbps on average with peak speeds in the 75-80 Mbps range and has been designed to deliver high throughput with very low latency to address the increasing demand for data-heavy interactive services like video conferencing.

“These seven sites will serve as a testbed for our 150-tower nationwide network,” said Mike Rupert, vice president of network operations for Gogo Business Aviation. “The testbed includes sites in both remote and populated locations to validate the network is operating as designed in all – and many – challenging environments.”

Airspan says its antenna solutions are ruggedized and proven for harsh environments, and provide a series of critical features including advanced beam shaping, high-precision beam pointing, specifically designed beam profiles for long range air-to-ground applications, critical interference suppression, and support of Doppler Effect exceeding 3GPP (industry standard) speeds by four times -- in excess of 1200 km/hour/750 MPH.

“These milestones and the innovation behind them are great examples of Airspan’s ability to provide unique solutions and continued leadership in 5G and Open RAN software, hardware and air interfaces in challenging deployments,” said Airspan President and CEO Eric Stonestrom. “We are working closely with Gogo to bring 5G innovation and technology to aviation. This network deployment is a model for future 5G Air-to-Ground networks, and is applicable to multiple markets on a global scale.”

  • As of Sept. 30, 2021, Gogo reported 2,237 business aircraft flying with Gogo’s AVANCE L5 or L3 system installed, 6,154 aircraft flying with its ATG systems onboard, and 4,542 aircraft with narrowband satellite connectivity installed

SES delivers satellite connectivity for Digicel Tonga

 SES confirmed that its satellite connectivity has has enabled Digicel Tonga to restore vital communications with the outside world following the Hunga Tonga- Ha’apai volcano eruption that sent tsunami waves across the Pacific Ocean. 

First international calls service from Tongatapu provided by Digicel has been up since Wednesday, with both SES and Digicel teams working on restoring more vital communications services in the coming days.

“With satellite partners such as SES, we have been able to establish international calls for our customers as soon as possible, and will increase capacity to provide more services in the next few days. We know how vital it is at times like this that to keep people connected. We take that responsibility very seriously and are focused on doing everything we can to ensure people are able to communicate with their loved ones in these difficult times,” said Digicel Tonga CEO Anthony Seuseu.

“We are humbled to be of service to the people of Tonga during this difficult time. The importance of connecting with critical resources, friends and family cannot be overstated, and our technical teams have been working hard to enable Digicel to restore vital connections between Tonga and the rest of the world,” said John Turnbull, Director of Pacific Region at SES. “SES and Digicel have a long history of providing multi-orbit capacity into key Pacific markets, and our partnership enabled the first communication services out of Tonga. Our thoughts are with the residents of Tonga as we continue to work relentlessly to increase connectivity to the nation.”

SES O3b provides capacity during Southern Cross upgrade

 Southern Cross Cables Limited (SCCL) will leverage SES Networks’ O3b satellite service to improve communications between Nukunonu of Tokelau, Kiritimati Island of Kiribati and the rest of the world as it upgrades the undersea Southern Cross cable network. Specifically, SES’s O3b constellation of medium earth orbit (MEO) satellites will be used to connect remote stations on the incoming Southern Cross NEXT cable network during its commissioning phase. The service will offer latency of less than 150ms round trip.

The Southern Cross cable network, in use since 2000, is a key internet gateway for the Pacific region. 

“We are glad to have a partner in SES Networks that is well-known in the region for providing tried-and-tested, fibre-like, high-speed connectivity services through its O3b constellation. As we work on laying the groundwork to improve connectivity, network resilience and network performance with the incoming Southern Cross NEXT network, we needed a strong and robust satellite network which could perform at the same level of low-latency, high-availability standards as our incoming next-generation cable network. SES’s solution not only fit the bill, but actually far exceeded our stated requirements,” said Laurie Miller, CEO of SCCL.

“This cooperation with Southern Cross is of utmost importance because it truly shows the complementary nature of satellite and undersea cable networks. It is a great example of how the entire network ecosystem can work together to ensure the Pacific region – with thousands of islands and vast open seas in between – remain connected at all times,” said John Turnbull, Director for Australia and the Pacific region of SES Networks. 

Padtec offers supervision and monitoring of optical fibers

Padtec is launching a new service for network operators that covers the supervision and monitoring of optical fibers.

“By choosing this service model, the provider can focus on its operation, direct investments to strategic areas and worry about what really matters: the growth of its business”, comments Carlos Raimar, Padtec’s CEO. “With an investment compatible with their resources, operators and providers anywhere in the country can deliver quality, availability and a better experience to the users of their services”, he adds.

For a monthly fee, Padtec offers packages that include equipment, installation, configuration, maintenance and technical support. The fiber optic supervision and monitoring service allows the operator to fully manage the operation of its network, remotely and in real time. 

To support this, Padtec has a Network Operations Center (NOC), equipped with advanced infrastructure, and specialized technicians who provide operation and maintenance services to customers, 24 hours a day, seven days per week. All this with the option of defining service level agreements (SLAs) suited to meet the needs, requirements and investment capacity of each provider.

Padtec teams up with Airspan and TrĂ³pico on 5G Open RAN

Padtec has formed a partnership with TrĂ³pico and Airspan Networks to offer 5G network solutions in several spectrum bands, including 700 MHz, 2.3 GHz, 3.5 GHz and 26 GHz.Padtec said the recent successful auction of 5G spectrum in Brazil will spur a wave of investments in telecom infrastructure to support the next-generation of high-bandwidth applications and services driven by 5G networks. The goal of the three companies is to collaborate to provide...

Padtec's Q3 revenue rises 42% yoy

Brazil-based Padtec Holding reported Q3 2021 gross operating revenue of approximately R$ 120 million, up 42.1% compared to the same quarter in 2020. Operating revenue reached R$ 326 million in the 9-month period of 2021 – an increase of 55% compared to the same period last year and 2.6% in relation to the revenue registered in 2020 (R$ 317.9 million). It was the best quarterly result in the company's recent history.In the period from January to September...

Keysight adds test for Time Sensitive Networking based on Avnu

Keysight Technologies added an integrated test package to the IxNetwork Ethernet test solution that enables manufacturers to ensure that chipsets and devices are in compliance with the Avnu Alliance base time sensitive networking (TSN) test plan for IEEE 802.1AS-2020, the standard for the transport of timing over local area networks.

The Avnu tests are designed for test programs that assess a product's conformance to specifications defined in the suite of standards known collectively as TSN and the basis for Avnu certification.

Keysight’s IxNetwork solution helps chipset and device manufacturers ensure their devices adhere to new TSN standards for silicon to deliver high-performing gear that interoperates with other standards-conforming devices on an Ethernet network. The TSN capabilities in IxNetwork are used to test and benchmark scenarios in the TSN ecosystem, which span across relevant IEEE standards. Each IxNetwork test port emulates hundreds of Ethernet endpoints with realistic behavior. Test scenarios are executed with the IxNetwork graphical user interface (GUI) or application programming interface (API) scripting to characterize performance bottlenecks and resiliency.

“Keysight’s compliance package, based on the latest Avnu TSN test plans, will help Avnu members and test houses advance the TSN ecosystem toward open interoperability,” said Gary Stuebing, vice president and chairman of Avnu Alliance. “These test plans encompass the base TSN compliance requirements to support many different applications and usages of TSN. As promoter members of Avnu and active working group contributors, Keysight experts were instrumental to this thorough collaborative effort.”

“Validation of TSN standards are increasingly important to ensure devices on Ethernet networks work together at the component level,” said Ram Periakaruppan, vice president and general manager, Keysight’s Network Test and Security Solutions group. “Keysight, as a member of Avnu Alliance, has played a key role in standardizing test methodologies for TSN. The addition of this test package to IxNetwork enables chipset and device manufacturers, across a range of markets, to deliver high quality interoperable devices to their customers.”