Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Biden signs CHIPS and Science Act

by James E. Carroll

President Biden signed the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022, which aims to onshore domestic manufacturing of semiconductors and to substantially increase government funding for science and technology development programs, including the networking and telecommunications fields. 

The legislation provides $54.2 billion in total appropriations for CHIPS and Public Wireless Supply Chain Innovation (also known as ORAN), and $82.5 billion in additional appropriations for research programs through the National Science Foundation, the Department of Commerce, NIST, NASA, and the Department of Energy.

“Today, we’re sending a clear signal to the world that we are serious about rebuilding our domestic manufacturing industry and leading the world in science and innovation for decades to come. I’m excited to get to work doing exactly that,” stated U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo. 

Key provisions of the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022

The U.S. House of Representatives voted 243-187 to pass the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022. The legislation was approved by the U.S. Senate last week. President Biden is now expected to sign it into law.The principal aim of the CHIPS Act is to onshore domestic manufacturing of semiconductors. It will also substantially increase government funding for science and technology development programs impacting the networking and telecommunications fields. The...

América Móvil spins off its towers business

by James E. Carroll

América Móvil completed the spin-off of its telecommunications towers and other associated infrastructure in certain Latin America countries into a new, independent company called Sitios Latinoamérica, S.A.B. de C.V. 

Sitios Latam is a Mexican company, independent from AMX’s management and capital structure. Its business focuses on the construction, operation and marketing of towers and other structures for the installation of telecommunications equipment. 

Sitios Latam's towers are located in the following countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Puerto Rico and Uruguay. 

In addition, as of today, Sitios Latam has started the construction of towers in Peru. Sitios Latam has an inventory of 29,090, on an aggregate basis, 39% of which are in Brazil. Sitios Latam will continue to evaluate growth opportunities in the region.


Türk Telekom maintains balance amidst inflation and other pressures

Citing inflation and other macroeconomic and societal pressure, Türk Telekom Group reported a balanced financial performance in the second quarter, with consolidated revenues increasing by 31.2% YoY to TL 10.7 billion. EBITDA rose to TL 4.4 billion with an EBITDA margin of 41.0%. Net income of TL 1.4 billion grew by 9.4% YoY. Net Debt/EBITDA increased to 1.54x from the previous quarter as the upward trend in FX rates continued.

Türk Telekom CEO Ümit Önal said: “Q2’22 has clearly demonstrated a fresh set of adversities. Inflation has proven to be an even bigger problem to tackle with for individuals, corporates, governments and central banks alike across the globe. Consumers were highly challenged by the pricing environment in general which has dictated more scrutiny on typical baskets. In this backdrop, we implemented our plans to weather the storm with highest focus on mitigating risks while generating healthy growth on a sustainable basis. Managing our subscriber base was an uneasy task but our steadfast priority for quality services, customer experience and value maximisation has lent great support to our satisfying operational and financial performance. The second half of 2022 will continue to be tough, we think. Therefore, we maintain caution and keep ourselves fit to remain resilient and financially sound."

2nd Quarter 2022 Operational Highlights

  • Total number of Türk Telekom subscribers remained flat at 52.2 mn with 53K net subscriber additions in Q2’22. The increase in fixed broadband and mobile bases was largely offset by the decline in fixed voice. Net subscriber additions were 1.5 mn during the last twelve months.
  • Fixed broadband subscribers inched up to 14.6 mn with slower quarterly net additions of 87K amid normalisation and price revisions. Broadband ARPU growth of 19.1% YoY was visibly higher compared to both Q1’22 and Q2’21 levels.
  • Fibre subscribers reached 10.7 mn with 387K quarterly net additions. The number of FTTC subscribers reached 7.6 mn, while the number of FTTH/B subscribers increased to 3.1 mn. The share of fibre subscribers in our fixed broadband base increased to 73.5% from 58.5% a year ago.
  • Fibre cable network length increased to 381K km as of Q2’22 from 372K km as of Q1’22 and 345K km as of Q2’21. Fibre network covers 30.8 mn households as of Q2’22 compared to 30.6 mn as of Q1’22, reflecting the continued focus on fibre rollouts. FTTC homepass made it to 21.4 mn while FTTH/B homepass increased to 9.4 mn.
  • Mobile subscriber portfolio reached 24.6 mn with 246K of net additions during the quarter.
  • Postpaid segment grew by 338K while prepaid contracted by 92K.
  • Share of LTE subscribers3 in mobile subscriber base increased to 69% in Q2’22 from 62% in Q2’21. Average monthly data usage per LTE user increased by 20.6% to 11.5GB in Q2’22 from 9.5GB in Q2’21.
  • Number of fixed voice subscribers declined by 264K during the quarter in line with the strategy focusing on naked-DSL sales in new acquisitions, rather than WLR. Including nDSL, the number of total fixed access lines increased to 17.1 mn.
  • In Q2’22, the number of TV Home subscribers remained flat QoQ at 1.5 mn.


Dell'Oro: Hyperscalers to lift data center Capex to $377B in 2026

Global data center capex is on track to reach $377 billion by 2026, with the hyperscale cloud service providers accounting for more than half the market total, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. 

“The data center of the future will continue to evolve, with new accelerated computing architectures on the horizon enabling AI applications that are more automated, intelligent, and immersive for end-users,” said Baron Fung, Research Director at Dell’Oro Group. “The hyperscale service providers will lead the market in investing in new accelerated computing technologies, with an emphasis on the cutting-edge server and network architectures, as well as enhanced thermal management solutions. However, there is much uncertainty in the near term for the overall market. Lingering supply chain challenges, persistent inflationary pressures, and declining economic growth could weigh down on enterprise data center spending in the near term. Despite these near-term uncertainties, our long-term outlook is optimistic, as enterprises undergo digital transformation initiatives, deploying new hybrid cloud workloads, and with the cloud service providers and telecom operators extending their infrastructure to the network edge,” explained Fung.

Additional highlights from the July 2022 Data Center IT Capex 5-Year Forecast Report:

  • Worldwide data center capex is forecast to grow 13 percent by 2026.
  • Adoption in new server CPU platforms and accelerated computing will be primary capex growth drivers in the data center.
  • Edge computing is forecast to comprise 8 percent of total data center infrastructure spending by 2026.


Kajeet and Samsung collaborate on Private 5G

Kajeet, which specializes in private wireless and managed IoT connectivity solutions, will become an authorized distributor of Samsung’s private RAN solutions in the U.S.

The collaboration matches Kajeet’s Smart Private 5G Platform with Samsung’s Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) solutions. 

Samsung’s CBRS products to be deployed by Kajeet include its Massive MIMO 64T64R macro cell and 4T4R 4G/5G radio. Certified by the OnGo® Alliance, these products support a variety of use cases requiring campus-wide connectivity with massive data capacity. This includes enabling FWA for underserved rural areas and industrial IoT applications connecting thousands of sensors to analyze data.

Kajeet builds and manages private 5G networks on behalf of school districts, smart cities, municipalities, universities and community colleges, utilities, libraries, healthcare organizations, and other enterprises in key vertical markets.

"Samsung has been a pioneer in RAN innovation, and we are excited to be collaborating with them to address the needs of our expanding array of customers that want robust, reliable and affordable carrier-class private wireless networks,” said Derrick Frost, SVP and GM of Private Wireless Networks at Kajeet. “Kajeet’s open innovation in 5G edge & core, paired with Samsung’s CBRS solutions that enable seamless migration to 5G and suit any vertical use case, provides enhanced connectivity experiences both today and tomorrow.”

“Samsung is committed to advancing private network innovation and putting this technology into action for various enterprises and organizations today,” said Imran Akbar, Vice President and Head of New Business Team, Networks Business, Samsung Electronics America. “Kajeet has extensive experience in deploying and managing end-to-end private and public networks, and we look forward to collaborating with them to accelerate deployment of Samsung’s industry leading private 5G solutions to help lead digital transformation for enterprises.”

Airspan adds 60 Private 4G/5G networks in Q2

Airspan Networks reported revenue of $46.9 million for the second quarter ended June 30, 2022, up 25% sequentially from first quarter 2022, and up 12% year-over-year. Gross margin was 40.1% compared to 32.1% in first quarter 2022, and 45.7% in second quarter 2021. There was a net loss of $21.0 million, compared to a net loss of $29.7 million in first quarter 2022, and a net loss of $10.4 million for second quarter 2021.

“We continue to execute our growth plan and see healthy demand for our innovative products and solutions,” said Airspan Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Eric Stonestrom. “Furthermore, we are encouraged by concrete government action on the CHIPS Act, which currently allocates $1.5B for Open RAN technology development, an area of Airspan focus and differentiation. However, the supply chain environment continues to impact sales and margin as seen in the near-term outlook.”

“Four of our largest customers signed new purchase orders during the quarter. We continue to see growing demand in the core markets we serve, namely mobile networks, private networks and fixed wireless,” said Airspan President and Chief Operating Officer Glenn Laxdal.

Some highlights:

  • Strong performance in a challenging supply chain environment.
  • Continued momentum in private network deployments:
  • Added over 60 Private 4G/5G Networks in second quarter 2022 bringing the total number of Private Networks design wins to more than 300.
  • Signed Global Purchase Agreements with two additional web scale cloud providers.
  • Signed agreement with a leading global Private Networks managed service provider.
  • New milestone reached with a Tier 1 US Cable MSO with a Purchase Order in second quarter 2022, and a significant deployment throughout 2022.
  • Airspan Networks Named Winner of Three Small Cell Forum Innovation Awards, Demonstrating Solution Scalability for Both Public and Private Networks. Fifth year in a row Airspan has been honored by the Forum (link).
  • Demonstrated a fiber equivalent 4+ Gbps Fixed Wireless Access point to multi-point connection speed with one of Asia’s largest carriers and made substantial inroads with US Rural Digital Opportunity Fund recipients.


SpaceX launches 52 more Starlinks from Florida

SpaceX launched 52 Starlink satellites from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

The Falcon 9 first stage booster supporting this mission, which previously launched SES-22 and now two Starlink missions.

The mission was SpaceX’s 55th Starlink mission to date. It was SpaceX's first Starlink mission in August and 21st Starlink mission this year.