Monday, August 15, 2022

Windstream Wholesale launches Managed Spectrum optical transport

 Windstream Wholesale announced nationwide availability of Managed Spectrum, a new network architecture solution that provides customers with a dedicated block of photonic capacity measured in GHz. Customers then procure, install, maintain and monitor the service layer equipment, giving them a secure, private connection between two locations within a metropolitan area or across the U.S.

Managed Spectrum, which leverages Windstream Wholesale’s nationwide Intelligent Converged Optical Network (ICON), provides customers the scalability of a conventional dark fiber offering without the operational overhead that comes with building, managing and maintaining a network.

“Exponential end-user traffic growth is requiring carriers to operate with greater agility, automation, cost-optimization and network flexibility,” said Joe Scattareggia, chief revenue officer for Windstream Wholesale. “The continuing evolution of Windstream Wholesale’s ICON network meets this need by enabling integration of new technologies. ICON’s innovative architecture makes it possible for us to simultaneously support emerging Spectrum services along with our traditional lit solutions, and that’s a huge advance for the high-bandwidth marketplace.”

In March 2021, Windstream Wholesale and Colt Technology Services, a leading provider of high bandwidth and on-demand connectivity, announced a successful trial of Managed Spectrum services. Colt leveraged the Windstream Flex grid open line system between Chicago and Ashburn, Va., using their own coherent transmission system in that trial. Colt leveraged the Windstream-provided Managed Spectrum to deliver multiple 100GE and 400GE services, traversing nearly 1,800 kilometers between the business hubs.

Colt has recently purchased three routes from Windstream Wholesale – Chicago to New York; Secaucus, New Jersey, to Ashburn, and Ashburn to Chicago.

“Since the success of our trial with Windstream Wholesale in March 2021, Colt has continued to invest in its high bandwidth, agile, on-demand network – the Colt IQ Network – in the U.S. and pursue innovation and investment in our partnerships. We are excited to build on our collaboration with Windstream with this next step and leverage Windstream’s spectrum services to scale up our backbone capacity and capability in the region,” said Vivek Gaur, Colt’s vice president of Network Engineering.

Windstream’s ICON provides open and disaggregated networking infrastructure, enabling wholesale and enterprise technology customers to select unique custom routes, maintain operational insights with Windstream’s Network Intelligence functions, and place their networks closer to the edge to better serve end-users.

Windstream Wholesale launches nationwide 400G routes

 Windstream Wholesale announced the following 400G wave service routes:Ashburn, Va., to Chicago, Denver, San Jose and Los AngelesAtlanta to Dallas, Phoenix, San Jose and Los AngelesSeattle to Portland, San Jose and Los AngelesChicago to Dallas and Atlanta“The bandwidth demands facing large enterprise and hyperscale customers are expanding and evolving rapidly as the transition to cloud services and cloud computing accelerates, and Windstream...

Windstream Wholesale completes 400G ZR+ trials

Windstream Wholesale completed interoperability testing of QSFP-DD form factor ZR+ pluggable modules from II-VI and Acacia, now part of Cisco. The tests established 400 Gigabit links in a production environment over a 1,027-kilometer link. The team also leveraged the Marvell Deneb Coherent DSP within a native 0 dBm II-VI pluggable and the Acacia module using the Greylock DSP. Industry standard oFEC algorithms were also used in the trials.“These...

Windstream Wholesale and Infinera develop Node-on-a-Blade 

Windstream Wholesale will transform its optical network infrastructure using an innovative Node-on-a-Blade jointly pioneered by Infinera and Windstream.The companies describe Node-on-a-Blade as the next evolution of ROADM-based solutions that will provide a more advanced and cost-effective approach to optical networking enabling deployment across a wider variety of network locations. Advanced capabilities include a coherent optical channel monitor...

Lumentum acquire optical transceiver business from IPG Photonics

Lumentum has acquired IPG Photonics Corporation's telecom transmission product lines, comprised of optical transceivers and coherent components. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The sale includes  the former Menara Networks and a subsidiary in Brazil.

"I am very excited to add such highly complementary and differentiated transceiver product lines and ASIC capabilities, which help to expand our addressable market and augment our technology capabilities," said Dr. Beck Mason, SVP and General Manager, Telecom Transmission at Lumentum. "This acquisition brings a talented team developing digital communications ASICs, including coherent DSPs, which complements our silicon and indium phosphide photonic integrated circuit capabilities and creates opportunities for increased vertical integration in future optical transmission modules."

Dr. Mason added, "Increasingly customers in the cable MSO and wireless network operator space are turning to wavelength tunable pluggable transceivers to help expand their network capacity and this acquisition brings highly synergistic product lines addressing this rapidly growing opportunity."

“While we have made good progress in developing fundamental technologies in our telecom transmission business, our ability to scale these product lines would require a step-up in investment that we believe would be better spent on our core materials processing and adjacent markets. After an in-depth review, we have determined that participation in the broader telecom market is non-core to IPG’s strategy. Our strategy is to remain focused on revenue diversification and growth opportunities in markets where we can increase our value proposition to customers by delivering advanced laser processing and technology solutions. We are exploring substantial new markets and applications where fiber lasers are replacing existing laser and non-laser technologies by improving efficiency, productivity, or enabling technological breakthroughs for our customers. We would like to thank our telecom transmission employees for their contributions and wish them success with Lumentum, a market leader in optical communications," said Dr. Eugene Scherbakov, IPG Photonics' Chief Executive Officer.

IPG Photonics said the sale will have an immaterial effect on the company’s total revenue and earnings per share, but is expected to reduce R&D spending and operating expenses going forward. The reduction will help to offset some inflationary pressures, including merit increases, impacting the rest of the year.

IPG Photonics Acquires Menara Networks for Optical Pluggables Wednesday, May 11, 2016    

IPG Photonics agreed to acquire Menara Networks, a supplier of enhanced optical transmission modules and systems for cable multi-system operators (MSOs), carriers and data centers, for $46.8 million in cash.

The companies recently announced a partnership to provide an integrated solution for simplified repeater-less 100G DWDM transmission for metro and data center interconnection. Menara’s cost and foot-print-saving product suite of 10G and 100G WDM modules eliminate the need for high-priced transponder systems.

IPG said the acquisition provides it with an entry into the growing optical pluggable systems market and leverages IPG’s international market access outside North America.

“The acquisition of Menara Networks is in line with our strategy to make bolt-on acquisitions that provide us with the talent, technology and products to enter large complementary markets,” said Dr. Valentin Gapontsev, IPG Photonics’ Chairman and CEO. “Since IPG was founded in the 1990’s, telecom products have been a staple offering for IPG, part of our DNA. This acquisition broadens and complements our telecommunications offerings and provides significant sales synergies. Together, we can offer our customers an expanded telecom technology platform with more integrated products with superior performance and economics. The acquisition also affords IPG a better position to capitalize on the robust growth of optical networking driven by video and broadband access.”

"The on-going shift to cloud based services and infrastructure has placed unprecedented strain on data centers and telecom/cable operators’ optical networks and presents a significant opportunity for Menara’s differentiated products,” comments Siraj Nour El-Ahmadi, Menara CEO, Chairman and Co-Founder. “We view the combination with IPG as a force multiplier to not only expand our market share vertically and geographically but just as importantly to bring about innovative and differentiated turn-key solutions that will effectively address the large and growing global DWDM market.”

Menara Ships 120 km 10 Gbps Transceivers with OTN & FEC

Menara Networks introduced an optical transceiver based on its OTN “System-in-module” DWDM XFP platform and featuring up to 120 km reach with integrated Forward Error Correction and advanced monitoring capabilities.

Menara said it achieves 120 km reach on standard single mode fiber without the need for optical amplification and/or dispersion compensation. The unamplified 120 km reach is achieved as a result of Menara’s superior performance of its optical transmitter and receiver designs, and the integrated Forward Error Correction coding gain afforded by Menara’s proprietary integrated circuit. Menara 10 Gbps XFP 120 km reach transceivers are MSA compliant and Telcordia qualified, compatible with both 10G Ethernet and 9.96 Gbps SONET/SDH line rates, consume under 3.5 Watts, and are compatible with all major routers and MPLS switches in the industry.

Japan's Astellas Pharma picks Verizon Business to upgrade global net

Astellas Pharma, a global pharmaceutical company headquartered in Tokyo, selected Verizon Business to upgrade its global network infrastructure. 

The network transformation will enable Astellas to harness advanced technologies to help reduce drug development timelines, healthcare costs and drive new revenue opportunities for the Japanese pharmaceutical multinational.

Verizon’s relationship with Astellas stretches back more than a decade. In 2016, Astellas successfully deployed Verizon’s Secure Cloud Interconnect (SCI) solution to provide a high-bandwidth secure connection to its Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure cloud services. Verizon’s current remit includes the build and deployment of Astellas’ global integrated network with a full suite of managed services, including Managed Wide Area Network, Local Area Network, Managed Security Services(MSS), Secure Gateway, Zero Trust Network Access and Unified Communications and Collaboration as a Service. 

Shinya Suda, Senior Vice President, Information Systems, Astellas commented, “From R&D to sales, we are seeing enormous amounts of data and intelligence flow through our business, across our 70 locations around the world. We want to ensure that we have a future-proof network in order to utilize cutting-edge technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, machine learning and robotics to make data-driven decisions to deliver better value for our patients. Our network transformation will underpin the next phase of our growth.”

“The network is transformative in its ability to enable innovation and growth and Astellas is changing the way they are using the tools at their disposal to completely revolutionize their business. This is truly a watershed moment for the pharmaceutical industry as companies grapple with the pressures of reducing time and costs for the development of drugs while improving patient care and value. We’re proud to have been a part of Astellas’ growth journey for more than a decade,” said Robert Le Busque, Regional Vice-President, Verizon Business Group, Asia Pacific.

Keysight and Synopsys collaborate on RF and Millimeter Wave Design

Keysight Technologies has extended its collaboration with Synopsys with the integration of PathWave RFIC Design (GoldenGate) with Synopsys Custom Compiler design environment and Synopsys PrimeSim circuit simulation solutions. 

This will enable designers to validate complex radio frequency (RF) and millimeter wave design requirements for 5G/6G system-on-chip (SoC) and subsystem designs in the Synopsys Custom Design Family.

“We are migrating our RF design environment to industry-leading commercial tools and workflows based on the Synopsys Custom Compiler™ design and layout solution,” said Koji Tomioka, vice president at Asahi Kasei Microdevices Corporation. “Keysight’s RFIC design tool integrated with Custom Compiler provides best-in-class layout and simulation capabilities to design and verify our millimeter-wave radar chips. We anticipate that the Synopsys-Keysight collaboration will save us time versus the maintenance of our in-house developed tools.”

“Native integration of Keysight’s PathWave RFIC Design (GoldenGate) with Synopsys’ Custom Compiler extends our collaboration to address end-to-end workflows for increasingly complex wireless designs,” said Niels Faché, vice president and general manager of Keysight’s PathWave Software Solutions. “This integration enables customers to access Harmonic Balance and Envelope simulation capabilities, as well as Keysight’s Virtual Test Benches, to reliably compute error vector magnitude and adjacent channel power ratio early in the chip design and verification process.”

Verizon targets enhanced mobile experience with 5G

Verizon will offer an enhanced mobile experience in Hi-Rez’s new game, Rogue Company Elite, via the Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband network.

Players on Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband will be able to download a high fidelity graphics package at super-fast speeds and with Verizon Up, Verizon’s customer loyalty program, they can receive a free weapon wrap for use in the game. 

“Verizon, the network America relies on, is built for gaming, with super-fast speeds, massive capacity and low lag on 5G Ultra Wideband, so you never miss a moment of the action when you’re on the go,” said Erin McPherson, Head of Consumer Content and Partnerships at Verizon. “With entertainment partners like Hi-Rez, we continue to bring the best experiences to our customers wherever they are - like games you can download in seconds and stream, and the ability to play data-intensive, multiplayer games typically reserved for consoles on your mobile phone.” 

The partnership will also give players rewards across Hi-Rez Studios’ games through the Verizon Up program.

BT faces further strikes on August 30 and 31

The Communications Workers Union (CWU), which represents BT Group employees, served notice of pending industrial action on August 30th and 31st, directly after the August bank holiday weekend.  As part of their ongoing campaign to seek higher wages and benefits, the union already held strikes on 29th July and 1st August, 2022.

CWU deputy general secretary Andy Kerr states “There’s no doubt that we were as solid as we could have been in the first industrial action – and I have no doubt that will be repeated on August 30th and 31st. We’re still hoping to get BT back round the table for serious negotiations , but as things stand it has sadly become clear that simply isn’t going to happen unless we take further action…so that’s precisely what we’re going to do.”

A BT Group spokesperson commented “We know that our colleagues are dealing with the impacts of high inflation and, although we’re disappointed, we respect their decision to strike. We have made the best pay award we could and we are in constant discussions with the CWU to find a way forward from here. In the meantime, we will continue to work to minimise any disruption and keep our customers and the country connected”.

BT braces for nationwide strike on July 29 and August 1

In the wake of a vote by the Communication Workers Union (CWU), BT confirmed that it will not raise the pay increase it implemented in April and will instead brace itself for industrial action.At a press conference today (30th June), the CWU – the union for all BT Group employees – announced that on a 74.8% turnout, the union’s 30,000 Openreach engineers have voted by 95.8% to take strike action. This number was followed by workers in BT, approximately...