Monday, September 12, 2022

Verizon serves nearly 48% of its cell sites with owned fiber

Verizon now connects nearly 48% of its cell sites with its own deployed fiber optic cables and is on track to reach about 50% by the end of this year.

In June Verizon announced that data traffic on its 5G Ultra Wideband network had already increased 249%, and it expects continued increases as more customers adopt the new technology and begin to experience the robust capabilities and performance of 5G Ultra Wideband. 

Verizon has also announced plans to upgrading older router equipment with new equipment capable of 400 Gbps per port.

Verizon upgrades its core network for 400G with Juniper's PTX series

Verizon is refreshing its core network with Juniper Networks' PTX series routers supporting 400G interfaces. Verizon said the new equipment is half the size of the existing equipment, reducing space requirements in core facilities and driving down both power usage per GB and cost per GB to operate. In addition, the new equipment offers an advanced level of automation, allowing for automated interfaces with other network systems.Verizon also...

Verizon activates C-band spectrum

Verizon activated C-band spectrum to boost its 5G Ultra Wideband network, which is now available to more than 100 million people in 1,700-plus cities around the nation.“This massive launch will put incredible speeds, reliability and security in the hands of our customers and amplifies our offering of reliable home and business broadband options to more places around the country, well ahead of the commitment we made last year,” said Hans Vestberg,...

American Tower and Verizon sign new lease agreement

American Tower and Verizon Communications signed a new overarching lease agreement, facilitating Verizon’s on-going 5G network deployment across American Tower’s extensive U.S. portfolio of communications sites. The companies said the deal provides a simplified and efficient leasing process through a contractual framework that will drive mutual growth and value over a multi-year period.“This agreement represents another key milestone and an...

Verizon starts rollout of 100 MHz of C-band spectrum

Verizon has started deploying with 100 MHz of C-band spectrum in many markets across the US – a significant increase from the 60 MHz it has deployed in 5G markets to date.In the recent trial, using 100 MHz of C-band spectrum, engineers were able to reach 1.4 Gbps peak download speeds near active cell sites and 500 Mbps further away from the towers.Verizon said the rollout is occurring several months earlier than expected due to agreements with satellite...

FAA reaches agreement with AT&T and Verizon

 The FAA reached an agreement with Verizon and AT&T on 5G in C-Band spectrum near airports. "The FAA appreciates the strong communication and collaborative approach with wireless companies, which have provided more precise data about the exact location of wireless transmitters and supported more thorough analysis of how 5G C-band signals interact with sensitive aircraft instruments. The FAA used this data to determine that it is possible...

Verizon has deployed 8,000 virtualized cell sites

Verizon has now deployed over 8,000 virtualized cell sites with a goal of deploying over 20,000 by the end of 2025. 

“We are building the network with the most advanced technology available, because we know people rely on our network and we are committed to delivering the variety and quality of services our customers need,” said Adam Koeppe, Senior Vice President of Planning and Technology at Verizon. “Even while driving the most aggressive network deployment in our company’s history, we know giving people access to 5G is only part of the winning equation.”

Verizon anticipates that key 5G use cases will heavily rely on the programmability of virtualized networks. The company also the following networking developmentsL

  • ORAN - Disaggregating the hardware and software functions on the network through widespread virtualization creates the foundation for ORAN. ORAN is an evolution of the virtual network architecture with the potential to bring many benefits in terms of deployment flexibility, faster innovation in an open environment, and greater service options by increasing the opportunity for new entrants to provide competitive and advanced solutions. More competition, more innovation, and increased supplier diversity will all be a net benefit to operators and consumers. 
  • Advanced antenna configurations - Verizon continues to drive antenna efficiency, including widespread use of Massive MIMO, which leads to greater speeds and less signal interference resulting in greater capacity and speed for customers.
  • MEC - Mobile EdgeComputing (MEC) moves the data processing done by the applications and services closer to the customer at the edge of the network. This shortens the roundtrip distance data travels from the device to servers that can process data. This helps critical, performance-impacting applications respond more quickly and efficiently. Verizon’s MEC is deployed in a rack next to our Core network gear which enables the lowest possible latency. We are partnering with the top cloud partners, driving tighter network integration/differentiation through API’s. Verizon recently expanded its MEC ecosystem by bringing AWS Wavelength zones to Nashville and Tampa and now reaches 19 metro areas. This means that 75% of the U.S. population is now within 150 miles of VZ 5G Edge.
  • Webscale platform - Using a Verizon-owned and operated webscale platform, Verizon engineers have created a cloud-native architecture. Verizon’s telco cloud has been optimized for telco workloads, unique telco regulatory and performance requirements, and tighter integration with other operations systems. This unique cloud architecture drives efficiency and allows functionality to be distributed throughout the network. Verizon’s native telco workloads (Core, RAN, signaling, and user plane) run more efficiently and with better performance and resiliency when deployed on this optimized cloud platform.

Aalyria envisions satellite-to-surface mesh with free space optics

Aalyria, a start-up based in Livermore, California, with roots in Google's now-disbanded Project Loon, emerged from stealth to unveil its ambitions for satellite communications.

Aalyria will offer a software platform for orchestrating networks of ground stations, aircraft, satellites, ships, and urban meshes. The software optimizes and continually evolves the antenna link scheduling, network traffic routing, and spectrum resources. In addition,  Aalyria will leverage an advanced coherent light free space optics technology for satellite-to-surface communications.

Aalyria is backed by leading Silicon Valley investors including the founders of Accel, J2 Ventures and Housatonic.

Google cancels Project Loon

Google is saying goodbye to Project Loon, its long-running effort to bring broadband connectivity to rural areas via free-floating balloons. The moonshot project launched in 2013 with a mission to deliver Internet access to "all the world's people" including remote locations on every continent." In a blog posting, Alastair Westgarth, CEO of Loon, said the company simply did not find a way "to get the costs low enough to build a long-term, sustainable...

Loon enters commercial service in Kenya 

Alphabet's Loon division began providing broadband service via balloon to subscribers of Telkom Kenya. The service footprint spans nearly 50,000 square kilometers across western and central parts of Kenya, including the areas of Iten, Eldoret, Baringo, Nakuru, Kakamega, Kisumu, Kisii, Bomet, Kericho, and Narok. Loon is using a fleet of around 35 or more separate balloons circulating in the stratosphere. The company is aiming to add balloons over...

Verizon tests 200 MHz of C-band spectrum

Verizon completed lab trials using 200 MHz of C-band spectrum for 5G – a significant increase from the 60 MHz of spectrum it has deployed in 5G markets to date. 

Last month, Verizon announced it was beginning to deploy 5G over 100 MHz of the spectrum.

Verizon won C-Band licenses for between 140-200 MHz in all available markets, and began in the first 46 areas deploying up to 60 MHz. Over the next few years as additional spectrum is cleared by satellite companies, Verizon will be able to deploy 5G Ultra Wideband on all available bandwidth that it has licensed, up to 200 MHz. Every piece of equipment being deployed today is capable of the full 200MHz of bandwidth.

“Imagine adding several more lanes to a highway,” said Adam Koeppe, Senior Vice President of Technology and Planning at Verizon. “The more lanes, the more cars can get on and off the interstate and the faster they can drive. In the same way, the more spectrum we open up on our network, the more data can move across our network faster and more efficiently.”

“Spectral efficiency is critical as we scale our network and define new, automated, customized ways for customers to use our network” said Koeppe. “We have a long history of efficiently using the assets we have and we intend to continue to flex our engineering muscle as strong stewards of spectrum licenses. Using technologies like carrier aggregation, maximizing the build for long term access to spectrum and planning ahead for future spectrum needs has allowed us to engage a highly disciplined approach to efficiently and rapidly make these spectrum resources available to our customers.”

Kaloom raises $21 million for cloud-native edge networking

Kaloom, a start-up based in Montreal, has secured  an additional US$21 million for its programmable and automated cloud-native edge center networking software solution. 

Kaloom's Cloud Edge Fabric is an automated and programmable network fabric with built-in support for network slicing featuring an embedded multi-Terabit per second (Tbps) 5G UPF that is a highly performant, scalable, low latency cloud native solution. 

The new investment came from the Quebec government and current investor, Alternative Capital Group (ACG), who matched the government of Quebec’s investment. 

Kaboom said the latest investment will support its go-to-market strategy and extend its current heterogeneous hardware strategy by supporting additional platforms like SmartNICs and servers. 

"With this investment, we can harness our momentum and continue to serve our global customers while expanding into new markets," said Laurent Marchand, Kaloom Founder and CEO. "Our mission is to empower service providers and operators worldwide with automated and fully programmable distributed edge network solutions that transform underlying network infrastructure and reduce total cost of ownership. This investment is critical to achieving that mission globally and enabling 5G-Edge and private 5G monetization in our industry."

Black Hawk flight data transferred via AT&T 5G

In a test conducted last month at Lockheed Martin's Sikorsky headquarters in Stratford, Connecticut, AT&T securely and rapidly transferred UH-60M Black Hawk health and usage data through an AT&T 5G private cellular network and Lockheed Martin's 5G.MIL multi-site pilot network.

The AT&T 5G millimeter wave private cellular network wirelessly transferred data to the 5G.MIL network through ground support equipment from the Black Hawk's Integrated Vehicle Health Management System (IVHMS). The data was then routed to local Sikorsky networks for processing and distribution through the secure Lockheed Martin 5G.MIL pilot network to the Waterton, Colorado, 5G test range site.

Currently, it takes Black Hawk crews about 30 minutes to remove the IVHMS data cartridge from the helicopter, transport it to an operations center and extract the data for analysis. Lockheed Martin used AT&T 5G private cellular technologies to reduce the time required to less than 5 minutes including cartridge removal, demonstrating the potential benefits in time and cost for military and commercial helicopter operations. 

The companies said the test demonstrated that 5G  on the flight line can support accelerated maintenance operations and improved aircraft readiness. It also proved highly secure interoperability between the AT&T millimeter wave 5G private cellular network and the 5G.MIL pilot network.

"These 5G capabilities deployed at scale are expected to enable high-speed, secure-data transfer on virtually any flight line, providing another example of how we're advancing our 21st Century Security vision by improving customer readiness and operations," said Dan Rice, vice president of 5G.MIL Programs at Lockheed Martin. "In collaboration with commercial 5G leaders, an interoperable 5G.MIL multi-site, multi-vendor network is another step closer to reality."

CyrusOne appoints Eric Schwartz as CEO (former Equinix)

CyrusOne has appointed Eric Schwartz as Chief Executive Officer, replacing Dave Ferdman, who has served as CyrusOne’s interim President & Chief Executive Officer since July 28, 2021. Mr. Ferdman, Founder of CyrusOne, will continue to work with the company and the team in the role of Board Member.

For the past 16 years, Eric has been an executive at Equinix in several roles, including leading the EMEA region for Equinix from 2008 to 2019. More recently, Eric has led Strategy and Development for Equinix, including the company’s xScale program and joint ventures focused on developing datacenters for large-scale customers. 

Waldemar Szlezak, Partner, KKR, said, “Eric brings tremendous experience as a leader to CyrusOne, having served as an executive at Equinix for 16 years, including leading the EMEA region for over a decade, leading the development of data centers for large-scale customers, and playing an integral role as a member of the company’s global leadership team. We are thrilled he has joined to help lead the CyrusOne team as the business continues to scale.”

KKR and Global Infrastructure Partners complete CyrusOne acquisition

Funds managed by KKR, a leading global investment firm, and Global Infrastructure Partners, completed their previously-announced acquisition of CyrusOne for $15 billion in cash.“Closing this transaction begins an exciting new chapter for CyrusOne as we continue our global expansion with the benefit of significant resources and expertise that KKR and GIP are able to provide to the Company and its customers,” said Dave Ferdman, Co-Founder and President...