Sunday, August 6, 2023

Tech Update: Rethinking networking for AI

Wondering how AI is transforming data center networking?

Shekar Ayyar, CEO of Arrcus, explains how:

  • The rise of AI applications is causing enterprises to rethink their network architectures. These applications demand massive scale and flexibility, pushing the boundaries of traditional, rigid data center technology.
  • Arrcus promotes the concept of flexible networking with their network operating system, ArcOS. This system can be distributed as needed, from the core to the edge, providing a unique architecture that saves cost and connects to the 5G ecosystem.
  • The transformation of data center networking is not just a nice-to-have, but a necessary architectural improvement to support applications like AI. This shift towards flexibility and scalability is the future of data center networking.

OFS offers Fiber Solutions for America's Broadband Buildout

In support of the Build America, Buy America Act, OFC is kicking off  Fiber Solutions for America's Broadband Buildout emphasizing its well-established U.S. manufacturing capabilities. The program supports fiber broadband and middle-mile infrastructure builds under the Biden administrations BEAD initiative.

For nearly five decades, OFS with its AT&T Bell Labs heritage has been at the forefront of optical fiber, fiber optic cable, and optical connectivity development and production in the United States. The company notes that part of its heritage includes being an inventor of original fiber optic technologies.

OFS currently operates manufacturing facilities in Connecticut, Georgia, Massachusetts, and New Jersey.

OFS expanded its domestic production of optical fiber and fiber optic cable with a $139M investment in Georgia completed in 2020 and employs over 1000 people in Georgia alone.

Sandia Labs develops method to intregrate photonic devices on chip

Sandia National Laboratories has patented a method to create hybrid silicon devices: hybrid lasers and amplifiers made from both indium phosphide and silicon, and similarly modulators made of both lithium-niobate and silicon. The lasers generate light in the C-band and the O-band wavelengths, which are commonly used in the telecommunications industry.

The Sandia team used many of the same tools found at commercial semiconductor plants.

“We know our process is scalable, so that’s one way we’re supporting the CHIPS Act mission,” Patrick said. “Sandia is eager to collaborate with others and start building new technologies together,” stated Patrick Chu, who co-leads the National Security Photonics Center, a group of more than 60 photonics scientists and engineers at Sandia’s Microsystems Engineering, Science and Applications complex.

Virtual connections on the Equinix Fabric surpass 50,000

Equinix reported Q2 revenue of $2.0 billion, up 11% over the same quarter last year or 14% on a normalized and constant currency basis. Net income was $207 million, a 4% decrease from the same quarter last year, primarily due to lower income from operations and higher income tax expense given a favorable tax settlement in 2022.

“We continue to see momentum in our business as digital transformation accelerates the pace of innovation and changes the way business is done. By 2026, IDC is forecasting that 40% of revenue from G2000 companies will come from digital products, services and experiences, a dynamic that is reshaping the basis of competition in nearly every industry, and making digital an unprecedented force for economic growth,” stated Charles Meyers, President and CEO, Equinix.

Some highlights for Q2

  • Equinix added 12 new projects including new International Business Exchange data center builds in Lisbon, Monterrey and Mumbai—in addition to the company's first build in Kuala Lumpur, one of the most strategic markets in Asia.
  • Equinix was selected to build incremental data center capacity in Singapore in response to the Singapore Government's Data Center Call for Application process. 
  • Equinix's Channel program delivered another strong quarter, accounting for 40% of bookings and nearly 60% of new logos. It continues to see growth from partners like Accenture, Avant, Cisco, Dell and HPE.
  • Equinix's global interconnection franchise continues to perform with over 456,000 total interconnections. 
  • In Q2, interconnection revenues stepped up 10% year over year as reported or 11% year over year on a normalized and constant currency basis.
  • Equinix Fabric saw total virtual connections surpassing 50,000 in the quarter for the first time, as it continues to add new capabilities to support larger workloads, like data-intensive AI training models and scalable enterprise networks. 
  • Beginning in the third quarter, Equinix Fabric customers will be able to provision virtual connections to cloud providers with bandwidths of up to 50 gigabits per second, with Google Cloud as the first cloud provider to support this capability.

Ericsson opens 5G manufacturing site in Penang

Ericsson inaugurated a 5G radio equipment manufacturing site in Penang, Malaysia.

The production was inaugurated by Communications and Digital Minister YB Ahmad Fahmi bin Mohamed Fadzil (who was represented by Deputy Minister YB Teo Nie Ching), Penang Caretaker Chief Minister Tuan Chow Kon Yeow, and Swedish Ambassador to Malaysia, His Excellency Dr Joachim Bergstrom.

Ericsson has been in Malaysia since 1965 and is rolling out the 5G network for Malaysia.

In addition to delivering a world-class 5G network, the selection of Malaysia for manufacturing also increases Ericsson’s socio-economic contribution to the country. Malaysia already hosts a Global Maintenance Center in Bukit Jelutong, which is one of the largest in the world, a Regional Distribution Centre at KLIA’s Free Trade Zone. It is also the base for a Regional Competence Hub that hosts 5G expertise and regional support functions, as well as promotes local talent globally.

Dell’Oro: PON equipment revenue to grow to $13.3 B in 2027

A new report from Dell’Oro Group predicts that sales of PON equipment for fiber-to-the-home deployments, cable broadband access equipment, and fixed wireless CPE will show a 0.2 percent Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) from 2022 to 2027, as service providers continue to expand their fiber and DOCSIS 3.1/4.0 networks, while also increasing the reliability and sustainability of their broadband access networks.

“After three consecutive years of tremendous broadband network expansions and upgrades, 2023 is expected to show a return to normalized levels of spending,” said Jeff Heynen, Vice President of Broadband Access and Home Networking research at Dell’Oro Group. “After 2023, spending is expected to increase through 2026 and 2027, driven by 25 Gbps and 50 Gbps PON, Fixed Wireless CPE, as well as DAA and DOCSIS 4.0 deployments.”

Additional highlights from the Broadband Access & Home Networking 5-Year July 2023 Forecast Report:

  • PON equipment revenue is expected to grow from $11.8 B in 2022 to $13.3 B in 2027, driven largely by XGS-PON deployments in North America, EMEA, and CALA.
  • Revenue for Cable Distributed Access Equipment (Virtual CCAP, Remote PHY Devices, Remote MACPHY Devices, and Remote OLTs) is expected to reach $1.6 B by 2027, as operators ramp their DOCSIS 4.0 and fiber deployments.
  • Revenue for Fixed Wireless CPE is expected to reach $2.7 B by 2027, led by shipments of 5G sub-6GHz and 5G Millimeter Wave units.
  • Revenue for Residential Wi-Fi Routers will surpass $5.2 B in 2027, owing to massive shipments of Wi-Fi 7 units. 

Georgia’s Cellfie Mobile awards 5G upgrade contract to Nokia

Tbilisi-based Cellfie Mobile (Cellfie) awarded an expansion contract to Nokia to modernize the mobile operator’s Georgia-wide 4G network and prepare the country for a 5G-ready future. 

Under the deal, Nokia will supply equipment from its 5G AirScale portfolio powered by its energy-efficient ReefShark System-on-Chip (SoC) technology. The deal will include its latest generation of, AirScale Baseband, and Remote Radio Head (RRH) products. Nokia will modernize and upgrade existing sites with LTE networks as well as add new 5G-ready sites. 

Following the country’s 5G spectrum auction, Nokia will also introduce 5G (3.5 GHz) new sites. Cellfie will also utilize Nokia’s intelligent MantaRay Network Management system to enable a consolidated network view for improved network monitoring and management, enhanced with built-in AI functionalities.