Monday, June 10, 2024

Lightpath to Acquire United Fiber & Data for NYC-to-Ashburn route

Lightpath agreed to acquire substantially all of the assets of United Fiber and Data (UFD), which owns and operates a diverse 323-route mile, high-fiber count network between New York City and Ashburn, Virginia. UFD also owns a 79-route mile metro network in New York City and New Jersey, including connectivity to over 350 enterprise and data center locations and a high-fiber count crossing of the Hudson River, which will add capacity to Lightpath's three existing Hudson River crossings. 

UFD's New York City-Ashburn network offers high-fiber counts, the latest optical technologies from Ciena, and will support dark fiber, Ethernet, and wavelengths up to 800 Gbps. UFD's network is geographically diverse from typical long-haul routes along the I-95 corridor and will enhance Lightpath's network of over 20,000 route miles, connecting over 15,000 service locations, including over 140 data centers and 7 cable landing stations. The combination of networks will allow Lightpath to offer geographically diverse, high-capacity services from commercial enterprise buildings, cable landing stations, and data centers along the east coast, directly to the Ashburn ecosystem.     

UFD customers will gain access to the entire Lightpath network as well as the entire service portfolio, including Wavelengths, Ethernet, Internet, Private Networks, Dark Fiber, LP FlexNet, Voice, Security Solutions, and other Managed Services. Additionally, customers will be able to utilize Lightpath services to connect to over 140 data centers, 7 cable landing stations, and all major cloud providers.  

Financial terms were not disclosed. The deal is expected to close in Q3.

"The addition United Fiber & Data is a natural extension of Lightpath's expansive Greater New York City Metropolitan fiber assets, increasing our ability to serve high-capacity customer needs into the Ashburn data center ecosystem and further enhancing our Manhattan metro coverage where we will serve nearly 1,500 enterprise and data center destinations, a 5x increase over the past 3 years," stated Chris Morley, CEO of Lightpath. "This represents a continuation of Lightpath's strategic investment thesis of creating critical fiber infrastructure in attractive and high growth markets for the benefit of our Enterprise, Hyperscale, and Wholesale customers."

Altice USA owns a 50.01% interest in Lightpath and Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners (MSIP) owns 49.99% of Lightpath.

Apple powers Private Cloud Compute with its own servers

At its #WWDC24 event in Cupertino, Apple announced Private Cloud Compute, its in-house cloud intelligence system designed specifically for private AI processing. 

The idea is to extend Apple Intelligence from the user’s device to the cloud while preserving security and privacy.  Apple says this will enable user to access even larger server-based models than could be achieved on-device, while ensuring that data stays within its Private Cloud Compute infrastructure.

Apple’s Craig Federighi said Private Cloud Compute will be powered by custom servers built with Apple silicon.  He also noted that user data would not be used to train Apple’s AI models.

In addition, Apple confirmed that iOS18 will have SMS-via-satellite capabilities.

IDC: Worldwide Public Cloud Services up 20% in 2023

According to new data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Semiannual Public Cloud Services Tracker, global revenue for the public cloud services market reached $669.2 billion in 2023, marking a 19.9% increase compared to 2022.

"In large part due to end-user investment in AI, PaaS revenue growth continues to outpace the overall cloud market," said Adam Reeves, research director, PaaS for Developers of Modern and Edge Applications. "Both market share-leading vendors and smaller providers continue to release PaaS-delivered AI offerings. Vendors are focused on being strategic partners to their customers by delivering highly performant, developer-friendly, trustworthy, and secure offerings that help users deliver intelligent applications more efficiently."


  • In 2023, the largest source of public cloud services revenue was Software as a Service – Applications (SaaS – Applications), making up nearly 45% of the market total. 
  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) was the second-largest revenue category with 19.9% of the total. Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service – System Infrastructure Software (SaaS – SIS) accounted for 18.4% and 17.0% of the overall revenue, respectively. 
  • Notably, PaaS and SaaS – SIS experienced the fastest year-over-year revenue growth.
  • The leading providers of public cloud services maintained their positions in 2023 with the combined revenue of the top 5 public cloud service providers – Microsoft, Amazon Web Services, Salesforce Inc., Google, and Oracle – capturing 40.5% of the worldwide total. 
  • With offerings in all four deployment categories, Microsoft remained in the top position in the overall public cloud services market with 16.8% share in 2023, followed by Amazon Web Services with 12.4% share.
  • IDC forecasts worldwide public cloud services revenue will surpass $800 billion in 2024, an increase of 20.5% over 2023 with a similar increase expected in 2025. 
  • While the annual rate of growth will slow slightly over the forecast period, the market is still forecast to deliver a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19.5% with worldwide revenues reaching $1.6 trillion in 2028.

Nokia completes first call using 3GPP IVAS Codec

Nokia completed the first cellular call using the new 3GPP Immersive Voice and Audio Services (IVAS) codec.

The IVAS codec, which is part of the upcoming 5G Advanced standard, allows consumers to hear 3D spatial sound in real-time instead of today’s monophonic smartphone voice call experience. The 3GPP IVAS codec standard has been developed by a consortium of 13 companies under the framework of the IVAS codec public collaboration. Nokia has been a leader in these standardization efforts and has contributed major parts of the technology to the standard, including the development of a smartphone specific format for the IVAS standard.

The company described the call as "the biggest leap forward in the live voice calling experience since the introduction of monophonic telephony."

Nokia was able to successfully demonstrate the IVAS technology in a real-time call even though the technology has not yet been implemented in mobile networks. This first live call used Nokia’s proprietary Immersive Voice technology to achieve the experience over a public 5G network.

Pekka Lundmark, Nokia's President and CEO, held a live immersive audio and video call with Stefan Lindström, Finland's Ambassador of Digitalization and New Technologies.

Stefan Lindström, Finnish Ambassador of Digitalization and New Technologies, said: "The live immersive voice and audio experience enabled by IVAS improves the richness and quality of the call, and the three-dimensional sound experience makes interaction more lifelike and engaging, bringing a wealth of new benefits to personal and professional communication. Immersive communications technology will also take XR and metaverse interaction to the next level."

Pekka Lundmark, President and CEO of Nokia, said: "We have demonstrated the future of voice calls. This groundbreaking audio technology takes you to the caller’s environment creating a spatial and massively improved listening experience for voice and video calls, offering significant benefits for enterprise and industrial applications."

HKBN to deploy Nokia's 25G PON fiber

Hong Kong Broadband Network Limited (HKBN) will deploy Nokia's 25G PON fiber solution to deliver 20 Gbps symmetrical broadband speeds for its users.

Nokia said its 25G PON, which is based on its Quillion chipset, allows HKBN to reuse its existing fiber broadband equipment.

William Yeung, HKBN Co-Owner, Executive Vice-chairman and Group CEO, said: “Since 2004, HKBN has been the market leader in introducing Hong Kong's first fiber-to-the-home broadband service. With an unwavering commitment to innovation, we have joined forces with Nokia to achieve a groundbreaking upgrade, proudly providing customers with a revolutionary 25Gbps broadband speed that meets their ever-increasing demands for network connectivity. Looking ahead, we will continue to stay at the forefront of technological advancements, investing resources to expand network coverage and upgrade infrastructure. This will enable more households and businesses to benefit from our exceptional and high-quality services.”          

Geert Heyninck, Vice President of Broadband Networks at Nokia, said: “Nokia’s technology enables HKBN to upgrade its existing fiber network quickly and efficiently, leveraging both passive and active assets. With Nokia's technology and HKBN 's citywide network, we're leading customers into a new era of seamless connectivity.”

GSMA: MWC Barcelona has a €502 million impact on local economy

MWC Barcelona 2024, which attracted over 101,000 participants over four days in February, contributed €502 million to the Barcelona economy, according to an economic impact report released by the GSMA.

The 0.5 billion euros in economic impact is over twice that of the inaugural edition of MWC in Barcelona, which was held in 2006. This means that cumulatively the event’s total economic contribution to Barcelona has reached €6.3bn since 2006. 

MWC Barcelona 2024 in numbers: 

  • €502mn of economic impact generated 
  • More than 9,200 part time jobs created 
  • €6.3bn contributed to the Barcelona economy in total since 2006  
  • More than 101,000 attendees from 205 countries and territories 
  • More than 2,700 exhibitors, sponsors and partners 
  • Over 59% of attendees representing industries adjacent to the core mobile ecosystem 
  • Over 1,100 speakers and thought leaders, including over 40% female speakers

“Our contribution to the prosperity and economic opportunities of Barcelona is clear, and we are delighted and proud to be part of the success of this city which means so much to us. MWC and Barcelona is the perfect combination of innovation, collaboration and mutual success – without the support of Host City Partners and the people of Barcelona, we wouldn’t be able to put on such a successful event, year after year. We are so grateful for this public-private partnership,” said GSMA Ltd.’s CEO, John Hoffman.