Thursday, March 31, 2011

Wireless DPI, Caching and Policy Management Wins by Allot and Openet

Allot and Openet announced (separately) recent wins – unfortunately without disclosing the customers names. Nevertheless, it provides one more proof as for the demand for DPI, caching and policy management solutions in the wireless market (Rami Hadar, Allot's CEO, says that "Mobile now accounts for approximately 40% of our total sales").

Allot announced (here) "five new mobile operator customers since the start of 2011. The operators, which are located throughout EMEA and Asia, selected Allot solutions based upon the Service Gateway .. include MediaSwift, an intelligent media caching solution which accelerates internet content delivery and improves the user experience, thereby reducing peering link costs". (see "PeerApp OEMs to ALU, Allot and BTI Systems" - here).
Openet (recently recognized as the policy management market leader - here) announced "a major policy win with a U.S. tier one wireless operator, including deployment of a suite of policy solutions. The suite will include Openet’s Corporate Spending Controls, Fair Usage, Parental and Content Controls and Service Passes solutions which will replace existing legacy products".

Several months ago the two companies presented a joint solution - see "Allot - Openet: Monetizing and Controlling OTT Applications Use Cases" - here.

DPI Deployments (61): University of Dayton Uses Procera's New Solution to Enforce Usage Allowances

Procera Networks continues to push its education market efforts (background - "Does the Education Market need Bandwidth Management?" - here) announcing a new "Smart Campus traffic management solution" and a deployment by the University of Dayton.

See "Procera Expands Smart Campus Solution for Higher Education" - here.

Al Stern, Director of Systems and Networking for The University of Dayton said: "Procera's Smart Campus enables us to identify and enforce usage allowances for users consuming high-bandwidth applications across multiple devices, such as laptops pulling down HD movies and streaming gaming consoles.. Once users exceed their bandwidth allotment, we can dynamically reduce their consumption rate, thus preserving the Quality of Experience for other users and allowing us to avoid increased operational expenses associated with bandwidth upgrades".

The university's "POLICY ON FAIR, RESPONSIBLE AND ACCEPTABLE Use University of Dayton resources for non-University related activities that unduly increase the network load (e.g., chain mail, network gaming and spamming)".  
USE OF ELECTRONIC RESOURCES" says that you may not "

As for the new solution, Procera lists some new features, which are unique to the education market, beyond the expected DPI, monitoring and traffic shaping capabilities:
  • Identification of users' identity based on integrating with Cisco's NAC (Clean Access)  and ImpulsePoint's Safe Connect  (as well as LDAP, RADIUS and Bradford Networks)
  • Peer-to-Peer Auditing capabilities for HEOA compliance and simplified DMCA response (see "Achieve HEOA & DMCA Compliance with PacketLogic Traffic Shaping Solutions" - here)
  • Departmental Chargeback  
Related posts:
  • Ohio University Tries to Block Netflix as "Internet pipeline is overflowing" - here 
  • iPad - A Traffic Management Problem for Universities - here

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Canada's Usage based Billing - Bell Rethinks, Netflix to the Rescue

Bell Canada Usage based Billing story continues (see previous episodes here).

Now the carrier has a new idea - it proposed that " ..the CRTC implement a new wholesale Internet pricing model that supports investment, competition and choice. Called Aggregated Volume Pricing, or AVP, the model provides wholesale ISPs with complete pricing flexibility on a per-customer basis. It offers wholesale ISPs the flexibility to develop their own pricing approaches, while supporting the fundamental principle that those who use less network capacity do not subsidize those that use the most .. In the case of legacy networks, the vast majority of ISPs will not have to pay for AVP because Bell will provide a significant usage credit up to 41 GB per user on an aggregate basis. As long as the ISP average does not exceed 41 GB per user, it will not have to pay AVP".

For more details on "How the AVP model works" see "Bell’s Aggregated Volume Pricing (AVP) proposal for high-speed Internet services used by wholesale ISPs" - here.

On the same day, Neil Hunt (picture), Chief Product Officer, Netflix was there to help his loyal Canadian customers, in a different way.

In the company's blog, Neil announces that "starting today, watching movies and TV shows streaming from Netflix will use 2/3 less data on average, with minimal impact to video quality. Now Canadians can watch 30 hours of streaming from Netflix in a month that will consume only 9 GBytes of data, well below most data caps ..Any member can adjust the settings anytime by visiting the Manage Video Quality page, found under Your Account .. In the past, viewing 30 hours of Netflix could consume as much as 70 GBytes, if it was all in HD, and typically about 30 GBytes".

So, with the new proposal from Bell, Netflix users may go back to the previous quality!

See "Netflix Lowers Data Usage By 2/3 For Members In Canada" - here.

[Update 36: Torres, Tibco/Kabira] PCRF - DPI Compatibility Matrix

Several updates made to the PCRF-DPI matrix:
  • Torres Networks informed me that they are now interoperable with Arbor's eSeries (Ellacoya) product line
  • The former Kabira products were rebranded as TIBCO Policy Orchestration™, presenting 4 key functions - Policy server, Profile manager, Usage server and Quota server. Tibco acquired Kabira a year ago. Tibco annual report says that:

    "On April 20, 2010, we acquired Kabira Technologies, Inc. (“Kabira”), a private company incorporated in Delaware and a provider of high performance transaction processing software solutions for communications service providers globally. Kabira’s products and solutions support key infrastructure capabilities such as subscriber provisioning, value-based charging, and mobile payments. Its in-memory approach to supporting transactions complements our abilities in handling events and adds to our broader suite of in-memory infrastructure software products. We paid $3.9 million of cash to acquire all of the outstanding equity of Kabira. We have also incurred $0.4 million of acquisition related and other expenses associated with the acquisition" (here).

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Infonetics: 2010 Policy Management Market up 48%, Openet Leads

A new research by  Shira Levine (picture), directing analyst for next gen OSS and policy at Infonetics Research, concludes that "Policy management revenue grew 48% in 2010 to $418.7 million worldwide, with the majority of spending occurring in the wireless market ..policy management market to nearly quadruple from 2010 to 2015, to $1.6B".

Previous Infonetics report said - "Policy Servers Market to reach $471M in 2010" - here ; Analysis Mason numbers: "Policy Management Market Reached $382M; Forecast 23% CAGR for the next 5 years" - here.
See "Policy management market up 48% year-over-year, quadrupling by 2015" - here.

"Top suppliers in the overall policy management market and in the fast-growing wireless segment held extremely close market share in 2010, with Openet pulling into the lead, followed by Bridgewater and Tekelec .. Skyrocketing machine-to-machine connections will drive growth in the policy management markets, as operators deploy solutions that identify and track M2M traffic and apply policy rules based on transaction type, time of day, network congestion, etc." (See "Tekelec Prepares Policy Management for M2M Communication" - here).

Data Caps or Speed Throttling?

Light Reading conducted a short "man in the street" kind of survey (actully in the streets of CTIA 2011 - so not necessarily impartial people) asking consumers whether they prefer a data cap or speed throttling policy for their mobile data service.

See video by Dan Jones (please follow the link to read his bio!), site editor Light Reading Mobile, below or "CTIA 2011: Throttling & the Data Cap Debate" - here.

I believe that this short survey shows the need for better subscriber management and self-provisioning services. For example, some said that they prefer speed throttling since they can’t monitor or estimate usage - so if data-caps are to be used, consumers should have an easy way to monitor usage, top-up quota etc. Same for speed limits - notifications and an option to get back to normal speed should be easy.

Side note - if I am not mistaken, the lady that is interviewed was the author of article I presetned yesterday (Debra Baker - here).

Monday, March 28, 2011

DPI Deployments (60): ACS [US] Uses Procera for Visibility, Reporting and Policy Enforcement

Procera Networks announced that "PacketLogic being deployed as the central intelligence point and service enabler by small to mid-size Internet service providers (ISPs) that build out broadband in rural areas with support from the national Broadband Initiatives Program (BIP) .. Arvig Communication Systems, also known as ACS, is the leading local multi-service communications provider serving residential & business customers throughout northwestern Minnesota"

See "Procera Successfully Deployed for Rural Broadband Build-Out" - here.

John Ketelhut, Internet Operations Manager at ACS said: ".. The visibility and policy enforcement we receive from Procera is invaluable for helping us plan the capacity required to support the projected explosive growth over the coming three to five years, while at the same time enabling new applications, services and devices rapidly gaining user acceptance and impacting our network."

[Globes]: Palo Alto Networks IPO Plans - Market Cap of $1-2B

Palo Alto Networks will submit its S-1 prospectus to the SEC later this year, and expects market cap of $1-2B.

The founder and CTO, Nir Zuk (picture), told the Israeli business site, Globes, that revenues for 2010 were $100M and the company expects revenues of $200M in 2011, with 60-70% margin.

Reported by Shmulik Shelach here (Hebrew).

Zuk explained that the company's "next generation firewalls" look deep into web application in order to secure enterprises' internet access.

Light Reading Survey: 38% of Operators have Policy Management Plans

Debra Baker (picture) reported to Communications Technology on Light Reading's  "Policy Management in the 4G Era" event held during CTIA 2011 last week:

"According to Graham Finnie, [Chief Analyst, Heavy Reading] .. 30 percent of 70 operators polled seven months ago said they had no policy-management plan in place, while 38 percent said they did. However, with the predictions of how much mobile data will be consumed in the next several years, not having a way to monitor and manage usage just seems shortsighted".

See "Live From CTIA: Got DPI?" - here and the short video below (from Light Reading's coverage - here).

"The bottom line is that DPI gives operators the tools to begin charging subscribers for the data they use, and isn’t that the whole idea?"

See also "Ovum: MNOs should use Customer Data and Policy Management to Drive Profits" - here.


Sunday, March 27, 2011

LSE: "The use of peer-to-peer technology should be encouraged"

Bart Cammaerts (picture) and Bingchun Meng from the Department of Media and Communications, London School of Economics and Political Science, published a report about "the proportionality and likely effectiveness of measures to protect intellectual property, due to be implemented by the DEA (Digital Economy Act)".

The DEA mandates Ofcom  to set up a code (here) to regulate the role of Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in curtailing online copyright infringements.

See the authors' blog post - "Media Policy Project Policy Brief 1: Creative Destruction and Copyright Protection" - here and the report (below and here).
According to the research, file-sharing is probably not the reason for the decline of recorded music sales, and revenues from sales of on-line music is rising rapidly. Since "Peer-to-peer file-sharing is a technology that makes distribution of content on a large scale possible and it is not inherently illegal" the report concludes that: 
  • The DEA gets the balance between copyright enforcement and innovation wrong
  • Providing user-friendly, hassle-free solutions to enable users to download music legally at a reasonable price, is a much more effective strategy for enforcing copyright than a heavy-handed legislative and regulatory regime 


[Yankee Group]: "Operators .. can potentially be at the center of the connected application and content ecosystem"

An interesting post to the Yankee Group's "The ANYWHERE BLOG" by Sandra Palumbo (picture) advises operators to "wade into the content provider world and start developing real relationships, partnerships and strategies for providing end users the services they want, no matter the device, no matter the network connection".

See "Operators and OTT Players as BFFs? Umm, Not Quite." - here.

"Operators are sitting at a place right now where they can potentially be at the center of the connected application and content ecosystem .. But I am not convinced that the operators have figured out how they can monetize and capitalize on this position they are in .. Perhaps one of the issues is a lack of understanding of the content community. Or perhaps it’s a fear of finally having to commit to application level and application specific SLAs"

Related posts:
  • Cisco: "there is a way to monetize that demanding video traffic" - here
  • Telefonica: "Pricing for Optimized Service should be based on QoS" - here
  • Allot - Openet: Monetizing and Controlling OTT Applications Use Cases - here

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Rogers [Canada] Admits its P2P Traffic Management Impacts Interactive Gaming

In a letter to the Canadian Regulator, CRTC, Rogers says that "Our tests have determined that there is a problem with our traffic management equipment that can interfere with World of Warcraft .. We recently introduced a software modification to solve the problems our customers are experiencing with World of Warcraft. However, there have been recent changes to the game, which has created new problems. A second software modification to address these new issues will not be ready until June .. We have determined that the problem occurs only when our customers are simultaneously using peer-to-peer file sharing applications and running the game".

See the letter, posted to, site - here.

According to Roger's Network Management Policy [here]:

"Rogers manages traffic associated with certain P2P file sharing protocols for customers of Rogers Hi-Speed Internet (delivered over cable) and Portable Internet from Rogers. We use packet inspection to determine the type (but not the content) of upstream traffic only. High-volume, low time-sensitive traffic (such as P2P file sharing) is limited to ensure all customers have a high level of service for time-sensitive tasks like sending email, requesting web pages, video and voice applications. For Rogers Hi Speed Internet (delivered over cable) and Portable Internet from Rogers customers, the maximum upload speed for P2P file sharing traffic is 80 kbps at all times. There are no limits on download speed for any application or protocol .. Rogers does not manage download P2P file sharing traffic; however, some P2P applications will limit download speeds based on various factors, including the amount of P2P upload traffic and protocol acknowledgments. These factors may be responsible for customers experiencing slow download P2P file sharing speeds.."

Friday, March 25, 2011

DPI Announcements: Ipoque Adds Reporting Facility

Net Reporter Statistics
Source: ipoque
 Ipoque announced the launch of a " Net Reporter product for traffic monitoring, reporting and trend analysis. With aggregated, real-time traffic statistics, the system provides detailed and customizable network visibility for all types of access networks right down to the individual subscriber level".
See "ipoque Launches Network Statistics and Traffic Analysis System" - here.

A network-level monitoring and reporting tool, with subscriber and applications views, is a basic feature of all DPI/traffic management solutions. Offering from other DPI vendors include Allot's NetXplorer, Sandvine's Network Analytics and Procera's PIC.

FCC: VoIP Replaces Regular Phone Service with Annual Growth of 21%

FCC, The US regulator published new statistics on internet access and voice services in the US, based on information collected from service providers (see "FCC Releases New Data on Internet Access Services, Local Telephone Competition",  here).

One of the reports shows the trend of switching from PSTN voice services to VoIP. According to the FCC report (here), between June 2009 to June 2010, "Interconnected VoIP subscriptions had increased by 21% (from 24 million to 29 million) and retail switched access lines had decreased by 8% (from 133 million to 122 million) during the preceding year. The combined effect was an annual decrease of 4% in wireline retail local telephone service connections (from 157 million to 151 million)".

Those 6M missing connections (without considering population changes) - are probably served now by wireless voice providers or by other VoIP services (the report does not include OTT providers such as Skype but does include operators such as Vonage).

Of the 29M VoIP subscribers, 24.2M are VoIP subscriptions that were sold with a broadband internet service, and 4.6M sold as a "standalone" VoIP subscription. 3.3M are "Nomdic" - "having the capability to use the service over any broadband connection to which the customer has access, for example, at a hotel or vacation residence"

Thursday, March 24, 2011

DigitalRoute Now Offers a PCC Solution

DigitalRoute (covered here) is moving from being a technology enabling vendor to a full solution provider, for Policy and Charging Control.

The company announced "the availability of the PolicyZone™ policy and charging control solution .. designed to address a wide range of use cases to enable and control services including Application-specific traffic steering, Time-limited bandwidth boost, Billshock prevention, Manage core- and access network congestion, Online charging, Parental control, Roaming access control and Subscriber tier and location based quality of service".

See "DigitalRoute launches Policy and Charging Control Solution" - here.

Jan Karlsson, CEO at DigitalRoute said: “DigitalRoute and our delivery partners have accumulated extensive experience in delivering bill shock prevention and customer centric policy and charging control solutions based on MediationZone. PolicyZone builds on this experience

DPI Announcements: Continuous Computing 200Gbps DPI Platform

Continuous Computing announced a new model for its ATCA based  FlexTCA platform, with 200 Gbps performance and 100GE interfaces (here), targeting network equipment vendors developing DPI products.

The highest performance we have seen so far for a standalone DPI product comes from Allot, with its recent 160Gbps announcement (See "Allot Boosts the Service Gateway to LTE" - here), also based on similar h/w components (ATCA, Netlogic packet processors). Nevertheless, Allot's Service Gateway is a fully functional product, while CCPU's platform still requires an additional application layer, which may or may not be able to explore the full performance potential of the platform.

While CCPU's new platform may seen as getting closer to an end-user solution (as it now combines DPI s/w, see below), Brian Wood (picture), CCPU's VP marketing, says that "CCPU draws a line just below the application layer and does not cross it"

"With this new platform family, network intelligence solutions such as Policy Charging and Enforcement Functions (PCEF) can exceed 200Gbps while wireless core and security applications can scale up to 320Gbps. Since “wire-speed” performance is so essential for DPI-based application differentiation and success, the cutting-edge FlexTCA family raises the ceiling on what is possible with mobile network packet processing platforms"

See "Continuous Computing Introduces Industry’s Highest Performance, Highest Capacity ATCA DPI Platforms" - here.

The new announcement includes the PP81 (here), a new packet processing blade with 40Gbps performance, a new switch (FM81, here) and a DPI software package (see "Continuous Computing Packages Qosmos, 6WIND and Wind River Packet Processing", here). With the FM81 "Continuous Computing’s new FlexTCA DPI platform is the first to come with native 100GbE interfaces".

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sandvine and Citrix Integrated Offload Solution - See How !

Sandvine announced that " is collaborating with .. Citrix Systems to offer mobile packet core offload solutions for mobile carriers"

The joint solution integrates Sandvine's DPI products (PTS) with Citrix NetScaler (here), a product line that so far was addressing, and associated by many with the enterprise and data centers markets.

Sandvine presents two use-cases:
  1. Help mobile carriers reduce both packet core congestion and transit costs, using intelligent traffic redirection based on subscriber, device, and application type. In this scenario, the PTS redirects select mobile 3G or 4G data traffic to NetScaler, which routes the traffic via a direct path to the Internet, while the control plane remains unaffected
  2. Multi-national mobile providers can improve service for data roaming subscribers on affiliated networks. This solution reduces network transit costs while dramatically reducing traffic latency for an improved user experience. 
According to Don Bowman, Sandvine's CTO, NetScaler is performing network address translation (NAT). PTS is installed in the IuPS (see chart below and "Sandvine New DPI Device for LTE" - here). Sandvine's PTS performs the function of online and offline charging as otherwise the carrier cannot count the data. PTS also selects the ‘right user’, ‘right traffic’, etc. E.g. only HTTP traffic from laptops might be one operators deployment, another might be only post-paid data.

In the 2nd use-case, its the same deployment but in Gp, and the PTS has a relationship with multiple OCS & OFCS systems, one for each home operator. It allows local serving of outbound roaming.

In addition, NetScaler also provides cache integration (here). 

DPI Announcements: Continuous Computing Packages Qosmos, 6WIND and Wind River Packet Processing

Barriers to entry the DPI market lower and products are quickly easier to develop, as a number of enabling technologies, combining packet processors, DPI and system s/w as well as blades are now available from multiple sources. While the cost ‘instant DPI’ is probably high, it shortens time to market while commoditizing the basic DPI features
Continuous Computing announced ".. FlowEngine, a deep packet inspection (DPI) software framework to enable network equipment providers (NEPs) to accelerate development and delivery of applications that make use of DPI. Designed to save time and boost performance, FlowEngine combines best-in-class software components with Continuous Computing’s load balancing and Trillium monitoring software with an extensive range of application intelligence software from Qosmos and packet processing software from 6WIND and Wind River".
See "Continuous Computing Announces FlowEngine Framework and Partner Ecosystem to Enable Complete, End-to-End DPI-based Applications" - here.  
The new package should allow network equipment vendors to quickly develop DPI applications using Continues Computing's ATCA DPI blade, based on NetLogic XLR packet processors (here). In a way, it competes with Cavium, who offers its own packet processors and a DPI s/w package (see "Cavium Now Offers DPI s/w" - here). A 3rd option is available from Netronome and Qosmos (here).

Mike Langlois, general manager for networking and telecommunications at Wind River (a wholly owned subsidiary of Intel), stated: “The ongoing explosion of data traffic demands advanced packet handling solutions that enable a range of network acceleration capabilities including DPI. The combination of Continuous Computing’s FlowEngine with Wind River runtime technologies, such as Wind River Network Acceleration Platform, can deliver an innovative solution that helps our customers break through the traffic bottleneck and bring much needed network intelligence to improve ARPU.”

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Optimization Deployments (59): Revol Wireless [US] Selected Bytemobile to Improve Network Capacity

Bytemobile announced that "Revol Wireless has selected its integrated web and video gateway platform to improve network capacity for the delivery of video and internet content to its subscribers .. All devices on the Revol Wireless network will benefit from the Bytemobile® Unison™ Smart Capacity platform [covered - here] deployed at the core of Revol’s all-digital network".

See "Revol Wireless Improves Network Capacity and Customers’ Mobile Content and Video Experience with Bytemobile" - here
Bytemobile claims now for 36 video optimization wins, deployed by 21 operators with a contractual commitment of 15 additional deployments (see "Bytemobile Secures its 36th Video Optimization Win for Mobile Network Operator Deployment - here).

Revol Wireless, a locally owned and operated wireless carrier headquartered in Independence. Ohio. The operator says that "Unlike traditional wireless companies that limit your minutes or charge you extra for text messaging and other data features, revol only offers unlimited wireless service. That means you can use your phone as much as you want for a flat monthly rate (no nasty billing surprises)".

However, terms and conditions (here) say that "Revol Mobile Web cannot be used: (i) for up/down-loading or streaming of movies, music, or games; (ii) with server devices or with host computer applications, including web camera posts/broadcasts, automatic data feeds, VOIP, or file sharing; (iii) as a substitute or backup for private lines or dedicated data connections; or (iv) for Peer-to-Peer (P2P) file sharing.
Scott Bergs (picture), COO of Revol Wireless, said: "The Bytemobile Smart Capacity web and video optimization platform enables us to deliver a robust user experience on high-end smartphone devices, while enhancing the efficiency and scaling the capacity of our network

Bytemobile: Video Stalling is Still a Major Problem for MNOs

Bytemobile released its 1Q 2011 Mobile Minute Metrics report (see the press release - "Bytemobile Secures its 36th Video Optimization Win for Mobile Network Operator Deployment" - here and download section - here).

Among the many charts, I found the one discussion Video Stalling as very interesting. The vendor reached the following conclusions:
  • Even on advanced networks, mobile video users experience stalling of play (see chart - from "anonymously sources data traffic in a global cross-section of Bytemobile customers’ wireless networks")
  • Mobile subscribers stop watching video content when they experience significant stalling
  • Consumers use quality of mobile video play as an indication of network quality 
See also - "Vendor Review: Bytemobile New Smart Capacity System" - here and "BE (UK): World Cup Without Buffering" - here.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Tekelec Prepares Policy Management for M2M Communication

Tekelec is introducing "a new machine-to-machine (M2M) service enablement solution for mobile service providers to deliver advanced M2M services. Tekelec's solution uniquely combines multiple network functions to give service providers new abilities to scale M2M deployments, prioritize and manage devices and applications and analyze M2M service performance".

See "Tekelec Unveils Intelligent Machine-to-Machine Service Enablement Solution" - here.

According to a recent Infonetics research report (here) - "The number of connections for embedded mobile M2M applications hit 87 million in 2009 and is forecast by Infonetics Research to jump to 428 million by 2014, driven by wider availability of services, new M2M applications, and 'Connected Society' regulatory and policy initiatives".

Tekelec' solution integrates several components, including Policy management and  Diameter Signaling Router (here).

Policy management will "allow service providers to apply different qualities of service to different machines and implement flexible service plans based on transactions, connections, time of day, location, applications, or data usage".

Source: Tekelec White paper - "Machine to Machine Services"

BBC's Traffic-Light System will Test ISP's QoS

The UK ISP vs. the rest of the world ping-pong continues.

Following the recent move by the ISPs ("UK: ISPs Publish New Voluntary Code on Broadband Traffic Management" - here) and the government response ("Your New Voluntary Code" is not Enough!" - here) the content providers join the game.

BBC News reports that "The BBC has always maintained that it won't pay to have its popular iPlayer service prioritised over other traffic .. The BBC is currently developing a traffic-light system to let users see how different ISPs treat its iPlayer service. The details of the system, due for release in the spring, are not fully decided but it is likely ISPs will be rated simply: Red for poor, amber for OK, and green for acceptable".

It seems the BBC doesn’t expect for more than "acceptable" - where is the positive approach?

 See article by Jane Wakefield "ISPs defend plans for two-tier net" - here.
John Tate (picture), the BBC's director of policy and strategy said: "People should be able to access the internet without the blocking or throttling of certain content due to commercial rivalry".

Few months ago there were other voices at BBC - see BBC: "traffic management may sometimes be necessary" - here.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Verizon: "We have no plans to implement usage-based pricing for our fixed broadband customers"

Following the recent move by AT&T (see "AT&T to Charge DSL Subscriber for Over-use" - here) DSLReports asked Verizon spokesman Bill Kula (picture) about their plans:

"This is something we have looked at in the past, and we’ll continue to evaluate what’s best to ensure our customers get the best broadband service for the best value .. We have no plans to implement usage-based pricing for our fixed broadband customers".

See report by Karl Bode -"Verizon: No Plans To Meter Usage" - here.

"Verizon terms of service were written in a way to allow us to terminate users if they violate our acceptable use policy, and excessive use 'could' constitute a violation .. However, we’ve not disconnected any consumer, small business or mass market customers to date"

Verizon Terms of Service (appears in multiple formats, one example here) say - "You also may not exceed the bandwidth usage limitations that Verizon may establish from time to time for the Service, or use the Service to host any type of server. Violation of this section may result in bandwidth restrictions on your Service or suspension or termination of your Service"

AT&T Detects and Enforces Tethering Policy

Apple's iOS now supports tethering ("Personal hotspot") although it was there months ago (see "Someone doesn’t like the Ipad Tethering" - here), and Apple's best friend offers a data plan with tethering (for extra $20/month - see "AT&T - No More Unlimited Mobile Data" - here). 

So why the world had to wait for so long? It seems we were waiting for AT&T to be able to detect tethering.
This is over now. osXDaily reports that "AT&T is beginning to crack down on unofficial iPhone tethering methods, including users of MyWi, the unofficial iPhone WiFi hotspot app that is popular among jailbreakers. Customers are being notified that their service plans need updating to subscribe to a tethering plan, and that they will be automatically subscribed to a DataPro 4GB package that costs $45 per month if they continue to tether. In the email, AT&T also notes that if customers discontinue the use of tethering, no changes will be made to their plan".

See "AT&T Cracking Down on Unofficial iPhone Tethering & MyWi Users" - here (includes the letter sent by AT&T to those suspected using "unofficial" tethering).

How does AT&T do it?

See some background "Why Do Mobile Carriers Need Device Awareness?" - here and note the anonymous use-case mentioned in "Sandvine on Device Awareness (Tethering Use Case)" - here (" use case that Sandvine has assisted with, using device awareness, is enabling service providers to offer a special tier to those customers wishing to tether their mobile devices. Tethering is the use of your cell phone or other Internet-enabled mobile device as a modem for another device, like a notebook or PDA. It enables you to go online from your laptop, for example, in situations where there’s no other means of Internet access. By being able to identify “tethering” devices, a service provider can offer a service tier or package that caters to the subscribers’ needs).

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Ericsson to Bundle Vantrix Video Optimization Solutions

Vantrix announced that "Ericsson, the world’s leading provider of technology and services to telecom operators, to be their partner in video optimization. Under the terms of the agreement, Ericsson will be bundling Vantrix Bandwidth Optimizer with its Multiservice Proxy mobile broadband traffic optimization solution".

Ericsson's Multiservice Proxy "is a multi-purpose, multi-technology network node that can be deployed in fixed and mobile environments. It is the critical link between a wireless or fixed core network and Internet. The main applications include network resource optimization and Value Added Services, such as the optimization of web and multimedia content, content adaptation and ad insertion".

Vantrix Bandwidth Optimizer ensures the best quality of experience using Bitrate Throttling, Adaptive Streaming, Transcoding & Transrating and Smart Caching & Proactive Optimization.

See "Vantrix Launches Video Optimization ROI Tool" - here.


Friday, March 18, 2011

UK Government to ISPs: Your "New Voluntary Code" is not Enough!

It seems that the UK government thinks that the new voluntary code taken by UK ISPs is not enough (here), apparently encouraged by "Google, Skype, Yahoo and Facebook representatives".

Kelly Fiveash reprot to The Register that " .. Communications minister Ed Vaizey (picture) is calling on ISPs to beef up their commitments to providing UK customers with information about how they manage online traffic. At a meeting attended by broadband firms BT, TalkTalk, BSkyB and Virgin Media yesterday, the minister approved of the industry's efforts to agree to "greater transparency for their traffic management policies" .

"Vaizey, whose opinions on net neutrality have wavered in the past few months, said yesterday that Sir Tim Berners-Lee [See "Tim Berners-Lee Defends Net Neutrality" - here] had been asked by ministers to work alongside ISPs on guidelines to help broadband companies expand their commitment "to cover managing and maintaining the open internet".

See "Broadband minister asks ISPs to better 'regulate' industry" - here.

Optimization Deployments (58): Vimpelcom [Russia] Selected Vantrix for Video Services

Vantrix announced that "VimpelCom (NASDAQ: VIP), Russia’s leading telecom group which provides voice and data services through a wide range of wireless, fixed and broadband technologies, has selected Vantrix Multi-screen Video (see video below) solution for a nationwide deployment of its new Mobile TV and Video on Demand (VOD) services on their Beeline network".

See "Vimpelcom selects Vantrix for mobile and web video" - here.

Vimpelcom operates in Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Georgia, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, Vietnam and Cambodia (and was recently combined with Wind Telecom - here) and has 92M mobile subscribers (September 30, 2010) operators.
Victor Markelov (picture), Products Director at Vimpelcom, said: “Vantrix’s solution features the unique Dynamic Bit Rate Adaptation, which allows real time adaptation to network conditions and guarantees the best user experience of video services. Quality of experience is a crucial element of our service offering

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Procera: Cox Generated $2.2M in 2010

Procera Networks announced its results for 2010 (see "Procera Networks Announces Fourth Quarter and 2010 Year End Results" - here - similar to the preliminary results announced in January).

In its 10-K SEC filling, the company states that "We are currently not dependent on any single customer. For the years ended December 31, 2010 and 2009, revenue from one customer (Cox Communications, Inc.) represented 11% and 44% of net revenues, respectively, with no other single customer accounting for more than 10% of net revenues" (here).

This translates into revenues of $2.23M in 2010, vs. $8.86M in 2009, of which ~$500K generated in the 2nd half of 2010 (See "[Update - 10% Customer:Cox] Procera Reduces Revenue Guidance" - here).

Verizon CTO: "policy control is very important"

A nice push to the policy management industry (here, here). In an interview to Sue Marek from Fierce Broadband Wireless, Tony Melone (picture), CTO of Verizon Communications, was asked about the importance of policy control (after saying about IMS is "It's not as big an enabler of the future").

Mr. Melone responded that:

"It [policy control] is very important. The tools in LTE and in this 4G IP-mobile broadband network are available to do creative things. The policy engine is the brains of how you want the network to treat different things at different times. It's essential. It's important for us to take those tools and structure them in a way that is simple to implement and simple to communicate to customers. It's rational in terms of what customers would expect. 

One thing that we as an industry need to do is segment the data market better than we have. We have segmented the voice market over the years but the data market has been one market: Aircards are this price and smartphones are this price. 

I think when you talk about LTE and how the world will evolve you want an environment where people can dip their toes in the water and experience some of it, and then move up the value chain. These policy engines are a key ingredient in doing that."

See "Verizon's Melone: Data market needs to be segmented further" - here.

The Camiant unit of Tekelec must be proud! (see "Verizon Wireless Selects Camiant for PCRF" - here). Verizon is not alone - see "Policy management is becoming a key technology for mobile operators (Vodafone, Orange)" - here.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

iiNet: New Proposal for "Policing Copyright Infringement"

The public discussion over copyright infringements is not as intensive as it used to be (maybe because a larger percentage of the content is now viewed or downloaded legally), but from time to time we still see new ideas and initiatives. 

iiNet, Australia's second largest DSL ISP, published a paper suggesting that the policing of copyright infringements  will be done by a third party. Steve Dalby (picture), Chief Regulatory Officer, suggests a new model which is based on the "addition of an independent body, into the mix": 

  1. A content owner will carry out their own detective work and identify an offending computer making unauthorised copies of their content available for sharing via (typically) bit-torrent software. This will provide them with an ‘IP Address’ that can be traced by the issuing ISP to a specific internet service.
  2. The independent body will determine whether the evidence meets a test of ‘cogent and unequivocal evidence’.
  3. IP addresses can be provided to an independent body who is able to identify the issuing ISP and ask that ISP for contact details for the service account holder. The ISP provides those matching contact details to the independent body.
  4. Using those contact details the independent body can issue notices to the account holder informing them that they had been detected making unauthorised copies available, provide educative information, advise the consequences that may follow continued behaviour and ask the account holder to ensure that the behaviour stops.
  5. The independent body keeps records of the notices and may modify the notice for a repeat infringer, or seek further sanctions. Some of those sanctions may include fines, court charges or changes to the internet service.
  6. Consumers who believe the allegations are incorrect will be able to appeal the notice to the independent body. These appeals and/or complaints would be dealt with by the independent body.
  7. Consumers who believe an insecure wireless access (or other technical issue) may be involved, will be referred, by the independent body, to their ISP for technical assistance.
See the complete document below, or here - and iiNet's press release - here.

Related posts:
  • The French Internet Police: 100,000 Warring Emails have been Sent - here 
  • Virgin Media - Throttles P2P but will not Inspect Content - here.