Tuesday, December 31, 2013

[Allot]: tigo Internet Use Case: Application Based Charging

A presentation (below and here) by Eyal Yaron [pictured], Director Product Solutions, Allot Communications delivered at Global Broadband Traffic Management Congress 2013 (here).

Slide 10 shows how tigo Internet (see "DPI Deployments: Millicom (9 affiliates) Deployed Allot" - here and "PCC Deployments: Tigo [Africa] Uses BroadHop for Quota and Self Top-Up - here) implements application based charging.

Monday, December 30, 2013

[YG]: The 3rd Way - MNOs Can Introduce White-Labeled OTT Services

So, there is a 3rd way - instead of losing customers to OTTs, or build your own (and sometimes fail, such as the case of Telefonica and Tu Mehere), MNOs can outsource such services (e.g. "Bouygues Telecom Deploys GENBAND's fring OTT Service" - here). 

A recent report by Declan Lonergan [pictured], VP, Yankee Group finds that "The growing popularity of over-the-top (OTT) communications apps such as WhatsApp, LINE and Viber poses serious challenges for mobile network operators (MNOs). As operators consider how to respond, one option is to introduce their own OTT apps by partnering with vendors on a white-label basis. This approach should be considered seriously, particularly by MNOs and mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) that lack the resources and/or time to develop an app in-house.

.. White-labeling is a viable option. To respond to this growing threat, MNOs have several choices. One option is to introduce an OTT app under their own brand by white-labeling a solution from a growing number of vendors. This is a valid approach that allows MNOs to deploy their own apps quickly and at relatively low upfront cost".

See "Can White-Labeling Solve Telcos' OTT Challenges?" - here.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

End of US Net Neutrality?

Reinhardt Krause reports to the INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY that "A U.S. District Court is likely to scale back the Federal Communications Commission's authority to impose broadband Net neutrality regulations on Internet service providers, says Stifel Nicolaus in a research report. A ruling could come soon, says analyst Christopher King". 

This opinion may be reinforced by the recent statement from the FCC new Chairman - "we're going to see a two-sided world" (here) and New America Foundation opinion "Net Neutrality is 'a Dead Man Walking'"  (here).

"A ruling could come soon A three-judge panel for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia heard oral arguments in the case on Sept. 9 [see below] .. We believe Verizon and other telco and cable providers could gain new latitude to seek new premium (paid prioritization ) deals with Internet edge/content companies .. Comcast will remain bound by the rules and related provisions under NBCU merger conditions until 2018, even if the FCC loses .. the impact on content companies (Netflix, Google, Amazon, Walt Disney would be particularly complex, given individual business plans and broader market ripple effects .. some might actually view the ruling as an opportunity to strike broadband deals that improve their service or customers' experience, giving the telco/cable broadband providers leverage"

See "Verizon, ISPs May Get Favorable Net Neutrality Ruling" - here.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Yahoo! Acquires Distributed (P2P) CDN PeerCDN

CDN consolidation continues. After the acquisitions of EdgeCast (by Verizon , here) and Verivue (by Akamai, here). PeerCDN founders, John Hiesey, Feross Aboukhadijeh, & Abi Raja (pictured, left to right) announced recently (in PeerCDN home page) that they have been acquired by Yahoo!. 

"When we started PeerCDN, our vision was to build a next-generation content delivery network — cheaper, faster, and easier than existing solutions. As PeerCDN grew, we found that many developers were ecstatic about fast response times and reduced bandwidth costs, but even more were excited by the new experiences that order-of-magnitude cheaper bandwidth would enable.

Today, we are thrilled to announce that we are joining Yahoo. We’ve found that they share our passion for excellent web experiences, as well as our love for web technologies like WebRTC, HTML5, and JavaScript. We’re excited by the possibilities — together we’ll be able to create even more amazing web experiences"

"PeerCDN is a peer-to-peer content delivery network for the web browser. PeerCDN serves your site's static assets (like images, streaming videos, and file downloads) over a peer-to-peer network made up of the visitors currently on your site. It's completely powered by JavaScript — your visitors don't need to install anything! .. By chunking static files into small pieces and finding the fastest peer to download each piece from, PeerCDN improves response times and reduces bandwidth and server costs for the site owner...  We use the WebRTC standard, which currently works in Chrome and Firefox .. Any static file should work with PeerCDN. We're focusing primarily on large assets like video, audio and images",

Friday, December 27, 2013

Gigamon Adds Subscriber-Aware Sampling, Intelligent Filtering and GTP Correlation

Gigamon announced recently a "new applications and enhancements designed to provide Traffic Intelligence – the next phase of the Visibility Fabric evolution. As part of the Applications and Services Layers of the Unified Visibility Fabric architecture, new applications and feature enhancements offer advanced filtering capabilities such as stateful correlation, subscriber awareness, and deep packet visibility. With Traffic Intelligence, the Visibility Fabric will deliver more granular filtering and forwarding to ensure that the tools organizations rely upon for managing, analyzing, and safeguarding the network and its users, receive only the most relevant traffic.

The enhancements and new applications for the Unified Visibility Fabric include:

  • The GTP correlation application which enables customers to filter and forward correlated subscriber traffic streams that are encapsulated using the GPRS Tunneling Protocol, or GTP, within 3G/4G/LTE environments.

  • The FlowVUE™ application which provides active, subscriber-aware flow sampling to intelligently forward only the most relevant traffic to the tools.
  • Adaptive Packet Filtering which offers the ability to look for content anywhere in the packet and make intelligent filtering and forwarding decisions"

See "Gigamon Visibility Fabric Apps and Features Offer Big Data Traffic Intelligence for Enterprises and Service Providers" - here.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Wi-Fi Deployments[281]: O-Zone [India] Deployed 5,500 Hotspots with Elitecore

Elitecore Technologies announced that its "SMP [see "Elitecore Helps Operators Monetize Wi-Fi (w/Location, Analytics and Revenue Generator)" - herehas been deployed by O-Zone Networks, to fulfill its vision of becoming India’s largest Wi-Fi operator. Elitecore SMP will help in delivering seamless connectivity and rich user experience across nationwide hotspots at affordable prices. O-Zone Networks has rolled out 5,500 hotspots in 23 cities of which over 1,000 locations are public hotspots.

As part of Wi-Fi SMP solution, Elitecore offers a captive portal through which O-Zone is able to create different types of login and post login pages which can be differentiated as per the zone or location requirements. It also integrates with various access controllers allowing controller MAC ID binding with specifically created zones ensuring that any user request received from any access controller can be defined by the zone to which the user belongs"

See "Elitecore Wi-Fi Service Management Platform enables O-Zone Networks to roll out nationwide hotspots in India" - here.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Tektronix Communications Acquired Newfield Wireless

Tektronix Communications announced that it has ".. acquired Newfield Wireless, a privately held pioneer in next-generation mobile network optimization with geoanalytics intelligence. Newfield Wireless brings a rich layer of geoanalytics and visualization tools for the RAN, enabling MNOs to dynamically pinpoint issues at the subscriber and network level in real-time across 2G, 3G and 4G networks".

See a guest post by Newfield Wireless CEO, Marc Bensadoun - "Circuit Switched Fallback: In Danger of crippling 3G and leaving LTE underused" - here.

Lyn Cantor [pictured], President, Tektronix Communication said: "Newfield Wireless’s RAN optimization products, services and expertise will combine with our own solutions to benefit service providers in two ways. One is the ability to assure customer experience across the entire mobile network down to the geolocated device. The other is an enhanced ability to provide new value-add data feeds into numerous departments – from operations to customer care to business audiences at any given service provider"

Newfield TrueCell 
See "Tektronix Communications completes strategic acquisition of Newfield Wireless" - here.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Czech Republic Published Net Neutrality Rules

telecompaper reports that "Czech regulator CTU has published new rules [see below] for operators using traffic management techniques ..  The rules prohibit ISPs from slowing or blocking services in such a way that the contracted speed and bandwidth is impacted, nor can they can discriminate against certain content, applications or services delivered over the network. Exceptions are allowed in certain cases, such as in order to prevent serious crime or disruptions to the network. In any other cases, internet services much be clearly advertised as restricted, with the limitations spelled out in the contract terms. The CTU will monitor compliance with the rules".

See "Czech regulator issues traffic management rules" - here and "Zpráva ze zasedání Rady Českého telekomunikačního úřadu v 51. týdnu 2013" - here.

Monday, December 23, 2013

BT Launches DNS-based Parental Control; Does it Log Traffic?

Following the UK Government decision to enforce opt our parental control on all ISPs (here), BT  announced recently a new, network-based, Parental control service.

Tim Guest, BT's Homepage and marketing manager, explains: "We’ve offered free parental controls to customers for years, but the protection focused on desktop computers and laptops – now the new controls cover any internet-enabled device using home broadband, from PCs, laptops and games consoles to tablets and smartphones. The filter will still be free to all customers. Anyone joining BT can choose whether or not to activate the parental controls when setting up their internet connection for the first time. We’ll also contact all of current customers during 2014 so they can choose whether or not to set up the controls.

See also - "[The Register]: All Major UK ISPs to Implement Network-based Parental Control" - here.

There will be three set filter levels – strict, moderate and light - which can be customised to suit each family’s needs. Additional websites can be added to the list to be permitted or blocked. The filter can be turned off at specific times, and can also be set to an additional level – ‘homework time’ – for extra peace of mind when children are studying.

The Open Rights Group asked BT a number of questions on the new service (see "BT answers our questions about parental controls", by Peter Bradwell, here). BT says that:
  • "BT Parental Controls is a network based solution which means that all devices connected to your BT Broadband will have the same level of protection applied.
  • Our Filtering solution is based on Domain name resolution and can apply to any protocol used for a blocked domain
  • we do not anticipate that BT Parental Controls will have any impact on user’s speeds however we will continue to monitor this
  • BT Parental Controls utilises a trusted specialist 3rd party to categorise content
  • The BT Parental Controls solution does not inspect or log traffic for customers who do NOT opt in to the service"; [q] if so, is it logged in a way that links the traffic to a subscriber? What logging will there be of blocking events? How does this work? - an answer was not available.." 

See "Free filter boosts online safety for families" - here.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

China Mobile Offers Consumers Bandwidth Trading

Tired of trading Bitcoins? Residents of Hong-Kong can sell and buy LTE bandwidth.

Telecom Lead reports that "China Mobile Hong Kong announced a faster 4G LTE network from Hong Kong to Kowloon station will be available by mid-February 2014. 4G LTE coverage will be extended to other MTR stations.
  • Through 1cm [see screenshot] app and website, customers can check their data usage balance as well as adjust and pre-set a data usage cap to avoid additional charges. Customers can upgrade their service plan if they discover that their data usage exceeds their plan’s limit".
  • Through 2cm app, China Mobile Hong Kong 4G Pro Service Plan customers can buy and sell data. Data can be traded in units of 1GB and each customer can set their own price per unit, between HK$15 to HK$60. Through the 2cm platform, users can check data transaction status, adjust prices and numbers of new orders at any time. The platform will automatically search for, match and notify 4G data sellers once a 4G data buyer is found. Extra data bought from other 4G Pro users can only be used during the same billing month. For each transaction China Mobile Hong Kong will charge data sellers an administration fee of HK$15 for each gigabyte of data from their bills of the following month. Similarly, revenues received from selling the extra data will also be deducted from the following monthly bill payment and fees incurred from additional local data usage. Yet, the remaining amount cannot be carried forward to the next billing month".
See "4G - A New Dream (AND) for China Mobile" - here.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

[Heavy Reading]: DPI Vendors Shift Focus to SDN/NFV

A new report by Simon Stanley [pictured], research analyst, Heavy Reading finds that "Providers of DPI (deep packet inspection) technologies are shifting their focus to emerging software-defined network (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV) in an effort to boost network performance".

See related posts on Procera Networks (here), Allot Communications (here), Sandvine (here, here), Radware (here) and Qosmos (here)

Other findings:
  • "SDN/NFV are driving a shift to virtualized platforms running on standard servers or dedicated hardware
  • Strong ecosystem for DPI, policy management and analytics, including systems, software and processors
  • Long Term Evolution (LTE) remains a leading driver for growth in policy management and analytics
  • Consolidation in the market with Cisco, Intel [see "Intel Acquires DPI vendor Sensory Networks ($20M)" - hereand Procera [see " Procera Acquires Vineyard Networks for $28M" - here] acquiring key software suppliers
  • Multicore processors from Broadcom, Cavium, Freescale, LSI and Tilera have been widely used in DPI systems. Network processors from EZchip and Netronome are used for pre-processing, load balancing and coarse DPI. Following the development of the Intel DPDK, x86 multicore processors and, in particular, the Intel Xeon E5-2600 family processors have been increasingly used for DPI and policy enforcement [see "New Intel Platform Provides 140 Gbps of DPI" - here]. The drive for virtualization will increase the use of x86-based platforms for DPI and policy management. The latest ARMv8-based multicore processors may also take some of this market. Multicore processors and network processors will be used to offload DPI and network interface functions, accelerating virtual platform performance".  
See "Virtualization Drive for DPI & Policy Management" - here and here.

Juniper's View on Sandvine SDN/NFV Integration

James Kelly [pictured] explains in a Juniper Networks' forum how Sandvine DPI was integrated with Juniper's SDN controller, Contrail [see "Sandvine Join Juniper's SDN Partnership"- here].

".. The way we have Sandvine integrated with Contrail, the virtualized Policy Traffic Switch (vPTS) [see "Sandvine: 'leading edge CSPs around the world are currently working with Sandvine on virtualization pilot projects'" - here] sits right in the network. The vPTS is the inline enforcement element of subscriber service and traffic management policies – these policies are created within Sandvine’s application layer to support the service provider business requirements and provide network analytics. With the advent of NFV, Sandvine has virtualized their components to run as VMs, but the PTS sitting in-network presents a challenge to manage and scale from an NFV point of view because as traffic flows through the vPTS, it may be represented by several VMs at a time and that number could be growing or shrinking in peak or lull times (not to mention HA or maintenance situations where they may be temporarily taken down or moved). This is where Contrail service chaining comes in and abstracts how data traffic flows into and out of the vPTS by taking care of selecting and load balancing traffic across all the VMs per vPTS instance in accordance with the VMs’ roles and states.

With the deployment model, operators have more flexibility and ease in the size of their Sandvine deployment. They are elastic, they scale very small or very large, and they can automate or simplify deployments with scripts or clicks instead of truck rolls and cabling. Also CSPs can now deploy a small- or medium-sized “vSandvine” deployment as a managed service for enterprises, lower-tiered ISPs, and MVNO customers, giving CSPs another new source of revenue"

See "Enabling Partner Services on Contrail: Making Networks Smarter" - here.

Friday, December 20, 2013

NI Deployments [280]: Neutrona Networks [LATAM] Uses Accedian for SLA Management, Performance Monitoring and Optimization

Accedian Networks announced that "Neutrona Networks has renewed its commitment to provide superior service experience to its customers by combining Accedian Networks’ Performance Assured Networking solutions with Neutrona’s pan-regional network.

As a “carrier’s carrier” that is uniquely focused on providing extended reach network access to many of the world’s largest international carriers into Latin America, Neutrona Networks delivers a level of innovation that provides a distinct advantage in today’s increasingly commoditized wholesale carrier market. 

Neutrona’s network was custom-built to combine the most robust data centers, fully redundant routing platforms, and multiple and diverse sub-sea cables, all managed by state-of-the art operations support systems and traffic analytics & engineering systems. All of this combined with Accedian’s EtherNID®, MetroNODE LT™ and Vision EMS™ solutions provides an unprecedented level of stability and visibility to Neutrona’s customers".

Luciano Salata [pictured], President & COO, Neutrona’s said: “We have been using Accedian EtherNID® technology in our network since 2011 to simplify the end-to-end management of SLA-based services and to carry-out effective service orchestration .. We have just completed a full technology refresh and have selected Accedian as our preferred partner for network performance monitoring and optimization.”

See "Neutrona Networks Selects Accedian Networks Solutions for Network Performance Monitoring and Optimization" - here.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

[ABI]: PCC Market to Reach $3B by 2018

A new report by Joe Hoffman [pictured], research director, ABI Research finds that "The leading Policy and Charging Control (PCC) vendors are “kicking it up a notch” to help operators increase financial performance, especially in relation to their mobile broadband operations .. The Policy and Charging Control market will reach nearly US$3 billion in 2018 with growth coming as subscribers acclimate to innovative, granular, and personalized price plans. The advanced Policy 3.0 solutions will equip operators to rapidly develop new plans and packages while discovering the subscriber’s willingness to pay. The synergistic benefits of coordinating Policy, Charging and Customer Experience Management will deliver key competitive advantages".

The following vendors are covered in the "Policy 3.0 and Monetization Techniques: Reality vs. Hype" report:  AdvOSS, Alcatel-Lucent, Alepo, Amdocs/Bridgewater, Aptilo, AsiaInfo-Linkage, BandWD, Cisco/BroadHop, Comptel, Comverse, Elitecore, Ericsson, Huawei, Intracom, MATRIXX, Nokia Solutions and Networks, Openet, Oracle/Tekelec, Orga Systems, Peter-Service, Protei, Redknee, RooX, Tango Telecom, Volubill and ZTE.

See "Mobile Operators to “Kick it up a Notch” with Policy 3.0 as the Policy Market Heads Toward US$3 Billion by 2018" - here.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

SON Deployments [279]: SingTel Deploys Ericsson; "20% Faster Internet"

Ericsson announced that "SingTel has chosen Ericsson's SON Optimization Manager to extend benefits of network automation to their WCDMA networks. The solution adapts intelligently to network traffic conditions, delivering optimum coverage, capacity and quality at all times .. With this system, SingTel and Ericsson optimize multiple network elements and domains, allowing the integration of multiple technologies 2G, 3G and 4G into a single optimization model".

SingTel itself announced that "mobile customers can look forward to faster and more consistent data speeds in crowded locations as SingTel implements a range of groundbreaking network capacity enhancements. The enhancements, which include the Self Organising Networks (SON) solution and small cells technology are being progressively rolled-out in busy locations such as shopping malls, event and concert venues, and selected commercial and residential buildings" (see "SingTel boosts mobile data speeds and network capacity in crowded locations" - here).

Related posts:
  • Singtel: 10% of Subscribers Consume 64% of Data; Implements Tiered Services - here
  • SingTel Digital Media CEO: "user experience will become the greatest differentiator for service providers" - here
  • Singtel: Theoretical LTE Download - 75Mbps, Actual 3.4-12Mbps - here 
"Ericsson's comprehensive SON solution [see white paper below] includes self-optimization features such as coverage capacity optimization and load balance (CCLB), and automatic neighbor relation (ANR) handling. Self-healing functions are being developed to automatically compensate for cell outages by adjusting the neighboring cells to find the optimal configuration. These features help to maintain a high performing network that can deliver a more consistent experience for SingTel customers with faster download speeds and reduced drop calls".

Mr Tay Yeow Lian, VP Mobile Core Engineering, SingTel said: "With SON and other network enhancements, our customers will enjoy up to 20 per cent faster internet access in crowded places that are prone to network congestion. The chances of encountering a dropped call at these packed locations will also be reduced by as much as 40 per cent. SingTel has invested heavily in its networks to deliver the fastest mobile services in Singapore. We are the only 4G service provider to offer speeds of up to 150Mbps and nationwide dual-band coverage. By investing in new technologies, we seek to provide our customers with an even better experience with their communications and multimedia applications."

See "SingTel deploys self-organizing network solution with Ericsson" - here.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Cache Deployments [278]: Toyama [Japan] Selected Qwilt - "achieving nearly 50% efficiency"

Qwilt's CEO expectations for "Full-Scale Deployments in Japan and Korea During 2013" [here] are coming through.

The transparent caching solution vendor [see "[Vendor Review] Qwilt: 'We can Save US Operators Hundreds of $Millions in Few Years'" - here] announced that "..Cable Television Toyama, a cable network operator in Japan, has selected and deployed its Qwilt Video Fabric Controller, achieving nearly 50-percent transparent caching efficiency for over the top (OTT) video, with a 2x improvement in quality of experience (QoE) for its subscribers. Systems integrator IT Frontier (ITF), a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corporation, managed the implementation. 

Cable Television Toyama's subscribers consume various types of OTT broadband traffic. From popular online video content sites such as YouTube and Dailymotion to software updates like the recent iOS7 update from Apple, their network was experiencing strain due to increasing traffic and demand".

See "Cable Television Toyama Improves Quality of Online Video Delivery with Qwilt Video Fabric Deployment" - here.

Redknee Signed $10M PCC Deal (Middle-East)

Redknee Solutions [see "[Vendor Review]: Redknee Policy Management Strategy" - here] announced that it has ".. signed a multi-year contract worth more than $10 million dollars for Redknee’s integrated charging and policy solution. The significant upgrade of the charging solution and new win for Redknee’s policy management (PCRF) solution, with an acquired customer in EMEA, reflects the positive momentum that Redknee is experiencing with its combined customer base".

Lucas Skoczkowski [pictured], CEO, Redknee said: “We are very excited about this significant software product upgrade contract from an acquired customer in the Middle East. I feel it is a testament to the positive feedback Redknee has received throughout the year from our customers. In addition, it validates the successful integration of the acquisition, the investments we continue to make in the combined product portfolio, and our focus on our long-term growth strategy. We are very excited by the opportunity afforded to us by our existing customers and partners as we look to continue to execute on our growth plan”.

See "Redknee Signs $10 Million Charging Upgrade and New Policy Management Solution Contract" - here.

Monday, December 16, 2013

[Infonetics]: Offloading Leads a $8.5B Carrier Wi-Fi Market (2013-17)

A new report by Richard Webb, directing analyst for microwave and carrier WiFi, Infonetics Research finds that "Over the 5 years from 2013 to 2017, operators will spend a cumulative $8.5 billion on carrier WiFi equipment, led by mobile operators using carrier WiFi for data offload. This strong growth will gain additional impetus from the proliferation of small cells with integrated WiFi over the coming years”.

"Globally, revenue for carrier WiFi equipment, including carrier WiFi access points and WiFi hotspot controllers, totaled $338 million in the first half of 2013 (1H13) .. As the carrier WiFi market evolves and more operators launch carrier WiFi services, Infonetics expects fluctuations in market share, with the top 5 positions—currently held by Cisco, Ericsson, Huawei, Ruckus, and Alcatel-Lucent—potentially shuffled"

See "$8.5 billion to be spent on carrier WiFi equipment over next five years" - here.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Ixia Adds Support for OpenFlow Controllers Performance

Ixia announced the " .. expansion of its IxNetwork application portfolio. The solution validates the scale and performance of OpenFlow controllers by emulating OpenFlow v1.3 switches and is the first to help enterprises and service providers ensure that their networks are carrier grade – enabling faster service delivery: 

  • IxNetwork now validates the controller, which must communicate with all the switches in the network and as such, is critical to ensuring reliability of the entire network.
  • With IxNetwork 7.20, customers have the advanced functionality required to deliver an always-connected experience within SDN environments. Until now, network and test engineers have had limited options for scale testing a controller.
IxNetwork 7.20 allows enterprises and service providers to better validate OpenFlow networks through the following capabilities: 
  • Emulates thousands of OpenFlow switches in various topologies to stress test their OpenFlow controller without the need of real OpenFlow switches in a customer’s lab.
  • Performs realistic functions such as establishing the OF-Channel, supporting statistic replies, LLDP based topology discovery, port status messages and generate packet-ins from these emulated switches"
See "Ixia Enables Carrier-Grade OpenFlow Network Validation" - here.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Sonus Acquires DSC Vendor Performance Technologies for $30M

Sonus Networks announced that they have ".. entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Sonus will acquire Performance Technologies (PT) for $3.75 per share in cash, or approximately $30 million, net of PT’s cash and excluding acquisition-related costs.

The acquisition of PT enables Sonus to expand and diversify its portfolio with an integrated, virtualized Diameter and SIP-based solution and deliver strategic value to service providers seeking to offer new multimedia services through mobile, Cloud-based, real-time communications. PT's premier suite of IP-centric SEGway signaling products  includes Diameter Signaling Controllers (DSC) [added to my Diameter Router Product list], which anchor the authentication, authorization and accounting messages sent across mobile networks. As the adoption of the mobile Internet grows, the DSC market is forecast to grow by an average of 42% per year from 2013 through 2017, to reach nearly $1 billion, according to Exact Ventures [here]".

Raymond P. Dolan [pictured], president and CEO of Sonus said: “The combination of Sonus and PT allows us to address this significant opportunity by bringing together unique and complementary technologies in wireless and wireline network intelligence, thereby expanding our addressable market by 50% and advancing our mobility and virtualization strategies. The transaction enhances Sonus’ best-in-class portfolio, further enabling service providers and enterprises to deliver on the promise of real-time communications”.

See "Sonus Networks Announces Definitive Agreement to Acquire Performance Technologies, Inc." - here.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Optimization Deployments [277]: BaikalWestCom [Russia/Rostelecom] Deployed Actix

Actix (recently acquired by Amdocs for $120M - here) announced the ".. successful implementation of ActixOne Geo-located Customer Experience Analytics and Network Optimization for BaikalWestCom, the largest mobile network operator in East Siberia ..a subsidiary of Rostelecom",

Anton Shalin, Head of the Department RNP&O, BaikalWestCom, said: “Automating RAN data collection and analysis with ActixOne provides a more effective, centralized view of the network. It enables our engineers to rapidly identify and resolve any issues, often before subscribers are even aware that a problem is developing

see "Russia’s first geo-located network optimization implemented by Actix for Rostelecom`s subsidiary BaikalWestCom" - here.

TWC: Online Viewing Drives Broadband Demand Growth (+40% Y/Y)

Optimizing service plans becomes a challenge - the service tiers (speed, data caps) should answer the demand for bandwidth and QoE, while maximizing revenues and minimizing churn. Here is a short example that considers all the ingredients:  

Stacey Higginbotham reports to GigaOm that "Thanks to a UBS note from Monday we now have some good data on broadband usage at Time Warner Cable

The investment bank issued a note saying that TWC’s CEO-designate Rob Marcus [pictured] said online viewing is up (although not a replacement for pay TV), and is increasing the demand for broadband. That demand is up 40 percent year over year with an average consumption of 50 GB per month and a median of 20 GB per month. That’s driving the introduction of faster tiers, although TWC will keep usage caps at the low end to appeal to more price-sensitive".

See "Time Warner Cable broadband usage is up 40 percent this year" - here.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Citrix Expands SP Business: Acquires Skytide

The following announcement appeared in a blog post (rather than a traditional press release): "I’m happy to share that Citrix has acquired Skytide, a privately-held company that enables service providers to measure and monitor streaming video as a critical part of their CDN video delivery infrastructure [see "Why Should Telcos Build their Own CDN?" - here]

The holistic understanding Skytide delivers  – and the insight that flows from it – is what enables the service providers as well as the businesses in each of these domains to strike the appropriate balance between the cost of delivery, the quality of the experience and the revenue implications for the stakeholders".
The post, by Chris Koopmans [pictured], VP and GM, Service Provider Platforms, Citrix explains that "The acquisition of Skytide builds on our current service provider business, extending our reach beyond mobile and into the CDN, thereby benefitting communications service providers of all varieties. We’re excited to welcome to our team a talented group of innovators who excel in analytics software design; and who share our commitment to customer excellence and passion for defining the leading edge of video delivery".

See Chris' (co-founder of Bytemobile) guest posts on my blog - "Video adverts – glass half empty or half full for mobile operators?" - here and "Seeing is Believing: Monetizing Traffic through Differentiated Services" - here.

See "The Mobile Video Paradox: Why Insight Matters" - here.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

PCC Deployments [276]: DNA [Finland] Uses Comptel for Roaming Cost Control

Comptel Corporation announced that ".. Finnish communications service provider (CSP) DNA Ltd has extended its use of Comptel Policy Control. The operator has leveraged the company’s roaming cost control functionality to launch defined data packages for a fixed price, to enable customers to affordably use their services while abroad and to reduce their fear of experiencing ‘bill shock' .. Comptel was selected for this data roaming pass project, which was taken into production in June 2013, based on its positive, long-standing relationship with the CSP, its flexibility and efficient time-to-market, and the quality of its products".

At the end of Q3, 2013 DNA had 2.437M mobile subscribers.

Related post - "DNA Uses Comptel for RAN Congestion Control" - here.

See "Finnish Operator DNA Encourages Customers to Affordably Use Data Services While Abroad with Comptel Policy Control" - here.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Sandvine Closes Israeli R&D Center: "Shifts Resources to Sales and Marketing"

A message I got from a creditable source said that Sandvine's R&D center, in Jerusalem, Israel has been closed and a staff of 30 S/W developers and QA testing engineers has been dismissed.

I asked for Sandvine's comment, and got the following: "While the process is still underway, as part of our ongoing strategy to shift resources towards sales and marketing activities, we are considering the consolidation of our operating sites, of which Jerusalem is the smallest. We don’t anticipate any impact to Sandvine’s products, partnerships or support activities. Our final decision will be made shortly, after our full process is complete".
Sandvine R&D center in Israel is a result of Sandvine's acquisition of CableMatrix in 2007, which created the base for Sandvine's policy management solution, recently expanded to a full PCRF product (see "Sandvine Adds PCRF Functionality" - here).

Verizon Acquires EdgeCast; Will it Serve DT and TeliaSonera?

Verizon announced a "definitive agreement under which the company will acquire EdgeCast, an industry leader in content delivery networks. Verizon Digital Media Services will integrate EdgeCast complementary capabilities to further improve and increase its ability to meet the exponential growth in online digital media content, as well as broaden its portfolio of site acceleration services for digital enterprises.

EdgeCast has more than 6,000 accounts and serves some of the world’s leading Web brands for global media delivery and acceleration services". 

Nevertheless, EdgeCast also have carriers as customers: Deutsche Telekom [here], TeliaSonera [here] and Telin [here]. I wonder what will happen here. PeerApp, EdgeCast's caching partner may enjoy this as well (see "PeerApp and EdgeCast Offer Operators Joint CDN/Caching Solution" - here).

See "Verizon Plans to Acquire EdgeCast Networks" - here.

Monday, December 9, 2013

[Analysys Mason]: Business Models for Application-based Pricing

As it seems that the FCC is considering more flexible Net Neutrality rules (see "FCC Chairman re-defines Net Neutrality: 'we're going to see a two-sided world'" - here), it is time to evaluate the business models for the relations between the customers, carriers and OTT content providers.

A new report by Ronan de Renesse, Principal Analyst, Glen Ragoonanan, Senior Analyst, Eva Weidinger [pictured], Research Analyst, and Anil Rao, Analyst, Analysys Mason on Application Based Pricing, finds that "The fact that consumers generally do not pay for content and apps is a fundamental consideration when deploying ABP solutions and exploring the underlying business models".
"Operators need to consider innovative tariffs to maintain ARPU and remain competitive as mobile data prices and per-user spending on digital content decline. Application-based pricing (ABP) is the inclusion of third-party content and services (applications) as part of tariff structures. ABP helps operators and over-the-top (OTT) players to further monetise consumer demand for popular apps on mobile devices. Apps drive smartphone adoption, and generate mobile data traffic, which in turn generates mobile data revenue for operators"

".. three typical business models, which are based on examples of exclusivity agreements:
  • Fixed rate: the operator pays the OTT player a fixed rate, as per the Deutsche Telekom and Spotify agreement [see "DT to Offer Zero-Rate Video Calls, Messaging, File sharing and Music Services" - here]
  • Revenue-sharing: the OTT pays the operator a share of revenue, as per Telefónica Digital and Aurasma‟s partnership.
  • No-one pays, as per agreements between Facebook and dtac Thailand (part of Telenor), [see "Facebook Offers Free Messaging Through 18 MNOs" - hereas well as SingTel and WhatsApp".
See "Application-based pricing: opportunities, business models and case studies" - here.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

New Intel Platform Provides 140 Gbps of DPI

Intel announced "..Highland Forest, a new communications platform that combines the Intel® Xeon® processor E5-2600 v2 with the next generation of the Intel® Communications Chipset Series 89xx. 

According to Steve Price [pictured], general manager of Intel’s Communication Infrastructure Division, Highland Forest will boost the performance of network traffic, delivering up to 255 million packets per second. Highland Forest will also create efficiencies for telecom customers though workload consolidation, streamlined R&D resources, common software tools and faster system integration"

According to an Intel "The Data Stack" blog post by Rose Schooler [pictured], GM and VP, Intel’s Data Center Group, (here) "With a dual-socket Intel® Xeon® processor E5-2600 v2 platform with the Intel Communications Chipset 89xx Series, performance scales up to 255 Mpps of L3 forwarding (64 bytes packets), 110 Gbps of IPsec throughput, 200 Gbps of OpenSSL* throughput, and 140 Gbps of deep packet inspection (DPI) throughput".

See "Chip Shot: Intel Announces Highland Forest, a New Platform that will Accelerate Network Transformation" - here.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

PeerApp Deployed by 3 out of the top 4 Korean Network Operators

PeerApp announced that ".. The company has been winning new network operator customers around the globe by enabling them to deliver the best performance to their customers. The largest operators in countries like South Korea, Taiwan and Israel -- all known for their high-speed broadband and mobile services -- have deployed PeerApp UltraBand. In South Korea, the country reported to have the world's fastest broadband speeds, three out of the top four network operators have deployed PeerApp UltraBand".

See also - "[F&S]: 'PeerApp is the clear current market leader in the transparent caching industry'" - here and "PeerApp Won 3 Tier1 Global Operators; Has 350 Deployments" - here.

See "PeerApp Enables the World's Fastest Internet Services" - here.

Friday, December 6, 2013

XL Axiata [Indonesia] Demos Huawei's Mobile Bandwidth on Demand

While there are doubts if Bandwidth on Demand (or some of its use-cases) is a viable business model (see "Bandwidth on Demand - 'will not necessary translate to additional, new near-term revenue'" - here), the vendors are not giving up.

Huawei announced that is has "recently helped successfully demonstrate a Turbo Button solution for dramatically boosting delivered LTE speeds with a simple push of a button on a mobile app. Turbo Button allows mobile subscribers to easily accelerate their data speeds on demand from 1 Mb/s up to 70 Mb/s over a set period of time with just one touch on a downloadable app. The service is especially useful for improving the experience of high-speed web surfing, online gaming, large file uploads and downloads, and HD video streaming among other bandwidth intensive services.

The demo was conducted by Indonesian mobile operator XL Axiata at the recent 2013 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum held in Indonesia and made exclusive use of Huawei’s Networker solution for LTE. XL Axiata is a leading Indonesian operator providing mobile services to more than 90 percent of the country’s 240 million people".

See "Huawei Helps Successfully Demonstrate ‘Turbo Button’ Solution for Boosting LTE Speeds and Revenues" - here.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

CSG Acquires Volubill's Assets

CSG International announced that it has "purchased key assets of Volubill [see "Volubill Entered Liquidation" - here] .. Volubill products, which are used by service providers globally to bring to market and monetize the new generation of digital, communication-based services, are a natural extension of CSG’s current market-leading billing and revenue management portfolio".

CSG has a PCC product in its portfolio - Integrated Charging and Policy.

David Heaps [pictured], SVP business strategy, CSG said: “Our clients are always looking for the most effective ways to maximize the value from the data and traffic that travel across their networks, and Volubill was an early innovator in that space .. Volubill’s well-respected brand and broad client installations will bolster CSG’s own expertise in revenue management, service personalization, and customer management. CSG has a deep client-focused culture and a reputation for maintaining long-term relationships. We look forward to serving the Volubill customer base”.

See "CSG International to Acquire Key Volubill Assets" - here.

FCC Chairman re-defines Net Neutrality: "we're going to see a two-sided world"

Richard Chirgwin, reports to The Register that the FCC maybe re considering its Net Neutrality rules - "That is, if the definition of “net neutrality” means there is never any scope for a provider to apply quality of service as a product differentiator – something which becomes contentious when people begin debating neutrality. As things now stand, the FCC takes a dim view of payment to get higher quality of service .. Wheeler endorses the idea that a Netflix might want to buy a higher QoS to ensure guaranteed performance, as distinct from best-effort performance".

Just compare this to President Obama's "I am a big believer in Net Neutrality" interview from 2010 (here).

FCC Chairman Wheeler [pictured] discussed that at Ohio State University (here). "What the Internet does is not an area that is appropriate for federal regulation … with a few notable exceptions .. I am a firm believer in the market. I think we're going to see a two-sided world [see "DT Believes in "Two-Sided" Business Model - OTT to Pay for QoS" - herewhere Netflix might say, 'I'll pay in order to make sure that you might receive … the best possible transmission of this movie'. I think we want to let these kinds of things evolve".

Related guest post, by Dean Bubley - "1-800 Apps Concept: Superficially Appealing but Unworkable" - here.

See "FCC boss hints at change to neutrality policy" - here.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

[Infonetics Survey]: Openet Tops the Policy Management Market

Shira Levine, directing analyst for service enablement and subscriber intelligence, Infonetics Research provided some additional information from Infontics' 2013 Policy Management Strategies and Vendor Leadership: Global Service Provider Survey:
  • Bandwidth management continues to be a primary driver behind policy management spending, but this year’s survey confirms once again that policy is expanding beyond its traditional realm, assuming a key role in operators’ strategies around innovative services and pricing
  • This shift is driving new requirements for policy solution capabilities, with flexibility and scalability becoming increasingly important and causing some major shifts in the vendor landscape as operators swap out systems that aren’t meeting their needs
  • When asked to identify the top business drivers behind their policy management investments, survey respondents put bandwidth management functions at the top of the list; service creation and revenue generation also received high ratings
  • Usage-based services, advanced subscriber control, and bandwidth on demand led the list of use cases again, while voice over IP and M2M gained momentum compared to Infonetics’ 2012 policy survey
  • Flexibility constraints are the #1 reason operators are replacing their existing policy management systems  
  • Marketing teams continue to hold key roles in the policy management decision-making process at many operators
  • For the 2nd year in a row, respondents named Openet as a top policy management vendor, followed by Oracle/Tekelec, and Huawei

See "Operators using policy management to innovate services and pricing will shift vendor landscape" - here.