Monday, August 31, 2015

UK: Switch Your ISP in "One Touch"

UK Broadband providers should work harder now on customer satisfaction, as unhappy subscribers may switch their provider in "One Touch".

Ofcom announced that "Earlier this summer the process of switching between providers who use the Openreach telecoms network - such as BT, EE, Sky and TalkTalk - became simpler and smoother.

A new 'one touch' process now places the responsibility for the broadband or landline switch entirely in the hands of the company to which the customer is moving .. Under the new system, consumers no longer need to cancel their contract with their old provider. Instead, the whole switching process is handled by their new supplier on their behalf.

Once the switching process is under way, the consumer receives written confirmation from both the old and new provider. If the consumer changes their mind, they can cancel the switch"

See "Easier broadband switching" - here.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

IHS Survey: Microwave Market Shifts to All-Packet; Ericsson Leads

Richard Webb [pictured], research director for mobile backhaul and small cells, IHS ".. conducted in-depth interviews with 23 service providers from around the world who use microwave equipment in their networks and found that 51 percent of the microwave links they deploy will be Ethernet-only by 2017, up from 38 percent currently ..  In additional to capacity requirements for backhaul connectivity continuing to rise, operator confidence in deploying Ethernet for voice and data backhaul has been boosted by packet synchronization, reducing the need for TDM:

  • Microwave equipment market is shifting significantly towards all-packet microwave through the next few years 
Source: WHAT IS PACKET MICROWAVE?. by Aviat Networks - here.

  • By 2017, 52 percent will have more than 5,000 microwave links
  • Ericsson leads respondents’ rankings of microwave manufacturers; Aviat Networks fared best of the microwave-only vendors
See "Mobile Operators Turning to Ethernet Microwave for Voice and Data Backhaul, Rate Vendors in IHS Survey" - here.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Ooredoo Qatar Deploys Nokia's Small Cells

Nokia Networks announced it has ".. won a deal with Ooredoo Qatar to deploy its small cells in hotspots across the country. .. Nokia Flexi Zone small cells were then discreetly installed in strategic locations such as café and restaurant rooftops to ensure additional capacity, coverage and better network availability, as well as reduce latency.

Ooredoo Qatar’s vision and work have led Qatar into this decade as one of the best-connected countries in the world. The operator is currently focused on providing the most innovative services, including ultrafast 4G+ services, to its customers. It recently announced the launch of Ooredoo SuperNet, one of the most significant network evolutions in Qatar’s history". 

At the end of H1 2015, Ooredoo Qatar has approximately 3.4M subscribers. 

See "Nokia Networks, Ooredoo Qatar sign deal to deploy small cells for more capacity, coverage in hotspots" - here and "Ooredoo Deploys Small Cells to Boost Supernet across Qatar" - here.

Friday, August 28, 2015

PCC Deployments [362]: Smartfren [Indonesia] Uses ZTE for Integrated CDMA and LTE Control

ZTE announced it is ".. pleased to help PT Smartfren Telecom launch 4G LTE-Advanced network in Indonesia, giving users access to the highest-performance mobile broadband services. 

.. With ZTE's powerful Universal Subscriber Profile Platform (USPP), Policy and Charging Rules Function (PCRF), and Online Charging System (OCS) products, the core NEs of both CDMA and LTE networks are highly integrated to provide a unified user database and policy control and charging policies, allowing the LTE network to be deployed rapidly, facilitating maintenance and operation of 3G and 4G networks in the future, and lowering operational costs. Smartfren can take advantage of the sophisticated OCS system to launch flexible tariff packages in the market to attract upscale users with an urgent need for mobile broadband services". 

Related post - "Facebook Offers Free Messaging Through 18 MNOs" - here.

See "ZTE Supports Smartfren Launch 4G LTE-Advanced Service in Indonesia" - here.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

AT&T Uses RaGaPa for Wi-Fi Ad Insertion

Last October I shared a post by Jonathan Mayer [pictured], a computer scientist and lawyer at Stanford, who discovered that " Verizon Injects HTTP Header for Advertising" (here). His discovery made Verizon  to announce that "Customers May Opt-out from Header Insertion" (here).

Now it is AT&T turn.

Jonathan reports that "While traveling through Dulles Airport last week, I noticed an Internet oddity. The nearby AT&T hotspot was fairly fast—that was a pleasant surprise. But the web had sprouted ads. Lots of them, in places they didn’t belong .. I started poking through web source. It took little time to spot the culprit: AT&T’s wifi hotspot was tampering with HTTP traffic.

The ad injection platform appears to be a service from RaGaPa 
[HotSpot Monetization], a small startup. Their video pitch [see below] features “MONETIZE YOUR NETWORK” over cascading dollar signs. (Seriously.)

Ad Inserted into a federal government site. Source: Web Policy

When an HTML page loads over HTTP, the hotspot makes three edits ... " 

See "AT&T Hotspots: Now with Advertising Injection" - here.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Did Microsoft's WUDO Help Saving B/W During Windows 10 Upgrade?

A post to Allot Communications' blog, by Maya Canetti [pictured], provides an analysis on the bandwidth consumes for Window 10 upgrade:

"it amounted to 8% worldwide before the launch on July 29, 2015 (when it became available for Windows Insiders) and around 4% on the official launch day. There are two reasons why the launch was so smooth. For one, Windows 10 is just not as popular as e.g., Apple’s iOS 7. Secondly, Microsoft did not rollout Windows 10 at once, but in stages.

.. Microsoft has embedded its “Windows Update Delivery Optimization” (WUDO) technology in Windows 10. Instead of relying on operators to schedule updates (as was done before), WUDO by default uses Windows users’ bandwidth to deliver Windows 10 updates and apps to all connected devices that are running Windows 10. The peer-to-peer patching technology is similar to BitTorrent

The impact of the staged Windows 10 release on networks bandwidth consumption was notable. The graph below, which was taken from a mobile operator during the period of July-August, clearly shows spikes in bandwidth on July 16, the prelaunch of Windows 10 to Windows Insiders, and on July 26, the official Windows 10 rollout". 

See "The Hidden Snag in Windows 10" - here.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

IHS: Distributed Antenna Systems Nodes Will Triple by 2018

A new report by Stéphane Téral, research director for mobile infrastructure and carrier economics, IHS ".. interviewed 16 of the world’s top 20 independent wireless, incumbent, competitive and cable operators that operate DAS (distributed antenna systems) and found that, on average, respondents expect the DAS nodes in their networks to more than triple between now and 2018. DAS is used by large service providers and venue owners—airports, stadiums, casinos, malls and the like—to improve network coverage in venues where a macrocell approach does not work .. When asked about the types of DAS nodes they are deploying, 69 percent of the service providers taking part in our DAS study indicated they are using both active and passive DAS,

  • The most common DAS locations are stadiums, tunnels, outdoor metro and retail malls
  • Indoor coverage optimization is the top DAS driver among respondents, while deployment cost is the number-one barrier
  • Axell Wireless, CommScope and TE Connectivity (listed in alphabetical order) are perceived as the top DAS manufacturers by survey respondents
See "Good News for Mobile Networks in Large Venues: Carriers Adding More Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS)" - here.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Google India: "strong protest" Against Including Zero Rating in Net Neutrality

Google, like other content providers, is traditionally in favor on Net Neutrality laws - see the US example - "FCC Expected to Adopt Net Neutrality this Quarter; Google Supports Neutrality" (here).

However, since the Indian regulator, TRAI is considering Zero-rating as "against the principles of Net Neutrality [see "India Planned Net Neutrality Laws" - here and "Airtel: The Internet, with Our Airtel Zero, is Neutral" - here], Google (and Facebook) seem to change sides.

Nikhil Pahwa reports to MEDIANAMA that "Google joined hands with Facebook to try and prevent the Internet and Mobile Association of India, which represents some of the largest Internet companies in India, from taking a stand that counters Zero Rating. 

According to emails exchanged between IAMAI’s Government Relations committee members, of which MediaNama has copies, Vineeta Dixit [pictured], a member of Google’s Public Policy and and Government Relations team, strongly pushed for the removal of any mention of Zero Rating from the IAMAI’s submission, as a response to the Department of Telecom’s report on Net Neutrality. Please note that Google hasn’t responded to our queries, despite multiple reminders.

..Dixit’s email to the IAMAI government relations committee, while reasoning that there is no consensus on Zero Rating, asked for its removal from the submission, saying: “We would like to register strong protest against this formulation and would request you to remove this (Zero Rating) from the submission.” Another email in that list indicates that only Facebook in the IAMAI has taken a stand supporting Zero Rating, and, funnily enough, STAR has taken positions both supporting and being non-committal on Zero Rating. This is a bizarre shift in STAR’s position, given that it had written to the TRAI saying that instead of telcos being paid for allowing Internet content (via Zero Rating), it should be telecom operators that pay content providers"/

See "Google joins Facebook in trying to prevent IAMAI from taking strong anti-Zero Rating stand" - here.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

ASPIDER-NGI Integrates BroadForward’s DSC into its IaaS Offering

ASPIDER-NGI announced it has "integrated the BFX Interface Gateway, BroadForward’s software-based signaling solution for Diameter routing and interworking.

ASPIDER-NGI delivers branded services for mobile network operators, helping them to improve customer engagements, provide better service delivery, and boost profitability. The company provides services to traditional mobile operators, MVNOs, MVNEs and Enterprise Internet of Things (IoT) initiatives to help them manage connectivity to manage loyalty and revenue". 

Jan Mooijman [pictured], CEO, ASPIDER-NGI said: “We launched the BroadForward Diameter solution specifically for NFV and service orchestration across different signaling technologies and vendors. This supports our innovation strategy by optimizing network policy, providing legacy mediation and adding dynamic routing for geo-redundancy. Bottom line: this helps us improve our services to our customers and increase our flexibility”.

ASPIDER-NGI Multi Brand Platform & Service Environment

See "ASPIDER-NGI launches BroadForward Diameter Solution" - here.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Aterlo Networks Deployed by Wireless Nation (ANZ); Offers Subscriptions

Last December I presented Aterlo Networks (see "Ex-Sandvine Team NightShifts Netflix for Satellite Subscribers" - here) and interviewed the CEO, Gerrit Nagelhout (here).

Aterlo NightShift Solution 

Since then, Aterlo made a nice progress, partnering with an ISP to deploy its technology in Oceania and offering its service directly to consumers:
  • Wireless Nation, an ISP from New Zealand, is using Aterlo's Nightshift technology

    "New Zealand and Australian Netflix users can now save time, money and their data allowances .. Wireless Nation’s technical director, Tom Linn says he’s pleased to be able to offer this easy solution to customers frustrated with slow internet speeds due to congestion at peak times .. For Wireless Nation’s rural customers, this is a great saver because they can pre-load Netflix shows and movies at night, using their free off peak data .. NightShift comes in the form of a dual-band router that plugs into the back of your current router. The NightShift technology is installed into the router so it’s ready to use from the moment you get it"

    See "Streaming Netflix in NZ Just got Much Easier" - here
  • The company is moving forward with its plan to offer paid subscriptions to consumers ('The idea is to charge a monthly subscription fee" - here) and launched a new site for direct sale to consumers. The service is priced at $9.99/month, and ooffered now, for a limited time, at $6.99. 

Friday, August 21, 2015

ALU Transforms Telefonica's IP Network; Sandvine Remains Happy

Alcatel-Lucent announced it is "transforming Telefónica’s fixed and mobile networks with its IP technology and services expertise to meet growing consumption of data and video by its customers – while ensuring optimal operational cost and efficiency".

Later in the release (see below), ALU states the 7750 Service Router (7750 SR-12) will be part of the transformation. Among its many features, the 7750 is also ALU's DPI based traffic manager used in both fixed and mobile networks.

As Telefonica is a long-time Sandvine customer for its DPI needs, I asked Sandvine about the impact of this project on their business with Telefonica. Their response follows:

"Alcatel Lucent has always been a vendor into Telefonica, and we sold into Telefonica using them until a little while ago. We now use a combination of IBM and direct sales. In short, the threat of replacement by an integrated NEV has been there the whole time, but Telefonica has consistently chosen to go best-of-breed with Sandvine – a decision that is made centrally. We are by now well entrenched in their business processes. The Telefonica Group remains a big customer of ours as you know, and while you can never say never, we are happy with that relationship" 

Related posts:
  • "ALU's DPI Device to Get a 400GE Interface" here 
  • "ALU Positions the 7750-SR as a DPI based Mobile Application Assurance Gateway" - here). 
Back to the announcement:

"Video content is causing data traffic to rise dramatically across Telefónica’s networks .. Demand is also growing amongst Telefónica’s mobile subscribers, as well as amongst customers of its fixed access business, driven by the operator’s announcement earlier this year that it will triple the speeds of its fiber fixed-line services. As a result of this demand, Telefónica aims to increase network capacity and reduce complexity to allow it to manage traffic with even greater efficiency: 
  • Alcatel-Lucent will replace older routers within the network, using its IP routing portfolio to perform core routing and layer two and three edge routing functions and act as a broadband network gateway for the provision of residential services. Alcatel-Lucent will deploy the 7950 Extensible Routing System, the 7450 Ethernet Service Switch (7450 ESS-MM), and the 7750 Service Router (7750 SR-12).
    5620 SAM – Assurance visualization
    for network & service operations
  • End-to-end management will be provided by the Alcatel-Lucent 5620 Service Aware Manager
  • Alcatel-Lucent offers a comprehensive portfolio of hardware and software based routing functionalities for enhanced network efficiency, allowing service providers to address the overwhelming growth in video and data traffic and offering a seamless migration toward virtualized network architecture, using NFV. Alcatel-Lucent recently announced an extension of its collaboration agreement with Telefónica to test NFV functions, following outstanding lab test results achieved by the Alcatel-Lucent Virtualized Service Router.
See "Alcatel-Lucent transforms Telefónica’s IP network as demand grows for highest network performance to deliver data and video" - here.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

SON Market to Reach $4B (2017); Converges with DPI and Analytics

A new report by Research and Markets finds that "Despite challenges relating to implementation complexities and multi-vendor interoperability, SON revenue is expected to grow to more than $4 Billion by the end of 2017, exceeding conventional mobile network optimization revenue by nearly 60%. .. Amid growing demands for mobile broadband connectivity, mobile operators are keen to capitalize on SON to minimize roll-out delays and operational expenditures associated with their ongoing LTE and HetNet deployments.

Originally targeted for the RAN (Radio Access Network) segment of mobile networks, SON technology is now also utilized in the mobile core and transport network segments. Furthermore, the SON ecosystem is increasingly witnessing convergence with other technological innovations such as Big Data, predictive analytics and DPI (Deep Packet Inspection).

  • Estimates suggest that SON can enable mobile operators to save nearly 40% of their electrical power consumption by dynamically activating and deactivating RAN nodes in line with the changing traffic and user distribution profile
  • Estimates suggest that a Tier 1 mobile operator can save more than 30% of its overall OpEx by employing SON across the RAN, mobile core and transport segments of the network
  • Mobile operators have reported up to a 50% reduction in dropped calls and over 20% higher data rates with SON implementation
  • SON platforms are moving from reactive systems to more advanced implementations that incorporate predictive analytics technology to make necessary changes to a network before any degradation occurs
  • Infrastructure and software incumbents are aggressively eyeing acquisitions of smaller established C-SON players to accelerate their entry path into the C-SON market 

Companies covered:

3GPP (Third Generation Partnership Project), Accedian Networks, Accuver, Actix, Aepona, Aexio, AIRCOM International, AirHop Communications, Airspan Networks, AlcatelLucent, Amdocs, Anite, Arcadyan, Argela, Aricent, Arieso, ARItel, Ascom, Astellia, AT&T Mobility, ATDI, Avago Technologies, Avvasi, Beeline Kazakhstan, BLiNQ Networks, Broadcom Corporation, Bytemobile, Cavium, CBNL (Cambridge Broadband Networks Limited), Celcite, CellMining, Cellwize, Celtro Communications, CENTRI, Cisco Systems, Citrix Systems, Comarch, CommAgility, Commsquare, Coriant, Datang Group, Datang Mobile, ECE (European Communications Engineering), Eden Rock Communications, Ericsson, ETRI (Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute), Flash Networks, Forsk, Freescale Semiconductor, Fujitsu, Globe Telecom, Guavus, Hitachi, Huawei, InfoVista, Ingenia Telecom, Intel Corporation, InterDigital, Intucell Systems, ip.access, JDSU, KDDI, Lavastorm, Lemko Corporation, List of Companies Mentioned, MIMOon, Mentum, Mobilicity, Mobixell, NEC Corporation, NetScout Systems, Newfield Wireless, NGNM (Next Generation Mobile Networks) Alliance, Nokia Networks, NXP Semiconductors, Optimi, Optulink, P.I.Works, Plano Engineering, Qualcomm, RTRON, RADCOM, Radisys Corporation, Reverb Networks, Rogers Communications, Rohde & Schwarz, Rorotika, Samsung Electronics, Schema, SEDICOM, Siklu Communication, Singtel (Singapore Telecommunications), SK Telecom, SpiderCloud Wireless, Symena, Tarana Wireless, Tektronix Communications, Telefónica, Tellabs, TEOCO, Teradata, Theta Networks, TI (Texas Instruments), TIM Brasil

See "SON (Self-Organizing Network) spending to surpass $4 billion by 2017 says, 'The SON (Self-Organizing Networks) Ecosystem Report: 2015 - 2030'" - here.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

IHS: VoLTE Starts to Pick Up; Huawei Leads the SP VoIP and IMS Market

A new report by Diane Myers [pictured], research director for VoIP, UC and IMS, IHS finds that ".. global service provider VoIP (voice over IP) and IMS (IP multimedia subsystem) revenue was up 46 percent year-over-year in 2Q15, to $1.3 billion .. Spending related to voice over LTE (VoLTE) deployments is starting to pick up, especially in Europe and India, fueling continued strong growth in the service provider VoIP and IMS market ..As well, operators with commercial VoLTE networks in North America and Asia Pacific are purchasing additional capacity as subscriber numbers grow in those regions". 

"Huawei took the lead in overall service provider VoIP and IMS revenue market share in 2Q15 ..  Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, GENBAND and Mavenir (a division of Mitel) also had standout growth from a year ago". 

See "Service Provider VoIP and IMS Market Soars 46 Percent YoY in 2nd Quarter" - here.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Does Comcast Use Data Caps for Fair Service?

Karl Bode reports to techdirt that "For years the broadband industry tried to claim that they were imposing usage caps because of network congestion. .. big ISPs have tried to argue that caps are about "fairness," or that they're essential lest the Internet collapse from uncontrolled congestion.

Comcast is of course slowly but surely expanding usage caps into its least competitive markets. More recently the company has tried to deny it even has caps, instead insisting these limits are "data thresholds" or "flexible data consumption plans."

But when asked last week why Comcast's caps in these markets remain so low in proportion to rising Comcast speeds (and prices), Comcast engineer and vice president of Internet services Jason Livingood candidly admitted on Twitter that the decision to impose caps was a business one, not one dictated by network engineering:

Read more - "Comcast Admits Broadband Usage Caps Are A Cash Grab, Not An Engineering Necessity" - here.

Monday, August 17, 2015

BitTorrent Clients May Generate DDoS Attacks, Boosting Bandwidth x120

BitTorrent, the old ISP challenger, is now creating a new threat - a way to generate DDoS attacks.

Source: P2P File-Sharing in Hell:
 Exploiting BitTorrent 
Vulnerabilities to Launch Distributed 
Reflective DoS Attacks (here)
Ernesto reports to TorrentFreak that "New research shows that BitTorrent clients and BitTorrent Sync can be exploited for Denial of Service attacks. With the help of the popular file-sharing protocol an attacker can reflect and amplify traffic through fellow file-sharers, boosting the original bandwidth 120 times. With dozens of millions of active users at any given point in the day the BitTorrent protocol is a force to be reckoned with.

While BitTorrent swarms are relatively harmless, a new paper published by City University London researcher Florian Adamsky reveals that there’s potential for abuse.

The paper shows that various BitTorrent protocols can be used to amplify Denial of Service attacks.

BitTorrent Inc has been notified about the vulnerabilities and patched some in a recent beta release. For now, however, uTorrent is still vulnerable to a DHT attack. Vuze was contacted as well but has yet to release an update according to the researcher.

For users of BitTorrent-based software there is no security concern other than the fact that people are participating in a DDoS attack without their knowledge. The vulnerability mostly leads to a lot of wasted bandwidth"


Sunday, August 16, 2015

[GSA]: 20% of LTE Operators Launched LTE-Advanced (88 vs. 20 in February)

GSA reports that "LTE-Advanced deployments have taken firm hold in all markets around the world with 131 i.e. over 30% of operators in 60 countries investing in LTE-Advanced system deployments, as reported in GSA's July Evolution to LTE report. Carrier aggregation is the first LTE-Advanced feature to be commercialised enabling operators to efficiently combine spectrum assets to deliver an improved customer experience of mobile broadband.

A total of 88 operators, i.e. over 20% of all LTE operators, have commercially launched LTE-Advanced service in 45 countries:
  • 15 LTE-Advanced networks support Category 4 devices (above 100 Mbps up to 150 Mbps peak downlink speed)
  • 73 networks (83%) support Category 6 devices (above 150 Mbps up to 300 Mbps) with most (37 networks) supporting the top theoretical peak downlink speed of 300 Mbps
  • In addition, another 22 are in deployment, trials or study phases
[Compare to the Feb'15 report - "[GSA]: 20 Operators Deployed 300 Mbps LTE-A" - here]

See "GSA says Investments in LTE-Advanced systems confirm global Cat 6 and Cat 9 growth trend" - here.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

[IHS]: Global Carrier SDN Market to Reach $5.7B in 2019

A new report by Michael Howard [pictured], senior research director for carrier networks, IHS concludes that "As service providers seek service agility and operational efficiency in their networks to stay competitive, the global market for carrier software-defined networking (SDN) software, hardware and services is expected to grow from $103 million in 2014 to $5.7 billion in 2019 .. We’re still early in the long-term, 10- to 15-year transformation of service provider networks to SDN. 

Momentum is strong, but we won’t see widespread commercial deployments where bigger parts of — let alone whole — networks are controlled by SDN until 2016 through 2020".  

"SDN software — including network apps, such as traffic analytics, and orchestration and controller software — is the critical piece that will convert a network into a software-defined network .. service providers around the world will increase their spending on SDN software by 15 times from 2015 to 2019.

Due to the newness of SDN technology and the fundamental changes it brings to networks, there is an incredible demand for expertise to design, deploy and operate SDN-based services, and carriers are looking to vendors for this expertise".
See "Carriers on Track to Spend $5.7B on SDN Hardware, Software and Services by 2019" - here.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Openet Details 13 Years of Use Cases with AT&T

During the years I write this blog I had a number of posts speculating that certain announcements made by Openet refer to AT&T ("Openet Sees PCC for VoLTE Success (AT&T?)" - here; "[Rumors]: AT&T "Sponsored Data" is Based on Openet's PCC" - here; "Openet - Why AT&T Changed its IPad Service plans?" - here),

However, I could not get a confirmation from Openet (not even off-the-record!) that this was the case. Recently, Openet made it public information, by including AT&T in its customer page and providing the case study (here) - "Openet supplied Evolved Charging, Balance Manager, Mediation, and Policy Manager to this leading operator".

"in 2002 Openet supplied their mediation product to AT&T to collect voice and data calls from AT&T’s 2G network. This was followed up with the supply of Openet’s Policy Manager product and their On-line Charging System product in 2008 and 2009 respectively to cater for the advance in 3G mobile data. As AT&T launched new 4G networks and new services Openet’s products have grown to support the new and innovative use cases that AT&T need to supply to maintain and grow their market position and enhance their reputation as one of the most innovative mobile operators in the world. Sample Use Cases supported by Openet products: 
  • Tiered data pricing (e.g. speed and quota) 
  • Usage notifications 
  • Service passes 
  • Mediation for voice, U-verse, SMS and data services 
  • Pre-paid Data and Messaging Charging Control 
  • Roaming detection 
  • LTE Application Policy - Video Calling and VoLTE

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Ofcom Report on Traffic Management Detection Methods

While  "Unlike some countries, All ISPs Voluntary Signed for the Net Neutrality Code"[here],  Ofcom, the UK regulator, had to find ways for detecting the use of traffic shaping practices used by ISPs and commissioned study that was published recently - "A Study of Traffic Management Detection Methods & Tools" (here).

Ofcom explains that "As consumers use more 'bandwidth hungry' Internet services such as video, existing access networks are likely to experience congestion problems. One way for Internet service providers (ISPs) to manage congestion is to increase the capacity of their networks. Yet, even in the longer term, congestion problems are still likely to persist as demand continues to rise; in particular on wireless networks. Alternatively, ISPs can adopt traffic management (TM) techniques to alleviate network congestion. 

[See also - "[UK] Ofcom Research on Transparency of Traffic Management" - here]

Potential TM points in the UK broadband infrastructure (wireline)
Source: "A Study of Traffic Management Detection Methods & Tools" (here). 

.. It is envisaged that a practical TM detection mechanism could be a useful part of the regulatory toolkit for helping the communications market deliver online content and services that meet consumer expectations. For example, such a mechanism could potentially help to increase transparency for consumers, visibility for the regulator, and benefits for online service providers.

The report provides a comparative analysis of the identified methods and tools, for example,
in terms of:

  • Their efficacy in detecting and quantifying the presence of TM in a given network;
  • The impact on the network and the consumer in terms generated traffic volume, quality of experience, etc; and
  • The need for a given tool or methodology to be integrated within, or executed outside a given ISP’s network infrastructure.
This literature review was commissioned by Ofcom to better understand the techniques that could be potentially used to detect traffic management"
See "Traffic Management Detection Methods & Tools" - here.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Qwilt Adds Remote Management and Cloud-based Analytics

Qwilt revealed ".. two new offerings: the Qwilt Video Fabric Management Service (VFMS) and Qwilt Network Media Analytics (NMA) solution for network operators.

Qwilt Network Media Analytics

Qwilt Video Fabric Management Service
  • The Qwilt Video Fabric Management Service (VFMS) is a fully managed, proactive remote network monitoring and management service that includes the following capabilities: Real Time Monitoring .. Video Fabric Diagnostics .. Proactive Health and Media Signature Updates.

  • The Qwilt Network Media Analytics (NMA) solution is a cloud-based product that provides operators with unprecedented visibility into video delivery performance, online video consumption trends and Quality of Experience, with capabilities including: Visibility into Open Cache Performance ..Online Video Consumption Statistics and Trends and Real Time Quality of Experience (QoE) Reporting.

See "Qwilt Video Fabric Management and Network Media Analytics Offerings Deliver Unmatched Operational Simplicity and Network Visibility for Online Video Delivery" - here.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

SoftBank to Offer Fastly CDN in Japan

Fastly Data Center
Fastly announced that it is partnering with "SoftBank Corp. to offer Fastly’s CDN services in Japan. 

Under the partnership, Fastly CDN services will be managed and operated for Japanese customers by Fastly. SoftBank will provide the primary sales route to market, with implementation and support delivered jointly in collaboration between Fastly and SoftBank. The Fastly Solution is available immediately via SoftBank to companies in Japan, and directly via Fastly to companies globally.

Japan's national Internet has historically had a single point of interconnection in Tokyo. To ensure the level of performance and resiliency expected from a CDN, Fastly has deployed a second POP in-country. The next logical point of interconnect is located in Osaka, where networks and enterprises have built secondary facilities in order to reduce network latency and to provide redundancy in the event of a catastrophic event affecting Tokyo". 

Fastly offers an "Accelerate anything" content distribution solution:
  • Static content - Cache static content — including images, CSS, and JavaScript — to ensure a faster response and download time for your end users. Fastly is built on Varnish, and its architecture is designed to cache entire webpages, handling traffic even more efficiently.
  • Event-driven content - We’re the only CDN that caches frequently changing and unpredictable content. “Event-driven” content is static for some unknown period of time, and then changes. Examples include wiki pages, news headlines, stock prices, sports scores, inventory, and APIs.
  • Dynamic Site Acceleration (DSA) - Fastly optimizes delivery from origin over long distances. Through the use of network and protocol optimization, along with mechanisms such as Origin Shield, Fastly’s DSA offering is capable of transporting dynamic content over long distances with efficient speed.
See "Fastly Partners with SoftBank to Enter Japanese Market" - here.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Vodafone India Launches a Seamless Wi-Fi Offload App reports that "Vodafone India, the country's second largest telecom operator, has rolled out its wi-fi offload application, which will shift data traffic away from the cellular network and help decongest it. The move comes amid rising subscriber complaints about inconsistent data speeds over the cellular network, with 3G dropping to 2G speed frequently as mobile internet usage surges in India.

Vodafone Wi-Fi Connect is available on Android and iOS platforms and requires a one-time sign-in. It will come into effect anytime the user enters Vodafone's wi-fi zones in Delhi and Mumbai. It has about 100 such zones in total.

The seamless authentication of customers with the mobile network profile was a key integration challenge, experts said. Vodafone India didn't respond to ET's queries.

Rivals such as Bharti Airtel, Idea Cellular and Aircel are also looking at wi-fi as an alternative that can be deployed in parallel with the existing macro base-station network, making more spectrum available for data usage.

The company added 1,100 3G sites and 1,000 2G sites in the quarter as part of its Project Spring initiative. 3G coverage in targeted urban areas increased marginally to 91% from the previous quarter's 90%". 

See "Vodafone India aims to decongest 3G data networks via Wi-Fi offloading app" - here.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

How Much will CSPs Spend on CapEx?

Two recent forecasts on telecom CapEx spending:
  • Dell’Oro Group forecasts that the ".. trends for the combined Service Provider Telecom Equipment market comprising the Access, Carrier IP Telephony, Microwave, Mobile RAN, Optical, SP Routers, SP WiFi, and Wireless Packet Core markets, are set to improve between 2014 and 2019—the cumulative Service Provider Telecom Equipment market is expected to be $26 B higher than the comparative five-year period (2008-2013)".

    See "Telecom Equipment Sales to Increase by $26 Billion" - here
  • ABI Research believes "global wireless capital expenditure (CAPEX) will remain flat in 2015, due to strong U.S. dollar impact on the purchase power of mobile operators and the regional unrest in Middle East and North African regions.

    As compared to 2014, ABI Research forecasts a slight decline of 0.6% in global CAPEX. North American operators such as AT&T and Verizon are expecting the percentage of CAPEX to revenue to decline in 2015 .. As multiple operators, such as Vodafone, Singtel, MegaFon, and Softbank, are currently testing 5G technology, ABI Research forecasts 5G to start around 2020, with capital expenditures anticipating 5G starts a few years ahead".

    See "Global Wireless Capital Expenditure Flat at US$194 Billion in 2015 with 5G Capital Planning in Sight" - here

Saturday, August 8, 2015

India's Regulator Demands Data Usage Transparency

India's regulator, TRAI, takes another step towards transparency and bill shock prevention, in addition to the other Net Neutrality laws (see "India Planned Net Neutrality Laws" - here).

Telecom Lead reports that the "Telecom Regularoty Authority of India today said Indian telecom service providers should share data usage related information with their subscribers on regular basis".


"Indian telecoms such as Vodafone India, Bharti Airtel, Idea Cellular, Reliance Communications, Tata Docomo, Aircel, Uninor, MTS India, Videocon Telecom, MTNL and BSNL must issue notices in form of USSD or SMS about data usage to its customers, TRAI said in its Telecom Consumers Protection (Eighth Amendment) Regulations, 2015.

TRAI said it received several complaints from mobile Internet consumers regarding non-availability of information relating to the amount of data used during a data session .. Mobile network operators now need to send information about the usage to data users at every 10 MB of data consumption except customers opting for special schemes like add-on packs, combo offers and others. The consumers are to be provided with an option to opt out if they do not desire to receive such information.

.. Further the consumer shall be informed about the details of tariff applicable after exhausting the data limit, when the data limit reaches 90 percent or the data balance available in the account reaches 10MB .. Telecom operators also need to send an alert to international roaming customer cautioning the person to deactivate data service if one does not intend to use data services.

TRAI ordered the service providers to implement the same by November 1 this year". 

See "TRAI wants telecoms to share data usage info with subscribers" - here.

Friday, August 7, 2015

DPI Deployments [361]: AccessKenya Selected Procera

Procera Networks and XON, the Pan-African ICT group announced that "AccessKenya, the leading and most reliable converged Communication and IT infrastructure service provider in East Africa, has selected Procera’s subscriber management solution (based on PacketLogic 8820) to replace an incumbent installation and deliver next generation subscriber experience management solutions to meet the region’s growing demand for high-touch IT services.

Due to an antiquated system becoming un-operational, AccessKenya needed to source a replacement for their subscriber management and provisioning system. The PL8820 was a natural fit meeting several key criteria which where critical to AccessKenya’s needs, including:

  • Multi-tenant support for enterprise clients, providing an enhanced interface to manage their own bandwidth and filtering specific services
  • Replacement of current subscriber statistical interface with an extended statistical interface and information
  • Provisioning mechanism to allow easy provisioning of new subscribers to subscriber manager and support their corporate customer management processes
AccessKenya National Connectivity

See "AccessKenya Chooses Procera Networks’ PacketLogic Platform for Next Generation IT Services" - here.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Silicom Wins $1M/Year 100GE Bypass Blade for Traffic Management Vendor

Silicom (NASDAQ: SILC) announced a "Design Win for 100G Bypass Blades with an existing customer in the Traffic Management industry. Initial-quantity production has begun and is expected to ramp up to approximately $1 million per year .. Silicom’s Bypass switches are fail-safe mechanisms that assure the continued flow of traffic in high-traffic in-line appliances in times of failure, whether due to loss of power, software malfunction or other occurrence"

The following chart from Silicom's recent presentation shows who their existing Traffic Management customers are: 

Shaike Orbach, President and CEO, Silicom said: “.. with the 100G market moving toward mainstream deployments, we believe that revenues from this Design Win will grow beyond the currently-forecast $1 million per year, and that our strong 100G capabilities will become an increasingly strategic advantage, contributing significantly to our ability to achieve our long-term growth targets.

See "Silicom Announces Design Win For 100G Bypass Blades With Existing Customer" - here.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Allot CEO: We Won an MNO with "Tens of Millions of Subscribers"

Allot Communications released its Q2 results (here), with revenues of $21.6M - right in the middle of the range provided in the preliminary announcement. The revenues guidance for the rest of the year remains at $100-105M, i.e. $48.9-53.9M for the the 2nd half of 2015.

Last month I quoted an interviewed with Allot's former CEO, Rami Hadar (see - "Allot's Former CEO: 'Security is the Right Direction for Allot'"- here). Allot's President and CEO, Andrei Elefant [pictured] statements made during the earning call, follow up Rami's recommendations ("win more large operators .. I think security is the right direction for Allot":

"According to our strategic plan, we expanded our customer base with new strategic accounts, which we provide constant flow of revenue. .. bookings from new customers was well above our average. During the quarter, we won five new tier-1 operators of which three are mobile operated. 
  • One of these mobile operators selected Allot Service Gateway Tera and our ClearSee solution for its new HP network. This network targets tens of millions of subscribers. The customer has already pledged a multimillion-dollar follow-on order at the beginning of Q3. We see this order as a validation to our strategy of increasing our installed base, creating greater stability in revenue. 
  • Another new customer, this one a fixed line operator purchased 100GE solution, which was delivered during the quarter [here]. Moving into 100GE network is a tend we see with many fixed line operators [indiscernible], and we expect to see additional benefits from this trend going forward.
Large deals reached 21 in total, none of which represent new customers; 15 came from mobile operators, five from fixed line service providers and one from cloud operator. The mobile sector continues to be our main focus and we are pleased with the flow of large orders from this vertical.
  • One of our security customers, a tier-1 mobile operator with more than 20 million subscribers began purchasing another security service two years ago. Today, they provide security services to over 5 million end users. They charge each end user an average of $1 per month with a total of incremental annual revenue of about $50 million. Our security offering is [Technical Difficulty] to our customers because the benefit goes directly into the top line.
See "Allot Communications' (ALLT) CEO Andrei Elefant on Q2 2015 Results - Earnings Call Transcript", by SeekingAlpha, here.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Sandvine Buys Momac for $7.7M; Enhances Customer Engagement Capabilities

Sandvine announced that it has "..acquired all of the shares of MoMac B.V. a Netherlands-based company that sells cloud-based, customer engagement solutions to mobile operators. Sandvine has purchased all of the shares of Momac in exchange for €7 million (approximately $7.7 million USD), plus certain retention-based management incentives. Momac has 26 employees, based in Rotterdam. Sandvine expects that the acquisition will not have a material impact to revenue nor earnings in fiscal 2015, and expects the acquisition to be slightly accretive to earnings in 2016.

Momac will enhance Sandvine’s portfolio of Revenue Generation products for its communications service provider (CSP) customers. Specifically, Momac’s products will work with Sandvine OutReach  [see "Sandvine Enables CSPs to Interact Directly w/Subscribers; How does it Work?" - hereto significantly enhance its customer engagement capabilities, such that subscribers are presented with the most relevant message, offer or alert at the right time, on any screen, such that they can take immediate action". 

See "Sandvine Acquires Momac B.V." - here.

DiViNetworks Launched Managed Access Service

DiViNetworks introduced its ".. DiViPipe Internet Traffic Delivery and Management Solution. .. With DiViPipe, ISPs, telecoms and infrastructure network providers, enable premium customers to classify, prioritize and distinguish cloud applications while guaranteeing bandwidth and meeting SLAs. With the new offering, DiViNetworks arms its customers with the competitive advantage for generating new revenue streams.

DiViPipe extends the operator's customers control over the network. Being Cloud-based network infrastructure, the platform provides access to PoPs at major Internet Exchanges in 5 continents.
[see map below] 

With a corporate dashboard for visibility into data traffic composition, the solution adds flexible policy definitions – set by the customer – that allows them to handle all elements of traffic management and dedicate bandwidth for cloud services. DiViPipe is enabled over the DiViCloud DDN (Data Delivery Network) platform which requires no CapEx investment and is effortlessly operated via a simple corporate desktop application.

See "DiViNetworks Introducing DiViPipe Solution To Enhance ISP Revenue Generation" - here.

Monday, August 3, 2015

TIM [Italy] Promises "Best Streaming Quality Experience" for Netflix

Yet another Net Neutrality problem coming up? it depends on what Telecom Italia will be doing to keep-up its promise for "best streaming quality experience" to the upcoming Netflix service in Italy (here).

Related post: "The EU 'Enshrines Net Neutrality’s no Blocking or Throttling Rules'" - here.

Telecom Italia group and Netflix announced an "..agreement to deliver easy access to Netflix to TIM's customers directly on the TIMvision set-top box ..  TIM customers will have easy, on demand access to Netflix, the world’s leading Internet TV network .. Netflix programming will be available in HD quality, directly on the TV via the TIMvision set-top box, on TIM’s fixed ADSL and UBB networks, the most broadly available networks in Italy. 

TIM and Netflix will work together to provide TIM’s customers an easy way to access the Netflix app and enable best streaming quality experience"

See "Telecom Italia to bring Netflix to TIMvision" - here.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

2000 Net Neutrality Complaints Filled

Brendan Sasso [pictured] reports to the National Journal that " In just the first month that net-neutrality regulations have been in effect, consumers have filed about 2,000 complaints to the Federal Communications Commission against Comcast, AT&T, and other Internet service providers, according to records obtained by National Journal.

And the depth of consumer outrage over unreliable Internet service and high prices is undeniable. .. Many consumers complained about data caps .. a consumer stopped watching Netflix and Hulu because of the "ridiculous" data caps

The FCC estimated the total number of informal complaints filed in the first month of the new regulations and provided copies of 50 of those complaints to National Journal as an initial response to a request submitted under the Freedom of Information Act. Public comments on proceedings and formal complaints are available on the FCC's website, but the agency does not routinely make informal consumer complaints available

See "Thousands Beg FCC for Net Neutrality Crackdown" - here.