Monday, August 31, 2009

Europe leads mobile managed services market at nearly $9 billion

NEW YORK, USA: When it comes to managed services for mobile operators, Europe leads the world’s most active regions this year.

ABI Research forecasts indicate that the European managed mobile services market will total nearly $9 billion in 2009. The Asia-Pacific region follows a distant second, with a market size of about $5.7 billion. Total managed services revenue for 2009 is forecast to reach $22.2 billion.

“Just a few large companies account for the lion’s share of the network-related managed services market,” says senior analyst Nadine Manjaro. “Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent are the leaders in this space with both vendors recently announcing new managed services contracts and agreements. Among them: Ericsson’s $5 billion contract with Sprint – the first major penetration in North America. The company also signed a seven-year contract with Vodafone UK.”

In 2008 Alcatel-Lucent concluded a three-year managed services deal with Saudi mobile operator Mobily.

Nokia Siemens ranks third in the world in terms of market share, and recently announced managed services contracts with the Brazilian operator Oi valued at $1.57 billion.

Meanwhile the major managed services providers are working to extend their IT capabilities through partnerships or on their own; Alcatel-Lucent, for example, has established a global alliance with HP. The company also entered a managed service joint venture with Bharti Airtel in India.

AdMob to acquire AdWhirl

SAN MATEO, USA: AdMob, the world’s largest and fastest growing mobile advertising platform, announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the assets of AdWhirl, the industry’s most widely utilized mobile ad mediation solution.

The acquisition of AdWhirl is an important development in the growth of the mobile ecosystem, and further cements AdMob’s position in the mobile app developer community. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

“AdMob’s number one priority with this acquisition is to help maximize monetization opportunities for app developers and publishers,” said Omar Hamoui, CEO of AdMob. “By offering this first ever open source ad mediation solution, our goal is to provide a much needed open, unbiased and transparent tool for mobile publishers who would like to build financially rewarding businesses that are fueled by advertising.”

AdMob will expand on AdWhirl’s mediation product to create enhanced developer tools that will be offered as an open source mobile ad mediation solution. This will provide a transparent and unbiased solution for developers to allocate their inventory among multiple mobile ad networks and maximize the fill rates and revenue potential of their applications.

AdMob expects to make these offerings available in the coming weeks. In the interim, publishers will be able to continue utilizing AdWhirl’s tools just as they have done previously.

With more than 1,000 publishers, AdWhirl’s technology has become a leading tool for mobile ad mediation. “We share a common vision with AdMob of promoting the growth of mobile app developers,” said Sam Yam, co-founder of AdWhirl. “Through working with AdMob to address issues around mobile ad mediation, we believe that bringing an open source solution to the community is the right next step for the industry, giving developers flexibility and control over monetizing their own inventory.”

The coming launch of these new developer tools will mark the first open source mobile ad mediation solution, and will join the list of many industry firsts for AdMob – including its iPhone app ad units, download tracking, download exchange, and support for iPhone OS 3.0.

With more than 100 billion ads served and a network with more than 7,000 mobile sites and 3,000 apps, AdMob is in a unique position to offer a suite of publisher tools designed to help app developers increase monetization opportunities, and in turn grow the mobile ecosystem.

Hitachi opens new facility for 4G mobile communication systems development

DALLAS, USA: Hitachi Communication Technologies America Inc. (Hitachi-CTA) officially opened a new facility to engage in the development of core network infrastructure equipment for Long-Term Evolution (LTE) wireless networks to address the growing 4th-generation (4G) mobile communications market.

The facility, named the Dallas R&D Center, is located in the “telecom corridor” area of Richardson, Texas. The Dallas R&D Center will focus on the Mobility Management Entity (MME) and other components of the Evolved Packet Core (EPC) for LTE.

“I am very pleased to announce the opening of the new Dallas R&D Center in support of Hitachi’s mobile communications business,” said Yoshihiro Kondo, General Manager, Dallas R&D Center, Hitachi-CTA. “This location in Richardson is at the heart of this activity in the United States, and I believe that we can expand our business in the near future.”

Last year, KDDI Corp., a leading Japanese wireless operator, selected Hitachi as the EPC supplier for KDDI’s LTE network. Hitachi partnered with Nortel Networks to provide the MME component of EPC to KDDI.

Hitachi has hired a seasoned staff of key MME/SGSN/mobility architects, R&D and business personnel for the Dallas R&D Center to work on the development and delivery of a market-leading MME and other EPC components for KDDI.

Each R&D staff member brings, on average, over 10 years of experience in developing and supporting MME/SGSN and 3GPP/3GPP2 wireless data products. The work on MME is based on a license under which Nortel has granted to Hitachi the rights to develop and deliver the MME to KDDI.

The Hitachi-CTA Dallas R&D Center further strengthens Hitachi’s ability to provide advanced solutions for communications service providers worldwide.

Friday, August 28, 2009

China Telecom 1H09: promising growth in the mobile market, but pressures remain

CHINA: China Telecom, the country’s biggest fixed operator, demonstrated strong growth in the mobile market in 1H09. The 3G licence it was granted in early 2009 has provided it with an opportunity to enter the mobile market just as fixed-to-mobile substitution is beginning to accelerate its fixed subscriber losses.

Its mobile subscriber numbers are now beginning to grow. It averaged almost 2 million monthly net additions in 1H09, and saw strong growth in its mobile net addition market share.

In contrast, the largest mobile operator, China Mobile, is losing its dominant share of net subscriber additions, with a share of 66 percent in 1H09, down from 85 percent in 1H08.

Ovum expects China Telecom’s strong mobile growth to continue in the second half of 2009 for two reasons:
* China Telecom is leading the way on 3G network deployment. Currently, it has the largest coverage of any of the Chinese operators, with 342 cities and more than 2,000 counties covered by its CDMA EV-DO rollout as of July 2009. In contrast, China Unicom has only deployed WCDMA in just over 100 cities, and China Mobile’s TD-SCDMA networks will only cover 238 cities by the end of 2009.

* Bundling will help China Telecom continue its strong growth. The bundling of mobile and fixed services is leading to the rapid expansion of its mobile subscriber base.
China Telecom announced that in the first half of 2009, the penetration of bundled among its mobile subscribers was 48 percent. China Telecom’s dominance in the fixed and broadband markets should promote further growth in the mobile market.

Evidence from July 2009 bears this out, with China Telecom gaining 2.45 million new subscribers –- its highest monthly growth to date.

But there are difficulties to overcome
Despite the potential for further growth, China Telecom needs to address several issues if it is to remain competitive with China Unicom and China Mobile:

* Poor choice of handsets for 3G customers. Although China Telecom has been heavily advertising its 3G brand in the market, the lack of handset choice is likely to become a limiting factor for further growth of its 3G services. It needs to expand the range of handsets available soon in order to maintain its current rate of growth.

* Weak show in rural markets. China Telecom has made great progress in urban markets, but it needs to take action to win new customers in rural areas too. China Mobile is dominant in rural markets and China Unicom has recently announced its rural strategies. With mobile penetration only around 20 percent in these markets, there is huge potential for growth in rural regions.

* Over-reliance on heavy subsidies. Although the use of heavy subsidies has been a successful competitive strategy for the three operators in the 3G market, these subsidies have become a drag on financial results. China Telecom should consider targeting niche markets and enhancing its bundled offerings to reduce reliance on subsidies.

GPS based vehicle tracking services in Bangalore at affordable pricing

BANGALORE, INDIA: Elanor Tracking, a Bangalore based company has launched Web based Vehicle Monitoring as a “service”. The speciality of their service is affordability and ease of use.

For a small monthly fee, Elanor Tracking helps people to monitor their vehicles for location, over speed, unauthorized stoppages, etc.

According to Shakeel Sheriff, CEO – Elanor Tracking, the activation of the service is very simple. You can register with Elanor Tracking for a small fee. Experienced engineers will take care of the installation of GPS/GPRS based tracking device on your vehicles. After this, a user name and password will be given to you.

Using this, you can log into Elanor's website and access your vehicle’s information from any where. Elanor Tracking has also set up a support centre, which is available 24/7 to support you.

This service helps to achieve efficient usage of vehicles, reduce fuel expenses, safer and quicker journeys etc. Some of the facilities of Elanor Tracking services are tracking the movement of vehicles when driven by others, define traffic routes & get alerts if the vehicle is deviating from it, get over speed alerts & making sure the vehicle is driven safely, avoid unauthorised travel etc. Using this service you can make sure that your vehicles are not misused.

150 Indian cities to have WiMAX in 90 days

NEW DELHI, INDIA: Some 150 cities in India would have wireless broadband through WiMAX technology in just 90 days once the 20 MHz spectrum is allotted at the base reserve price of 250 million dollars (Rs. 1,010 crores) to four operators in each circle.

Each operator could serve 15 to 20 million subscribers with good quality service. But much would depend upon early implementation of the proposed auction of the spectrum for the service.

This perspective emerged at the WiMAX India 2009 conference being organized by Bharat Exhibitions. “India is ready for broadband experience” said C.S. Rao, chairman of WiMAX Forum India. “Wireless is the key to broadband” he said recalling the projection in the President’s address to Parliament setting 100 million subscriber target for broadband by 2014 and 20 million by 2012. The fact of India having a social demographics of over 600 million young people underlined the need for rapid roll out of broadband in the country, Rao pointed out.

Despite this national vision for broadband penetration, why the ground level progress so slow was, asked several telecom experts participating in the day long discussion. Telecom experts contrasted the huge push in cellular phone subscription to 14 million per month in June with the total users of a mere 6 million in broadband.

“Against over 40 percent penetration of cellphone at 450 million, Internet penetration is just 0.6 percent” regretted Naresh Ajwani, secretary, Internet Service Providers Association of India. “Roll out the bidding for spectrum. The delay is stopping India from developing” he said.

On the issue of poor broadband penetration despite huge WiMAX potential, Bharti Airtel group CTO Jagbir Singh found that price points “are not good and scalability is an issue.” He and several other experts who participated called for early conducting of the spectrum auction to get the WiMAX based broadband penetration roll out fast.

Jagbir Singh also expressed concern over backhaul costs that have become “a huge issue”. Several other speakers agreed with him on the backhaul issue, especially the problems being faced by service providers in getting right of way permissions from local authorities. “RoW cost should be near zero if rural broadband is to be affordable”, he added.

“Backhaul cost is killing us” revealed Mallikarjuna Rao, Head technology and network planning Aircel, adding that government intervention was needed to bring down the high costs of carrying and Internet bandwidth if broadband were to be available at affordable price.

On how operators and government could work together to reduce total costs to improve affordability for rural customers, A. Sethuraman, executive director of Huawei, a leading global telecom equipment company, listed several factors like smaller footprints, natural cooling, advanced technologies to save energy, could reduce the huge operational costs.

Converged platforms putting together optic fibre and microwave and use of multiple technologies in the same equipment were some of the available options. User end costs were also going down with many PCs and laptops now becoming WiMAX embedded. “New innovations in terminals combining WiFi and WiMAX” were also coming up he disclosed.

Sethuraman, Executive director, Huawei Telecommunication India also disclosed that a new technology by his company “CSR initiative” for rural India was available especially useful in connectivity in education.

WiMAX Forum has over 500 members. It sees India as a large market. IIT-Delhi hosts a WiMAX applications laboratory. That technology and equipment for commercial operation of WiMAX was already available, was underlined in the presentation that Motorola India country head for home and networks mobility business, Subhendu Mohanty gave at the conference.

He found great [prospects for future broadband penetration in the rising sales of PCs and laptops. Notebook growth has crossed 114 per cent last year. Worldwide 133 million broadband subscribers were expected by 2012 of which 70 per cent would use mobile WiMAX devices. “WiMAX is here, LTE would be available by next year” he revealed. LTE is a high speed wireless on GSM platform for cellphone services, faster than 3G. “WiMAX is a step towards LTE”, he said.

As many as 25 applications on WiMAX were already available. Low cost chipsets “critical for India” roll out of WiMAX were being provided by his company. He claimed “total cost advantage’ in using WiMAX for broadband expansion.

Calling for a “faster auction” of 3G and WiMAX spectrum, Neeraj Sonker, vice-president, Tata Communications defined the challenge in wireless broadband was to make business plan viable at an average revenue per user of four to five dollars per month. The equipment and technology must be looked at “differently” for India operations to make WiMAX affordable. The roll out should be such as to enable seamless transfer from WiMAX to EVDO(the cellular platform for triple play connectivity).

Through wireless broadband it was now becoming possible for housewives to work from home for providing many services notably as call centre operators, Sonker said listing several new openings that WiMAX was offering to broader user audience.

There should be 27.5 million WiMAX users by 2012, according to Bharat Exhibition Managing Director Sasidharan, organizers of the conference.

Service delivery platforms market review: $3.09 billion in 2008 to $6.05 billion in 2013

DUBLIN, IRELAND: Research and Markets has announced the addition of the "Service Delivery Platforms Market Review" report to its offering.

We forecast rapid growth in spending on service delivery platforms (SDPs), from $3.09 billion in 2008 to $6.05 billion in 2013, at a 14 percent CAGR. This is significantly down from our forecast a year ago.

The principal change is reduced SDP spending in 2009 and the first half of 2010. We forecast a return to rapid growth in SDP spending from 2011 onwards, as the global economy recovers and communication service providers (CSPs) return to more-normal spending patterns.

The deployment of an SDP is usually a major project for a CSP. It requires integration with network enablers, mobile portals, billing systems, customer care systems and OSS. It often requires a major marketing effort to define and launch the package of services that the SDP supports. It sometimes involves new business models and strategic partners that require careful strategic analysis.

Most CSPs have been through this process a number of times to support different services and in different business units. As a consequence, there is already a legacy of custom-built and product-based SDP infrastructure.

In this report, we focus on quantifying spending on the product components of an SDP; this includes the licence revenue from new deployments, the maintenance revenue from installed base and the professional services directly related to product deployment.

The product components we include in SDP are telecoms application servers (TASs), mobile content management and delivery (MCMD), mobile device management (MDM) and real-time charging (RTC).

Thursday, August 27, 2009

World’s top 10 most fiber broadband-enabled countries -- Singapore to overtake South Korea as fiber leader!

BOSTON, USA: “The future of broadband is clearly in fiber,” according to analyst, Ben Piper, Director of the Strategy Analytics Multiplay Market Dynamics service. “The existing Telco xDSL infrastructure is reaching the end of its useful life. Soon it will no longer be able to support increasingly bandwidth-heavy consumer applications.”

Table: Source -- Strategy Analytics
Rankings just released by Strategy Analytics show that eight of the world’s top 10 most fiber broadband-enabled countries are Asian and Eastern European.

At the end of 2009, 51 percent of South Korean households will have a fiber connection, making it the most fiber-connected country worldwide. Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Lithuania round out the top five in the firm’s rankings.

Singapore will overtake South Korea for the number one position by 2013, according to Strategy Analytics. Part of the Singaporean government's “iN2015” initiative is the construction of a 1 Gbps Fiber-to-the-Premises (FTTP) network, currently underway, with mandated 100% coverage by January 1, 2013.

Likewise, Australia, which this year launched its $31 billion National Broadband Network (NBN), will catapult from 21st to 8th place worldwide by 2013, according to Strategy Analytics. The government-backed FTTP based solution aims to deliver 100 Mbps FTTP service to 90% of Australian households, schools, and businesses over the next eight years.

Strategy Analytics’ Global Broadband Forecast: 1H’09 provides coverage 60 countries in five discrete regions, and provides history and forecasts for key metrics including: Households, PC Penetration, Internet Access Subscriptions, Household Internet Access Penetration, Broadband Subscriptions, Household Broadband Access Penetration, Broadband Users, Dial-up vs Broadband splits, Service Revenues, ARPU, and Subscriptions by Technology Platform (xDSL, Cable,FTTx, and FWA / WiMax).

Reliance Communications, China Telecom provide first terrestrial cable to directly connect China and India

HONG KONG: Reliance Communications and China Telecom have announced the opening of the first direct terrestrial cable link between the Chinese and Indian domestic markets.

The Reliance Communications and China Telecom constructed cable was the first cross border terrestrial connectivity project to be planned between India and China, and was completed earlier this month. The cable passes through the inhospitable terrain of the Nathula Pass, linking Yadong in China to Siliguri in India.

The cable will provide direct, enterprise class connectivity between all major Indian and Chinese locations as well as expanding high-bandwidth coverage to more rural regions and cities in both countries. Neighbouring countries like Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and even Pakistan and Bangladesh will also benefit in the longer term, through increased bandwidth availability and global termination options.

Reliance Globalcom, the global arm of Reliance Communications can now offer the additional protection of two separate cable routes between India and China with considerable less risk from natural disasters.

Both international businesses and consumers in the region will benefit from improved internet connectivity, lower latency and improved voice clarity calls. Previously, the only available option for high-bandwidth connectivity between the two countries was via undersea cable routes through Hong-Kong or Singapore.

The disruption to major international services in the region due to the recent typhoons and earthquakes has clearly exposed an associated risk with complete dependence on these cables. This new terrestrial link enables Reliance Globalcom to provide business critical service provision to its customers by offering dual cable route diversity between India and China for the first time.

“This announcement and cable connection is a landmark which represents many years of planning and hard work,” said Han YiHu, Managing Director of China Telecom. “We are very pleased with the increased dedicated bandwidth availability, connection speed and security this cable will provide to Chinese based enterprises and consumers. It will greatly assist our customers to become global industry leaders, while improving opportunities for international business development in both India and China.”

This new link increases the reach and diversity of Reliance Globalcom’s largest privately owned global cable network – by providing direct, dual cable route connectivity from emerging business locations within China to other international business hubs in Europe, Middle East and the East Coast US.

Similarly, Indian companies looking for connectivity to South East Asia, Japan and the West Coast US can now go via the terrestrial cable system to Hong Kong and then on a submarine route, enabling lower latency and improved network resilience.

“India and China represent the largest growing economies in the world, and the current global economic environment requires ever increasing high-bandwidth, converged applications to be run between these markets,” said Punit Garg, President, Reliance Communications.

“This new cable will help our customers across Asia and beyond to effectively compete on a global scale by providing increased network availability and secure connectivity from the world’s key business centres to these high growth markets. We are very pleased that Reliance Globalcom’s global network will play a major role in the development of international business opportunities in the region,” he added.

i-wireless launches ZTE’s C77 handset

DALLAS, USA: ZTE USA, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of ZTE Corp. and leading global provider of telecommunications equipment and network solutions announced that its C77 handset is now available through i-wireless, a national wireless service provider sold exclusively at over 2,200 retail locations within the Kroger family of stores.

The C77 marks the first ZTE handset i-wireless has introduced to its customer base.

As with all its products, ZTE both designs and manufactures its handsets in-house. The C77 joins ZTE’s portfolio of high quality, full-featured handsets available to the US market.

A stylish and affordable option, the C77 is a sleek candy bar phone available in black with a silver band and a two-inch display for vivid pictures. For those who want to stay connected, the C77 features a WAP browser and raised keypad that lends itself to easy texting capability and surfing the web.

“The launch of the C77 with i-wireless highlights the continued demonstration of ZTE’s commitment to bring to market high quality handsets at affordable prices,” said a ZTE spokesperson. “We are very pleased to announce this partnership with i-wireless as it marks yet another milestone for ZTE’s handset growth strategy and expansion of offerings to the US market.”

“Our customers want a handset with all the latest features for a great user experience at an affordable price,” said Don Daniels, Vice President of Marketing, i-wireless LLC. “ZTE delivers on our customer needs with the C77. We are excited to launch our first ZTE handset and look forward to working together to deliver the high-quality, affordable handsets together.”

ZTE USA offers a full portfolio of end-to-end wireless handset and networking solutions in the U.S. The company's handsets have won numerous design awards, and its flexible product design and manufacturing cycle enables ZTE USA to quickly deliver affordable products to customers.

i-wireless will launch the ZTE C77 with an introductory price of $29.99 that includes a free month of service.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

All GSM calls under threat from hackers

UK: GSM call can be listened to by anyone with $500 and a laptop within six months!

At the recent Hacking at Random (HAR) conference, Karsten Nohl detailed plans for cracking standard GSM cell phone encryption, known as A5/1, and making the results available for anyone to use.

His presentation from the event is here --

The implications for businesses, individuals and the mobile industry are enormous:

* Once complete it means anyone with a $500 radio card and a laptop will be able to listen in to GSM calls.
* It marks a lowering of the bar for criminals to be able to hack calls.
* It makes having someone listen to our calls a real-life threat for all of us

Stan Schatt, Vice President and Practice Director, Healthcare and Security at ABI Research, commented, “Potentially this news could have as profound an impact on the cell phone industry as the breaking of WEP encryption had on the wireless LAN industry.”

Cellphones cause brain tumors -- new report by international EMF collaborative

BERKELEY, USA & SUTTON COLDFIELD, ENGLAND: A new report, “Cellphones and Brain Tumors: 15 Reasons for Concern, Science, Spin and the Truth Behind Interphone,” was released today by a collaborative of international EMF activists. Groups affiliated with the report include Powerwatch and the Radiation Research Trust in the UK, and in the US, EMR Policy Institute, and The Peoples Initiative Foundation. Download the report.

The exposé discusses research on cellphones and brain tumors and concludes:

* There is a risk of brain tumors from cellphone use;
* Telecom funded studies underestimate the risk of brain tumors, and;
( Children have larger risks than adults for brain tumors.

This report, sent to government leaders and media, details 11 design flaws of the 13-country, Telecom-funded Interphone study. The Interphone study, begun in 1999, was intended to determine the risks of brain tumors, but its full publication has been held up for years. Components of this study published to date reveal what the authors call a ‘systemic-skew’, greatly underestimating brain tumor risk.

The design flaws include categorizing subjects who used portable phones (which emit the same microwave radiation as cellphones,) as ‘unexposed’; exclusion of many types of brain tumors; exclusion of people who had died, or were too ill to be interviewed, as a consequence of their brain tumor; and exclusion of children and young adults, who are more vulnerable.

Lloyd Morgan, lead author and member of the Bioelectromagnetics Society says, “Exposure to cellphone radiation is the largest human health experiment ever undertaken, without informed consent, and has some 4 billion participants enrolled. Science has shown increased risk of brain tumors from use of cellphones, as well as increased risk of eye cancer, salivary gland tumors, testicular cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and leukemia. The public must be informed.”

International scientists endorsing “Cellphones and Brain Tumors: 15 Reasons for Concern” include Ronald B. Herberman, MD, Director Emeritus, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute; David Carpenter, MD, Director, Institute for Health and the Environment, University at Albany; Martin Blank, PhD, Associate Professor of Physiology and Cellular Biophysics, Columbia University; Professor Yury Grigoriev, Chairman of Russian National Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection, and many others.

InfoTrends study reveals drivers of camera phone activity

WEYMOUTH, USA: A new study from InfoTrends has revealed that US consumers place a high value on having the ability to take photos with their mobile phones.

In fact, over half of respondents cited a camera for taking photos as a vital feature on their mobile phone, second only to text messaging capabilities and ranking significantly above all other features included in the survey.

This study also aimed to determine what factors encourage consumers to use the camera on their phones. Our survey results suggest that consumers with higher resolution camera phones capture, edit, upload, and print more of their camera phone photos.

This is in part because respondents with higher resolution camera phones are more likely to capture photos due to their increased image quality, and it is also likely that those with a greater interest in photography are more likely to deliberately purchase a camera phone with higher megapixels.

Regardless, as time goes on and specifications continue to improve, the availability of higher quality camera phones will likely provide a much needed boost to the entire mobile photography industry.

In addition to those with higher resolution camera phones, younger consumers also appear to be more active camera phone photographers. Notably, when asked how many camera phone photos they take every three months, respondents under age 18 reported taking nearly twice as many as total respondents. Significant differences also emerged when the responses to this question were segmented by other demographics.

Sixnet, TESSCO announce distribution alliance

HUNT VALLEY, USA: TESSCO Technologies Incorporated (Nasdaq:TESS), a value-added provider of the product and supply chain solutions needed to design, build, run, maintain and use wireless systems, and Sixnet, LLC, a market-leading supplier of innovative machine-to-machine (M2M) and both wired and wireless industrial networking solutions, announced that Sixnet’s products and solutions are now available through TESSCO.

TESSCO’s customers can take advantage of solutions for industrial remote monitoring and control systems; wireless, cellular modems designed to provide simple and reliable communication and to enable M2M intelligent wireless data solutions; as well as a comprehensive portfolio of industrial Ethernet switches that connect to any Ethernet device and provide the reliability and other important, critical features.

“This is an important announcement for TESSCO as we broaden and enhance our M2M and industrial automation offering. We expect our relationship with Sixnet to further strengthen our position in the energy and transportation markets,” said Jerry Garland, senior vice president of solutions development and product management at TESSCO.

“The addition of these products to our broad and diverse product portfolio will help us continue to solidify our position as a vital link to a wireless world and a total source provider of the solutions and services that make wireless work.”

Sixnet Vice President of Sales Michael Oliveri commented, “This is the perfect partnership, as it will unite TESSCO’s extensive supply chain experience and outstanding customer service with Sixnet’s leading-edge product line. We look forward to the future with great excitement.”

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Intel's Atom powered Nokia Booklet 3G brings all day mobility to PC world!

ESPOO, FINLAND: After more than 25 years as a pioneer and leader in the mobile industry, Nokia will bring its rich mobility heritage and knowledge to the PC world with the new, Windows based, Nokia Booklet 3G.

Powered by the efficient Intel Atom processor, the Nokia Booklet 3G delivers impressive performance with up to 12 hours of battery life, enabling people to leave their power cable behind and still be connected and productive.

Delivering the rich experience of a full-function PC inside an ultra-portable aluminum chassis, the new mini-laptop weighs 1.25 kilograms, measures slightly more than two centimeters thin, and has the features one would expect from the world's leading mobile device manufacturer.

A broad range of connectivity options -- including 3G/HSPA and Wi-Fi -- gives the consumers high speed access to the Internet, including Nokia's broad suite of Ovi services, and allows them to make the most of every moment and every opportunity.

"A growing number of people want the computing power of a PC with the full benefits of mobility," said Kai Oistamo, Nokia's Executive Vice President for Devices.

"We are in the business of connecting people and the Nokia Booklet 3G is a natural evolution for us. Nokia has a long and rich heritage in mobility and with the outstanding battery life, premium design and all day, always on connectivity, we will create something quite compelling. In doing so we will make the personal computer more social, more helpful and more personal."

The mini-laptop also comes with an HDMI port for HD video out, a front facing camera for video calling, integrated Bluetooth and an easily accessible SD card reader. Other premium features include the 10-inch glass HD ready display and integrated A-GPS which, working with the Ovi Maps gadget, can pinpoint your position in seconds and open up access for a truly personal maps experience.

The Nokia Booklet 3G also brings a number of other rich Ovi experiences to life, whether its access and playback of millions of tracks through the Nokia Music Store, or using Ovi Suite to sync seamlessly from your Nokia smartphone, to your mini-laptop, to the cloud.

The Nokia Booklet 3G will widen the Nokia portfolio, satisfying a need in the operator channel, and bringing another important ingredient in the move towards becoming a mobile solutions company.

RFMD announces 4G LTE engagements with leading handset manufacturers, baseband providers

GREENSBORO, USA: RF Micro Devices Inc., a global leader in the design and manufacture of high-performance semiconductor components, announced that the company is engaged with two leading handset manufacturers and two leading baseband manufacturers in the development of fourth generation (4G) Long Term Evolution, or LTE, mobile broadband handsets.

Specifically, RFMD is supplying the RF6276 and the RF3280, both of which are 4G LTE power amplifiers (PAs) designed to meet or exceed the data-centric performance requirements of the 4G LTE mobile broadband standard. RFMD anticipates production revenue related to 4G LTE PAs will begin in the second half of fiscal 2010, ending April 3, 2010.

"These expanding customer engagements with leading industry partners clearly demonstrate our commitment to advancing new technologies and accelerating the wide scale deployment of next-generation mobile broadband," said Eric Creviston, president of RFMD's Cellular Products Group (CPG).

"RF Micro Devices has a proven history in technology leadership and the support of new air interface standards, including 2G, 2.5G and 3G. Now, with these customer engagements, we are pleased to support the early field deployment of next-generation 4G LTE handsets."

The RF6276 linear LTE power amplifier (PA) is tuned for operation in LTE bands 12 (698 to 716 MHz) and 13 (777 to 792 MHz) and delivers a blend of high-power efficiency and lower current consumption as output power levels decrease.

The RF6276 features two digital power modes that adjust bias current and optimize the PA for the desired range of output power, while maintaining the stringent linearity requirements of LTE modulation.

RFMD's RF3280 linear LTE PA is tuned for operation in LTE band 7 (2500 to 2570 MHz) and is optimized for use in linear multimode WCDMA/LTE mobile devices. The RF3280 leverages RFMD's proven quadrature PA technology, which improves end-product immunity to VSWR (otherwise known as "antenna mismatch") and eases end-product implementation.

The RF3280 is designed for RF front end architectures utilizing analog bias control in combination with a mated DC-DC converter. This architecture enables dynamic PA loadline adjustments which optimize performance whether the handset is operating in WCDMA or LTE.

The combination of analog bias control and a DC-DC converter also optimizes efficiency, at all power levels, and minimizes overall thermal impact. The RF3280 includes an integrated output power detector that supplies a voltage signal relative to the output power level of the PA, thereby reducing board area and simplifying implementation.

Control4 surpasses milestone of 1 million ZigBee products!

SALT LAKE CITY, USA: Control4, the leader in affordable IP-based home control and entertainment systems, announced the shipment of its one millionth ZigBee product to Music Lovers, a Control4 dealer in Berkeley, California.

“Shipping our one millionth ZigBee device is a significant achievement for Control4. Broad consumer adoption of ZigBee technology furthers our vision of simple and affordable home automation solutions for any home,” said Will West, CEO of Control4.

“ZigBee technology allows us to provide and integrate with standards-based wireless products to give installers and consumers confidence when selecting and integrating home solutions.”

ZigBee is a global wireless standard that enables the control and automation of different electronics and environmental systems without costly rewiring or extensive remodeling. As a result of this technology, the Control4 platform can be installed quickly and easily in new or existing homes.

This distribution milestone positions Control4 as the defacto leader in ZigBee products for Home Automation. It also strengthens the company’s move in the fast-growing energy management market, providing utilities and Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) vendors a proven in-home platform for their Home Area Network (HAN) solutions.

“We are delighted to be a part of this milestone,” said Hugh Fountain, owner of Music Lovers, “Over the years, Control4 has enabled us to bring our clients affordable, easy to use control solutions for their home entertainment systems. Thanks to Control4's powerful controllers and our dedicated in-home service, our clients enjoy the benefits of comfort, convenience and peace of mind that comes with whole-home control.”

Control4 was one of the first companies to develop home control products built on the ZigBee mesh networking standard and shipped its first IP-controlled system in April 2005. As an active member of the ZigBee Alliance, Control4 helped shape the current version of the ZigBee standard to promote its vision for affordable automation for every home.

The value of the ZigBee standard is its collaborative development environment, which fosters an ecosystem of interoperable devices including appliances, lighting, environment, energy management and security. Using ZigBee technology, Control4 and its base of over 1,200 dealers have made industry-leading strides in home automation, bringing effortless entertainment and control to every consumer with solutions that balance affordability and reliability.

“Control4 continues to be a cornerstone member of the ZigBee Alliance,” said Benno Ritter, Vice President of Marketing, ZigBee Alliance, “With this milestone, Control4 has shipped a huge number of ZigBee products and will continue to be a major player in the home automation industry.”

ZigBee is a global wireless communications standard that allows dramatically different devices to connect and work together to enhance everyday life. The ZigBee Alliance is a non-profit association of more than 300 member companies driving development of technology and products based on the ZigBee standard.

The ZigBee Alliance promotes worldwide adoption of ZigBee as the leading wirelessly networked, sensing and control standard for use in energy, home, commercial and industrial areas. Control4 will continue to develop and expand its product line to provide consumers and installers a robust and reliable ZigBee product ecosystem.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Yulong launches Coolpad N900 in China to combat iPhone

SHENZHEN, CHINA: Last week, Yulong, a mainland Chinese supplier of high-end smartphones, launched its 3G mobile phone, the Coolpad N900. Just as Apple is about to reach an agreement on entering the China market through co-operation with China Unicom, the new Coolpad N900 looms over the sales prospects of the iPhone 3G by winning itself the title "iPhone Killer".

Yulong Coolpad is a professional company specializing in research and production of high-end smartphones which offers a variety of high-end business phone products that are considered the best smartphones in the China market. Yulong introduced the first dual-mode dual stand-by technology in the world in 2005.

In recent years, the company has focused on developing the Coolpad brand, which is quickly emerging as a renowned local brand in China, and is seen as one of the major competitors of Samsung in the high-end mobile phone market.

Coolpad is launching its latest 3G mobile phone, the Coolpad N900, with CDMA2000/GSM featuring dual sim dual stand technology, which combines the stylish UI interface of iPhone's 3D Touch and is designed according to the usage habits of Chinese customers. As a flagship 3G product promoted by China Telecom and a bestseller in China, the model is especially favored by the Chinese business elite.

Li Wang, Executive Vice President of Yulong Coolpad, commented that with more high-end business consumers using more than one mobile number, dual mode dual stand-by mobile phones are expected to become more popular. Younger consumers have also shown a preference for fashionable and stylish functions and have high expectations regarding the convenience of their operation experiences.

Designed based on years-long research on the usage habits of high-end consumers done by Yulong Coolpad, the Coolpad N900 not only includes the latest and coolest TOUCH operation featuring a multi-intelligent interaction experience, it also has swift handwriting input capability convenient for Chinese consumers.

The model also includes other outstanding functions such as contact management and portable business office. The dual mode dual stand-by capability, pioneered by Coolpad, has become a standard feature of high-end smartphones. With comprehensive applications specifically geared towards Chinese consumers, N900 is unmatched in the current mobile phone market.

Guo Deying, CEO and President of Yulong, added: "One can interpret the Coolpad N900 as this -- as fashionable as the iPhone, as professional as the Blackberry, while at the same time, one of the most suitable mobile phones for Chinese users, all making N900 the 'iPhone Killer'."

According to a report by Ovum, a telecommunication consulting agency, although Apple's iPhone has not officially entered the China market, over one million iPhone handsets have already flowed into China through non-official channels.

Besides its cool interface, Chinese consumers have not truly experienced the value-added services offered by iPhone; also, the different usage habits of Chinese and Western users have impeded the using experience of Chinese users.

Entering the 3G era, applications of mobile phone content will become a field of major competition, but the iPhone Appstore's binding profit mode is facing great pressure from the Google Android camp. In China, where Chinese consumers are accustomed to getting free information and applications from the internet, iPhone's method of charging would definitely face great challenges.

According to research done by Analysys on usage habits in the Chinese market, more than 70% of consumers prefer downloading products and applications for free. Yulong Coolpad offers a free software supermarket for the Coolpad N900, which clearly caters to the internet usage habits of Chinese consumers. Compared with the iPhone, which charges fees, the Coolpad N900 Coolmart, which offers products free of charge, has a better chance in the Chinese market.

Amidst tense negotiations on the iPhone entering the China market, several key points are yet to be confirmed with China Unicom. According to Apple, to address the different consumption habits of Chinese consumers, products offered online are likely to undergo modifications upon entering the China market.

Positioned as a major competitor of the iPhone, the Coolpad N900 is expected to take away a fair share of the smartphone market, especially with the iPhone facing a tough entry into the Japanese market, which foreshadows the challenges of foreign brands entering into highly localized markets, such as China.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Indian comms sector to become largest GDP contributor by 2014-15: Nokia study

BANGALORE, INDIA: Nokia India shared the findings of a study that highlights the increasingly significant role of the communication sector in driving growth across rural and urban India.

The study – “Economic Impact of the Communication Sector in India” – has been carried out by Dr Rajesh Shukla (Senior Fellow) and K.A. Siddiqui (Associate Fellow) of the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER).

The study indicates that the communication sector is predicted to emerge as the single largest sector of India’s economy, with a 15.4 percent share (equivalent to Rs.865,031 crore) of GDP by 2014-15. In India’s transformation from an agrarian to a services economy, communication is recognized as the fastest growing sector, growing by 25.7 percent during 2001-08.

The findings of the study indicate that the communication sector will be one of the major drivers of the Indian economy in the next five years. Its ranking in terms of contribution to total GDP has moved up from #17 in 1980-81 to #8 in 2007-08, and is further expected to surpass all other sectors by 2014-15, assuming that all other sectors grow at the average growth rates observed during 2001-08.

At the same time, the communication sector’s share of total GDP has increased from just 0.7 percent in the 1980s and 1 percent in the 1990s to 3.6 percent during 2001-08. In 2007-08, the sector accounted for 5.7 percent of GDP.

Trade, Communication and Registered Manufacturing have shown more than 10 percent contribution (16.7 percent, 12.24 percent and 11.68 percent, respectively) to GDP growth during 2001-2008; however, the Communication sector has outperformed the others despite its share of total GDP being only 3.6 percent as against the shares of Trade (14 percent) and Registered Manufacturing (10.2 percent).

The communication sector has also had a significant impact on employment in the country. The study predicts that the sector will generate an additional 8.5 million jobs by 2014-15, taking the total number of jobs in the sector to 10.3 million.

Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, President and CEO of Nokia said: “This study reinforces the view that the communication sector will continue to be an engine of the Indian economy over the next years. There is plenty of potential for growth in the sector considering that teledensity is currently only around 39.8 percent.”

Kallasvuo continued: “The role of communications in accelerating socio-economic development should not be underestimated. In India, communication is having a positive impact on employment in the services and retail sectors, and helping the country to emerge as a major manufacturing power.

"It is critical to empower every individual to connect to people, information and services regardless of their location or income. This is a key element in the vision of a truly inclusive knowledge society. Connected people can create, accumulate and disseminate knowledge, eventually leading to enhanced productivity and equitable socio-economic development. This latest study reiterates communication’s growing importance as an agent of transformation.”

Airtel expands rural footprint in Karnataka

BANGALORE, INDIA: Bharti Airtel, Karnataka’s No. 1 mobile network and the first telecom circle in India to go past the 1 crore customer milestone, announced a unique initiative to penetrate deeper into the remotest villages of Karnataka.

Airtel Service Centre (ASC) is an ideal combination of distribution and service to reach out to rural customers and an important step in Airtel's objective of expanding its presence in the state.

ASCs are Multi Brand Outlets (MBOs) located in a good, easy accessible location, preferably in the main market in a village that attracts high footfalls. This new initiative is based on meticulous consumer research and insight highlighting different behavioral patterns of a customer in rural/smaller towns and villages, thus marking Airtel’s strategic intent to service customers differently. Airtel plans to set up many more ASCs in Karnataka by the end of this financial year.

Announcing the launch of ASCs in the state, Venkatesh V, CEO, Mobile Services, Bharti Airtel Ltd, Karnataka, said: "Airtel is undertaking concentrated efforts to make mobile communication available in the smallest and remotest villages of the state, which otherwise do not have the same kind of communication facilities enjoyed by customers in a big town or district.

"We are now focusing on a dominant rural strategy to strengthen the 4A’s in mobile communication, i.e., –- Availability, Affordability, Awareness and Acceptability. A one-stop shop for customers’ immediate communication requirements, ASCs will revolutionize the lives of our rural customers with localized mobile communication and service at closer locations”.

ASC objectives
* One-stop shop for information about the entire gamut of Airtel products and services.
* Helps in removing barriers towards availing mobile communication.
* Handling customers queries and complaints.
* Reducing rural calls per customer.

This unique rural model of distribution and service has been developed on the basis of multiple Consumer Studies, which reflect that rural consumers are hesitant to speak with machines and most rural people are not comfortable speaking with the call centre executives – these customers prefer to be served in the local dialect, by a local representative.

Services available to rural customers
* Sale of connections.
* Exchange of damaged or lost SIM cards.
* Best value recharge and offers of the day.
* Educating and subscribing to relevant value added services.
* Handling customer queries and complaints.

Enabled with a Multi-function printer and a photocopier machine, ASCs are suitably equipped to ease documentation required for new connections. ASCs provide rural mobile customers the convenience of availing all Airtel’s services under a single roof.

ASCs are empowered to resolve consumer queries by a direct routing channel to trained agents on behalf of customers for solving queries that are specific to customers’ needs.

Fixed mobile convergence still struggles to gain traction

SCOTTSDALE, USA: Fixed mobile convergence (FMC), the transparent and seamless hand-off of active voice calls between cellular and Wi-Fi networks using a dual-mode phone, can be a powerful enabling tool for businesses, reports In-Stat.

FMC provides a viable bridge to address the gap between legacy wireline capabilities, wireless networks, cellular services, as well as evolving VoIP and unified communications capabilities. But the technologies driving FMC applications have developed more quickly than business end-user interest.

“A wide sweep of industry announcements trumpeting FMC capabilities have been made in 2009, however, our analysis shows only moderate increases in actual use, or planned use, of most applications,” says David Lemelin, In-Stat analyst.

“IT managers, service providers and integrators may have a good understanding of FMC’s benefits, but until workers actually use its capabilities, the benefits will go unrealized.”

Recent research by In-Stat found the following:
* Business FMC handset connections will jump from 5.8 million in 2009 to 31 million by 2013.
* 19 percent of businesses with Wi-Fi capability use voice over Wi-Fi.
* The ability to seamlessly roam between wireline and wireless networks carries more importance among business users than other FMC solutions, but all FMC solutions remain in a relatively nascent state.

More feature phones among new handsets sales in Q2 2009

PORT WASHINGTON, USA: According to The NPD Group, a leading market research company, when it comes to sales of mobile phones in the US feature phones still rule the market, even as smartphone sales continue to increase their share of overall handset sales.

NPD’s Mobile Phone Track information reveals that unit-sales of new feature phones fell 5 percentage points to 72 percent of new handset sales in the second quarter (Q2), while sales of new smartphones (i.e., handsets that are sold with their own operating systems) reached 28 percent of overall consumer purchases -– a 47 percent increase in the category’s share since last year.

“Despite their ties to pricey data plans, the rich Internet access capabilities of smartphones are attracting consumers wooed by lower device prices,” said Ross Rubin, director of industry analysis at The NPD Group.

Overall handset sales volume in the US grew 14 percent year over year in Q2 2009, as sales revenue increased 18 percent. The average selling price of all mobile phones increased 4 percent year over year – reaching $87 in Q2.

NPD’s Q2 2009 ranking of handsets showed the LG enV2 and Samsung Rant led feature phone sales, while Apple iPhone 3G and RIM Blackberry Curve were the top-selling smartphones.

Wi-Fi capability increased three-fold since last year, with 20 percent of all new handsets equipped with this capability. Touch screens on both feature phones and smartphones have also seen tremendous growth since last year, with 26 percent of all new handsets purchased in Q2 including this feature; physical QWERTY keyboards, by comparison, were available in 35 percent of handsets sold.

"Feature phones are taking on more of the physical characteristics of smartphones, and often offer greater exposure to carrier services," Rubin said. "Although their user interfaces continue to improve, the depth of their applications generally lags behind those of smartphones.

"With the price gap between smartphones and feature phones narrowing, to remain competitive feature phones need to develop a better Web experience, drive utility via widgets, and sidestep the applications arms race."

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Optical transport equipment market grew 11 percent in Q2-09

REDWOOD CITY, USA: According to a newly published report by Dell’Oro Group, the trusted source for market information about the networking and telecom industries, the worldwide optical market grew 11 percent quarter-over-quarter (Q/Q) in the second quarter this year.

The Asia Pacific region contributed most of this sequential growth and was the largest region contributing nearly 40 percent of the worldwide revenues in the quarter.

“An 11 percent growth following a near historic sequential decline in the first quarter of the year gives me confidence that the worst may be over for the optical equipment market,” said Jimmy Yu, Director of Optical Transport research at Dell’Oro Group.

“My only reservation is that, although each region experienced slight growth, the growth was predominantly driven by Asia Pacific which grew nearly 25 percent sequentially. Additionally, I estimate that it was revenue from China that contributed almost all of this region’s growth, so a good deal of the optical market’s recovery is dependent on China’s continued strength as the other regions recover,” Yu added.

Huawei and ZTE benefited from the optical sales growth in China, increasing their worldwide market shares.

GetFugu develops face recognition for mobile phones

SAN FRANCISCO, USA: GetFugu Inc., the next-generation mobile search tool, to debut on 09/09/09, has revealed that their laboratories have seized upon an advanced technology of facial recognition which will be swiftly embedded in their software and be available to the more than 2 billion mobile phones around the world.

GetFugu's application allows the GetFugu user to query a subject's web identity by looking at him/her through their mobile's camera.

"The significance of this ground-breaking facial recognition enhancement is inestimable," Rich Jenkins, GetFugu's Vice President for Development, stated.

"It will connect the World Wide Web with the physical world, creating one's reality from one's own perspective. The dating world will most likely be the earliest adapters, but business will quickly learn that this modality increases the speed of commerce, as users around the world snap pictures of people they interact with and receive instant information about the products, services, and proposals represented by their contacts."

GetFugu's 09/09/09 premiere of its four unique "See It" vision recognition (ARL), "Say It" voice recognition (VRL), "Find It" location recognition (GRL), and "Get It" Hot-Spotting services is targeted at consumers who spend valuable time hunting for entertainment, news, sport results, shopping, and more on their mobile phones.

Getfugu offers ease of operation and direct connection to the Internet without tedious typing in of URL addresses for commercial transactions.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Vodafone deepens strategic partnership with EMC

BANGALORE, INDIA: EMC Corp. today announced that Vodafone has selected EMC as a preferred partner for storage and storage-related products in its European markets.

The deepening of the strategic relationship between the two companies will result in EMC receiving preferred vendor status for the next three years.

Under the terms of the agreement, EMC’s solutions will represent a significant proportion of the overall external storage capacity for all new storage-related purchases within Vodafone Information Systems’ data center control. This will help to ensure that Vodafone continues to provide continuous availability of all customer and corporate data – with an optimal Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) –- across Europe.

Vodafone currently uses EMC high-end and mid-range Storage Area Network (SAN) and Network-attached Storage (NAS) systems in its global data centers, as well as EMC storage management software and services.

With this agreement Vodafone and EMC have expanded their existing partnership to unify the maintenance and service for Vodafone’s European storage environment, and to help increase efficiency by consolidating around –- and upgrading to -– EMC’s industry-leading information infrastructure technology.

“Both Vodafone’s global brand and its established reputation are founded on technical excellence. EMC recognizes the significance of the endorsement that Vodafone has made in moving to work with us as a preferred storage solution partner in the European theater,” said Frank Hauck, EMC’s Executive Vice President, EMC Storage Division, Global Marketing and Customer Quality.

“We look forward to working with Vodafone more closely than ever, in this and in other areas of the EMC Information Infrastructure and Management portfolio.”

EMC has been a Strategic Supplier to Vodafone for several years, and was honored in 2006 with Vodafone’s Global Supplier Award in the “Best Performance in IT” category. EMC attained the company’s number one ranking in corporate responsibility, financial stability, commercial performance, technology, quality management, and delivery capability.

CDG announces completion of CDMA2000 1X advanced specs

COSTA MESA, USA: The CDMA Development Group (CDG) today announced that the specifications for CDMA2000 1X Advanced have been completed and published by the 3rd Generation Partnership Project 2 (3GPP2).

1X Advanced allows 3G CDMA operators to significantly increase the voice capacity of their CDMA2000 1X network by taking advantage of several interference cancellation and radio link enhancements.

Among these improvements are base transceiver station (BTS) interference cancellation, improved power control, early frame termination, and smart blanking. 1X Advanced enhancements can be integrated all at once or in phases, offering operators an evolutionary approach to expanding existing networks based on their individual market needs. The complete set of 1X Advanced enhancements can theoretically quadruple the voice capacity of CDMA2000 1X systems in the same 1.25 MHz of spectrum.

"Both large and small CDMA2000 operators will benefit greatly from the voice capacity gains enabled by 1X Advanced," said Perry LaForge, executive director of the CDG.

"In addition to lowering the average cost per call for more affordable voice services, 1X Advanced also frees up channels to deliver 1xEV-DO broadband data services. Additionally, as operators consider augmenting their 3G CDMA networks with LTE and Mobile WiMAX, 1X Advanced will enable them to get more out of their existing circuit-switched voice networks for as long as needed."

1X Advanced builds on the CDMA2000 1X technology platform, which has been providing superior voice quality and capacity for over 10 years. Operators can now transition to 1X Advanced gradually and economically, while sustaining backward compatibility.

The spectral efficiency of the 3GPP2 standard has been recently enhanced with advanced voice codecs like Enhanced Variable Rate Codec-B (EVRC-B) and the use of quasi-linear interference cancellation (QLIC) techniques, which are already providing up to 50 percent higher voice capacity in today's networks.

The next step would be to move to 1X Advanced, which is a simple channel card upgrade (expected to be commercial in the second half of 2010) with new devices supporting mobile receive diversity, enabling them to more than double voice capacity immediately after the channel upgrade.

A complementary device enhancement known as simultaneous 1X Voice and EV-DO Data (SVDO) will also become available during the same timeframe and will enable CDMA2000 devices to access EV-DO packet data services while in an active 1X circuit-switch voice call.

For example, users will be able to send emails or access the Web while on voice calls; phones with GPS can update maps or download real-time traffic information while on voice calls, etc. This device enhancement, which enables these concurrent voice and data services, is independent of the air link standard and infrastructure.

Hughes' broadband satellite router for commercial and government/military apps

GERMANTOWN, USA: Hughes Network Systems LLC has launched its latest generation HX broadband satellite router, the HX280. The HX280 is a commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS), high-performance satellite router that provides carrier-grade Internet Protocol (IP) services with enhanced security and on-the-move (OTM) capabilities.

Ideal for both commercial and government/military applications, the HX280 has integrated Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) 140-2 cryptographic security and additionally supports the newly released HX System Enhanced Signaling Security feature, which protects all data, management, and signaling traffic over the satellite network. OTM capability is built-in enabling, for example, military operations to maintain secure communications in joint fixed and mobile environments.

Configurable in any combination of star and mesh networking topologies, including simultaneous operation, the HX280 is ideal for low-jitter voice, video, and data broadband IP connections for government and military networks.

"The HX family of broadband routers is extremely successful because of its high level of performance, functionality, and bandwidth efficiency," said Rick Lober, vice president and general manager of the Defense and Intelligence Systems Division at Hughes.

"In designing the HX280, our goal was to build on the HX platform with enhanced security features required by the US government and Department of Defense, and some of our more demanding commercial customers. The HX280 combines high-end secure voice and data services with on-the-move capabilities, and ensures protection of critical security parameters. It has also been designed to operate with our simplified Network Management System available later this year."

The HX280 supports connection to IP-based networks for commercial, government, and military applications, including U.S. Armed Services, joint operations, and Coalition partners. The HX280 will be featured for the first time August 18-20, 2009, in Hughes booth #1237, during the LandWarNet conference in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

GPS Insight's CDMA-enabled GPSI-4000 tracking device

SCOTTSDALE, USA: GPS Insight, a leading supplier of GPS tracking hardware and software solutions for commercial and municipal fleets, has released its GPSI-4000V tracking device.

This new version of the GPSI-4000 supports CDMA network services, made available through KORE Telematics. The new GPSI-4000V offering now gives customers a full range of network choices in addition to GPS Insight’s current GPRS and satellite offerings.

GPS Insight is pleased to provide coverage on multiple networks, to ensure customers receive the best possible network service based on their geographical region and coverage requirements.

“Today’s complex asset tracking applications must deliver a complete range of reliable network options, and do so at an affordable cost,” said Alex Brisbourne, President and Chief Operating Officer, KORE Telematics.

“KORE is the only specialized M2M service provider to make a significant investment in Tier 1 CDMA rate plans and value-add services, and we are proud to help partners like GPS Insight take full advantage of North America’s largest and most reliable CDMA network.

Monday, August 17, 2009

DiVitas, Samsung to advance SDK for mobile unified communications

MOUNTAIN VIEW, USA: DiVitas Networks, a leader in Mobile Unified Communications (Mobile UC), and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., a leading mobile phone provider, announced today that they, with support from Microsoft, have successfully worked to enable Enterprise-class fixed mobile convergence and unified communication on Samsung phones based on the Microsoft Windows Mobile platform.

With the July 27 release of Samsung Mobile Innovator’s Software Developer Kit (SDK) version 1.2.0, Samsung and DiVitas have collaborated to enhance the mobile unified communications experience on the Samsung phones with Windows Mobile.

Samsung is a leader among Windows Mobile device manufacturers in bringing solutions to market to address customer needs for fixed mobile convergence and unified communications. Together, DiVitas and Samsung defined the requirements for the API that Samsung developed for current beta testing.

The API will enable the DiVitas Mobile UC solution on the latest Samsung Windows Mobile smartphones available globally for both GSM and CDMA networks. These devices include the Samsung Epix, Samsung Saga, Samsung Jack and the Samsung Omnia (CDMA) in the US and the Samsung Omnia (GSM) globally.

"We asked DiVitas to join as a core member of the Samsung Mobile Innovator program because of their expertise in the field of Mobile Unified Communications," said Martin Tannerfors, Director for Samsung Mobile Innovator. "Collaborating with core members like DiVitas to meet the precise needs of our ecosystem is a key component of the Samsung Mobile Innovator Program."

“We are committed to working with our partners to create richer experiences for Windows Mobile customers,” said Stephanie Ferguson, general manager of product management, Microsoft. “The Samsung Mobile Innovator’s Software Developer Kit is a great example of how partners can innovate and add value to customers when working with a powerful, enterprise-ready platform like Windows Mobile.”

“DiVitas is very excited to be working with Samsung and Microsoft on this project,” said ATG Srinivas, VP of engineering for DiVitas Networks. “We have the knowledge and time tested deployment experience to assist Samsung in the requirements definition. This is a significant step towards enabling commercial Mobile UC products on Samsung Windows Mobile devices for both GSM and CDMA networks.”

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Ditech Networks joins VoLGA Forum

MOUNTAIN VIEW, USA: Ditech Networks, a global leader in mobile voice processing solutions, announced that it has joined the Voice over LTE via Generic Access (VoLGA) Forum.

The VoLGA Forum was initiated by wireless industry leaders to specify and promote an approach for extending traditional GSM and UMTS services over Long Term Evolution (LTE) access networks.

Based on the existing 3GPP Generic Access Network (GAN) standard, solutions based on VoLGA are designed to enable mobile subscribers to receive a consistent set of voice, SMS and other services as they transition between GSM, UMTS and LTE access networks.

Ditech Networks provides voice processing solutions, including voice quality enhancement and Voice 2.0 applications. Voice quality enhancement is designed to ensure that service providers’ core revenue generator, voice, is delivered with the highest quality while maintaining infrastructure costs.

Beyond traditional voice telephony, Ditech can enable carriers to create value for subscribers from web and social networking applications. By joining the VoLGA forum, Ditech continues to provide carriers with solutions that satisfy customers, control costs, and generate revenue as telcos migrate into LTE.

“We are very excited about the opportunity to engage with other wireless industry leaders to ensure that subscribers receive an outstanding and consistent quality of experience and breadth of services for phone calls delivered over LTE,” said Karl Brown, VP of marketing at Ditech Networks.

“Ditech brings over 15 years of continued commitment and experience in voice processing technology. We look forward to participating with other VoLGA members to facilitate a smooth migration of voice services to LTE.”

Friday, August 14, 2009

In-building wireless deployment revenue to maintain 21 percent+ growth through 2014

LONDON, UK: The economic downturn is likely to cause a slowdown in North American and European in-building wireless (IBW) deployments during 2009-10.

ABI Research sees flat growth in those regions for ‘09-10, however typical 20-25 percent annual growth is expected to return by 2013. Buoyed by constant high growth rates in Asia-Pac and Middle East/Africa, IBW will post a very respectable worldwide revenue growth rate in excess of 21 percent over the same period.

The recession is global in scope: why are North America and Europe suffering more than other regions? The answer, says senior analyst Aditya Kaul, is partly in the scale: "In Europe and North America there is a greater proportion of large building deployments (500K sq. ft. and higher) and when those get postponed or scrapped, revenue is hit hard.

"NA and European operators have also seen their CAPEX being squeezed, which is not necessarily the case elsewhere. Also, in APAC and Middle East/Africa cheaper passive systems and repeaters are deployed to a greater extent."

In terms of IBW, some vertical industries fare better than others. In North America particularly, the hospitality and financial sectors have been affected badly. Shopping malls have slowed down as well. "IBW is intimately tied to the real estate market, especially new construction," says Kaul. "As real estate for specific verticals slows there is bound to be some effect on IBW."

In contrast, North American verticals such as healthcare are relatively unaffected. Healthcare is a mature market that has always shown strong growth, and continues to see a high demand for in-building systems that can support not just cellular but also VoWLAN, telemetry, location-based applications and electronic medical records.

University campuses are also seeing large IBW activity with some universities investing in their own systems.

Qualcomm updates on JFTC investigation

SAN DIEGO, USA: Qualcomm Inc. has now had an opportunity to review a full translation of the previously disclosed draft order from the Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC).

The company has also obtained additional information about the allegations from the JFTC and reviewed some of the materials the JFTC says it is relying upon, including statements by several Japanese licensees.

The draft order asserts that Qualcomm's Japanese licensees were forced to cross license patents to Qualcomm on a royalty-free basis and were forced to accept a provision under which licensees agreed not to assert their essential patents against each other.

The draft order seeks to require Qualcomm to modify existing licenses with Japanese companies to eliminate these provisions while preserving the license of Qualcomm's patents to the Japanese companies.

If Qualcomm were to eliminate these provisions as contemplated by the draft order, there is a risk that some Japanese licensees may attempt to assert their previously licensed patents against Qualcomm, its customers and its licensees.

Qualcomm naturally disputes the notion that any provisions in our license agreements with Japanese companies were forced upon them. These licenses were agreed to voluntarily by the Japanese licensees many years ago, after extensive arms-length negotiations.

Indeed, the non-assert provision was rejected by several Japanese companies, and is not even a provision in those agreements. In addition, these cross-license and non-assert provisions, common elements of many license agreements, provide enormous benefits to our customers and licensees.

Qualcomm believes that requiring revisions of long-standing contracts is neither justified by the facts nor supported by the law.

The company will submit a written response opposing the draft order within the next two weeks. The JFTC investigative staff will then decide whether to issue a formal order reflecting the terms of the draft order, modify it in some respect, or decline to issue a formal order.

If the investigative staff adopts the draft order in whole or in part, Qualcomm will request a full evidentiary hearing and review by the JFTC. Qualcomm will also seek to have any order suspended or stayed during the pendency of the reviews and appeals.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Apple/Google spat represents opening shot in high-stakes wireless data battle

EL SEGUNDO, USA: Apple Inc.’s recent move to reject Google Inc.’s Google Voice software from its App Store represents an initial skirmish in the escalating battle among wireless operators, cell phone makers, and content developers and aggregators over who will control revenue generated by applications and data services, according to iSuppli Corp.

Google Voice is a free Voice-Over-Internet-Protocol (VOIP) application that provides no-cost phone calls in the United States along with a range of services, including call screening, voice mail with transcriptions and Short Messaging Service (SMS).

With Apple not giving a reason for rejecting Google Voice, speculation has been rife that the company’s wireless operator for the iPhone—AT&T—demanded the application’s denial, fearing it could erode its service revenue from iPhone subscribers.

Apple’s move, and the news following afterward that Eric Schmidt—chief executive officer of Google—would resign from Apple’s board, reflect changing circumstances in the global wireless industry due the rise of data applications and services for the new generation of smart phones.

“The explosive growth in wireless data service revenues, mobile applications and smart-phone device unit shipments during the past two years is spurring a dramatic shift for the global cell phone industry,” said Dr. Jagdish Rebello, director and principal analyst with iSuppli.

“Companies including Apple, Google, Nokia, RIM and Microsoft are trying to muscle in on the wireless carriers for a share of the lucrative and growing mobile premium content, service and application pies. Regardless of who wins, this battle will alter the balance of power in the mobile value chain.”

Global revenue for wireless data services, excluding messaging, is projected to grow by 26.2 percent to reach $87.7 billion in 2009. This follows 57.1 percent growth in 2007 and a 60.3 percent expansion in 2008 for total data revenue among the world’s wireless carriers.

iSuppli is forecasting that total data revenues of carriers worldwide, excluding messaging, will grow to approximately $188 billion by 2013. In contrast, total revenues for all services offered by the world’s wireless carriers will remain roughly flat at approximately $866 billion in 2009.

Mobile applications, such as those on Apple’s App Store, are key to stimulating the data service revenue growth.

“Clearly, mobile data revenue is key to the continued health of wireless carriers and the cell phone value chain in the future,” Rebello said. “In this battle, ownership of customers and who can monetize data services and applications are up for grabs.”

Apple’s rejection of Google Voice is a dramatic illustration of this fight for data revenues.

“By introducing applications and services that allow customers to make calls and send text messages without paying the operators, wireless operators have no incentive to invest in network upgrades,” Rebello said.

“This is the reason why many carriers are pushing out the upgrades of their networks to 2010/2011, compared to 2009/2010 before. With billions of dollars in expected investments, the stakes are huge for the wireless carriers.”

The figure presents iSuppli’s forecast of global wireless data revenue excluding messaging revenue.

iSuppli: Global Wireless Operator Non-Messaging Data Revenue by Country (Millions of US Dollars)Source: iSuppli, Aug. 2009

Wireless carrier success strategies
To sustain the growth momentum in data revenues while maintaining their relations with other players in the value chain, wireless carriers must develop and implement carefully thought-out business models. Operators need to develop strategies that are built around four central tenets:

* Monetizing broadband access.
* Co-operating with the mobile value chain to develop and offer compelling applications and content.
* Offering revenue-generating services that take advantage of mobility.
* Leveraging mature billing capabilities and inherent customer trust to develop new applications that can take the industry to the next level.

Specifically, it’s critical for wireless service providers to implement new strategies and to develop business models optimized for each of the different revenue opportunities in mobile broadband access, content and applications marketing and value-added service offerings

“Failure to do so will result in contraction in data and total revenues, excessive subscriber churn and a slowdown in market development,” Rebello warned.

Apac broadband subscribers to hit 182 million this year

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA: Asia-Pacific’s fixed broadband subscribers are likely to grow 17.3 percent to reach 182 million users by the end of 2009, clocking estimated billings of $44.9 billion, a rise of 13.3 percent over 2008.

Even as mobile broadband grows in tandem, Frost & Sullivan industry analyst Adeel Najam expects fixed broadband uptake to continue. He attributes this to the various government initiatives in rolling-out their national broadband ambitions such as Malaysia’s high-speed broadband (HSBB) project, Australia’s national broadband network (NBN) and Singapore’s iN2015 masterplan. He also expects telcos in developing markets to continue deploying basic xDSL (digital subscriber line) infrastructure.

By next year when most of the government-initiated projects are earmarked for full-scale roll-out, broadband users in Asia-Pac are expected to breach the 200-million-mark closing the year 2010 at 212.6 million.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Asia-Pacific Fixed Broadband Market, finds that the broadband subscriber base in the region -- covering 14 Asia-Pac countries including Japan -- will grow at a CAGR of 14.1 percent annually (2009-2014) to reach 342.9 million subscribers by end-2014.

The same year, the region’s household broadband penetration would have risen to 37.2 percent, from only about 18 percent last year, with revenues estimated at close to $69 billion.

“The bulk of bandwidth growth and network roll-outs in the next few years will be driven by fibre-to-the-node deployments aided mainly by government spending on national high-speed broadband projects,” Najam says, adding that xDSL will however remain the dominant platform in developing markets.

According to Najam, “Consumer appetite for broadband will be spurred by the demand for high throughput value-added services such as IPTV and video-on-demand.”

He adds that services such as Web 2.0, social networking, file-sharing, online gaming, as well as falling PC prices and availability of low-cost netbooks have also added impetus towards broadband consumption.

In 2008, the top six Asia-Pac countries with the highest household broadband penetration rates were South Korea -- said to be one of the highest in the world -- at 92.8 percent, Hong Kong -- 85 percent, Singapore -- 78.5 percent, Taiwan -- 66 percent, Australia -- 63.7 percent, and Japan -- 62.7 percent.

The remaining eight markets have household broadband penetration rates of less than 60 percent.

By number of subscribers, in 2008 China had the most fixed broadband users with 83.4 million (53.8 percent of the region’s total subscriber base), followed by Japan with 30 million and South Korea with 15.5 million.

Looking forward, Najam dispels the threat of mobile broadband to fixed broadband services. He believes that both these access services need to co-exist, “In the age of convergence and multi-play services, both wireless and wireline broadband should be viewed as complementing technology to offer subscribers with blended services.

“While mobile broadband has significantly lower throughput than fixed access, it provides residential users with the convenience of ‘on-the-go’connectivity,” he adds.

Undersea outages in Asia -– again!

UK: ral news outlets have reported multiple undersea cable breaks around Southeast Asia occurring on 12 August 2009. Due to the depths of the water and the fact that -– according to various reports and quoted cable operators -- multiple cables have been affected, the most likely cause is undersea seismic activity (i.e. earthquakes).

Cable damage due to fishing activity tends to be in shallow water, and usually affects one cable at a time. Yesterday’s disruptions, then, are puzzling. The only Asia region earthquakes logged in this timeframe by the US Geological Survey (USGS) –- usually a reliable source –- are located far from the reported breaks. Assuming the breaks did occur at the reported locations, then, several explanations are possible.

One is that the USGS log simply missed one or more underwater earthquakes responsible for the breaks. The measurement process is not flawless, especially underwater, and the risk of errors would seem to be higher during bad weather –- which Typhoon Morakot clearly represents.

The USGS did log a magnitude 5.6 quake around Mindanao, Philippines at 4am today (local time, in the Philippines); if a similar quake a day earlier went unrecorded, this would explain some of the reported outages.

Another possibility is that the outages actually stem from terrestrial hardware or fiber network failures; these are less common but not unheard of. Deliberate sabotage of either the undersea cables or the cable terminating stations on shore is another explanation.

This is in theory a big risk, as cable stations are not always well secured, and it is impossible to safeguard thousands of kilometers of cable deep underwater. But again, this is unlikely, and -– as far as the public knows –- this has not happened yet outside of imaginative novels.

Hopefully these issues will resolve themselves over the next few days. Given that there is no single authority managing or monitoring the world’s undersea cable networks, uncertainty is inevitable, and it takes time to learn the hard facts.

We would note, though, that the real story here may be how much progress Asia’s international network connectivity has made in just the last few years. With the installation of the Transpacific Express, the Asia America Gateway, several smaller intra-Asia projects and cables linking Europe and Asia through India and the Middle East (not all complete), the region’s cable systems are now much more meshed and resilient, and less prone to catastrophic failures.

With progress comes higher expectations, though, so we look forward to learning from this recent outage how to improve performance going forward; after all, undersea cable networks play central, underappreciated roles in global commerce.

Microsoft, Nokia form global alliance to design, develop and market mobile productivity solutions

NEW YORK, USA: The worldwide leader in software and the world's largest smartphone manufacturer have entered into an alliance that is set to deliver a groundbreaking, enterprise-grade solution for mobile productivity.

Microsoft Business Division President Stephen Elop and Nokia's Executive Vice President for Devices Kai Oistamo announced the agreement, outlining a shared vision for the future of mobile productivity. This is the first time that either company has embarked on an alliance of this scope and nature.

Under the terms of the agreement, the two companies will begin collaborating immediately on the design, development and marketing of productivity solutions for the mobile professional, bringing Microsoft Office Mobile and Microsoft business communications, collaboration and device management software to Nokia's Symbian devices.

These solutions will be available for a broad range of Nokia smartphones starting with the company's business-optimized range, Nokia Eseries. The two companies will also market these solutions to businesses, carriers and individuals.

Both Microsoft Corp. and Nokia possess a rare combination of enterprise experience and consumer understanding and, in addition to the collaboration on existing software and services, will use these assets to jointly design a range of new user experiences for future Nokia devices.

These experiences will be identified together, and will be created by dedicated teams inside both companies to better meet the growing needs of the mobile professional.

"With more than 200 million smartphone customers globally, Nokia is the world's largest smartphone manufacturer and a natural partner for us," said Elop.

"Today's announcement will enable us to expand Microsoft Office Mobile to Nokia smartphone owners worldwide and allow them to collaborate on Office documents from anywhere, as part of our strategy to provide the best productivity experience across the PC, phone and browser."

"If you are going to provide a seamless and integrated productivity experience on a mobile device, Microsoft is an ideal partner," said Oistamo.

"Together with Microsoft, we will develop new and innovative user experiences for employees of small and large businesses alike, ensuring Nokia's smartphones are an integral part of the office and home-office environment, and addressing the significant opportunity in mobile enterprise productivity."

This announcement builds on the existing work Nokia is doing by optimizing access to e-mail and other personal information with Exchange ActiveSync. Next year, Nokia intends to start shipping Microsoft Office Communicator Mobile on its smartphones, followed by other Office applications and related software and services in the future. These will include:

* The ability to view, edit, create and share Office documents on more devices in more places with mobile-optimized versions of Microsoft Word, Microsoft PowerPoint, Microsoft Excel and Microsoft OneNote.
* Enterprise instant messaging and presence, and optimized conferencing and collaboration experience with Microsoft Office Communicator Mobile
Mobile access to intranet and extranet portals built on Microsoft SharePoint Server.
* Enterprise device management with Microsoft System Center.

"Having these two major players cooperating at this level will help us continue to meet our customers' needs and reinforces our future business mobility strategy," said Diane Sanchez, head of Telefonica USA.

"The scope of the alliance between Microsoft and Nokia, and potential value for the enterprise and individual is significant," said Stephen Drake, VP of Mobility & Telecom at IDC. "By bringing Microsoft's productivity solutions to Nokia's large customer base, the two companies should be better able to serve the needs of the growing mobile worker population, which IDC estimates to reach 1 billion worldwide in 2011."

Smartphone downloads from all app stores to reach 6.67 billion in 2014

MOUNTAIN VIEW, USA: Smartphone penetration in the US mobile markets is increasing rapidly. For some time, mobile operators have been offering a branded 'catalog' of mobile content and services that could be purchased from the handset itself.

However, all that is changing for smartphones, in which newer types of targeted app stores are being introduced to enable the device owner to purchase content from outside the operator environment. The availability of a large number of inexpensive or free mobile applications that leverage the next-generation technical capabilities of the target device will help drive adoption.

However, in the end, service differentiation and generating suitable return on investment from the app store business could be challenging.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan: An Insight into the US Smartphone Application Storefront Market, finds that smartphone downloads from all app stores will reach 6.67 billion in 2014. The market segments covered in this research include prepaid and postpaid mobile, SMS and MMS, mobile Internet, iPhone, Android, Windows Mobile, Palm, and Symbian.

"Next-generation devices are being introduced at a rapid pace, and stakeholders are offering app stores to facilitate downloads of compelling applications from multiple categories, serving a wide range of communication, entertainment, information, and personalization requirements of the mobile user," says Frost & Sullivan Industry Analyst Vikrant Gandhi.

"For example, Apple, Google, Nokia, Palm and Microsoft have either already introduced app stores or are in various stages of app store rollouts and are working to ensure that the entire service experience is compelling for the end user or device owner."

A vast majority of applications are available 'free of cost' to the end user, significantly driving adoption in the US smartphone app store market. These applications leverage advanced device capabilities such as touch screen, accelerometers, full Web browsing, and location-based services, among others, to deliver a truly compelling proposition.

The most significant challenge is to ensure service differentiation and optimal management of the scale of the app store business. App store providers should always be open to support new business models to drive the introduction of innovative services and content types. Having a clear value proposition is also important for mobile operators.

"Unless the app store providers establish exclusivity agreements with application developers -- something that is not feasible for a large majority of applications -- it will be difficult to provide enough differentiation through the app stores," notes Gandhi.

"The best example of how this could be done is Apple's app store, in which the entire experience of service purchase and consumption -- including device characteristics, form factor and the operating environment -- was a radical shift at the time of its introduction."

This does not mean that services could not be differentiated at all. The moot point then is the extent to which providers are willing to invest in their infrastructure to offer new service to their customers, which then ties back into something that is still being examined -- identifying the main purpose of launching the app stores and if app stores alone are strong enough reasons to purchase a particular type of device.

A single participant cannot provide all the services in the mobile content industry. App store providers need to work with multiple application providers and offer them sufficient incentives for their app store initiatives.

Services of independent, third-party app store providers such as Handango, Handmark, and PocketGear can also be used to run an app store business profitably with adequate service differentiation.

"For instance, outsourcing or white-labeling of the app store business might become a good idea in the long run since a device vendor or an operating system provider may not want to commit large resources to manage the smartphone app store business," concludes Gandhi.

Harris Stratex Networks to supply India's first urban mobile WiMAX network

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, USA: Harris Stratex Networks Inc., a leading provider of wireless solutions that enable the evolution of next-generation fixed and mobile broadband networks, has signed a contract with ICOMM, one of India's leading groups in the field of telecom, power transmission and distribution EPC, solar and infrastructure, to supply, install, commission and maintain an IEEE 802.16e mobile WiMAX network for Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL).

Under the multi-year contract, Harris Stratex will supply its StarMAX WiMAX solution to extend BSNL's public wireless access network to provide high-speed wireless mobility services to enterprise and retail customers in urban areas across the southern Indian state of Kerala.

Under the agreement, Harris Stratex will supply its StarMAX WiMAX Forum Certified(TM) IEEE 802.16e-2005 base stations, along with solutions for access services network (ASN) gateway; home agent; authentication, authorization and accounting; and network management system. Customer premises equipment and subscriber units will be supplied by ICOMM, along with deployment and project management services.

Formed in 2000, BSNL is the world's seventh-largest telecommunications company and provides a comprehensive range of telecom services to 7,330 cities and towns, and 550,000 villages across India.

In 2008, the government of India awarded BSNL 20MHz of spectrum in the 2.5GHz band, enabling the operator to introduce mobile WiMAX to expand the reach of its broadband network to deliver services to India's un-served and under-served communities, including rural and urban areas.

The contract award to ICOMM and Harris Stratex will enable broadband services to be deployed throughout the state of Kerala, India's fourth largest telecom market by revenue with a population of more than 35 million people in an area of 38,000 square kilometers. This mobile WiMAX rollout by BSNL will represent one of the largest deployments of this technology in the world.

"We are excited to work with Harris Stratex as a part of BSNL's landmark WiMAX network deployment. By combining ICOMM's infrastructure build-out expertise with Harris Stratex' sophisticated end-to-end 802.16e WiMAX solutions and top-tier customer focus, we will enable BSNL to provide its broadband users highly-reliable high-speed mobile broadband services," said C.S. Rao, chairman, ICOMM.

"We greatly appreciate BSNL's strategic leadership in India and its efforts to help the government reach its target of 20 million broadband subscribers by 2010, and are extremely proud to be a part of this very important undertaking," said Harald Braun, president and CEO, Harris Stratex. "We are thrilled to work with ICOMM to deploy one of the world's largest, most sophisticated 4G WiMAX networks for BSNL."

The StarMAX platform is the result of the March 2, 2009 acquisition of Telsima Corporation by Harris Stratex Networks and includes an extensive portfolio of IEEE 802.16d-2004 and 16e-2005 compatible base stations, fixed and mobile subscriber devices, ASN gateway solutions, home agent and network management tools.

The StarMAX product is part of Harris Stratex' complete end-to-end broadband network portfolio, which also includes high-speed IP wireless backhaul, advanced core network elements, umbrella network management and service assurance, and complete turnkey services from network design and deployment, to full network operations center managed network services.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

LIDO celebrates 25 years of providing telecom education

PETALUMA, USA & BANGALORE, INDIA: The LIDO Organization Inc., which provides telecommunication education, training, consulting and advisory services, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this summer by announcing its fall international training seminars and becoming a CompTIA Authorized Quality Curriculum (CAQC) for Convergence+ certification.

In addition, this year also marks the 10th anniversary of LIDO Telecommunications Essentials online training which has demystified telecom concepts and terminology for numerous business and educational organizations.

Presented in four parts online, this concise and comprehensive program covers the principles, technology and infrastructure of the telecommunications industry. In August, LIDO also will celebrate the 1st anniversary of LIDO Telecom Pvt. Ltd., which offers telecom content and eLearning solutions in India.

“Telecommunications is the critical infrastructure for the 21st century. In a global economy with nearly every facet of a business touched by intersecting information and communication technologies (ICT), companies need to understand the fundamentals of telecom to make their businesses function more efficiently,” stated Lillian Goleniewski, president, The LIDO Organization Inc.

“Whether they are in healthcare, education, entertainment, government, transportation, finance, national security, defense or public utilities –- these industries are dependent on ICT. LIDO helps them understand telecom fundamentals and close the widening skill gap between current industry technologies and professional knowledge.”

In October, business professionals can master telecom through LIDO’s intensive seminar program in just three days. Offered October 7-9 in Singapore and October 19-21 in London, the program allows operators, service providers, regulators, financiers, lawyers and government authorities to gain a solid grounding in telecom technologies, applications, and regulations.

Attendees will examine the impact of converged and new-generation networks and learn how to compete effectively as regulations change, opening up new market opportunities for their businesses.

Prospective attendees can register for the London seminar and the Singapore seminar.

For professionals not able to attend the seminars in person, they can access LIDO Telecommunications Essentials online and complete the course independently. The CompTIA Educational Foundation’s Creating Futures participants can access the program for free, through LIDO’s donation of 100 single-user licenses.

With the $115,000 donation received recently, the Foundation now can offer both free IT and telecommunications training to transitioning US veterans, wounded warriors and their spouses.

The software-delivered program includes 34 hours of dynamic multimedia lectures, simultaneous transcripts, accompanying slide shows and clickable links to supporting educational resources, as well as quizzes to test student understanding.

Topics covered include communications fundamentals, transmission media, circuit versus packet switching, public switched telephone networks, data communications basics, local area networking, wide area networking, Internet and IP infrastructures, IP services and converged networks, next generation networks, optical networking, broadband access alternatives, wireless communication principles, wireless WANs, MANs, LANs, PANs, broadband wireless access and emerging mobile applications.