Uncommon Wisdom


September 27, 2007  9:51 PM

Verizon seeks multi-service edge device



Posted by: Tom Nolle
Ethernet, multi-service edge device

September 27 2007: Verizon will likely announce the winner of its RFP for a multi-service edge device by late November, and the announcement could come as much as a month earlier. The company, like many access providers, has been looking for a device that could be used to transition customers from the multiple packet protocols used to deliver business services today, to a converged Etherenet/IP infrastructure. Verizon is looking initially for products to deploy IP VPNs and Ethernet services, primarily over carrier-grade Ethernet infrastructure. The box will have IP features but is likely to be acting as an edge router for IP-over-Ethernet rather than direct IP connection. We believe that Verizon is also asking for a PBB/PBT commitment.

Relevant Reading
LightReading

September 27, 2007  9:46 PM

Cisco ISR features target branch locations



Posted by: Tom Nolle
Integrated devices, Routers

September 27 2007: Cisco is expanding the feature inventory of its popular ISR line to include things like acceleration, VoIP, and security. The move is targeting the branch offices of multi-site businesses, and is intended to reduce the success of one-off vendors in these spaces, including Juniper. As a market leader, Cisco can link secondary features to router products and have the combined product set fulfill its revenue requirements even though integrated devices have a lower user cost. We believe this to be a direction that is also aimed at creating a more generic branch access appliance to counter rumored moves by IBM in that direction, possibly in partnership with another network vendor.

Relevant Reading
InternetNews


September 26, 2007  9:42 PM

Cable companies driving WiMAX and WiFI



Posted by: Tom Nolle
Cabling, Wi-Fi, WiMAX

September 26 2007: The cable companies, in a number of geographies, are deploying both WiMAX and WiFi services with some indication of success, in contrast to the apparent difficulties being experienced by municipal WiFi networks. The success here, we believe, is likely due to the fact that in these applications an incumbent is using wireless to drive extensions to the basic service set rather than by an emerging player to enter the market. However, there are some indicators that even the emerging-player municipal WiFi activity may be stabilizing as the need for a more thorough consideration of a business model is recognized and such refined changes are applied. We believe that wireless and wireline incumbents, partly due to UMA-based or IMS-based FMC, will drive greater use of both WiMAX and WiFi.

Relevant Reading
Screen Plays


September 26, 2007  9:37 PM

Have mobile operators missed the ad opportunity?



Posted by: Tom Nolle
Mobile

September 26 2007: Might the mobile operators be getting scooped on their own service because they’ve failed to capitalize on the ad model? It’s an interesting question, and one that may be very relevant for a number of reasons. First, Fox and MySpace have both recently launched ad-supported free mobile versions of their service, which is (like it or not) creating an emerging over-the-top model for mobile. Second, it appears that portal-supported mobile sites offer a way of introducing mobile ads without creating a lot of customer pushback, or a situation where someone might perceive themselves charged for viewing an ad. The whole issue raises again the question of IMS and its value. Unless you can block a user’s Internet experience on a mobile device, you can’t prevent this kind of service-on-top relationship, even with IMS. This tells us that the operators may need to be thinking less about IMS and more about Web 2.0.

Relevant Reading
MediaPost’s Mobile Insider


September 26, 2007  9:31 PM

Verizon adds SLAs for non-Verizon network



Posted by: Tom Nolle
IP services, SLAs

September 26 2007: Verizon is adding end-to-end SLA availability on its business IP services, the first time a major US operator has crossed boundaries to offer an SLA on a network partly delivered by someone else. The move is a validation of work by standards groups like the IPsphere Forum to provide a means of creating a uniform SLA across multiple network partners. Verizon is a member of IPsphere but it has not been indicated that the service uses IPsphere technology.

Relevant Reading
InfoWorld


September 25, 2007  9:24 PM

Juniper earns Carrier Ethernet credibility



Posted by: Tom Nolle
Carrier Ethernet

September 25 2007: Juniper has released two new members of its Ethernet family, giving Juniper the full range of product capacities it needs to be a credible player in the carrier Ethernet market. In the announcement, Juniper made no specific mention of the two emerging carrier-Ethernet standards PBB and PBT, but the products’ features seem to make it clear that Juniper has designed them with both capabilities in mind. Juniper’s comment is that they “will support what the customer requires”. It is fair to say that Juniper has been historically reluctant to embrace a standard until it has been fully ratified (which neither PBB nor PBT are at this point), but it’s also fair to say that our own research shows almost universal provider interest in, if not support of, both these technologies. The question now is whether Juniper can sustain carrier Ethernet dialogs without specific support of PBT, in particular. A related question is whether Cisco will now move more aggressively on PBT to overhang the Juniper announcement. As we noted below, there is already a Cisco/UBS brief scheduled for today, and this might be a forum Cisco would use to take a position on PBT.

Relevant Reading
Juniper Networks press release


September 24, 2007  9:17 PM

Verizon FiOS moving to all-IPTV platform?



Posted by: Tom Nolle
Optical Networking

September 24 2007: Light Reading reports that Verizon will be moving FiOS to an all-IPTV platform within three years, quoting company sources, but we strongly doubt that statement. We have heard nothing to suggest that Verizon is eager to follow in AT&T’s footsteps, and we would point out that the U-verse model delivers no more channels than the current FiOS and has a higher cost, assuming both “new” and “old” FiOS are based on FTTH. We think this is a misunderstanding on LR’s part.

Relevant Reading
LightReading


September 21, 2007  7:48 PM

Nokia WiFi handset lacks UMTS and 3G capabilities



Posted by: Tom Nolle
Wi-Fi, Wireless broadband

September 21 2007: Nokia has become the latest in a crowd that is releasing WiFi handsets that lack UMTS or high-speed 3G capability. As we have noted, the multimodal handsets are both a potential positive in that they may be promoting FMC options and offering some symbiosis between wireless and wireline broadband, and a potential negative in that they are socializing what is basically application offload from 3G. The long term risk, we believe, exceeds the benefit for the wireless world, but it is empowering to those operators who have strong wireline broadband franchise. It seems likely that voice as an application will actually end up being tapped off a bit from mobile as well. As an entry below remarks, VoWiMAX is already becoming viable in emerging markets, and it is not impossible that a portable voice service that mingles WiFi at home and WiFi in muni-Fi form, and later WiMAX, will take off. This could be facilitated if a reasonable video strategy emerges for WiMAX.

Relevant Reading
Telephony Online


September 21, 2007  7:43 PM

Alcatel-Lucent invests in IPTV



Posted by: Tom Nolle

September 21 2007: Alcatel-Lucent is acquiring a small IPTV company that focuses in interactivity and advertising links with IPTV. The deal, in our view, reflects a number of important points. First, it shows that Alcatel-Lucent will be pushing its IPTV strategy to cover the revenue shortfall from mobile that it says was the cause of its recent quarter disappointment. Second, it shows that the forces of YouTube have, as we’ve suggested, changed the industry dynamic away from pay-for-view to sponsored viewing. The need to integrate better-targeted advertising is thus key to IPTV success, and to the success of Alcatel-Lucent.

Relevant Reading
Light Reading
Alcatel-Lucent news release


September 21, 2007  7:42 PM

Cedar Point chooses voice over WiMAX



Posted by: Tom Nolle
WiMAX

September 21 2007: Cedar Point, a VoIP player in the cable market, has announced it’s deploying a voice-over-WiMAX network in Equador. Voice may be an ideal application for WiMAX and even for municipal WiFi because its bandwidth is low enough to insure that service quality won’t deteriorate under load. For WiMAX, the lower bit rate per customer can mean very large service geographies, up to the theoretical limit of about 30 miles radius. The main issue for VoWiMAX will be spectrum availability in the developed markets. In third-world deployments where there is little spectrum competition and mobility is less significant, WiMAX is a very good choice even for voice alone. For developed economies, 3G mobility is financially attractive and shares the same general spectrum requirements. For both 3G and WiMAX, there are still questions of how the shared-bandwidth nature of the service can accommodate the varying loads of users.

Relevant Reading
Light Reading


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