Telecoms news roundup March 19

Telecoms news roundup March 19: Zayo expands Vancouver network, Orange launches its 5G network in Paris, and Nokia to reduce 5G base station power consumption by 2023

19 March 2021 | Natalie Bannerman

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Your news roundup from around the world making headlines today!

Adtran becomes member of BUGLAS

Adtran confirms that it is now a full member of BUGLAS, the German fibre-optic connection association.

As such, Adtran will contribute to BUGLAS’ technical, regulatory and product work streams, helping alternative networks in Germany build fibre broadband networks in a cost-efficient and highly competitive way.

In addition, this will support network providers meet targets outlined by the European Electronics Communications Code and the Gigabit Germany initiative.

“We’re pleased to welcome ADTRAN to BUGLAS,” said Wolfgang Heer, CEO at BUGLAS.

“Adtran has connected more households to broadband than any other network supplier in the German market, and the company employs more than 250 people in Germany. This close proximity means significant advantages and short communication channels for their customers, from the smallest city carriers and municipal utilities to the largest network operators.”

 

Zayo to expand network in Vancouver

Zayo Group has announced plans for a significant infrastructure expansion in Vancouver, British Columbia with two key projects.

The first is a network upgrade to 100G capacity which has now been completed. The second is an increase in the fibre capacity of its existing terrestrial route between Vancouver and Seattle, due to complete by 2022.

The upgraded network in the Vancouver area will enable Zayo to support 100G of Internet Protocol (IP) services, including IP Transit and Dedicated Internet Access (DIA) services.

“Our delivery of 100G enabled service capabilities to the Vancouver market and increased capacity for the Vancouver-Seattle technology corridor reflects Zayo’s commitment to building our network based on customer needs,” said Dennis Kyle, senior vice president of Zayo Networks’ mountain region.

“We look forward to collaborating with innovative businesses and organisations in the region, helping them drive transformative changes that disrupt the way we live and work.”

 

Orange launches 5G network in Paris

Orange has gone live with its 3.5 GHz 5G network in Paris as of 19 March 2021.  

As a result, this new network will deliver “theoretical maximum speeds up to 3 times faster than 4G”.

The French capital has just joined 235 municipalities already deployed in 5G by Orange and, in particular, the 51 Ile-de-France towns in the inner suburbs.

"I am very happy to deploy 5G in Paris, but also in the Ile de France region,” said Laurence Thouveny, director of Orange Ile de France.

“Orange is deploying 5G where there is a need to best support the evolution of French consumption patterns, in a responsible and reasoned manner."

 

Samsung casts concerns on global chips shortage

Samsung Electronics has said it is struggling with a “serious imbalance” in global semiconductor chips.

The company has said that it expects the shortage to impact its business results for the next quarter, according to comments from Koh Dong-jin, co-chief executive officer of Samsung Electronics during an annual shareholders meeting in Seoul.

“There’s a serious imbalance in supply and demand of chips in the IT sector globally,” said Koh.

“Despite the difficult environment, our business leaders are meeting partners overseas to solve these problems. It’s hard to say the shortage issue has been solved 100%.”

It is believed that the shortage should be shortlived as the industry races to meet demand, there is a chance of temporary shortfall in electronics manufacturing as a result.

“If Samsung is publicly talking about future products, you know that the silicon crunch is serious,” said Avi Greengart, analyst and founder of consultancy Techsponential.

 

Nokia to reduce 5G base station power consumption by 2023

Nokia has announced that its AirScale 5G mMIMO Base Station will reduce its average power consumption by 50% by 2023.

These power savings are achieved by continuous improvements in software functionalities and new mMIMO product variants based on its latest system on chip (SoCs).

“Nokia is committed to contributing to solving the world’s sustainability challenges and we do that by ensuring our technology is designed to be as energy efficient as possible,” said Ari Kynäslahti, head of technology and strategy at Nokia Mobile Networks,

“This means using less energy during use and manufacture. Everything from our chipsets to our software and hardware is geared towards supporting this goal.”

The company recently completed field tests on a live commercial network which saw consumption for Nokia’s 5G mMIMO BTS site double digit percentage points lower than its nearest competitor.

 

Subex and SkyLab partners on shipping security

Subex and SkyLab have partnered to offer IoT and OT cybersecurity solutions and services to the maritime sector.

These solutions have already been deployed and are already securing ships and maritime infrastructure across oceans from the likes of cyberattacks and cybercrime.

Through this partnership, Subex and SkyLab will be jointly offering cybersecurity solutions and services, including Security Operations Center services, to improve overall maritime cybersecurity posture and cyber-resilience.

“This alliance combines Subex’s deep expertise in cybersecurity and SkyLab’s strengths in 4G/5G mobile edge computing and core networking technologies to reliably accelerate, monitor and inspect traffic whilst adapting to dynamic connectivity conditions at sea,” said Vinod Kumar, managing director & CEO, Subex.

“This association will help secure the industry and ensure compliance to standards whilst offering reliable protection to both critical and non-critical systems.

 

MDS Global launches Metro solution for BSS

BSS-as-a-service provider, MDS Global confirms the launch of its Metro deployment option for its BSS solution.

Metro gives network operators, virtual network operators and virtual network enablers a quick and low-cost option for launching 4G or 5G initiatives.

The new offering combines a BSS suite with a real-time charging engine and customer self-service and is built around specific use cases and business processes for both the consumer and enterprise markets, as well as the selling of telco services via B2B2X business models.

“MDS Global’s new Metro approach is the ideal starting point for any operator looking to launch a greenfield operation or rationalise away from an existing BSS environment,” said Steve Bowen, CEO at MDS Global.

“Metro provides all the feature sets of our flagship solution but is delivered faster and at a low cost, using convention over configuration principles.”

In addition, with pre-defined and standardised interfaces and out-of-the-box processes, Metro enables operators to launch new services in as soon as twelve weeks.

 

Only 20.6% of digital transformation efforts are optimised, says NTT

Latest figures from NTT’s 2021 Global Managed Services report show that only 20.6% of digital transformation efforts are optimised.

According to the report, 89.2% of business and IT leaders agree Covid-19 has caused significant changes to their operating processes, while 87.3% say it has accelerated their digital transformation strategy. 

In addition, 92.4% of technology teams agree their overall technology strategy is aligned, either fully (49.8%) or partially (42.6%) to the organisation’s business strategy needs. 

However, despite greater strategy alignment, some disconnect in priorities exists between the business and IT. 69.9% of operations teams believe the need for a technology strategy that drives business efficiency opportunities is crucial, yet only 48.0% of IT teams agree. Further, 69.6% of operations teams consider speed and agility a key component of technology strategy, in contrast to only 53.4% of IT teams.

The unprecedented challenges that Covid-19 has impressed upon businesses has forced the issue of business and IT alignment into the limelight. And there is still work to do to ensure core orgnisational priorities are understood by all,” said Damian Skendrovic, executive vice president at NTT Ltd.

“IT is under an immense amount of pressure to deliver against present requirements, while concurrently planning for future delivery and innovation. With technology and agility front and centre of the business conversation, alignment of priorities is no longer optional, it is critical for the sustainability and resilience of the business."

 

Californian net neutrality law forces AT&T to remove some free data services

AT&T has stated that it will remove some of its free data services in response to a new net neutrality law in California.

The California Internet Consumer Protection and Net Neutrality Act of 2018 prohibits “sponsored data” services that allow companies to pay for some data usage of certain AT&T wireless customers.

“Given that the Internet does not recognize state borders, the new law not only ends our ability to offer California customers such free data services but also similarly impacts our customers in states beyond California,” said the company in a statement.

“A state-by-state approach to ‘net neutrality’ is unworkable. A patchwork of state regulations, many of them overly restrictive, creates roadblocks to creative and pro-consumer solutions.”

 

BLiNQ Networks partners AttoCore for embedded EPC

BLiNQ Networks, a provider of fixed wireless hardware, has repurposed its Evolved Packet Core (EPC) to support the deployment of Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) networks into rural not-spots.

This milestone was achieved by embedding AttoCore’s AttoEPC software directly into the BLiNQ FW-300i base station.

By embedding the EPC in this manner, BLiNQ creates an FWA solution which is much easier to deploy. There is no need to invest money in a separate server to host the EPC, or to invest time and expertise in software installation and configuration.

Internet service provider Astrea has deployed several BLiNQ FW-300i units in North Wisconsin and Michigan, to solve rural connectivity gaps.

“We really like the BLiNQ price point for low density coverage,” said Steve Mason, director of fixed wireless at Astrea.

“The compact unit on the towers is ideal for a lot of the wind problems in some of the areas. We're also really impressed with BLiNQ’s non-line-of-sight performance.”

Skynet 360 is also using BLiNQ’s FW-300i to provide connectivity on sites which require a secure LTE network such as power plants and airports across the US. 

“The BLiNQ units with embedded EPC are the perfect solution for a contained and secure network. Everything is internal and loss of connection is less of an issue,” added Jose Camarillo, CEO of Skynet 360.