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The Fight for 5G Superiority

Micro Edge Computing

Microsoft Breaks Data Transfer Record

Crossing 5G and IOT





16 Carlos Slim Buys Telefonica Central America Assets


Temporal-Spatial SDN

25 PacketFabric Continues their Successful & Deliberate Growth for 2019

31 Zayo to “Explore Options”


The Fight for 5G Superiority

22 Aqua Comms: A Submarine Fiber Carrier’s Carrier


Colt Simplifies Delivery of 5G Backhaul Services

24 Canada’s Metro Optic is Acquired

10 CommScope Helps Accelerates 5G 11 Micro Edge Computing is Soaring 13 Crossing the 5G and IoT Connectivity Chasm with SDR and SDN 17 Breaks Efficiency Record of Data Transfer on MAREA System

27 Juniper to Bring AI to IT 29 60 Hudson: Datagryd Grows Their Footprint 32 Secure Your Mobile Number to Reduce SIM Swap Scams 33 Fear and Loathing: Cyber Threats Continue to Increase 35 Facebook Will Be a New Wholesale Network Provider




Editor in Chief - International & Senior ICT Analyst Toni Eid toni@telecomreviewna.com Editor in Chief - North America & Senior ICT Analyst Jeff Seal jeff@telecomreviewna.com Graphic Designer Vanessa Haber Lead Analyst Group - Production Manager - Copy Chief information@telecomreviewna.com Advertising advertising@telecomreviewna.com Special Events - Photo Director Editor - Digital Properties info@telecomreviewna.com News Provided in Cooperation With AFP, the Global News Agency. The AFP agency delivers the news immediately and worldwide with a team of 2,900 staff including more than 1,400 staff journalists and 700 freelancers in 165 countries. Published by www.tracemedia.info Adresses United States Of America 3616 Far West Blvd, Suite117-301 Austin Texas 78731 Tel 512-312-9262 Fax 512-312-9265 www.telecomreviewna.com Dubai Trace Media FZ.LLC. Dubai Media City, UAE Bldg. 7, 3rd Flr., Office 341 P.O. Box 502498, Dubai, UAE Tel. +971 4 4474890 www.tracemedia.info

Politicians Need to Keep Out of Technology They Don’t Understand


y favorite line in Elizabeth Warren’s manifesto to slice Google, Facebook, and Amazon down to size was her discourse on the Internet search business and the debt of gratitude consumers owe to antitrust regulators. “Aren’t we all glad that we now have the option of using Google instead of being stuck with Bing?” she asserted.

I had to chew on this. Google is the dominant search tool in most of the nonChina world and a monopoly in certain rich countries. Bing, Microsoft’s search engine, launched after Google already was dominant. It has been a relatively also-ran. I’m not certain that consumers ever feared being stuck with Bing; they probably don’t give Bing much thought at all. Warren’s point is that Google arose because Microsoft was slowed in the 1990s by antitrust regulators. (She is theorizing that Microsoft, in the normal course of things, would have offered Bing and that it would have been lame.) Now Google must get the same treatment so the next Google has a chance, which it won’t unless Warren becomes president. I’d argue that changes in antitrust enforcement are far more likely than a Warren presidency. She has two broad ideas, and the second feels like more and more of a sure thing: Antitrust regulators should do their jobs better. It’s hard to argue that Google, Facebook, and Amazon should be able to snuff out and otherwise use their market power to harass competitors. All sorts of candidates, Democratic and Trumpist, will be interested in addressing this. Warren’s other idea is to prohibit “platform” companies with more than $25 billion in revenues from also selling their own goods and services on their platforms. This is arbitrary and unfair, but that hasn’t stopped Congress from disallowing big banks from charging fees that are fine for small banks. Like the Green New Deal, Warren’s proposal isn’t a bill, which is telling because legislation is something a senator has in her power to offer. Instead, it is a conversation starter. And it’s a conversation worth having.

© All Rights Reserved. Publication of any of the contents is prohibited. - Year 9 - Issue 48 -

Jeff Seal Managing Partner Editor in Chief Telecom Review North America

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The Fight for 5G Superiority

Since the term "Cloud Computing" was coined, CSPs (Communications Service Providers) have had a tremendous challenge developing viable cloud capabilities and offerings for their enterprise clients that can compete with emerging digital infrastructure players such as Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure. With 5G on the horizon it is ever more critical that traditional telco operators find their cloud mojo or else current cloud leaders and new intermediary entrants make a move to the middle to take the great 5G promise away from them.


n May of 2017, Verizon sold its struggling cloud and managed hosting business to IBM. Verizon is far from the only CSP to throw in the enterprise cloud towel. Carrier cloud is a vast battleground littered with the bodies of operators that have struggled to make a dent in the armor of the Big Two - Amazon's AWS and Microsoft's Azure. In the emerging era of 5G, CSPs are once again faced with the threat of becoming OTT'ed as public

cloud players begin to eye frontiers beyond the data center - Edge Computing. “Just imagine Amazon converting a section of a Whole Foods into a central office that hosts converged IT/CT cloud infrastructure services closer to the Edge – scary,” states Leonard Lee, managing director and founder of neXt Curve, a U.S.-based research advisory firm. Fortunately, CSPs have been in the business of connecting businesses and households to the last mile, which

positions them well to capitalize on computing's move toward the Edge. “The IBM and Vodafone deal represents a compelling move toward what neXt Curve believes is a critical collaboration between an enterprise technology firm and a telecommunications company in taking important first steps in realizing new, converged IT/CT services that are delivered across the emerging 5G network,” says Lee. It might seem like telcos are revisiting this strategy. After all, Verizon tried to add cloud services onto their network with the acquisition


of Terremark in 2011, but that project didn't pan out as hoped. What is different this time around? 4G and 5G - That Was Then, But This is Now A foundational transformation that 5G brings to the telecom industry is the virtualization of the entire network - core and mobile. That means network functions are abstracted and software-defined allowing for an elastic, composable infrastructure that can be configured and fine-tuned for the specific needs of an application or workload via network slicing. According to Lee, “As the network becomes more "cloud" like, it is converging with the compute and storage cloud thanks to open source and consortia standards such as OpenStack, Kubernetes (container management & orchestration) and OpenFog, which are collectively promoting the integration and blurring of IT and CT into what we call converged IT/CT. This is the big different between 4G era and the coming 5G era.” While there is overwhelming fanfare and hype about how 5G will transform our lives, another transformation must take place before the world can reap the benefits of 5G - telco transformation. There are few things that telcos must do to position themselves to capitalize on converged IT/CT opportunities in the coming age of 5G. • Modernize Core and Mobile Networks - When most of us think of 5G we think of the mobile network and 5GNR (New Radio). We tend to treat lightly the core network and the importance of modernizing (virtualizing and softwaredefining) the entire network. CSPs will need to commit to a robust aspiration of digitizing the network to realize the cost-efficiencies and the enablement of new service revenues that will drive the return on their investment in 5G. • Revamp Service Delivery Operations - CSPs need to transform the culture and practices of their service delivery operations and organization to become more IT-like through the adoption of webscale operational practices and a

COVER STORY new service-oriented mindset. This transformation is less about DevOps and Agile than it is about adopting ITSM (IT Service Management) principles that are geared toward delivering and managing cloud-based converged IT/CT services. • Extended Business Support Systems (BSS) - CSPs need to figure out how to sell, provision, bill and present new converged IT/CT services that are delivered over the 5G network cloud. A new, extended BSS platform will be vital in enabling CSPs to quickly go to market with new 5G services that will be dynamically-optimized blends of network, compute and storage/persistence services, and to rapidly configure and deploy new revenue models. • Service Innovation - CSPs need to adopt a different mindset in their product and service development and borrow from IT disciplines of Agile development and DevSecOps as their production infrastructure becomes increasingly virtualized, software-defined and continuousdelivery capable. Symbiotic Relationship in the Making IT consultancies and systems integrators like IBM have a decadeslong history working with CSPs on their "digital transformation" endeavors. Partnering together with operators in the development and delivery of converged IT/CT services can be a powerful symbiotic relationship that addresses the challenges that both CSPs and traditional IT firms face today - CSPs need IT and vertical market expertise, and IT firms need tight integration with the new 5G network cloud to deliver the next-generation, ubiquitous computing solutions to their enterprise clients. There are a number of key synergies that CSPs and IT firms can pursue in reinventing the network and ushering in the next evolutionary stage of cloud computing: • Webscale Mindset - With years of managing hosted services at scale many IT firms bring deep experience in operating software-defined assets


in deliver cloud-based IT services to enterprise clients. Some of these IT firms are supporting the digital transformation of CSPs and are ideal coaches on organizational, operational and business model change. • Agile and DevSecOps Culture - Since the advent of cloud computing, IT firms have adopted Agile and DevSecOps practices and culture in the way that they operate and deliver new IT services and applications to their clients. CSPs that partner with IT firms can learn and adopt these practices to foster continuous delivery and accelerate service innovation. • Technical Expertise - By partnering with an IT firm CSPs can leverage the technical knowledge and experience in IT needed to design, implement and operate a new converged IT/CT platform and infrastructure. Conversely, IT firms gain deep integration with a 5G fixed and mobile network infrastructure upon which new converged IT/ CT services can be delivered with intelligence and optimized value. • Vertical Industry Expertise - An increasing number of IT firms are developing or have developed robust industry-savvy consulting groups that can work with CSP product development teams in designing compelling converged IT/CT offerings that address the ubiquitous computing needs of a vertical market. A New Platform, A New Infrastructure for A New Era of Computing “The key outcome of this symbiotic collaboration between CSPs and IT firms should be a new Digital Experience Platform that is an integrated, distributed stack of network and IT services running on an intelligent 5G network and across the Cloud Continuum,” states Lee. Why "Experience?" The new 5G networks will provide an elastic, composable and finely-tunable infrastructure of connectivity that will be expected to deliver high performance with consistency (QoS), reliability, resiliency, availability and




The realization for this Digital Experience Platform may be exactly what CSPs need to stave off the growing OTT (Over-The-Top) threats from Amazon (Nokia partnership), Google (Google Fiber), Facebook (Nokia fixed wireless partnership) and Microsoft (Redline Communications partnership), all of which have some form of converged IT/CT play in the works or dabbling in telecommunications.

coverage to meet the requirements of some of the hypothetical killer applications that lead the 5G promise such as autonomous vehicles and remote surgery. The Digital Experience Platform will likely emerge with the following key attributes: • Open and Interoperable - Built on open standards and frameworks such as OpenStack and designed to be interoperable as converged IT/CT applications will need to be deployed and consumed across different networks and environments. • Ecosystem-Friendly - Supports converged IT/CT application development and service management environments and tools that are easy to use and foster engagement of developer and service management communities. • Composable & Elastic Infrastructure - A cloud-based infrastructure that provides fine-grained virtualization of network and compute functions and resources that can be

configured and deployed elastically to meet the real-time requirements of an application or workload. • Intelligent Service Orchestration & Automation - Algorithmically orchestrates converged IT/CT services across the network and automates service management operations based on context and events. • Self-Optimizing Infrastructure Leverages predictive analytics and machine learning to continuously tune the converged IT/CT infrastructure to deliver optimal service quality across data centers and edge nodes. • Holistically Secure - Provides contextually-aware security up and down the converged IT/CT stack and from endpoints to applications to bare metal. • Personalized & Privacy First - Designed with personalization features that are compliant with established and emerging privacy regulations such as GDPR, and provide safeguards and consumer controls.

Implications for Business Leaders 5G is not just about the lofty promises of faster broadband service, near-zero latency and massive device connection. For CSPs, 5G is an opportunity to reinvent their business and their industry. The future of digital infrastructure is not just about connectivity. It is about IT and CT working together in concert in enabling new industrial and consumer applications - market opportunities. The network will need to be tuned dynamically and fine-grained services matched with the bespoke needs of each individual compute workload across a converged IT/CT cloud that spans from the data center to the small cell. What new value can CSPs create in enabling ubiquitous, intelligently distributed and orchestrated computing? This is the big question and challenge for today's beleaguered telecommunications industry. It will be important for business leaders who are leading the future of CSP organizations to consider and pursue strategic partnerships with systems integrators and IT consultancies - such as the one that Vodafone inked with IBM - to accelerate the development of vertical industry solutions and converged IT/CT capabilities and services that will make high-value 5G and IoT use cases possible today and in the future. Highly-motivated partners such as IBM can bring the IT acumen and the cross-industry experience that many CSPs sorely lack. What better catalyst for driving the massive reinvention and transformation journey that CSPs will need to undergo as we push forward into a future of 5G and transformative IoT applications? Old dogs working together maybe able to figure out some new trick to win in our digital future.




Colt Simplifies Delivery of 5G Backhaul Services Since the 1990s, the role of the mobile phone, and the cellular network, has changed dramatically. 5G is the next step in this evolution. This fifth generation technology provides new services at exceptional scale, data rates, and low latencies. Alongside the existing services, new services such as autonomous vehicles, virtual and augmented reality, and smart cities are possible with 5G. But the gigabit speeds, sub millisecond latencies and the ability to connect over 2.5 million devices per square mile places unprecedented demands on the network.



olt sought to create its global Colt IQ Network to serve as a foundation for mobile service providers (MSPs) to provide rapid 5G deployment and effective service delivery to consumers. For MSPs, 5G will require macro and small-cell densification. This density will lead to a demand for increased investment in deep fiber connections to next generation antennas and small cells. Microwave backhaul is still prevalent from the cell site to a first routed hop. The challenges microwave presents around cost, variable bandwidth, and high-link latency are exacerbated by the demand for 5G service offerings that can be monetized. Many MSPs can’t justify the business case for either dark fiber rental or their own-installed fiber. The bandwidth and service utilization threshold would typically be far higher than an individual MSP would require. Sometimes fiber isn’t accessible at all because of planning permissions or local regulations.


The solution to these issues is to share fiber costs among multiple MSPs. Ideally, creating managed services could offer significant reductions in operational expenditures without a major capital investment. Although sharing transport connectivity lowers costs, the lack of differentiated services has been a barrier to adoption. Colt has a significant global fiber network with paths typically traversing a maximum of 3km from any given location in large metropolitan areas. This network has been combined with a leading-edge, programmable-routing architecture for advanced 5G service enablement. Although the underlying fiber infrastructure is shared, each MNO can have a different service-level agreement (SLA) for their applications. With previous routing protocols and their highly manual operations, it was a time-consuming process to share a fiber. It also had little no flexibility to enforce strict SLAs beyond 1 x hop. However, Colt deployed a Ciscopowered segment


routing (SR) and Ethernet VPN (EVPN) architecture, which is now a vital element of the Colt IQ Network. The openness and programmability of the architecture can be extended to Colt’s customers directly using standards-based APIs. These advancements have provided a long-awaited breakthrough in automation for next generation 5G backhaul requirements. The architecture enables self-provisioning of guaranteed SLA services or network slices based on latency and bandwidth demands. In regions where deep last-mile fiber resides, such as in the US and parts of Asia, the initial 5G deployments are using CloudRAN. In this case, parts of the Radio Access Network are disaggregated, often into virtualized components. CloudRAN dictates strict latency requirements, which restrict the distance that a centralized and/or virtualized radio component should reside from the antenna. This distance typically isn’t more than 20km and this type of connection


(known as front haul) often has a far greater bandwidth requirement. Colt Technology Services is working with Cisco to add greater flexibility to its Colt IQ Network for mobile service providers (MSPs) ahead of the advent of 5G. With the ability to deliver 5G backhaul, Colt will help MSPs around the world to support new 5G services at exceptional scale, data rates, and low latencies, offering more flexible and cost-effective solutions. To differentiate its 5G backhaul offering and accelerate the delivery time to its customers, Colt will deploy Cisco’s segment routing and Ethernet VPN (eVPN) based architecture. Deployment of 5G currently requires significant capital and operational expenditure by MSPs due to its bandwidth demands and required fibre investments. By allowing MSPs to share connectivity costs while maintaining individual service level agreements (SLAs) for their applications, Colt’s deployment with Cisco will help its customers deliver 5G services to end-users faster and with lower subscription costs. “We are focused on providing bestin-class, high bandwidth, on-demand connectivity solutions to meet our customers’ ever-growing business needs and the arrival of 5G presents exciting opportunities,” said Peter Coppens, Vice President, Product Portfolio at Colt. “We have worked closely with Cisco to design a network architecture that is simple to operate, highly available, and capable of delivering the innovative network services that are required for 5G.” Combined with Cisco’s programmable-routing architecture for advanced 5G service enablement, the openness and programmability of the Colt IQ Network can be extended to customers directly using standards-based APIs. This is a breakthrough in automation for next-generation 5G backhaul requirements, enabling selfprovisioned bandwidth scaling and guaranteed SLA services or network slices based on latency and bandwidth demands.

FEATURE “With every new mobile technology comes complexity, and 5G is no different. We are proud to support Colt as a strategic partner in its mission to simplify 5G deployments,” said Sumeet Arora, SVP and GM Service Provider Routing Cisco. “Cisco’s highly programmable segment routing architecture will enable Colt to lower the barriers of entry for MSPs, reducing costs and significantly speeding up the delivery of 5G services.” The Colt IQ Network is a high bandwidth, agile, flexible backbone, which provides low latency connectivity and is present in all major hubs around the globe as well as in the major hyperscale data centres. This coupled with Colt’s on Demand proposition, which allows


organizations to scale their bandwidth requirements up and down in near-real time, positions the Colt IQ Network as a next-generation architecture to support the arrival of 5G. The partnership with Cisco will also enable Colt to support newer 5G deployment architectures using Cloud Radio Access Network (CloudRAN). CloudRAN lowers operational costs through more efficient use of spectrum and radio resources and cost-optimised antennas that require fewer site visits. Colt is present in over 850 data centers globally. This extensive footprint naturally complements the requirements for deep-fiber-based networks for 5G services, including remote edge compute demands.




• FIST fiber management: single circuit and single-element splice trays with high levels of performance at high splice capacity • Easy install: removable base with easy access during installation and provisioning

CommScope Helps Accelerate 5G As governments around the world invigorate broadband with investment in digital infrastructure, the number of 5G connections is expected to exceed one billion by 2025. The next few years are critical to building networks that will meet the demand. In anticipation of this need, CommScope is introducing its FISTTM Modular Splice Closure that assists network operators with building a fiber foundation for future networks.


peed of deployment and shortage of skilled labor continue to be a challenge around large fiber connectivity deployments. CommScope’s FIST Modular Splice Closure addresses the need to keep pace with subscriber demands using plug-and-play technology. The modular build allows configurations on-site, reducing the need for site inspections, and therefore decreasing rollout lead time.

The new FIST Modular Splice Closure adapts to the constantly-changing needs of the network featuring the following innovations: • Gel sealing technologies: composed of eight interchangeable and wrap around cold-seal segments that are field and factory installable • Wide range of cables: universal termination for 1-27 millimeter (mm) cables

“As we move toward connectivity for a gigabit society, government directives, grants and subsidies are encouraging full fiber infrastructure vital to underpinning 5G coverage,” said Ric Johnsen, senior vice president of Network Cables and Connectivity, CommScope. “CommScope’s new FIST modular splice closure is a game changer as we consider it the most comprehensive upgrade to our fiber portfolio in decades. This is the type of innovation which will continue to gain in popularity as it helps service providers build a stronger business case for truly converged wireless and wireline networks.” Digital economy is key pillar of future growth: “Fiber is a growth engine for Europe and markets around the world,” said Erzsébet Fitori, director general of the FTTH Council Europe. “By investing in smart innovation, governments have the opportunity to shape the global competitiveness of their societies and economies in a digitally managed world. Fiber infrastructure is the foundation for innovation in key areas like IoT, mobile computing and 5G. There are a multitude of inventions that are less visible and well-known, but which have also contributed greatly to the communications industries. For every new smartphone, streaming service and internet-connected gadget, there’s a network engineer somewhere innovating to ensure the data from these devices is moved quickly, error-free and costeffectively,” said László Bóka, head of Fixed Access SSC, Deutsche Telekom. “While we rarely think of the network as the epicenter of an ongoing series of innovations and that is exactly what it is. Its continued evolution is what enables the services that people have come to love.”




Micro Edge Computing is Soaring Distributed computing is edging closer, and as it does, the companies specializing in edge computing are working to perfect their designs, build partnerships and raise money to finance their vision.


ne of the startups targeting the edge opportunity is EdgeMicro, which this week said it has completed a $3 million round of funding to support its next phase of growth. The money will help the

company move beyond the proof-ofconcept stage and begin deploying data center modules in production. “This is an important year for edge computing and EdgeMicro,” said Mike Hagan, CEO of EdgeMicro. “This new round of funding will allow us to accelerate our company and achieve

our business’ critical milestones. We will keep our heads down, use resources wisely and help our customers turn their edge strategies into reality.” Much of the buzz around edge computing centers around nextgeneration technologies like driverless cars, or 5G wireless, or augmented




reality. These technologies could be transformative, but are early in their adoption. In the meantime, edge data center specialists are deploying pilot projects to prove out their designs, so they can move quickly when the business begins to scale. That includes EdgeMicro. “There is a lot of smoke and mirrors in the edge market, but if you want to know what’s truly happening, we can look at our edge Micro Data Center POC in Denver,” said Martin Capurro, Vice President and General Manager of EdgeMicro. “Our team is working closely with partners and customers to test applications that are the last step toward large-scale edge deployments.” Denver Pilot Preps for the Edge to Come EdgeMicro’s initial $3 million round of funding provided the company with capital to build its team and create its first proof-of-concept micro data center (MDC) in Denver. The pilot project was deployed next to Flexential’s Englewood facility in South Denver, and features a partner lab to demonstrate the latency benefits of tethering far-edge data centers to near-edge data centers – tying together several of the layers of edge computing. Companies participating in the pilot include content delivery specialists Akamai and StackPath, while the lab environment is supported by EdgeMicro partners including BitBox (Compass), Cisco, Fiber Mountain, Megaport and Flexential. The pilot projects are expected to be completed this month, followed by production deployment with clients by mid-year. “The companies participating in this testing environment are a who’s who of the tech industry, including household names that are among the largest companies in the world,” said Loren Zweig, VP of Operations at EdgeMicro, who is overseeing the test lab. “Additionally, infrastructure companies are participating and playing a vital role in making edge connections and computing a reality.”

The EdgeMicro project in Denver features a containerized 6-rack micro data center that supports 48kW of IT capacity, and can be built in a factory. Each EdgeMicro enclosure features biometric security, redundant power and cooling and fire suppression. The micro data center is undergoing SOC 1 and PCI compliance assessments. “The biggest takeaways from this project aren’t the technical specs,” said Capurro. “The key is that these companies see the immediate value and are well down the path in development of their edge strategies. So much of the industry discussion about the edge has been theoretical, as if it is only sketched on a napkin, but there is nothing hypothetical about these pilots as we are hosting real-time content and traffic. They are a final step toward rollouts that will be stunning to many people both in terms of scale and the shape they take.” A Vision for a New Edge EdgeMicro was founded in 2017 by Hagan and Greg Pettine, who has worked with the data center teams at CB Richard Ellis and DCI Technologies. The company envisions a future in which thousands of small data centers provide multi-tenant colocation services at telecom towers and urban rooftops, bridging the infrastructure gap between data networks and the millions (and soon billions) of mobile devices at the edge. The company’s target market includes mobile network operators (MNOs) creating 5G wireless infrastructure, and content providers delivering gaming

and video to consumers. That creates an opportunity for regional data center specialists like Flexential, which houses EdgeMicro’s Colorado micro data center. “The pilot projects being conducted in this test lab are bringing together many of the smartest people in the edge industry to put their companies’ edge initiatives into action,” said Tim Parker, VP Network Strategy, at Flexential. “The companies involved in these tests have a bold vision for the edge that will reshape the way the internet works. The facility may be small, but the ambition is transformative. The concept of tethering these far edge data centers to near edge data centers such as Flexential is the future of edge computing. When these projects come out of the lab, the participating companies will be prepared to implement their edge computing strategies with confidence.” As conjunction with its funding, EdgeMicro also announced that industry veteran Jason Bourg has joined the company as Vice President of Sales. Bourg brings to EdgeMicro more than 20 years of experience in the colocation and cloud market, holding past roles with CenturyLink, AT&T and Terremark. “EdgeMicro is shaping the future of the internet, and you couldn’t ask for a better team of people to bring it to fruition,” said Bourg. “The culture here is laser-focused on delivering valuable solutions that help businesses succeed with speed, which is exactly what the edge industry needs, and I am excited to be part of this remarkable team.”




The 5G promise is broad and ambitious, but business leaders need to recognize that we are at the very beginning of this journey, and emerging technologies under the 5G umbrella are creating new opportunities for new entrants to fill the gaps as the world moves toward the promise of 5G such as 5G-enabled IoT, new shared spectrum resources, hybrid multicloud services brokering, network slicing on demand within mobile computing nano-data centers at the carrier edge.


Crossing the 5G and IoT Connectivity Chasm with SDR and SDN

he Radio Can Be A Part of The Cloud By 2025, 5G applications are generally expected to emerge that will be consumed by an exploding range of connected things from mobile devices, laptops and newer IoT devices to large servers, routers and storage arrays in the data center. “These 5G applications will drive the need for new mobile and fixed connectivity architectures that enable quality delivery of experience and efficient deployment across the Cloud Continuum and the carrier edge�, according to Akshay Sharma, principal analyst at neXt Curve, a U.S.-based research advisory firm that specializes in telecom digital reinvention and emerging technology markets.




Though 3GPP has made significant strides in 2018 to baseline standards for 5G, fragmentation in the emerging 5G/ IoT connectivity landscape is going to be an ongoing challenge for operators, enterprises and consumers. New thinking in radio systems will be needed to drive 5G application innovation and investment in 5G infrastructure as the shake out of a wide range of connectivity protocols, technology standards and interoperability issues occurs through the early phases of 5G /IoT evolution across the globe. The ITU suggests that the newer thinking needs to achieve programmability, flexibility and adaptability of mobile wireless assets including the radio. Virtualizing the Radio Will Change the Game “5G carrier-edge nano-data centers housed in cell tower locations and central offices of the past will need new, innovative radio designs”, says Sharma. Legacy approaches included a 2-pronged approach of radio resources in cell towers and small cell deployments. With Software-Defined Radio (SDR) and programmable electronics a third approach has occurred that presents new possibilities in radio equipment flexibility and adaptability. Software-defined networking (SDN) technology is an approach in networking leveraging cloud computing concepts that facilitates network management and enables programmable networks. Software-defined radio technology leverages these same softwaredefined concepts and applies them to the radio interfaces, which are

typically hard-wired” to communicate in specific frequencies with pre-defined protocols. “Now, radio interfaces can be ’programmable’”, according to Sharma. Software-Defined Radios Plus Cognitive Computing and Dynamic Algorithms A software-defined radio can be flexible enough to leverage different spectrum bands on-the-fly making new designs of IoT devices, base stations, and small cells possible with the following benefits: • Allows several transmitters to transmit in the same place on the same frequency with very little interference creating full duplex-communications as Kumo Networks is doing, thereby doubling capacity,

• Able to adaptively "lock onto" a directional signal so that receivers can better reject interference from other directions allowing it to detect fainter transmissions by leveraging adaptive beam-forming techniques for improved communications, • Improve the efficiency of spectrum utilization by leveraging Cognitive Radio techniques, • Improve QoE (Quality of Experience) for resource-intensive applications such as Ultra HD video by applying SDx resources end-to-end with Software-Defined Radio and softwaredefined data center resources (CPU/ GPU/CDN) along with SD-WAN networks for backhaul.


Software-Defined Radio Needs Adaptable Hardware Today, many SDR units are shipped with a range of chip types including general purpose processors (GPP), digital signal processors (DSP) and field programmable gate arrays (FPGA), with the latter being widely adopted for its user configurability that can foster hardware reusability and repurposing. FPGAs are also great for device hackers who want to build and configure their own software-defined radio transceivers for their private networks. According to the IoT Lab at Santa Clara University's Dept. of Computer Engineering in their report entitled: "Software-defined Radios: Architecture, State-of-the-Art, and Challenges" the tradeoffs between various chip types are as follows: Sharma states that, “FPGAs present a compelling value proposition for operators looking to modernize their RANs with Smart Antennas, which are considered ‘intelligent’ or ‘smart’ due to their ability to select a frequency band and adapt with adaptive beam forming as well as interference cancellation in real-time and on demand.” The advent of secure over-the-air (OTA) silicon

FEATURE updates will enable mobile network operators to remotely update their mobile radio devices and repurpose or re-platform them to support new software-define radio functions as needed and as connectivity requirements and technologies change. Implications for Business Leaders 5G will bring about new mobile network that not only is spectrum-efficient but is resource-efficient with lower bill of materials, more resilient, cost-effective to manage and modernize going forward as the 5G technology landscape and market rationalize themselves from their scattered, fragmented current state. Improved spectrum usage and sharing will make more capacity available and foster new revenue opportunities and models for network operators. “CIOs and CTOs of communications service providers embarking on 5G should explore SDR-based technologies as they re-vector their base stations and deploy new adaptable small cell sites to provide 5G connectivity that will enable a growing and diverse range of IoT applications, new media and content distribution platforms and low-latency applications that are yet to be imagined”, recommends Sharma. The benefits of



SDR and user configurable logic such as FPGAs can ally some of the first-mover jitters and concerns that mobile network operators may have regarding investing in early-phase technologies and assets for their 5G mobile networks.

“These 5G applications will drive the need for new mobile and fixed connectivity architectures that enable quality delivery of experience and efficient deployment across the Cloud Continuum and the carrier edge”




America Movil and Spain’s Telefonica have in a pitched battle for decades throughout Latin America, from Mexico, where America Movil has long dominated, to Brazil, where Telefonica rules. A landmark telecom reform passed under former Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto was meant to make the landscape more competitive. Five years later, prices in Mexico are down significantly but America Movil’s market share still stands at about 60 percent. Telefonica has blamed regulators for its inability to gain traction in Mexico. The price, which equates to €570 million (corresponding to a €293 million value for Guatemala and €277 million for El Salvador), represents a multiple of 9.7-times the estimated 2018 EBITDA of the two companies. Telefonica added it expected to generate capital gains before taxes and minorities of around €120 million, mainly from El Salvador.

Carlos Slim Buys Telefonica Central America Assets

Telefonica confirmed an agreement to sell its Movistar operations in Guatemala and El Salvador to America Movil for $648 million.


n a statement to Telecom Review, Telefonica announced the sale, confirming local newspaper reports last week speculating a deal for the two units was edging closer.

America Movil is controlled by the family of Mexican billionaire Carlos

Slim. The transaction in Guatemala has closed, and the Salvadoran deal is pending regulatory approval. America Movil has already completed the acquisition of 100 per cent of Telefonica’s Guatemala business, with a deal to purchase 99.3 per cent of the El Salvador operation still subject to regulatory review.

The operator explained the transaction is part of its asset portfolio management policy, “based on a strategy of value creation, improving return on capital and strategic positioning”. The move is also designed to cut net debt, which stood at €42.6 billion at the end of September 2018. As well as Guatemala and El Salvador, Telefonica also has stakes in operations in Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Panama in Central America. Reports in 2018 suggested the company could be open to selling its entire Central America operation. For America Movil, the deal in El Salvador creates a new market leader, combining its Claro business which holds a 31 per cent market share and Telefonica Movistar (24 per cent), displacing Millicom’s Tigo (33 per cent), based on GSMA Intelligence figures for Q4 2018.




Microsoft Breaks Efficiency Record of Data Transfer on MAREA System If you are making an overseas phone call or using cloud computing, there is a 99 percent chance an undersea fiber optic cable is being utilized. Now, new work with lasers shows promise for squeezing more data through these cables, to help meet the growing demand for data flow between computers in North America and Europe. The method could increase network capacity without requiring new cables, which can cost hundreds of millions of dollars to build. Telecom Review was recently invited to be present at the Optical Fiber Conference in San Diego where we visited with many industry professionals and researchers on transmission efficiency.





team of researchers from Infinera has achieved new benchmarks for efficiency for transatlantic fiber optic cables. Testing an emerging approach for how the light signals are transmitted -- called 16QAM modulation -- the group smashed through efficiency records for data transfer, nearly doubling data capacity and approaching the theoretical limit for such a transfer. They presented their research at the Optical Fiber Conference and Exposition in San Diego. “In an optical fiber, it’s desirable to carry more data per second, which we call the fiber capacity, and also to be able to send the signal over longer distances, which we call the optical reach,” said Dr. Pierre Mertz, an author on the study. “In simple terms, if you try to push the limits of fiber capacity you will reduce the reach. “ The team managed to extend recordsetting capacity for a given reach -- across the Atlantic Ocean -- using the MAREA transatlantic cable, which spans 6,605 kilometers from Bilbao, Spain, to Virginia Beach, Va., U.S.A. Funded in part by Microsoft and Facebook, MAREA currently holds the record for the highest-capacity cable crossing the Atlantic Ocean. The MAREA cable came online last year and is made of eight pairs of optic fibers, with each pair designed to carry 20 terabits per second -each one enough to stream more than 4 million HD videos at once. Demand for new and better cables has risen ever since the first undersea transAtlantic communications cable was laid in 1858. That demand has skyrocketed over the last decade, thanks to the shift to cloud-based computing. Indeed, Virginia and North Carolina have become hotbeds for building data centers, especially since the MAREA cable went live in February 2018. The recent construction includes four data centers for Microsoft alone.

Not only does the new experiment mark the first time PM-16QAM signals were sent such distances, Mertz said, the feat was achieved with equipment readily available to the industry. Information was sent through the MAREA cable via high-speed lasers. Using their own high-tech toolkit to modulate the lasers, Infinera generated signal speeds topping out at 26.2 terabits per second, a 20 percent increase over what the cable designers originally thought feasible. The biggest challenge is that the system was operating very close to the Shannon Limit, or the theoretical maximum information transfer rate for a communications channel, according to Mertz. "That means that every gain we make becomes harder and harder,” he said. This result is already delivering comparable capacity to next-generation chipsets from other vendors that employ a technique called probabilistic constellation shaping (PCS). The good news for service providers demanding ever more capacity, Mertz said, is as the industry moves toward higherperformance systems, their technique

can be combined with PCS for even faster speeds in the future.

“In an optical fiber, it’s desirable to carry more data per second, which we call the fiber capacity, and also to be able to send the signal over longer distances, which we call the optical reach,”




Temporal-Spatial SDN

Since its secret beginning in 2011, Loon has been pursuing the seemingly quixotic task of bringing internet to the world’s most remote corners via stratospheric helium balloons. Now, after nearly a decade, the Alphabet-owned company is embarking on a new chapter, and it involves acknowledging it cannot accomplish the immense task of bringing billions of people online on its own.


oon is announcing a partnership with Canadian telecommunications company Telesat in a deal that will see Loon’s custom software service for managing its LTE balloon fleet be put to use controlling Telesat’s new constellation of low Earth orbit satellites. It’s part of Loon’s realization that no one solution will get internet everywhere across the globe and that its technology can benefit a major player

in an industry it once viewed as a potential competitor. “The opportunity is bigger than any one of us,” says Loon CEO Alastair Westgarth, who explains that Loon came to learn that the solutions to some of its biggest hurdles were not just about developing better technology, but also about finding the right partners. “During that learning process, we decided that we needed to seek collaboration.” While Loon has worked closely with telecoms to source internet access for its balloon

networks in foreign countries, the company has never before licensed out proprietary technology as a packaged software service. The partnership will bring Loon a new line of revenue, turning its software for controlling non-stationary aerial networks into a viable product for the satellite industry, which is now eyeing the lower portion of Earth’s atmosphere as a lucrative and untapped market. Loon has spent a majority of its existence as an Alphabet-funded project developing


this software, and it’s become an instrumental system for controlling the network traffic for Loon’s LTE service in areas like Brazil, Peru, and elsewhere around the globe where the company has performed field tests. As a result of its successful work around the globe, and in helping bring Puerto Rico back online after Hurricane Maria, Loon has become increasingly focused on becoming a proper business, too. Loon started life as one of Google’s moonshot The Telesat partnership is the second commercial deal for Loon, after the company announced plans to help expand mobile networks for smartphone users in Kenya earlier this year. Broadly speaking, these are Loon’s first steps in commercially addressing what it sees as a global hurdle for connecting the planet. Around 3.5 billion people, or a bit under half the world’s population, don’t have access to the internet, according to the 2018 Global Digital report. As it stands today, current options for bringing remote areas online, like geostationary satellites that sit more than 20,000 miles above the surface, provide ample coverage area, but suffer from high-latency and sluggish connection speeds. They’re also immensely difficult and expensive to maintain. For companies like Loon and Telesat, newer solutions ranging from satellites in low Earth orbit — a more cost-effective and lower latency portion of space — to stratospheric balloons and airships are necessary to begin bridging the gap. And it’s no longer about providing a single, one-size-fitsall solution, but a patchwork of different approaches all targeting different segments of the connectivity problem. Not only is internet access critical to upward mobility in developing countries, but its lack of availability is also an impediment to the future success of Google. While Google is technically another Alphabet subsidiary, many of the companies outside the Google bubble can be seen as pursuing goals that the search giant stands to benefit from. And Alphabet as a whole can only grow and continue thriving — and writing the healthy paychecks that

FEATURE keep the lights on at companies like Loon — if more internet users come online and start using ad-supported web services like Google search and Gmail. The tech being licensed to Telesat is what Loon is calling a “temporal-spatial” SDN, short for software-defined network. It was developed to manage Loon’s fleet of LTE balloons using learnings from Google’s years of experience building custom data center architectures and management tools. Such a technology was needed because Loon’s balloons shift in the sky depending on weather conditions, the locations of other balloons, the direction each balloon is facing, and a number of other factors that influence the stability of the network and its connection to people’s smartphones on the ground. At any given moment, Loon’s software is automatically adjusting the shape of the network to manage the data passing between each node and ultimately beaming down to and up from the surface of the Earth. In a normal cell network, the cell towers are stationary, and “you’re the only thing moving around,” explains Sal Candido, Loon’s head of engineering. With Loon, however, “it was pretty apparent early on that our towers would be moving around.” According to Candido, there didn’t exist a technology that could manage such a complex task. So Loon decided to build it. The task was not easy — Loon’s LTE balloons operate at around 20 kilometers, or more than 65,000 feet, in the sky. They cannot be adjusted on the fly; you can’t send a technician into the stratosphere to fiddle with the balloon’s antennas. So the team began researching the way aerospace networks were first set up by organizations like NASA. It’s something Loon’s Brian Barritt, a networking expert and former consultant for the NASA Glenn Research Center, had unique insight into. The technology didn’t exist to manage a network that moves around in the sky “A lot of this started off with a general solution trying to support many


different types of aerospace networks. We looked at a lot of things... planes, satellites,” says Barritt, who joined Google in 2014 and now acts as the technical lead for the temporal-spatial SDN product. “From the start, we were trying to build something that would solve this class of problem: a highthroughput network where people are moving and the network is moving.” To connect the balloons together in any given deployment area, Loon needs to set up a communication link between a ground station and one of its vehicles. The custom software system then transfers that link to other balloons using a set of three antennas affixed to rotating gimbals on each balloon’s payload. That payload also holds the networking hardware, helium source, and the means by which the balloon can stay powered in the air using a mix of solar energy and batteries. The SDN manages that whole process by predicting which balloons will handle which requests and how best to send that data across the network. It then automates the morphing of the “topology” of the network, essentially its physical arrangement, as well as scheduling those changes multiple minutes out and predicting how it will need to adjust going forward. In that way, a Loon network can reliably mimic a terrestrial LTE one, even as it floats in the sky. The result was an unprecedented network architecture, or what the Loon team nicknamed “Minkowski,” after the German mathematician Hermann Minkowski that translated Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity into a geometric representation of space-time. Its unique characteristic is that it uses software to virtually control a network that shifts both in its physical orientation and across time simultaneously, all while the physical recipients of the connection are also moving on the ground, on a ship at sea, or even on an airplane traveling 550 mph. Going forward, Westgarth says Loon will continue to push more of its technology into the commercial space and telecom sectors, as it sees fit. “As we develop a capability — some intellectual property or some tech


applicable outside Loon — we will make a determination,” he says. “Do we commercialize it? If yes, how do we find a partner and license it?” Back in September of last year, Loon announced it was able to string one such connection across seven balloons spanning 621 miles, a feat that would have been impossible without the aid of Minkowski. projects, like the Waymo self-driving car program, but it was spun out into a standalone company under Alphabet last year, roughly a year and a half after Westgarth, a telecom industry veteran, took over as CEO. Alphabet’s more experimental businesses cost it billions of dollars per year, and as a result, the companies that get spun out come under pressure to prove their worth and turn a profit. At Access, the telecom unit that encompasses Google Fiber, and drone delivery outfit Project Wing, executive turnover has been frequent, while smart home company Nest has lost both its co-founders and was folded back into Google last year. Alphabet’s solarpowered internet drone division, once a kind of sister project to Loon, was shut down in 2017. Loon, however, remains one of the rare Alphabet companies now plotting a clear path toward becoming a viable, self-sustaining venture.


The visual interface of Loon’s temporalspatial SDN software that Telesat will use to manage low Earth orbit satellites. In developing the software, Loon discovered that the product could be especially useful to satellite companies that are expanding into low Earth orbit, where satellites shift around in space. Because they’re closer to the surface of the planet, these satellites can provide faster connections, and they’re also cheaper to launch. But that area of the atmosphere requires that the satellites, like the International Space Station, constantly orbit the Earth to avoid reentry. In that way, LEO satellites start to resemble Loon balloons, although they’re much, much higher in the sky. (A LEO satellite sits approximately 35 times closer to the Earth than a standard geostationary one, but roughly 50 to 100 times higher than a Loon balloon.) “The same type of technology we used to manage the mobility of the balloon makes a ton of sense for these non-geostationary satellite constellations,” explains Candido. Loon discovered that its software was perfect for the satellite industry. Telesat doesn’t plan to beam down LTE to your average smartphone user, at


least not in the near-term. Instead, the company plans to use its LEO satellites primarily to provide connections to remote areas of Earth, such as research vessels in the ocean and cruise ships as well as for in-flight Wi-Fi and other forms of midflight satellite connections. (Interestingly, Telesat is partnering with Amazon’s Blue Origin to launch its LEO satellites, whereas Alphabet is an investor in SpaceX, both a Blue Origin competitor for space travel and Telesat competitor due to SpaceX’s planned Starlink constellation.) But for Loon, this is a first step in helping position its technology to bring universal, global connectivity closer to reality. One day in the future, Barritt envisions these stratospheric internet stations could become the backbone of a new kind of aerial internet infrastructure. “They could be used to handle urban densification, to work with satellites and different generation of Loon balloons, high-altitude solar gliders or airships,” he says. “All interoperable.” Of course, in that vision of the future, it’s Loon software that becomes the glue that holds it all together. It’s a fittingly optimistic dream for a former moonshot project of Alphabet’s X lab that, all these years later, looks like it’s finally gotten off the ground.




Aqua Comms: A Submarine Fiber Carrier’s Carrier Aqua Comms was established with the vision to build, acquire or merge with Subsea Fibre-optic cable networks to provide capacity networking solutions to customers that require exceptional reliability and performance. They are a carriers’ carrier. There are lots of companies that do wholesale and lots of carriers’ carriers. The difference with Aqua Comms is that they are only a carriers’ carrier. They do not service directly the end customers in any geographic location. They don’t sell to enterprises, they don’t sell to consumers, they don’t sell to any end-users. They simply provide capacity for the companies that use networks as part of their businesses. They have a team of senior people with twenty to thirty years of experience within this industry. They also have a series of outsourced relationships that allow them to manage these large submarine assets, with an employee base of less than twenty.


elecom Review recently visited with Nigel Bailiff, Nigel Bayliff, Chief Executive Officer of Aqua Comms, to get a better feel for their submarine fiber routes and their growth. Since the company was founded in 2014, Aqua Comms has established a reputation for excellence in the field of subsea cabling. Aqua Comms DAC is an Irish Carriers’ Carrier which

specializes in the building and operating of submarine cable systems. They offer a complete service that includes the planning, implementation and supply of fiber pairs, spectrum and capacity services to the global media, content and carrier markets. The Systems Aqua Comms is the owner and operator of America Europe Connect-1 (AEC-1) and CeltixConnect-1 and continues to build on its vision of efficient submarine infrastructure ownership

with membership in the Havfrue consortium, and the development of CeltixConnect-2 and North Sea Connect, bridging the Northern Atlantic between North America and Northern Europe. All products are supported by Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and they pride ourselves in our flexibility, security and reliability. They have a dedicated team who can adapt to your needs. Aqua Comms’ networks are the most-advanced subsea cable systems connecting Ireland, the U.K. and the U.S. to Europe.


Aqua Comms began a few years ago with a private investor in a transatlantic cable initiative previously called Emerald Networks, while also acquiring Sea Fibre Networks, an Irish cable company. Sea Fibre Networks built an undersea cable in 2012, called CeltixConnect-1 that links Dublin to Holyhead in Wales. It is the shortest, most secure crossing of the Irish Sea. This was during a period of high growth in the Irish economy, and the private investor, Aqua Ventures International, combined CeltixConnect-1 with a new transatlantic cable that was the result of the Emerald project, called America Europe Connect-1 (AEC-1). Running from Shirley, Long Island, to Killala, Co. Mayo, in the far western reaches of Ireland, AEC-1 was designed to have the shortest passage through shallow water in the U.S. and then land in western Ireland with a very short run along the continental shelf before it goes into Killala. It has dual diverse backhauls to Dublin to reach the Irish Sea and dual diverse backhauls across the U.K. to London. At the turn of the century, there was a huge drive to build new transatlantic cables. The costs for building new cables jumped due to the demand. To build a transatlantic cable back then cost two or three times what it costs today. Then the market collapsed in 2002. With a huge oversupply of capacity in the Atlantic, a great number of these cables went into bankruptcy, putting an end to new investments in cable systems. The oversupply, however, is coming to an end. Legacy cable systems typically have a 25-year lifespan and roughly a 15-year economic life. The economic life


has been extended to a degree through upgrades by the equipment vendors, but the cost of running these cables is roughly the same as running a new cable. However, these older systems can carry approximately a tenth of the capacity of new cables – 4-5 Tbps per Fibre pair when compared to 20-40 Tbps per fiber pair today. That’s six to eight times the capacity for the same operating cost. When the opportunity came recently for Aqua Comms to be involved in another cable build in the North Atlantic, they jumped at it. They worked with consortium partners Facebook, Google and Bulk Infrastructure, a data center operator based in Norway, to develop the HAVFRUE cable system. HAVFRUE is the Danish word for “mermaid.” Aqua Comms is the operator of this new high-speed cable and the landing party in New Jersey, Ireland, and Denmark. They call a portion of it – the fiber pairs that they own – America Connect-2 (AEC-2) They are also building a brandnew cable across the Irish Sea called CeltixConnect-2 and a cable across the North Sea running from Newcastle, in the U.K., to Denmark. This cable is called North Sea Connect. With so many cloud and data center clients moving to the Nordic countries for low cost power these routes are certainly in demand. Between them, these cables will create a series of ring-based structures between North America and Northern Europe that they call the ‘’North Atlantic Loop.’’ Nigel noted that, “People chose deconflicted routes so they look to have landings/POPs that may not be in congested areas such as New York.” Instead they are in New Jersey


with onward connectivity. He noted that they are optimized for 100G connectivity, and could go to 400G if there was a requirement. Aqua Comms has deployed a Point of Presence (PoP) within NJFX's colocation campus, allowing NJFX customers to directly access the carrier's suite of services without incurring cross connect fees. Epsilon and Aqua Comms have partnered to deploy Infiny by Epsilon -- an ondemand connectivity platform -- within the NJFX facility, and Aqua Comms will use the Cloud Link eXchange (CloudLX) module of Infiny to rapidly interconnect new services in and out of the NJFX campus. Now, Aqua Comms' customers can benefit from interconnecting with NJFX's growing ecosystem of global carriers, network operators, enterprises, cloud providers, and internet exchanges. "We are excited to welcome Aqua Comms as a strategic addition to our community," says Gil Santaliz, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of NJFX. "What makes NJFX unique is its carrier neutral subsea capabilities, so customers have options when choosing which cables move their data from our campus to key landing points in Europe. Having Aqua Comms at our colocation campus enables customers to further diversify and plan their international connections with certainty and accuracy, eliminating any transport uncertainty." Nigel told us that, “there is plenty of capital for good quality infrastructure so they will continue to look for new niche areas of growth.




Canada’s Metro Optic is Acquired

Cologix has acquired Montreal based infrastructure provider Metro Optic with data center facilities in Montreal, QC, and Toronto, ON. In addition to adding data center capacity the acquisition also strengthens the Company’s ability to support its wholesale, carrier and Hyperscale customers by providing diverse, high strand count dark fiber between their data center campuses and to the multiple public cloud on-ramps that are hosted in existing Cologix owned interconnection hubs. Cologix also gains 30+ new carriers with unique subsea cable routes into Montreal and adds to its existing colocation and network connectivity hubs with data centers in Montreal and Toronto.

We are thrilled to continue our investment in our Canadian footprint by adding an additional interconnection hub in Montreal and our eleventh data center in that market. The metro dark fiber assets enable us to connect our entire campus there, and provide enterprises with low cost access to AWS, Microsoft Azure, IBM Cloud and Google Cloud. We are also pleased to be adding Hyperscale edge capacity in Toronto, with unique connectivity to Cologix’s MMR in 151 Front Street,” said Bill Fathers, Chairman and CEO of Cologix. “This acquisition allows us to maximize

the value and efficiency of our Montreal footprint by offering Hyperscale capacity, access to robust interconnection hubs and now also the underlying infrastructure to connect those entities.” Cologix acquired Hyperscale data center provider, COLO-D, in December of 2018 combining a unique product of Hyperscale Edge capacity from their data centers with robust interconnection diversity from Cologix’s existing footprint of seven interconnection data centers throughout the city. This latest acquisition adds a new interconnection hub in downtown Montreal, located near Cologix’s MTL3 (1250 Rene Leveque)

data center with connectivity between the two sites and also adds Hyperscale capacity data center in Markham, ON, just outside of Toronto, designed to Tier III standards with connectivity back to Cologix’s 151 Front Street MMR. “We are excited to join the largest Hyperscale and interconnection company in Canada,” stated Michael Bucheit, CEO Metro Optic. “Cologix is closely aligned with our core vision to offer our customers extended geographic reach and hyperscale cloud access in key North American markets while maintaining network, data center and carrier neutrality.”




PacketFabric Continues their Successful & Deliberate Growth for 2019 PacketFabric is developing world class technologies which are changing the way networks communicate with one another. Their first-of-its-kind infrastructure was strategically built to deliver automated and cost-effective capacity from 1Gbps to 100Gbps and beyond. Their simple user interface enables customers to instantaneously provision highly scalable network connections between any two or more points across our private and secure network. PacketFabric facilitates coast-to-coast connectivity between more than 150 premier colocation facilities across 17 U.S. markets, and enables simple, cost-effective, and scalable network deployment via its advanced Application Program Interface (API) and web-based portal.





elecom Review recently spoke with Jezzibell Gilmore, SVP Business Development and Co-Founder and Chad Milam, President and Chief Operating Officer at PacketFabric, in order to update our readers on this rapidly growing company. Jezzibell told us that “2018 was a year where we solidified our network.” In 2018 the Company had a 550% growth rate. For 2019 she noted that there is an incredible interest from vertical markets. This includes such areas as healthcare and media/entertainment. They have also received quite a bit of interest from the financial industry. “We offer redundant services along with allowing existing customers to expand their services so it is a big win for our customers. International Connectivity Jezzibell told us that they have been getting quite a bit of interest for PacketFabric to provide their services in international locations. This includes Frankfurt, London and Amsterdam. They are also looking at expansion to Tokyo, Hong Kong and Singapore. “We are not doing spec builds and all expansion is revenue driven,” she noted. Our international expansion is not driven to be deep and wide Hawaiki and PacketFabric have signed a strategic partnership to provision secure, low-latency transpacific capacity on the Hawaiki submarine cable system and extend the reach of PacketFabric’s Softwaredefined Networking (SDN) platform into APAC. Launched in July 2018, the Hawaiki transpacific cable is a 15,000 km fiber optic deep-sea, carrier-neutral cable with a design capacity of 67 Tbps. Hawaiki is the fastest and largest capacity link connecting Australia and New Zealand to Hawaii and mainland United States. With this partnership, Hawaiki expands its reach to more than 150 locations on PacketFabric’s network,

with instant connectivity to its ecosystem and all global endpoints. “PacketFabric is a natural partner for Hawaiki and gives us the ability to extend our capacity services to everywhere and everyone PacketFabric reaches,” said Remi Galasso, CEO of Hawaiki. “This means new customers can quickly and easily connect to the Hawaiki cable system, and enjoy greater capacity and diversity across the Pacific.” Chad said: “Partnering with Hawaiki allows us to extend our disruptive Software-defined Networking (SDN) platform into the fast-growing markets of the Asia-Pacific region, including the creation of new POPs in Sydney and Auckland. Not only can PacketFabric offer customers transpacific capacity, but also the newest and fastest route to Australia and New Zealand through Hawaiki, from any location on PacketFabric’s private and secure network.” PacketFabric, the highly scalable Connectivity-as-a-Service (CaaS) platform, has selected StrataNet to provide secure, private intra-Asia capacity, extending its disruptive Software-defined Network (SDN) platform into Asia. This strategic partnership will enable PacketFabric to reach the Asian continent, making PacketFabric’s network-as-a-service platform accessible throughout StrataNet’s intraAsia locations. In addition, StrataNet will gain instant access to 19 additional markets and more than 150 colocation facilities across the United States, as well as the ability to reach Europe.

Expanding Network Connectivity Jezzibell noted that they have begun to secure last mile services for their existing customers. They have partnered with other providers to provide these type services. They recently partnered with StrataNet to extend their network. In addition, StrataNet has deep connections into Asia so that PacketFabric may provide last mile connections into such hard to reach locations such as Thailand and Cambodia. With this partnership, StrataNet will be able to offer their customers instantaneous and private connectivity to all locations on PacketFabric’s secure and scalable network, and vice versa. “Most of our focus had been on establishing a robust, reliable network footprint throughout the United States,” explained Chad. “Our partnership with StrataNet will allow us to bring our network to new markets in Asia and offer reliable, private access to network and cloud environments throughout our ecosystem, regardless of physical location. We couldn’t be more excited about redefining the way clients in the Asian market procure and manage network connectivity within the region and the rest of the world.” “We’re excited to partner with PacketFabric,” said StrataNet CEO Chris de Josselin. “This mutually-beneficial partnership will also expand StrataNet’s North American footprint, enabling us to serve a wider range of customers beyond Asia across the continental United States, with an extremely fast time to market.”




Juniper to Bring AI to IT Okay. That was a tongue twister. There is a movement underway in enterprise IT. With a shift from mere service management (ITSM) to strategic enabler, the very purpose of IT has changed. Where the past was about uptime in a largely static environment, the present is about user experience amidst a constantly-changing mosaic of technology. When the only currency that matters is time, IT cannot be a manually-manipulated Rube Goldberg machine. The future will favor the fast and the fast requires a simpler, AIdriven approach to operations.



uniper Networks is taking in pursuit of a simpler IT experience. With their planned acquisition of Mist Systems, we are not only expanding their enterprise portfolio into the wireless arena, but also staking claim to AI-driven operations in the era of multicloud. Operations is inherently an end-to-end proposition. User experience is not siloed. It requires all of the elements, from wireless access to the wired LAN across the WAN, to servers in the data center or cloud to work together. Having the breadth of product to service this entire space is important. With the addition of Mist’s industry-leading wireless portfolio, we are becoming one of a limited number of technology suppliers that can truly service the endto-end enterprise. Their industry is at an inflection point and what has served them well until now simply cannot get them to where we need to be. We cannot cling to the past while we stare into the future. Multicloud and the software-defined enterprise are upon us. AI for IT is upon us. Wireless is the most strategic place to start as we adopt AI for IT. Companies are already increasingly going wireless first, meaning Wi-Fi is the entry point onto the network for virtually everyone and everything. And whether it’s a person accessing an application or an IoT device communicating with other


devices, connectivity is not enough to declare success. User experience is the new uptime and it cannot rely solely on manual intervention. It’s also more than just wireless. AIdriven operations must extend across the whole IT stack if it is to reach its full potential. By integrating Mist’s cloudmanagement and advanced AI engine into the balance of Juniper’s enterprise portfolio, we are setting ourselves up to continue to lead the transition to the software-defined enterprise. As we venture down this path, it is important to note that Mist shares Juniper’s principled approach to design. Multicloud will be multi-vendor and Mist’s commitment to an open framework for their AI-driven wireless solution is critical. It means Juniper customers can gracefully evolve from whatever legacy infrastructure might exist, leveraging whichever elements make sense for the enterprise. And while we have the best-of-breed components to serve even the most advanced customers, we fundamentally believe that choice and flexibility matter. The addition of Mist to Juniper’s portfolio will benefit customers in a myriad of ways: • Full end-to-end software-defined enterprise. Customers that look to Juniper to build out their campus, branch and SD-WAN capabilities with


both wired and wireless can get the full stack from Juniper. Notably, Mist is already integrated with Juniper’s management software. • AI for IT. The Mist acquisition brings immediate operational benefits to wireless customers. Over time, as Juniper integrates Mist’s AI engine, customers will see these benefits accrue through the entire softwaredefined enterprise. • Purpose-built for the cloud. Mist’s revolutionary solution goes beyond just what it promises. In delivering a cloud-first, microservices architecture, they have the building blocks to accelerate customers’ adoption of AI-driven operations software. Importantly, their products and team will also help accelerate Juniper’s existing efforts in this area. Additionally, they complement their existing enterprise strategy perfectly. While many people think of Juniper today as a high-performance networking provider to SPs and cloud providers, many do not know that we have deliberately built their strategy to help enterprises transform in the cloud era. This strategy has been working as we have now achieved six quarters of continued growth in the enterprise by combining their technologies across routing, switching and security to offer customers solutions to help them transform and simplify operations as they move to cloud.




60 Hudson: Datagryd Grows Their Footprint 60 Hudson Street facility in Manhattan is not only one of largest and most valuable datacenters on the East Coast, it’s also an icon in the history of the communications industry.


he 23-story building, completed in 1930, was originally the headquarters of Western Union which operated its international telegraph business there. Then, following the breakup of AT&T in 1984, it became a carrier hotel, connecting 1,000-plus telecom companies. 60 Hudson Street was also the first to use international switches, which led to it becoming the home of multiple data centers.

Datagryd recently named Tom Brown as their CEO. “He brings a tremendous amount of experience in market development, which we know will be an immediate asset to guiding DataGryd into its next phase of customer acquisition and revenue generation.” Telecom Review recently visited with Tom in order to give our readers a good feel for updates on 60 Hudson. Prior to joining DataGryd, Tom led the content, cable, and data center verticals within Windstream’s Wholesale Business Unit. From 1999 to 2009, he was Senior Vice President of Sales and

Marketing at FiberNet Telecom Group, Inc., where he was an integral part in the sale of the company to the Zayo Group. “I am thrilled for the opportunity to join DataGryd’s exceptional team as we work together to acquire a new wave of customers seeking customized wholesale and colocation solutions,” says Mr. Brown. “With the largest single footprint data center available in New York, DataGryd has displayed extraordinary leadership within New York City’s telecommunications community. I believe my extensive experience in sales and revenue generation will


enable me to effectively lead the company toward continued growth and success.” Tom Brown is DataGryd’s President and CEO, responsible for planning and implementing the company’s strategy, and managing the overall revenue growth of the company. Mr. Brown joined DataGryd in 2018 and brings more than 25 years of leadership experience in start-up, turnaround and high-growth operations. Now both power and space are a premium here in New York City, so we have a direct feed from the electric utility to our facility. “Our direct relationship with the electric utility means we don’t have to go through a third party. So, in the unlikely event that the building power goes down, we would not be touched by that event in any way. This is a mission-critical requirement to have network diversity and power diversity, especially for some of the hyperscale players who are deploying their own networks on dark fiber. There are also an additional five megawatts we will allocate towards the sixth floor at 60 Hudson Street. That power is quite significant; it allows us to engineer the building to suit.” Now, aside from the 120,000 squarefeet of total data center space, there’s


another 55,000 square-feet of support infrastructure that lives in DataGryd’s own space. They have a 13,200 Volt connection with Con Ed in their mezzanine space, from which they distribute diverse feeds to the third-floor space. They distribute power diversely to all their customer floors from that third floor. It’s an efficient design because it allows DataGryd to send any amount of power to any place of our floors in the building. Tom did tell us that they are not a “cross connect fee” driven company. They are working to help their customers grow by providing 4-inch conduit on their floors to help their customers connect with partners. Datagryd has selected Clune Construction, to build DataGryd’s MegaSuite 6. With more than twenty years of experience working on major mission-critical projects nationwide, Clune brings its expertise to the iconic 60 Hudson Street building, which will be transformed into New York City’s most modern and efficient high-density, high-performance data center solution available in that market. DataGryd’s MegaSuite 6 is expected to be ready for occupancy by the third quarter of 2019 . “DataGryd’s selection of Clune Construction as our general contractor for the build out of MegaSuite 6 is a testament to their outstanding track


record for successfully delivering superior projects on time,” says Tom Brown, President and CEO of DataGryd. “As a result, we are committed to providing our customers near limitless scalability in the heart of New York City’s most concentrated hub of global data networking solutions.” Upon completion of MegaSuite 6, DataGryd’s customers will benefit from cost-effective megawatt configurations, supported by 5,000 kilowatts (kW) of utility power generators and towers. Located within 60 Hudson Street, globally renowned world-class carrier hotel, DataGryd’s customers will be able to directly connect to over 300 carriers, network providers, exchanges and more than six fully operational subsea systems anchored within the building without incurring monthly cross connect fees. With a zero monthly cross connect fee model, DataGryd customers benefit from tremendous cost savings that could reach tens of thousands of dollars across the lifetime of an agreement. “Clune is excited to play such a big part in one of the largest data center construction projects taking place in Manhattan,” adds Ben Walker, Executive Managing Director and President of Clune’s Eastern Region. “We are looking forward to working with DataGryd and their customers to bring their vision for MegaSuite 6 to reality.”



Zayo’s purpose is to provide mission-critical bandwidth to the world’s most impactful companies. We accomplish this by executing a focused strategy centered on communications infrastructure. With our deep and expansive fiber networks in North America and Europe, we play a unique and compelling role at the core of our customers’ networks,” said Dan Caruso, Zayo Chairman and CEO. “Whether public or private, this will remain Zayo’s focus and we will continue to expand the depth and breadth of our fiber infrastructure.” According to Reuters, activist hedge fund Starboard Value LP has acquired a 4% stake in the company – enough to have significant influence in the direction of the telecom infrastructure provider, and has requested that the board consider a sale. Reuters cites a letter sent by Starboard to Zayo.

Zayo to “Explore Options” Zayo announced that the Company is postponing its Analyst Day. The Board of Directors and management said they are currently evaluating strategic alternatives that may enhance shareholder value. The Company is postponing its Analyst Day to allow time to explore these alternatives, while retaining focus on execution and driving organic growth.

The company’s stock price jumped 13 percent after the company said it was cancelling the analyst day as it sought ways to enhance shareholder value. In today’s pre-market, the company’s share price was indicated up another 2 percent. The company had lost 25% of its market value in the last year, which the Reuters report blamed on amid anemic revenue growth and heavy capital expenditure. Additionally, Zayo has previously rejected earlier offers to purchase the company. Citing the letter, which Reuters said it had reviewed, Starboard says it thinks the best way to boost shareholder value is to sell the company. “Starboard in its letter blamed a string of poorly integrated acquisitions, senior leadership turnover and lack of spending discipline for the company’s revenue growth decreasing from 7.8% in September 2015 to 3.6% at the end of 2018. Were Zayo to decide to remain independent, it would need to streamline its operations, adopt a more disciplined approach to capital allocation, and improve oversight of the company, the New York-based fund wrote.” Perhaps most of all, Starboard wants Zayo to pick a strategy and stick to it. Over the past year, Zayo has announced, then walked back, plans to


split into two publicly traded companies by the end of 2019. It also explored the possibility of converting to a realestate investment trust, or REIT, as a way to reduce its tax bill and increase shareholder value. Zayo, with a market value of just under $6 billion, operates a 130,865-mile optical fiber network in North America and Europe that helps connect data centers and also serves wireless and landline phone companies. Zayo also has about $6 billion in debt. If private equity firms succeed in acquiring Zayo, it would represent one of the largest leveraged buyouts of the year. Since 2014, Zayo has spent $2.7 billion on acquisitions and another $2.8 billion of growth-related capital expenditures. However, despite commentary from the Company claiming to have realized significant synergies and generated positive returns from acquisitions and capital investments, an analysis depicts a different outcome. As of December 31, 2014 total enterprise value was approximately $10.2 billion. Currently, Zayo’s enterprise value is $11.7 billion, which is an increase of only $1.5 billion. This implies that since 2014, despite $5.5 billion of spending on acquisitions and investments, only $1.5 billion of incremental enterprise value has been created, signaling significant value destruction. Digital Colony, a communications infrastructure-focused firm formed by investor Tom Barrack's Colony Capital Inc and Digital Bridge Holdings, is part of a potential buyer group planning to bid for Zayo, Bloomberg reported, citing a person with knowledge of the matter. Both Digital Colony and Zayo declined to comment. The Company notes that there can be no assurance that any strategic alternative will result from this evaluation. Zayo has not set a timetable for the evaluation of its options, although it anticipates a minimum of several weeks to months, and does not intend to comment further unless it determines that further disclosure is appropriate or required by law.




companies, and get access to your online accounts. You may not know this has happened until your mobile device suddenly loses service. Then, you may not be able to get into important accounts online, because the bad guy has changed your passwords and your account profile details. You can lose money, and the bad guy now has access to more of your personal information.

Secure Your Mobile Number to Reduce SIM Swap Scams It starts when bad guys find a person to target who has valuable accounts that are accessible online. What kind of accounts? The crooks could be interested in draining a financial account or taking over a social media account with a large following.


o do this, they want to take control of your phone to get past extra authentication that may be an added layer of protection for your online accounts. That’s where somebody can’t get into your account (even you) unless they can receive a one-time PIN via text or call. The code is delivered to your phone, so the bad guys want the phone! They physically can’t get it unless they take it from your pocket. So, they try a “SIM swap,” which lets them transfer your phone number onto their device. If they take over the phone number, the authentication text or call comes to their device, not yours. Here’s how the scheme works:

Once the bad guys decide you are a target, they do some homework. They try to gather information about you, like email, home address, phone numbers, social media accounts and the financial institutions you use. They sometimes do this through phishing attacks, where you click on a suspicious link and get a virus on your computer or device. But they sometimes can get much of the information with simple internet searches. A bad guy wants this information so he can pretend to be you when he contacts your phone carrier. He’ll ask to turn on a SIM card that he has and swap it with the one currently in your phone. If he’s successful, this means your number is now on the bad guy’s phone, and he can receive your text messages and your calls. He can intercept those authentication texts or calls from your bank, credit-card issuer or other

While this scam tends to target highprofile individuals, it could happen to anyone. In the meantime, the measures you take to secure your phone number can be key to protecting your identity. Not all hacks are preventable, but here are a few tips to help avoid the SIM swap scam and other phone hijacking attacks such as porting. • Be careful about sharing your phone number. Be selective in what number you share with the companies you do business with, and limit how often you share it with others. This includes on social media, email and websites. Be selective when it comes to including the number you use to authenticate your accounts on telephone lists and directories. • Add all “extra security” measures to your Wireless accounts. If you create a unique passcode on your account, in most cases the carrier will require you to provide that passcode before any changes can be made, including ports initiated through another carrier. • Keep your personal email inbox clean. Delete phone bills, bank statements and other emails that may include personal information. If your email account is compromised, this will help minimize the chance hackers can get sensitive information. • Don’t share personal information online. Don’t post information on social media that could be used by the bad guys to gain access to your accounts. This includes answers to security questions, legal names and dates of birth.




Fear and Loathing: Cyber Threats Continue to Increase Click! That’s the sound of a mobile phone taking photos coming from a coworker's cubicle. Maybe they’re just taking selfies. But the sound is repeating, so you overcome social inhibitions and check on what’s happening.


our coworker is taking pictures of their computer screen—which is showing customer financial data. You inform your manager, who confronts your coworker immediately. They claim they were indeed taking harmless selfies. Should management take their phone? What if it's a corporate device? External attackers can compromise systems in hours or even minutes, while it can take months or more for organizations to detect intrusions. Since insiders have fewer barriers to overcome and compromises don’t require circumventing controls, the time-to-compromise and time-toexfiltrate metrics for insider threat actions are grim.

The time from an unsanctioned action (such as unauthorized access to a database or email transfer of sensitive data) to discovery represents a vast area for improvement. Most breaches that begin with an abuse of access are only found months or years later. No Industry is Immune When we focus on data varieties that aren’t as monetizable as payment card or banking information, industries such as Manufacturing, Mining, and Professional Services become more prominent. Industries have varied threat landscapes, with some more susceptible to insider threats than others. Much of this is driven by actor motives and data types insiders can access. Threat modeling should reflect where data resides or is processed within a specific organization, and

how its employees and partners could potentially misuse it. Perhaps you'll recognize one or more of these insider threat actors. Most organizations have them: 1. The Careless Worker (misusing assets). Employees or partners who misappropriate resources, break acceptable use policies, mishandle data, install unauthorized applications and use unapproved workarounds; their actions are inappropriate as opposed to malicious, many of which fall within the world of Shadow IT (i.e., outside of IT knowledge and management). 2. The Inside Agent (stealing information on behalf of outsiders). Insiders recruited, solicited or bribed by external parties to exfiltrate data.


3. The Disgruntled Employee (destroying property). Insiders who seek to harm their organization via destruction of data or disruption of business activity. 4. The Malicious Insider (stealing information for personal gain.) Actors with access to corporate assets who use existing privileges to access information for personal gain. 5. The Feckless Third Party (compromising security). Business partners who compromise security through negligence, misuse, or malicious access to or use of an asset. Potential Indicators of Insider Threat Activity While investigating various cybersecurity incidents over the years, we've seen various indicators of potential insider threat activity. Some of these include: • Attempts or successful access to systems and data without a valid "need-to-know." • Requesting access to information outside of normal job duties. • Unusual or erratic behavior. • Highly disgruntled attitude. • Working odd or late hours without reason.

FEATURE • Apparent, unexplained affluence or excessive indebtedness. • Efforts to conceal foreign contacts, travel, interests, or suspicious activity. • Unreported offers of financial assistance, gifts or favors by a foreign national. • Exploitable behavior, such as criminal activity, sexual misconduct, excessive gambling, alcohol or drug abuse, or problems at work. We denote these as possible indicators, because taken individually or even in twos and threes, they don't necessarily imply an insider in conducting malicious activity. But taken as a whole they may be concerning, and attention should be paid. Cybercriminals targeting organizations from the outside are overwhelmingly motivated by financial gain: the rise of the Dark Web means it’s easier than ever to monetize stolen data. And while financial gain can motivate insiders, our research shows they have a wider range of reasons for malicious acts. These can include boredom and curiosity, working around security controls to make a task more convenient or holding a grudge and seeking revenge:


Preparation and Mitigation • Control and restrict access to trade secrets, customer data and other proprietary information on a need to know basis • Increase monitoring and logging of sensitive areas, systems and data • Monitor behavior including use of external storage devices and cameras and smartphones in sensitive areas • Disable access for activities deemed inappropriate, malicious or otherwise posing organizational risk Detection and Response • Monitor suspicious network traffic such as unusual off-hours activity, volumes of outbound activity, and remote connections • Keep baseline system images and trusted process lists; compare these standards with compromised systems • Temporarily block outbound internet traffic, change user account passwords, and search for indicators of compromise • Disable compromised user accounts, remove malicious files and rebuild affected system




Facebook Will Be a New Wholesale Network Provider Through their subsidiary Middle Mile Infrastructure, Facebook will begin the project this year. Work on the project is expected to last for roughly 18 to 24 months.


he project will begin in Ashburn, Va., and end in Columbus, Ohio, connecting two major internet exchanges. As a result, broadband providers will be able to expand middle-mile networks into communities along the route, and it will establish West Virginia as a preferred route for fiber backbone construction. “Access to broadband internet drives economic growth and opportunity, but there are still too many unserved communities, including here in West Virginia," said Kevin Salvadori, director of network investments, Facebook. "We see the need for long haul fiber as an opportunity to provide critical infrastructure where it did not previously exist. To that end,

we’ve designed our project to attract potential local and regional providers to expand broadband internet access for the communities surrounding our builds." West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice said, "It's going to be probably without question the biggest initiative we've had in the state forever." After expressing thanks to Facebook, U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito and the Department of Commerce, Justice added, "We have truly, truly done something here that's going to give our citizens what we need so badly — connectivity to the world, to be able to really market ourselves and our products." "This is a great thing for us," said Sen. Capito, R-W.Va. "I don't think it can be undersold."

She said connectivity is critical in West Virginia for business, tourism, agriculture, health care and education. "This will help us grow and prosper here in the state." Capito said she has worked for more than a year to make this project a reality, including discussing the issue directly with Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg during a Senate Commerce Committee hearing. “We are very excited to expand West Virginia’s internet infrastructure through this partnership with Facebook,” added state Commerce Secretary Ed Gaunch. “I supported Governor Justice’s Roads to Prosperity initiative because good roads are crucial to our state’s economic success — and in today’s economy, internet infrastructure is every bit as important.”




DE-CIX and Seaborn Networks Partner for Connectivity Between North and South America and Europe

DE-CIX and Seaborn Networks (“Seaborn”) have established an interconnection to DE-CIX New York enabling turn-key direct access from Seabras-1. Seabras-1, built, owned and operated by Seaborn, is a fully operational 6-fiber pair, 72Tbps submarine cable system between Brazil and the U.S offering the lowest latency path between São Paulo and the NY metro area. Seaborn’s interconnection to DE-CIX New York provides Seabras-1 customers in South America with the ability to reach over 200 networks within the US without incurring long provisioning intervals and additional costs such as cross connect fees. Further, customers on Seabras-1 gain access to DE-CIX Frankfurt via its GlobePEER Remote solution. GlobePEER Remote provides VLAN connectivity from DE-CIX New York enabling companies to

peer with networks connected to DECIX Frankfurt and Marseille as well as Hamburg, Munich, Dusseldorf and Istanbul reaching more than 1,000 European-Asian-African networks.

• No additional cross connect fees to reach any DE-CIX customer globally.

DE-CIX New York is the largest IX and the only Open-IX certified carrier and data center-neutral IX in that market. DE-CIX North America operates exchanges in two markets; the second is DE-CIX Dallas, the Southwest region’s fastest-growing carrier and data center-neutral Internet Exchange.

• A more reliable and resilient path between Brazil, USA and Europe utilizing Seaborn’s 24/7 proprietary NOC and benefitting from 100% subterranean backhaul within Brazil

With a direct connection to DE-CIX New York and its GlobePEER Remote solution, Seaborn‘s Seabras-1 customers can receive the following benefits: • Seabras-1 provides the lowest latency path between São Paulo, Brazil and DE-CIX New York • Turnkey solution that bypasses traditional interconnection challenges due to newly established direct connectivity to DE-CIX • Direct access to DE-CIX Frankfurt and Marseille via GlobePEER Remote

• Avoids hurricane zones of the Southeast US and the Caribbean

“I am thrilled that DE-CIX’s unique solution is now available to South American networks over Seabras-1’s lowest latency network to New York,” comments Ed d'Agostino, General Manager, DE-CIX North America. “Through Seaborn, DE-CIX is readily accessible throughout Brazil bringing world-class connectivity between North America and South America and Europe.” “This partnership with DE-CIX provides Brazil’s IP networks with one-stopshop, remote IPX access to DE-CIX’s most compelling interconnect locations, leveraging the scale and agility of Seaborn’s Seabras-1 system,” adds Larry Schwartz, Seaborn’s CEO. “In this new arrangement, Seaborn is pleased to continue supporting the global expansion initiatives of Brazil’s ISP community.”

GTT Recognized in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Network Services, Global for Three Consecutive Years GTT has been recognized in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Network Services, Global. The report, published 25 February 2019, provides ICT decision-makers with an objective evaluation of market vendors. In this year’s Magic Quadrant, GTT’s position on both axes improved compared to the previous year. GTT’s positioning is based on Gartner’s evaluation of ability to execute and completeness of vision. GTT attributes this recognition to the company’s increased scale, market presence, and network reach. The

2019 report states that, “Enterprises need greater agility from global network services to support cloud IT delivery.” “I believe GTT’s position in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Network Services, Global, is further validation of our expanded cloud networking and SD-WAN service capability,” commented Rick Calder, GTT president and CEO. “Our highly talented team members live our values of simplicity, speed and agility as they deliver on our purpose of connecting people across organizations, around the world and to every application in the cloud.”







NTT Communications Completes Acquisition of Stake in IOT Platform NTT Communications Corporation (NTT Com) and Transatel jointly announced that NTT Com has completed acquisition of majority stake in Transatel on February 28, 2019.

This transaction will allow NTT Com to drastically extend its Global IoT solution offerings. The combined synergies between Transatel’s Worldwide data MVNO solutions

and NTT Com’s global network infrastructure, data center, cloud and IoT platform will bring to this alliance the ability to provide a unique value proposition to the market.

New Fiber Connecting Canada to the US industry, or connecting Canada to the Asia Pacific capacity coming into North America through Seattle. The Initiative opens Canada up to extensive opportunities globally, and will greatly benefit the markets of Washington, BC and AsiaPac."

Cascadia Gateway and its affiliate Cascadia FiberNet Inc. tells us that construction is expected to begin on a new 864-strand fiber, carrier neutral network between the carrier hotels in Vancouver, BC and Seattle, WA: Vancouver's Harbour Centre and Seattle's Westin Building Exchange, at the end of 1st quarter, 2019. The Readyfor-Service projected date is the end of the 1st quarter, 2020. Once in place it will be the largest fiber network ever established between the two cities. The Cascadia Gateway Initiative (the Initiative) involves a series of collaborative projects spanning the Cascadia bio-region corridor between Vancouver, British Columbia and Seattle, Washington. The Initiative embraces the concepts put forth under the "Cascadia

Innovation Corridor" project being undertaken by various public and private sector organizations. The purpose of the Cascadia Innovation Corridor member companies is to develop regional business across the international border between the Province of British Columbia, the State of Washington and AsiaPac. "The Initiative being undertaken by Cascadia FiberNet is a critical next step forward in meeting the growing capacity demand north and south of the border," states Michael Boyle, Strategic Planning Director, Westin Building Exchange. "Building an open cable allows for new entrants to thrive and new opportunities to come to fruition whether it be through enhanced cloud services, support of the burgeoning BC media/ Visual Effects

Joe Grech, President of AFL Network Services adds, "We're proud to be the partner of choice to provide construction and engineering services, as well as AFL's world-class fiber optic cable and accessories for the Cascadia FiberNet infrastructure project. As a company with offices in both Vancouver and Seattle, we know first-hand the value enhanced communications infrastructure will bring to the Pacific Northwest. We're excited to be part of the partnership that will provide increased capacity across the border, benefit communities across the entire region, and create new jobs in the area." The new network will be the largest fiber optic network ever built between Vancouver and Seattle, and is the first in a series of 8 major initiatives set out to improve connectivity and capacity between BC and Washington and connect the Cascadia region on both sides of the international border with AsiaPac via a subsea fiber optic cable. In alignment with the rural broadband initiatives in both regions, the completion of the Cascadia network will benefit the citizens and businesses it connects by providing open access, competitive ultra-high-speed bandwidth to urban, sub-urban and more significantly rural communities alike between Vancouver and Seattle on both sides of the border.




HGC Launches SDN Dynamic Network Provisioning HGC Global Communications Limited (HGC) launched its International Telco-service Marketplace, bringing international services to a digital marketplace for service orchestration and ordering enabled by HGC Software Defined Network (SDN) architecture. Through this centralized and intelligent platform, customers and partners will be able to manage multiple networks and resources with ease and efficiency, as well as extending business service coverage worldwide. Customers are empowered to elastically manage infrastructure and services to drive their digital transformation. In the digital marketplace, HGC’s carrier partners, corporate customers, OTT (over the top) players and the developer community can access a wide range of services covering: 1. Global connectivity on Ethernet layer to other major carrier hubs, data

center to data center worldwide (i.e. Hong Kong, Singapore, London and Los Angeles), on a single orchestrated layer. 2. All HGC flagship Big Data Exchange (BDX) data centers will be connected enabling customers to order private cloud services, colocation and other value-added one-stop services. 3. Seamless connection to Global Internet Exchange will be enabled via the SDN infrastructure, starting with AMS-IX Hong Kong, and expanding to Europe and US-based Internet Exchange to meet the needs of Asian ISPs and OTTs. With continuous service enrichment, HGC’s services marketplace will also have Metro Ethernet available to all major IDCs in Hong Kong. HGC SDN-enabled Marketplace immediately offers a myriad of

benefits to carriers, OTTs and corporate customers HGC’s SDNenabled marketplace provides customers with agility, end-to-end, zero-touch, on-demand bandwidth, the ability to scale in minutes, realtime usage monitoring and data analytics. Cliff Tam, Vice President, Global Data Strategy of HGC’s International Business said: “The new marketplace launch marks an important leap to elevate customer experience with an important, on-demand and intelligent digital service marketplace. HGC can quickly introduce new, innovative and customized solutions enabling speedto-market and ease of operations for our customers. It is HGC’s strategy to continue expanding SDN services to enable carrier-carrier interoperability to enhance our network provisioning, cloud connectivity and to provide secure and customized data-driven solutions.”

Verizon Names Hans Vestberg as Chairman The Board of Directors of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ) has elected CEO Hans E. Vestberg as chairman, effective March 8, 2019. Lowell C. McAdam is retiring as Verizon’s chairman on that date and will remain on the Board until the company’s annual meeting of shareholders on May 2, 2019. In addition, the Board elected Clarence Otis, Jr., as lead director, effective March 8, 2019. Otis will succeed M. Frances Keeth, who is retiring from the Board in May in accordance with the Board’s mandatory retirement policy. Keeth said, “I’m honored to have been lead director of Verizon’s Board. With the approach of my planned retirement from these duties, this is the culmination of a succession planning process that -with Hans as chairman and Clarence as lead director -- best positions Verizon for continued leadership in the 5G era.” Otis has served on Verizon’s Board since 2006. He is the former chairman

and chief executive officer of Darden Restaurants, Inc., the largest company-owned and operated fullservice restaurant company in the world. Vestberg has been CEO since Aug. 1, 2018, with responsibility for all business operations at Verizon, including the strategic direction of the company. He has served on Verizon’s Board since June 2018. Vestberg joined Verizon in April 2017 as executive vice president of Network and Technology and chief technology officer, after having served as president and CEO of Ericsson from 2010 to 2016. Another Verizon Board member – Richard L. Carrion – has informed the company that he will not stand for re-election when his term expires at the company’s annual meeting. He has served on the Board since Verizon’s founding in 2000 and before that was on the board of predecessor companies.

Keeth said, “Our Board thanks Richard for his many years of service.” She added, “We also owe a great debt of gratitude to Lowell for the legacy he is leaving to Verizon customers, employees and shareholders.” McAdam had been Verizon’s CEO since August 2011 and chairman since January 2012. He retired as CEO effective Aug. 1, 2018, and at year-end became non-executive chairman. McAdam is one of the architects of today’s global wireless industry, having built wireless businesses on three continents since the technology’s development in the 1980s. Under his leadership as CEO, Verizon took over complete ownership of Verizon Wireless by purchasing Vodafone’s 45 percent stake, positioning Verizon for a new phase of wireless growth. He also led the company’s push into growth markets in the Internet of Things and digital media. Verizon currently has 12 Board members.




NTT Communications is the Market Leader in APAC Cloud portfolio thanks to its integration with sister companies.

workload management and service orchestration.”

According to the report, the cloud market landscape is evolving in the Asia-Pacific region. While web-scale players such as Amazon, Google, Microsoft and Alibaba are continually expanding in the regions, telecoms operators are carving out a niche by offering integrated network and cloud services.

Australia-based Telstra and Francebased Orange Business Services are in second and third place. While these providers have similar capabilities to NTT Communications, they are slightly behind with their footprints in the region. But they are rapidly closing the gap, with Orange Business Services having partnered with Huawei to drive expansion in the region – particularly in China, and Telstra recently announcing a partnership with Equinix for direct access to more infrastructure globally.

NTT Communications is the leader in the APAC telco cloud services market with the highest overall score based on four categories - cloud portfolio, data center footprints, software-defined infrastructure and supplemental services. NTT Communications is the market leader in the Asia-Pacific telecom cloud segment, and is well placed to maintain its position, according to GlobalData. In a new report, the analyst company said NTT Communications has carved out a lead due to its software-defined capabilities, wide network and data center coverage and an expanded

“Cloud products offered by telcos are comparable in terms of technical capabilities and ecosystem partners,” GlobalData analyst Alfie Amir said. “What differentiates NTT Communications from the rest is its wide footprint and presence in the region to address data residency and latency requirements, as well as its softwaredefined capabilities which offer better

“The APAC cloud market is still growing fast as the market emerges, while the competition is getting more intense driven by the web-scale players,” Amir said. “Telcos need to continue to leverage their network strengths and at the same time, include latest technologies such as selfservice tools, analytics and AI in their offerings to gain competitive advantage.”

Windstream Wholesale Expands Fixed Wireless breadth and depth of coverage with this technology,” said Joe Scattareggia, executive vice president at Windstream Wholesale. “Customers experience faster install times and a more costeffective alternative to fiber and copper with the same service level agreements.”

Windstream Wholesale tells us that its Fixed Wireless service will increase its Wholesale Ethernet Services footprint to customers in over 50 major metro markets, complementing and operating in parallel to Windstream’s robust 150,000-mile core fiber footprint. The new service offer adds 400,000 prequalified buildings that serve more than

3 million businesses with Windstream OnNet assets by providing primary access or redundant access solutions. More markets and locations will be added during 2019. “Our Fixed Wireless is unique in the industry as no other service provider can deliver Windstream Wholesale’s same

The new Fixed Wireless service now supports products including Ethernet E-Access, Dedicated Internet Access, and MPLS at bandwidth levels to deliver a guaranteed bit rate over a path-diverse wireless connection at speeds ranging from 3 Mbps to 5 Gbps with guaranteed four-nines availability. Entities seeking business continuity plans can now combine fiber optic access and Fixed Wireless connectivity. For added convenience, self-service quoting and ordering are available for all access types within the Customer Portal Tool (CPT).




Telia Carrier and Telxius Announce Major Network Capacity Agreement Telia Carrier and Telxius have an agreement for multi-terabit capacity services combining transatlantic capacity from Telxius in the new 6,600 km MAREA cable system and Telia Carrier’s European backbone network. The combination of Telia Carrier’s extensive terrestrial European and North American footprint and Telxius’ newest transatlantic cable assets will not only provide both parties with additional network muscle and reach, it will also create a natural and vital bridge linking the US with other cable systems connecting to Northern Europe, Africa and Asia. “This is one of the largest European capacity projects in recent years and by combining our extensive European network across 100 PoPs in Europe with Telxius’ Spanish footprint and the Marea cable system, this is a perfect, end-to-end fit,’ said Ivo Pascucci, VP of Sales, Telia Carrier. ‘Apart from the obvious benefits of additional capacity and lower latency within Europe and towards the US, we are delighted to

work with such a strong partner in this and other projects.”

recent technological developments have increased up to 200 Tbps.

“MAREA is the highest capacity cable system in the world offering a key diverse route across the Atlantic. Telxius and Telia Carrier both work with the world’s largest operators, content providers and enterprises, who will now also benefit from this deployment,” said Enrique Valdés, VP of Sales, Telxius. “This partnership was perfect for us and we’re confident that our combined strengths will contribute to realizing the full potential of the Marea sea cable system.”

Telia Carrier owns and operates the world’s #1 backbone (according to Dyn Research) and provides critical network infrastructure, services and cloud connectivity to operators, content providers and enterprises alike. With customers in more than 115 countries, their global network footprint connects more than 280 Points of Presence with 65,000 km of fiber across Europe, The Americas, Asia and the Middle East.

The MAREA subsea cable system provides route diversity and the low latency across the Atlantic. MAREA runs from Sopelana in the north of Spain to Virginia Beach in the US, on a more southerly route than other transatlantic cables which are mostly located further north. The Sopelana landing is connected to an existing fiber network corridor in Europe, linking major hubs like Paris, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and London. MAREA consists of 8 fiber pairs, with an initial design capacity of 160 Tbps which

Telxius owns and operates the two highest-capacity submarine cables in the world, MAREA (200 Tbps) and BRUSA (138 Tbps) within its 87,000 km international network of fiber optic subsea cables. MAREA is the transatlantic cable jointly owned with Microsoft and Facebook. BRUSA effectively provides the lowest latency route between the US and Brazil. Telxius provides the latest generation IP, capacity, colocation and security services over its extensive network, always enabling the best communication for customers all over the world.

Xplornet to Expand Canada’s Rural Broadband

Rural Canadians will soon have access to faster speeds and more data as Xplornet Communications Inc. makes historic investments in its national broadband network, enabled by the Government of Canada’s Accelerated Investment Incentive. Announced by President and CEO Allison Lenehan, this bold new investment plan will position Xplornet to deliver 5G wireless services nationally to rural Canadians. “We have made unprecedented investments in our broadband network to offer more services to our customers.

Later this year, Xplornet will double the speeds we are able to offer customers to 50 Mbps,” said Mr. Lenehan. “Then, we will fulfill our bold promise to offer 100 Mbps speeds to rural Canadians by the end of 2020.” This investment will enable Xplornet to provide 5G-ready wireless services across Canada, supported by new investments in a fiber backbone capable of delivering speeds of at least 1Gbps. The plan makes effective use of Xplornet’s licensed 3500 MHz spectrum to provide rural Canadians with 5G wireless services. “At Xplornet, we are proud to fight for rural Canadians,” said Mr. Lenehan. “5G technology is not just about urban Canada – we believe strongly that 5G can enable amazing broadband services in

rural Canada, unlike anything previously available.” To deliver on this commitment, Xplornet will invest $500 million over the next five years to deploy state-of-the-art hybrid fibre wireless technology for rural Canadians. Thanks to the Accelerated Investment Incentive for telecommunications equipment, announced in the 2018 Fall Economic Statement, Xplornet is positioned to accelerate total investment in its rural broadband network. “Xplornet is grateful to the Government of Canada for their continued support for rural broadband,” said Mr. Lenehan. “These measures, combined with a significant capital investment unprecedented in our company’s history, will deliver 5G services to rural Canadians on the same timeline as in Canada’s largest cities.”




Nokia and U.S. Cellular Sign Multi-Year 5G Network Deal Nokia has expanded its relationship with U.S. Cellular with the signing of a five-year deal to modernize the company's network by providing its end-to-end 5G technology, software and services solutions. This will enable U.S. Cellular to deliver innovative services to its customers and expand into new customer and enterprise segments with 5G services and solutions. The new contract builds upon the 5G trial activities Nokia and U.S. Cellular have been engaged in during the last year. As part of the agreement Nokia will modernize and build out a 5G network for U.S. Cellular across its markets using 5G capabilities compliant with 3GPP 5G New Radio (NR) standards. Mike Irizarry, Executive Vice President and CTO, U.S. Cellular, said : "By keeping U.S. Cellular's network on the cutting edge, we can continue to deliver the innovation our customers demand, gain new customers and add new revenue models - all with a 5G-ready network. With Nokia's end-to-end solutions we will have the ability to launch 5G-based services that will provide massive connectivity and enhanced IoT to our customers."

Ricky Corker, President of Customer Operations for the Americas, Nokia, said: "5G will ultimately deliver unprecedented user experiences and business models that require innovative solutions. We're delighted to continue our work with U.S. Cellular to accelerate 5G development and deployment that will not only provide a multi-fold increase in capacity for its customers, but also deliver 5G coverage." U.S. Cellular will leverage multiple products across Nokia's end-toend 5G technology, software and professional services portfolio. Nokia's 5G portfolio is based on its commercial AirScale radio platform and a cloud-based network architecture. 5G promises to enable faster speeds, massive connectivity, decade-long battery life for sensors and superresponsive and reliable networks for customers. This will unleash on-demand virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) experiences, driverless vehicles, medical monitoring, advanced industrial automation services, and so much more - all requiring ubiquitous low latency connectivity.

U.S. Cellular Also Gives Ericsson the Green Light The week prior U.S. Cellular and Ericsson revealed a multi-year contract for Ericsson to support U.S. Cellular’s 5G network deployment. Under the contract, Ericsson will provide U.S. Cellular with 3GPP standards-based 5G New Radio (NR) hardware and software. Ericsson will support U.S. Cellular’s network modernization from its LTE network to 5G, allowing U.S. Cellular to leverage Ericsson’s industryleading 5G portfolio to expand coverage while simultaneously future-proofing its current network. Michael S. Irizarry, Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, U.S. Cellular, says of the Ericsson deal, “We’re constantly working to ensure that our customers have access to the latest technology available. We value our long-standing relationship with Ericsson and are impressed with their 5G-ready portfolio. We also know Ericsson is committed to meeting our deployment timeline in order to bring 5G to our customers in the second half of 2019.”

Verizon Acquires ProtectWise and bring additional talent to the company.

Verizon has closed its acquisition of ProtectWise, Inc., a Colorado-based company which provides clouddelivered Network Detection and Response. This acquisition allows Verizon to expand its product offering in Network Detection and Response

"Integrating ProtectWise's capabilities with Verizon's global network services further enhances our ability to detect and respond to security threats," said Alex Schlager, executive director, product management and development, Verizon. "In addition, as we rapidly expand our 5G footprint, increasing our capacity and capabilities in network detection and response will secure our customers as they adapt and expand with the next generation of connectivity." “ProtectWise has dedicated the last five years to building a next-generation Network Detection and Response

platform that’s been recognized as one of the leading technologies in the cybersecurity industry,” said Scott Chasin, ProtectWise CEO and Co-Founder. “Our technology and the outstanding team behind it will be great assets to Verizon as the company expands its enterprise security offerings. We look forward to becoming a part of Verizon to deliver immediate value to our customers, partners and team based on the company’s strong security market presence and global reach.” Technology from ProtectWise will be integrated into Verizon’s existing offerings. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. DBO Partners acted as the financial advisor to ProtectWise.



June 2019


November 2019 TIA Date: 3-5 June 2019 Place: Dallas

Canadian Telecom Summit Date: 3-5 June 2019 Place: Toronto, Canada

September 2019

MEF 19 Date: 21November 2019 Place: Los Angeles

December 2019 Telecom Review Leaders Summit Date: 9-10 December 2019 Place: Dubai

Asia Carriers Conference Date: 3-7 September 2019 Place: Cebu, Philipines

October 2019 Mobile World Congress Americas Date: 22-24 October 2019 Place: Los Angeles, California

Incompas Date: 30-31 October 2019 Place: Louisville KY

Latest updates on: www.telecomreviewna.com




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Telecom Review North America Issue 48 - 2019  

Telecom Review North America Issue 48 - 2019

Telecom Review North America Issue 48 - 2019  

Telecom Review North America Issue 48 - 2019


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