América Móvil’s KPN Interest: Sweep MNC Visions Aside, It’s About the Mobile Subscribers

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • It is tempting, but probably wrong, to expect América Móvil’s bid for KPN to have a global MNC angle.
  • América Móvil’s track record shows preference for mobile subscribers; KPN’s divesting E-Plus with Telefónica likely spurred the proposed takeover.

Billionaire tycoon Carlos Slim Helú is known for making bold moves with strategic investments.  When Carlos Slim-owned América Móvil increased its investments in KPN and Telekom Austria in 2012 by investing billions of euros, the strategic business synergy seemed obvious. When it comes to serving multinational corporations (MNCs), América Móvil and Telefónica are rivals throughout Latin America.  Both competitors can go cross-border into North America easily enough, to extend services across North America. Continue reading “América Móvil’s KPN Interest: Sweep MNC Visions Aside, It’s About the Mobile Subscribers”

Dimension Data Highlights Expertise as Global Telepresence and Managed Video Services Provider

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • Dimension Data draws on its global professional services and in-country staff to operate its own successful managed video services offer.
  • Dimension Data draws on its own tools, global video hardware support organization for rapid troubleshooting and resolution of customers’ issues.

Dimension Data is known for its global professional services and solutions building, outsourcing, network integration, hardware device installation and support. While it doesn’t have the name-brand recognition of the carrier-side global telepresence services providers, the company has been steadily building its Managed Services for Visual Communications base. The company now describes having 250 clients for its managed video services, representing 6,000 video endpoints and processing more than 20,000 calls per month, combining immersive and non-immersive endpoints. Continue reading “Dimension Data Highlights Expertise as Global Telepresence and Managed Video Services Provider”

tw telecom’s Intelligent Network Third Phase Takes Shape: Constellation Platform to Connect Resources to Customers On-Demand

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • tw telecom is gearing up to release its Constellation Platform, promising click-and-connect links to third-party data centers and resident cloud providers.
  • Constellation Platform details are still under wraps, but tw telecom will likely succeed in raising the bar for customers’ on-demand service expectations.

When it comes to cloud services, the largest U.S. incumbent network providers are all-in: AT&T with its Synaptic line of services, Verizon with its acquisition of Terremark, and CenturyLink with its acquisition of Savvis. Many smaller providers by contrast are split on their cloud services approach. Windstream and EarthLink Business are examples of network providers that are developing data centers and cloud services in-house. Sprint’s entry into the cloud has been through a partnership with CSC. However, there are also competitors such as tw telecom and Lightpath that choose to stay away from building and selling in-house cloud services: They would prefer to be impartial agents serving a large audience of third-party data center and cloud services providers. Of these, tw telecom in particular has invested in network tools, with the goal of becoming a more flexible network provider of cloud connectivity. Continue reading “tw telecom’s Intelligent Network Third Phase Takes Shape: Constellation Platform to Connect Resources to Customers On-Demand”

‘BT for Life Sciences’ Maps Progress in Biomedical/Pharmaceutical IT Industry

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • The ‘BT for Life Sciences’ program has built up personnel expertise and ramped up partners and customers, and it is adding adjacent services.
  • While the pharmaceutical sector enters integrators’ territory, major telecom service providers target opportunities across the wide spectrum of healthcare services.

Service providers know well by now that enterprise cloud services are about more than selling low-cost compute power.  The value of a cloud service is in the sum of applications, expertise and agility the provider brings to the table.  BT has been heavily focused on solution building – in the past, to the point of overextending itself with large, specialized consulting and professional services engagements.  Since then, the provider has taken a more pragmatic approach, which includes delivering industry-specific, repeatable cloud solutions.  BT’s vertical solutions targets include pharmaceutical industry contracts, and its BT for Life Sciences business unit puts it in good stead to compete for these compute-intensive projects. Continue reading “‘BT for Life Sciences’ Maps Progress in Biomedical/Pharmaceutical IT Industry”

NII to Cede Peru Operations to Entel, Consolidating Around Brazil and Mexico Core Markets

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • NII selling its Peru holdings could help fund investments to become a major cellular competitor in Brazil and Mexico.
  • Mexico and Brazil are extremely competitive markets; still, the long-running wireless demand boom could help lift NII’s prospects.

On April 4, regional Latin America wireless specialist Nextel International (NII) announced that it was selling off its wholly owned Nextel Peru subsidiary to Chile’s incumbent provider Empresa Nacional de Telecomunicaciones (Entel). The purchase price is expected to be US$400 million when the transaction completes in H2 2013. NII will continue to compete with its existing wireless services in Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Chile. Continue reading “NII to Cede Peru Operations to Entel, Consolidating Around Brazil and Mexico Core Markets”

Managed Videoconferencing Homes in on Price Point Differentiation

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets

  • Reservationless telepresence – emulating the familiar dial-in audioconferencing experience – has proven popular, to the point that the major competitors either have it, or are launching it.
  • Telepresence providers with a large conventional videoconferencing installed base are now drawing from these benefits, as their clients expand beyond immersive endpoints.

As Current Analysis has begun its latest analysis and update to the world’s major telepresence and videoconferencing providers, some trends are already becoming clear. Below is a list of issues that are currently top-of-mind for service providers: Continue reading “Managed Videoconferencing Homes in on Price Point Differentiation”

Uncertainty as the Telecom Boom’s Fiber IRU Flurry Closes in on the 20-year Mark

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

• Claims of network providers entering flux as telecom boom’s IRUs expire are important for wholesale; enterprise services should be unaffected.

• The telecom boom’s national fiber builds are now well over a decade old: The fiber’s transport characteristics remain serviceable today.

Starting anytime now, and through the end of the decade, we just might see network operators’ national footprints widely thrown into disarray, as the host of IRU agreements signed during the telecom boom of the 1990s begin to expire (the standard length of an IRU being 20 years, though they can vary). Some observers speculate that, just like the baby boom set the stage for a next-generation ‘baby boomlet’, expiring IRUs will spur a fresh round of telecom negotiations and deal-making. These new deals would buoy transport, network and infrastructure providers. Personally, I expect the freeing up of IRUs to be a relatively minor event. But on the other hand, there still appears to be room for strategic fiber investment.There are two important background points to understand when discussing the telecom industry’s IRUs: Continue reading “Uncertainty as the Telecom Boom’s Fiber IRU Flurry Closes in on the 20-year Mark”

AT&T Expands on Wireless Plans for Project Velocity IP Rollout

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • AT&T expects to add 10,000+ macro cells, 1,000+ DAS and 40,000+ small cells: These and other providers’ plans will keep installers busy.
  • AT&T has timetables for VoLTE (2014) and QoS (2015); LTE Advanced features are on the roadmap without target dates.

AT&T’s Project Velocity IP plans made a big splash when the company in November 2012 announced it expected to invest $14 billion in its networks. To recap what we covered at the time, AT&T plans to cover 300 million people – 96% of the U.S. population – with its 4G LTE and HSDPA+ network. The company continues to invest in spectrum, and intends to deploy distributed antenna systems (DAS) and small cells to increase its coverage. Continue reading “AT&T Expands on Wireless Plans for Project Velocity IP Rollout”

100 Gbps Hits Rapid-Fire Rollout

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • 100 Gbps wavelength deployments were pushed back repeatedly.  However, providers are now in full swing, lighting 100 Gbps coherent wavelength services for commercial and wholesale clients.
  • The new 100 Gbps speeds benefit some situations, but they are not yet cheaper than buying a fistful of 10 Gbps waves.

The first major trials for 100 Gbps wavelength services started in 2009, and the hype began gathering steam in 2010.  While some providers took an interim step and supported 40 Gbps, industry consensus seemed to be that 100 Gbps would be out in time to make 40G waves obsolete.  It took two years longer than some expected, but 100 Gbps long-haul wavelengths services are now being lit.  Most adopters are lighting the higher speeds for their own internal use, but a few are also offering the option for wholesale and content customers. Continue reading “100 Gbps Hits Rapid-Fire Rollout”

Dead or Alive? Copper Loops Merit Major New Platform Upgrade Investments

Brian Washburn
Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • Counter to those who declare copper networks obsolete, platforms taking advantage of existing copper plant are drawing healthy new investment.
  • Both incumbents and competitive carriers are deploying platforms that wring faster speeds out of existing copper plant.

The telecom industry hasn’t talked up copper networking for years: Twisted-pair wire just doesn’t have the allure of fiber or wireless. But even with projects such as Verizon FiOS having run for many years, removing all copper from access networks has proved too expensive and difficult to be a feasible goal. Fiber steadily finds its way into access networks, but carriers – both incumbents and their facilities-based competitors – are also continuing to stretch existing copper plant in new ways. Just since the beginning of November, there has been a flurry of new industry activity: Continue reading “Dead or Alive? Copper Loops Merit Major New Platform Upgrade Investments”