We hope you had a great start to 2022! We trust that this message finds you and your loved ones safe in the face of the omicron variant or that you all recovered quickly and thoroughly.
We’re planning to be in Barcelona for MWC 2022 at the end of the month unless the Spain government changes its policies. If you’re going to be there, reach out to us, and we’d love to find a time to meet (firstname.lastname@example.org).
In January, AvidThink participated in a webinar for Platform9 examining and discussing their inaugural cloud and container survey results (2022 Enterprise Trends in Cloud Native) from a sampling of 526 professionals across 450 companies. There are some excellent insights there, and it’s worth a read. Unlike many surveys, which simply reinforce marketing tropes, there’s data in this that is helpful — for instance, discerning differences in concerns between longer-term adopters of containers versus newcomers.
You might also want to check out this lively panel AvidThink moderated at the Cloud Networking Blitz Week, discussing “Hybrid and Multi-cloud Strategies for Telco – a Deep Dive.” Red Hat, Google, and Harmonic had a go at it and it was more exciting than most webinars (you’ll experience what Thierry describes as a mild “catfight”).
In February, we’ll also be moderating an ACG Silicon Valley panel featuring our friend, Dan Pitt, and Prof. Yunhong Liu (Santa Clara University) on Web3 – Reality or Vaporware? Join us on February 16 for what promises to be a fun discussion.
If you missed our recent article on Dish Wireless and their core principles in building infrastructure, it might be worth your time — we have been receiving positive feedback on it, even from executives at competing carriers. The article distills out and examines the five key principles Marc Rouanne (Chief Network Officer) and his team is using to make infrastructure decisions and build new competencies in a cloud-dominated world.
Resource Sites — 2022 Predictions are HERE!
With our partner, Converge! Network Digest, we launched a very successful Predictions 2022 site — highest traffic ever! We collected predictions for this year from thought leaders in networking, cloud, and telecommunications — CEOs, CTOs, CIOs, EVPs, SVPs, VPs, architects, principal engineers, subject matter experts. AT&T, Microsoft Azure, Arelion (Telia Carrier), Telstra, Juniper Networks, Accedian, MEF, Linux Foundation, Marvell, IBM, Spirent, Open Compute Project, and so many others! If you haven’t yet, check out the Next-Gen Predictions 2022 resource page, which includes a single download bundle of our most popular reports.
In the meantime, contact us at email@example.com if you are interested in participating or sponsoring our sites: SD-WAN/SASE, telco and edge infrastructure, service assurance, SmartNICs, private mobile networks, data center networking, infrastructure security, and other new ones coming this year.
On to our news summary for January 2022!
AT&T is about to get aggressive with its mid-band 5G deployment
AT&T will soon embark on a program to upgrade tens of thousands of cell towers with mid-band 5G equipment —that includes its C-band spectrum and its 3.45GHz-3.55GHz spectrum. AT&T expects the upgrade to cost around $8 billion, and that will include equipment plus the deployment costs. CEO John Stankey told investors during the company’s 4Q earnings call that the company will be able to deploy the gear fairly quickly because it will use a “one-touch” tower climb. The company expects to cover 200 million people with 80 MHz of mid-band spectrum by the end of 2023.
Dish’s 5G network is based on cloud-centric principles
(shameless plug warning) AvidThink’s Roy Chua talked with executives at Dish Network as well as Dish’s 5G vendors to determine the core principles for how Dish’s team makes wireless infrastructure decisions. Those principles include cultivating a cloud and DevOps mindset, which means everything can be hosted in the cloud, but not all functions belong in the cloud. In addition, vendors need to support the diversity of functions at the edge. The company also believes platforms are commodities and are interchangeable.
CTIA launches a 5G security testbed
CTIA launched a 5G security testbed that will be used to validate security in commercial 5G networks. The testbed will be located at the University of Maryland, and founding members of the initiative are AT&T, Ericsson, T-Mobile, UScellular, MITRE, and the University of Maryland. The site will provide an environment where wireless researchers can test use cases, make recommendations and bolster 5G security. It is also a place where researchers can assess potential threats to 5G security.
Chinese operators added nearly 27M 5G subs in December
Chinese operators reported a net gain of 26.9 million 5G subscribers in December. China Mobile said it added 12.5 million 5G customers during December, for a total of 386.8 million 5G subscribers overall. China Unicom added 5.38 million 5G subscribers in December, for a total of 154.9 million 5G subscribers overall. And China Telecom said it added 9.04 million 5G subscribers in December, bringing its total 5G base to 187.8 million.
Verizon launches 5G lab at Arizona State University
Verizon is bringing 5G innovation to Arizona State University (ASU) in Tempe, Arizona. The wireless operator launched a 5G Innovation Hub on ASU’s campus where students, faculty and others can use 5G to develop solutions to real-world problems. The Hub is set up as a private network and initially uses Verizon’s millimeter wave spectrum (mmWave) with a non-standalone 5G core. Verizon and its partner AWS also have a mobile edge compute platform installed.
China ended 2021 with 1.43M 5G base stations
China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology reported the country ended 2021 with 1.43 million 5G base stations. In the past year, Chinese operators deployed 654,000 5G base stations and the country’s 5G network now covers more than 98% of county-level urban areas and 80% of township-level urban areas, the MIIT said.
Verizon has deployed 1 million Cradlepoint routers
Verizon announced it has deployed 1 million Cradlepoint wireless WAN routers on its network. The companies said this signaled a rise in enterprises incorporating wireless into their solutions at a rapid pace. “Even [the] largest enterprises and the public sector [want] fixed wireless access solutions at the edge,” Jennifer Artley, SVP of strategic initiatives at Verizon Business told RCR Wireless News.
Comcast launches a private wireless network
Comcast Business is getting into the private wireless game. The company will deploy a 4G/5G private wireless network at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia during the first quarter of this year. Comcast will use Nokia’s Digital Automation Cloud (DAC) technology and its licensed Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) spectrum. Comcast said this is its first private wireless network, but the company is in discussions with other business customers that want to deploy private networks.
Research firm drops expectations for CBRS RAN equipment revenues
Research firm Dell’Oro Group reduced its expectations for sales of equipment running in the 3.5GHz spectrum band. Specifically, the company said that private wireless networking and mobile network augmentation in the CBRS band is not moving as quickly as it anticipated. The company said that it previously expected sales of CBRS radio access network equipment to increase from 2% of the overall RAN market in 2021 to 5% of the overall North American RAN market in 2025. Now Dell’Oro believes that CBRS RAN will account for less than 5% of the overall North American RAN revenues by 2026.
Telstra deploys Ericsson’s Private 5G in Australia
Telstra deployed Ericsson Private 5G, an on-premise dedicated 5G network for enterprises. The network has a 5G dual-mode core with both LTE and 5G Standalone running simultaneously. AgriFood Connect, an Australian non-profit, is the first customer and will use the network for industrial IoT capabilities such as asset monitoring and collection of data from machinery.
Nokia sees private network potential in Ligado’s L-band spectrum
Nokia is collaborating with Ligado Networks to deliver its private network Digital Automation Cloud using Ligado’s L-band spectrum. The goal is to provide 4G and 5G private networks to U.S. enterprises using L-band spectrum. Nokia said it wants to make private wireless networks available in different spectrum bands, both licensed and unlicensed. For its part, Ligado is working to make its L-band spectrum capable of supporting 5G and IoT.
Verizon teams with Atos on 5G edge analytics
Verizon Business partnered with Atos to bring predictive analytics to enterprises that want to use 5G edge computing to improve their operational efficiency and increase revenue. The Verizon-Atos platform can be used in private 5G edge computing environments and will deliver capabilities such as artificial intelligence-powered video analytics. Verizon will also use Atos’ BullSequana Edge servers to strengthen its edge offering for more advanced network security, connectivity and data management.
Verizon adds four more 5G mobile edge compute locations
Verizon and Amazon Web Services (AWS) said they have added four more 5G mobile edge compute locations in the U.S. Charlotte, North Carolina; Detroit; Los Angeles; and Minneapolis are the latest locations for Verizon’s edge compute sites. These sites join Verizon’s other edge locations, including Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Las Vegas, Miami, New York City, Phoenix, San Francisco’s Bay Area, Seattle and Washington, D.C.
Zayo Group buys SD-WAN firm QOS Networks
Zayo Group purchased QOS Networks, a managed edge and SD-WAN company that helps enterprises deploy, manage and monitor their SD-WAN and edge networks. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Zayo said the acquisition would allow it to combine its extensive fiber network, as well as its optical and packet capabilities, with QOS’ managed SD-WAN and edge services.
Lumen signs $1.2B contract to revamp the USDA’s legacy network
Lumen Technologies was awarded a $1.2 billion contract with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to revamp its network. The contract covers the USDA’s 9,500 locations across the country and includes SD-WAN, managed trusted internet protocol, zero-trust networking, edge computing, remote access, virtual private networking, cloud connectivity and more.
Juniper adds security features to SD-WAN portfolio
Juniper is updating its Session Smart Routing SD-WAN platform by adding new security features, hardware and configuration options. The company combined its Mist AI and SRX secure branch gateway with its Session Smart SD-WAN platform allowing its SD-WAN customers to configure, manage and use the SSR technology via the Mist cloud and AI engine. The company also added intrusion detection and prevention systems and URL filtering capabilities.
Cisco will add Webex collaboration tools to its SD-WAN platform
With the growing number of employees working at home post-pandemic, Cisco has decided to integrate its Webex collaboration software into its Cloud OnRamp portfolio, which is part of the company’s SD-WAN efforts. Cloud On-Ramp lets remote workers and those at branch office access cloud-based applications. The company said that collaboration tools are becoming more critical for workers and that by integrating Webex into the SD-WAN portfolio, Cisco can create a more seamless experience.
Juniper’s 4Q revenue hits $1.3B with growth in service provider, cloud markets
Juniper Networks ended 2021 on a positive note with the company’s fourth quarter revenue hitting $1.3 billion, up 6% year-over-year and 9% sequentially. The company’s service provider segment returned to growth in the quarter and was up 8% year-over-year. Likewise, the company’s cloud division also had a strong quarter and was up 19% year-over-year. Enterprise revenues declined during the quarter but Juniper attributed that to the timing of shipments and supply chain issues. For the full year, Juniper’s revenue was $4.5 billion, up 7% from 2020.
Microsoft’s cloud division continues to rain money
Microsoft’s Intelligent Cloud business, which includes Azure, reported revenue of $18.3 billion in the fiscal second quarter, an increase of 26% year-over-year. Overall company revenue for the quarter was a record $51.7 billion, up 20 % year-on-year, and net income rose 21% to $18.8 billion. CFO Amy Hood highlighted Azure’s focus on vertical markets, noting Microsoft now offers six separate industry clouds.
BT inks a partnership deal with Rackspace
BT partnered with multi-cloud solutions company Rackspace Technology to expand its portfolio of managed services for business customers. As part of the deal, Rackspace will deploy its technology, including its Rackspace Fabric management layer, in BT’s data centers. BT will run its hybrid cloud services on Rackspace’s solutions.
Tech leaders meet with White House on open source software security
Amazon, Google, IBM, Microsoft and VMware joined Apple, Facebook/Meta, and other tech heavyweights and met with government officials on how to make open source software more secure. The meeting was prompted after the discovery of a vulnerability in Apache’s Log4J open-source software.
Aptiv buys Wind River for $4.3B
Aptiv acquired software company Wind River from private equity firm TPG Capital for $4.3 billion. Wind River Studio, which is the company’s cloud-native platform for edge-to-cloud has more than 1,700 customers, and its intelligent edge software is on more than 2 billion devices.
Citrix gets acquired by PE firms for $16.5B
Citrix is being acquired by private equity firms Vista Equity Partners and Evergreen Coast Capital (an affiliate of Elliott Investment Management) for $16.5 billion. The all-cash deal will include the assumption of Citrix’s debt. Vista said it plans to combine Citrix with Tibco, which it acquired in 2014. Citrix will become a privately held company once the deal is completed.
BT will use Nokia’s RAN intelligent controller in its Open RAN trial
BT said it will use Nokia’s RAN intelligent controller (RIC) in a number of its Open RAN trial sites. The company is conducting an Open RAN trial outside of London to see how it can optimize network performance using Open RAN. The trial will initially focus on near-real-time RIC and deployments in outdoor urban areas. In addition, BT also said it is going to open an Open RAN Innovation Center later this year so that vendors can test their equipment in an open network architecture.
Will Open RAN radio units be cheaper?
A Heavy Reading operator survey found that only 16% of respondents said that they expect Open Radio Access Network (Open RAN) radio units to cost significantly less than vendor-integrated radio units. The research firm said that this answer signals that the operator market is not anticipating a large reduction in costs by deploying Open RAN. About 35% of respondents said they expect the cost to be about the same.
Open RAN is getting traction, analyst firm says
Research firm Dell’Oro Group said that Open RAN deployments are moving faster than the company expected, and it now expects open RAN to account for about 15% of the overall 2G-5G RAN market by 2026. The research firm said that it is seeing traction for the technology in multiple regions around the globe, but much of the initial deployments are occurring in Asia-Pacific. Dell’Oro said that the APAC region will account for more than 40% of total Open RAN revenues from 2021 to 2026.
Vodafone debuts first 5G Open RAN site
Vodafone switched on its first open RAN cell site. The company is in the midst of swapping out its Huawei network equipment and has said it plans to install 2,500 open RAN sites. Samsung will provide the radio units and RAN software. Other vendors involved include Dell and Intel, which provide chipsets and servers.
Internet of Things
Sigfox files for bankruptcy
Sigfox, the high-profile Internet of Things (IoT) startup that raised over $300 million in venture capital funding, has filed for bankruptcy protection in France. The company cited slow product sales and challenges in IoT due to Covid-19. However, the company was marked by many high-profile executive departures, delays in IPO plans, and missed financial targets. The company is seeking a buyer and will continue to operate its network, which it says spans 75 countries and connects 20 million devices.
And that’s it for the start of the year!
We’ll check in with you again next month, where we’ll bring you the latest from February and from Mobile World Congress in Barcelona! Until then, stay safe!