Verizon Gears Up to Roll 5G Out in U.S. This Year

 29 January, 2015 | By M8Trix Communications

Verizon has major plans for fifth-generation (5G) wireless technology this year, & Fran Shammo, the company’s chief financial officer, recently highlighted the fact that 5G will likely soon become a reality in the United States. Last week, Shammo explained that his company plans to be “at the forefront” of 5G and expects that Verizon will be the first company to roll out 5G in the United States, and that it aims to fulfill on the promise by 2020.

During Verizon’s 4Q15 earnings call, Shammo said, “We think ahead to 5G. We will be at the forefront and we are currently at the forefront globally talking about standards. We will be the first company to roll 5G out in the United States and we are currently preparing for those field trials.”

Verizon stressed that its recent investments poise the company to excel in the 5G market for many years ahead. Verizon highlighted how its acquisitions of Millenial Media and AOL have given it added capabilities that “significantly bolster Verizon’s strategy with strong cross-platform consumer and advertising offerings, particularly in mobile and video”.

Shammo didn’t gave details about the new technology, but mentioned that tests will take place in two of Verizon facilities located in Waltham, Massachusetts and San Francisco.

Shammo also stressed that the uses and potential of 5G technology goes beyond the mobile industry as we know it today; for instance, one direction the new network promises to take is the Internet of Things (IoT), which Verizon is currently exploring. LTE focused mainly on quick connection speeds for mobile devices, but 5G has the potential to connect smart home devices that communicate with each other through data packets. Shammo emphasized how Verizon has already tapped into the IoT market and last year, saw an increase of 18 percent of revenue connected to IoT.

Lowell McAdam, Verizon CEO’s, said these investments should help his company to expand worldwide as well. In a separate statement, McAdam said,”Verizon embraced transformational change in 2015, and in 2016 the company has a huge opportunity to drive a new era of growth in our industry”.

Verizon appealed to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (USFCC) to generate the legal infrastructure for the technology’s groundbreaking speeds. Last year, the regulator explored offering higher frequencies for 5G networks in order to help carriers offer improved broadband coverage to densely populated areas.

However, Verizon and its rivals need the support of the federal regulator for the 5G technology to work as well as possible. Roger Gurnani, chief information and technology architect for Verizon, said, “For technical trials themselves, we have what we need”; but in order to move beyond the testing phase, Gurnani thinks that 5G needs a “big band of spectrum.”

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TelePacific and AT&T Continue Partnership to Deliver New Capabilities to Customers

29 January, 2015 | By M8Trix Communications

TelePacific Communications recently reached an Ethernet over 3rd Party Vendor (Eo3PV) agreement with various parties, including AT&T, to help the LA based company continue to support its customers’ range of demands. Telepacific serves companies in California, Texas and Nevada, providing a range of customer solutions to enable anywhere-to-anywhere communications and help businesses run more efficiently.

AT&T continues to play a critical part in this evolution, allowing TelePacific to grow its coverage with transformative IP-based technologies. Dave Zahn, senior vice president of Marketing at Telepacific, said, “AT&T has been a primary enabler in providing us with an underlying Ethernet foundation that allows us to meet our customers’ ever-changing, modern-day needs with services such as VoIP and VPN. Most significantly, AT&T has shown its commitment to our success by not just giving us access to today’s technologies but in enabling access across its Ethernet network”.

The recent Eo3PV agreement with AT&T adds a significant new layer of capability to TelePacific’s Ethernet ecosystem. This is a significant step as one of TelePacific’s key aims is to simplify the lives of its customers who operate across multiple states.

“The new agreement means we can expand our Ethernet ecosystem beyond our three-state footprint to better meet our multi-location business customers’ connectivity, cloud and continuity needs. Through AT&T’s collaboration, we will be able to help our customers transition more of their geographic locations to affordable, reliable and scalable IP-based services. This will allow our customers to enjoy a more seamless experience on a single bill with the other TelePacific solutions they are using,” added Zahn.

Vice President, Wholesale Sales, AT&T, Rob Dapkiewicz said, “We are committed to providing our wholesale customers with industry-leading solutions to support their needs, delivering the choice, innovation, security and accessibility service providers need to take their businesses into the future”. Dapkiewicz added, “Our Ethernet leadership will allow us to continue to enable TelePacific and all of our wholesale customers – to grow their business and better serve their customers, helping them expand their reach and transform their network offerings to support their customers’ dynamic needs.”

TelePacific’s Ethernet ecosystem gives its business customers a wide range of transport-agnostic, high-bandwidth alternatives to traditional private lines that can be altered to customize individual needs, including Eo3PV, Ethernet over Copper (EoC), and Ethernet over OneAir Fixed Wireless, among others. This flexibility allows Telepacific to offer solutions that can rapidly and efficiently adapt to present and future changing business requirements, increasingly necessary to a world with less rigid geographic borders, hence a need for wider network choices.

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 Level 3 Reaches a Settlement-free Interconnection Arrangement with Google

 29 January, 2015 | By M8Trix Communications

Level 3 Communications recently announced it has arrived at a new multi-year, settlement-free interconnection deal with Google which will ensure a connection between their global backbone networks to maintain the flow of bits into the next decade “and beyond”. Furthermore, Level 3 and Google said that the agreement would enable the continued development of interconnection locations between the companies, necessary to supporting an ever-growing demand for the Internet.

A critical part of the new arrangement is its focus on the bit mile balance concept, in which both companies agree to carry equitable amounts of bit miles, taking into consideration traffic volume and the distance over which that traffic is carried by each network. A probable benefit for end-users that access Google’s content is the fact that a network may improve bit mile balance by delivering traffic to the other participating network so that it is closer to its end users.

Paul Savill, senior vice president of core product management for Level 3, said, “Our bit mile interconnection agreement with Google highlights the importance of all networks — content-based, backbone or last mile — to achieve an equitable arrangement that benefits Internet users worldwide”.

The two service providers said that this pact will help both of them meet their customers’ needs for the next 10 years and beyond; furthermore, it should facilitate more interconnection locations between them.

Level 3 has made a similar range of interconnection agreements with other service providers; for instance, Level 3 acts as an Internet transit provider for a number of content providers like Netflix and has established interconnection agreements with AT&T and Verizon.

Level 3 entered into a long-term bilateral interconnection agreement with Verizon back in April of last year to ensure “that customers on the two networks can continue to exchange data in an effective and efficient matter”, according to a blog post by Libby Jacobson, Verizon’s director of digital communications.

“As the Internet continues to grow and evolve, Internet service providers are negotiating business arrangements that allow exchange of Internet traffic in a scalable, resilient and reliable manner,” the blog post details. “This agreement contains provisions to add capacity and establish new interconnection locations between the two networks to stay ahead of growing traffic demands.”

The deal resolved potential disagreement between Level 3 and Verizon over network interconnections quality. Earlier in the month, Level 3’s general counsel, Mike Mooney, had said that the company was unhappy with the way in which Comcast was treating its interconnections and at that point, it was “evaluating our options” based on “interconnection point congestion as some large consumer ISPs continue to attempt to leverage control over access to their users to extract arbitrary tolls.”


Screen shot 2016-01-28 at 22.55.14 Primus Canada Negotiates Sale to Birch Communications and Wins Creditor Protection

29 January, 2015 | By M8Trix Communications

Following a series of declines across quarterly revenues, Primus Canada is looking to sell itself to Birch Communications and thereby win court protection from its creditors. The Ontario Superior Court in Toronto last week granted Primus protection under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act.

Primus has additionally filed a petition for the Canadian verdict to be recognized in the United States, where it has a small-scale service operation.

The sale of the Toronto based service provider to Birch Communications would initiate the company’s final chapter. The company has faced challenges in generating a profit on next-generation broadband services as increasing numbers of its customers give up traditional landline and long-distance voice services for wireless services.

The Globe and Mail secured court documents showing that Primus’s revenue had fallen to $113.7 million in 2015 from $160 million in 2012, with underlying residential sales (which totalled over double its 2015 revenue) falling by an average of 9 percent per year.

Primus has previously billed itself Canada’s biggest “alternative” telco to Telus and BCE. The service provider has over 200,000 remaining residential customers and 23,000 small and medium-sized business clients, and the group has approximately 27,000 residential customers in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.

In an interview with The Globe and Mail, CEO of Primus, Michael Nowlan, said, “Primus, historically, had a strong revenue base of long-distance and traditional local line revenue. It’s no surprise to anybody that there is structural change going on in the industry. … Everyone’s using mobile”. Nowlan said, “The marketplace — and I do believe the marketplace as a whole — will have great interest in getting competitive access to fiber [Internet] services.”

Atlanta based Birch Communications, a leading IP-based telecom and managed services provider to small and medium sized businesses, signed an agreement last Monday to acquire Primus for an undisclosed price. Primus said it would now seek the court’s approval of the arrangement over the next month.

The acquisition for Birch is a strategic move that will give the Atlanta-based CLEC a greater foothold in the Canadian service provider market. It also aligns with Birch’s tuck-in acquisition strategy to acquire assets that will expand its IP network and increase its customer density.

In addition to Primus, Birch has acquired over a dozen other smaller competitive providers, including Cbeyond and Lightyear Network Solutions.

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