Category Archives: NEC

Google’s trans-Pacific submarine cable enters into service today

GoogleA consortium of tech giants including Google and NEC has completed the construction and end-to-end testing of a new trans-Pacific submarine cable system, reports

The 9,000km FASTER Cable System enters into service today (30 June), and is claimed to be the first cable system designed from the outset to support digital coherent transmission technology, using optimized fibers throughout the submarine portion. The cable system lands in Oregon in the United States and two landing points in Japan, Chiba and Mie. The team claim the cable will be able to deliver 60 Terabits per second (Tbps) of bandwidth across the Pacific.

“From the very beginning of the project, we repeatedly said to each other, ‘faster, Faster and FASTER,’ and at one point it became the project name, and today it becomes a reality,” said Hiromitsu Todokoro, Chairman of the FASTER Management Committee. “This is the outcome of six members’ collaborative contribution and expertise together with NEC’s support.”

The consortium includes China Mobile International, China Telecom Global, Global Transit, Google, KDDI and Singtel, of which Google has been one of the most vocal. On the official blog, Google said the new cable will help the team launch a new Google Cloud Platform East Asia region in Tokyo.

The new data centre in Tokyo is part of Google’s ambitions to dominate cloud computing and other enterprise service offerings. While it is generally considered to be ranked third in the public cloud stakes, with AWS and Microsoft Azure out ahead, it has been making strides in recent months. Alongside the Tokyo data centre launch, another was opened in Oregon, and there are plans for a further ten over the course of 2017.

Google has been investing in submarine cables since 2008, initially with the 7.68Tb trans-Pacific Unity cable, which came online in 2010. The completion of the project now takes the number of Google-owned undersea cables up to four, though there are likely to be more added in the coming years.

“Today, Google’s latest investment in long-haul undersea fibre optic cabling comes online: the FASTER Cable System gives Google access to up to 10Tbps (Terabits per second) of the cable’s total 60Tbps bandwidth between the US and Japan,” said Alan Chin-Lun Cheung, a Google Submarine Networking Infrastructure.

“We’ll use this capacity to support our users, including Google Apps and Cloud Platform customers. This is the highest-capacity undersea cable ever built — about ten million times faster than your average cable modem — and we’re beaming light through it starting today.”

Intel teams up with NEC on Cloud RAN development

Base stations could get smaller, cheaper and more powerful if a new virtualization project reaches fruition in 2016, reports

Kit maker NEC and Intel Corporation are to jointly develop a Cloud-Radio Access Network (Cloud-RAN) that can virtualize the functions of mobile base stations. The first joint proof of concept trial of Cloud-RAN will run in early 2016.

The partners say they aim to virtualize two major components of the next mobile base station, the Digital Unit (DU) and the Radio Unit (RU), which respectively handle data processing and the sending and receiving of radio waves. The new Cloud-RAN system will separate the DU functions from mobile base stations so they can be run on general-purpose Intel servers with multi-core processors. This means DU functions can be centralised which in turn allows for multiple radio units to be centrally controlled from one general-purpose server.

This re-engineering of base stations boosts their communication performance as they have more precise control of radio interference between the radio units. By consolidating the servers it also cuts the power and space consumption. The upshot of Cloud-RAN should be more powerful base stations that are cheaper to run, according to NEC. Virtualization has been a work in progress for a long time at NEC, said Nozomu Watanabe, General Manager for NEC’s Mobile Radio Access Network Division.

“We have been working with Intel on the virtualization of mobile core networks and customer premises equipment and are pleased to extend our collaboration in Network Functions Virtualization to mobile base stations,” said Watanabe.

NEC is to strengthen its relationship with Intel for the advancement of NFV as the core technology supporting 5G said Watanabe. NEC contributes to SDN and NFV related standards bodies the Open Networking Foundation (ONF), OpenDaylight, ETSI NFV, and Open Platform for NEV (OPNFV). It also the NEC SDN Partner Space programme to promote the development and use of network virtualization technologies.

NEC and partners in Europe to develop converged cloud-based 5G network

5G - 1A new consortium of technology vendors and academics is collaborating on a project to build future 5G mobile networks on superfluid (AKA cloud) principles.

The Superfluidity Project is part of the European H2020 5G Public-Private Partnership (5G PPP) initiative. The stated aim of the project is to define and develop a converged, cloud-based 5G virtual network and service platform. According to a statement, the network will be distributed over the mobile edge and core of 5G networks extending up to data centres.

The collaborators in the project include a number of top IT brands, including NEC, Citrix, Intel, OnApp and Red Hat. Telecoms equipment maker Alcatel Lucent is to act as a technical coordinator. Among the telcos taking part in the project are British Telecom, PT Inovação e Sistemas and Telefónica. A number of research and academic bodies across Europe are also joining the consortium, including CNIT (which will be project coordinator), the University of Ben Gurion, the University of Liège, the University of Technology in Dresden and the University Politehnica of Bucharest.

There will also be input from a trio of small and medium sized enterprises. EBlink, Telcaria Ideas and Unified Streaming will all help shape the development of the superfluid 5G network of the future.

The goal is to create a superfluid set of properties for the network, which would have location, time, scale and hardware independence. These properties would be exemplified through unlimited growth potential, instant service migration and complete transparency of services.

The work, which will have a planned 30 month project lifecycle, began on the 1st of July 2015.

If successful the Superfluidity project will tackle crucial shortcomings in today’s networks and improve on the long and wasteful provisioning processes that are employed today to meet demand for mobile operator networks, according to a statement from NEC.

NEC, Foxconn to partner on cloud services

NEC, Foxconn are partnering to develop and deliver cloud services to enterprise

NEC, Foxconn are partnering to develop and deliver cloud services to enterprise

NEC Corporation and electronics manufacturing giant Foxconn Technology Group have announced a partnership that will see the two firms jointly develop an infrastructure-as-a-service platform for enterprises.

The deal will see NEC deploy its datacentre operations management software as well as its software-defined networking technology as the foundation of the service, which will be hosted in Foxconn’s Kaohsiung datacentre in Taiwan.

“We are proud to contribute to the commercialization of Foxconn’s datacentres integrated with SDN technology. Virtualized datacentres enable flexible configuration and rapid provisioning of IT resources, bringing significant benefits to datacentre operators and users alike,” said Takayuki Morita, executive vice president, NEC Corporation.

“NEC is a market leader in the SDN field, with an installation record that includes hundreds of systems for customers worldwide. Utilizing our extensive experience and expertise, we are committed to providing support for the smooth operation of Foxconn’s datacentres in Taiwan, while seeking to broaden our collaboration in order to promote the global expansion of Foxconn’s datacentre business,” Morita said.

NEC will also be providing a direct channel to potential enterprise clients, which may give the joint initiative a boost in the region; Foxconn doesn’t really have a direct relationship with enterprises.

Ed Wu, corporate executive vice president, Foxconn, said: “Information processing technology is a cornerstone in Foxconn’s sustainable business strategy and we are pleased to be working with an industry-leading company like NEC to boost our capabilities in datacentre solutions and to augment our comprehensive suite of information and communications technology solutions.”

“We are committed to investing in the development of high-quality, innovative products and services that meet the needs of our customers and consumers, enabling them to tap the immense opportunities in the Big Data era,” he said.