Tag Archives: Verizon Wireless

Verizon to roll out new LTE IoT solution for Neptune Technology Group to drive sustainability in water industry

VERIZON

Verizon to roll out new LTE IoT solution for Neptune Technology Group to drive sustainability in water industry

Gas and electric utilities also poised to benefit from new low power/low bandwidth IoT solutions from Verizon

 

Verizon have announced that it will provide a new Cat M1 IoT (Internet of Things) solution for industry-leading water metering technology provider Neptune Technology Group. The solution is designed to equip Neptune with a robust, scalable and secure connectivity platform to help water utility companies reduce costs and accelerate sustainability efforts. This is part of a range of initiatives Verizon is working on to deliver innovative IoT solutions tailored to meet the complex needs of other types of utilities, including reducing development costs, improving integration requirements and reducing time to implementation.

“We are excited to work with Verizon to develop next-generation IoT products to help address the many challenges faced by water utilities,” said Don Deemer, executive vice president, Neptune Technology Group. “We’ve leveraged Neptune’s expertise in rugged water utility endpoints and have combined that with Verizon’s Technologies’ technical expertise to deliver a compelling offering. The collaboration has resulted in a long-life AMI network that eliminates the utility’s need to deploy and manage network infrastructure.”

Announced at the start of CTIA Super Mobility 2016, key solutions that Verizon is bringing to bear for the utilities industry include:

  • A Category 1 IoT solution on 4G LTE ideal for the connectivity requirements of rural cooperative and municipal electric utilities. The solution utilizes Qualcomm Technologies’ MDM9207-1 LTE modem engineered for IoT, providing built-in security and features including edge processing and reliable connectivity up to 10 Mbps speed with power and throughput optimization. To meet the requirements of utility customers, the chipset also supports up to 10 years of battery life at a cost-effective price point.
  • A Category M1 solution for water and gas companies. Qualcomm Technologies’ MDM9206 LTE modem is a key component and features a purpose-built IoT design suitable for applications such as battery powered water and gas smart metering applications that demand even lower power consumption and longer range, reliable connectivity with up to 1 Mbps speed, and all at a cost-efficient price point. Solutions based on MDM9206 are expected to be commercially available in early 2017.

For its part, Verizon will leverage its Grid Wide Utility (as-a-service) solution, which includes integrating smart meters with Verizon 4G LTE Category 1 and M1 Smart Meter Communications Device, Verizon’s 4G LTE network, security and a range of cloud-based applications to support smart metering, demand response, meter data management, and distribution monitoring and control. Customers will also have access to flexible deployment options combined with other RF communication technology offered in a highly-integrated package that reduces costs, design complexity and integration time. Verizon currently supports more than 3 million utility meters on its network nationwide.

“We are pleased to collaborate with Neptune to invest in R&D that helps to reduce barriers commonly associated with IoT such as fragmented ecosystems and a lack of standards,” said Mark Bartolomeo, vice president IoT Connected Solutions at Verizon. “Driving innovation on 4G LTE to deliver a unified, reliable, scalable and secure platform optimized for IoT deployments is core to our strategy.”

“Utilities drive some of the most demanding connectivity requirements within the Internet of Things,” said Raj Talluri, senior vice president, product management, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “4G LTE networks such as Verizon’s, together with our LTE modem solutions, have evolved to meet or exceed those demands, and these products deliver the ubiquitous coverage, scalability, quality of service, reliability, long battery life, and security required to support utility operations.”

Source: Verizon

Verizon to trial 5G in 2016

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US operator Verizon announced plans to hold 5G field trials in 2016 in a bid to “accelerate the expected rate of innovation” of the technology.

In a statement, the company outlined its “aggressive roadmap for 5G”, and said it will work with Alcatel-Lucent, Cisco, Ericsson, Nokia, Qualcomm and Samsung to ensure “an aggressive pace of innovation”.

Verizon’s announcement is the strongest 5G move so far by any US mobile operator. To date most 5G talk has been dominated by companies outside of the country; Russian operator MegaFon plans to trial 5G at the 2018 World Cup while Japanese operator NTT Docomo wants to have a 5G network up and running by the 2020 Olympic Games.

However, it remains to be seen exactly what will comprise Verizon’s version of 5G in its trials next year, as an official definition and standard for the technology have not yet been defined. Commercial launches are not expected before 2020.

The parties involved form Verizon’s 5G Technology Forum, which kicked off last month.

The forum said it expects 5G technology to have 50 times more data capacity compared to current 4G LTE, and have the ability to “handle exponentially more internet connected devices”, as part of the Internet of Things.

Verizon will create innovation ecosystems in the operator’s two innovation centres in Waltham Massachusetts and San Francisco to enable “collaboration in a shared environment,” as it did when setting out to develop 4G LTE.

Roger Gurnani, EVP and chief information and technology architect for Verizon, said the company feels a “tremendous sense of urgency to push forward on 5G and mobilise the ecosystem by collaborating with industry leaders and developers to usher in a new generation of innovation”.

“5G is no longer a dream of the distant future,” he added.

Ericsson’s chief strategy officer Rima Qureshi hailed Verizon’s leading role in developing the technology, given that “a lot of development and requirements for 5G networks have so far come from Asian operators”.

“It’s exciting to see a US company accelerate the rate of innovation and introduce new partners.”

Along with industry partners, Verizon’s 5G Technology Forum also includes a group of leading east and west coast venture capital groups focused on a variety of emerging technologies. Collectively, Gurnani revealed the partners “represent more than $50 billion in annual research, development and technology investments and thousands of patents.”

Verizon was the first US operator to launch 4G LTE in 2010, and began testing the technology two years before its launch. The company said despite its new focus on 5G, it will continue to grow its LTE offering.

Source: Kavit Majitha/Mobile World Live

Verizon agrees $4.4B AOL Deal to drive LTE Video, Mobile advertising

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Verizon Communications announced an agreement to buy AOL, the digital content and advertising platform provider, in a deal worth around $4.4 billion, which the operator said would “further drive” its LTE and OTT video strategy, as well as bolster the operator’s mobile advertising platform.

“Verizon’s vision is to provide customers with a premium digital experience based on a global multiscreen network platform,” said Lowell McAdam, Verizon CEO. “This acquisition supports our strategy to provide a cross-screen connection for consumers, creators and advertisers to deliver that premium customer experience.”

AOL’s assets include its subscription business and portfolio of global content brands, includingThe Huffington Post, TechCrunch, Engadget, MAKERS and AOL.com, as well as its programmatic advertising platforms.

Indeed, TechCrunch flagged an internal memo by Tim Armstrong, AOL CEO. He spoke warmly about the merits of being acquired by Verizon.

“The deal means we will be a division of Verizon and we will oversee AOL’s current assets plus additional assets from Verizon that are targeted at the mobile and video media space,” said Armstrong. “The deal will not change our strategy – it will expand it greatly. The deal will give our content businesses more distribution and it will give our advertisers more distribution and mobile-first features. The deal will add scale and it will add a mobile lens to everything we do inside of our content, video, and ads strategy.”

McAdam was equally effusive. He said that Verizon had already been “strategically investing in emerging technology” which taps into the “market shift to digital content and advertising”.

“AOL’s advertising model aligns with this approach, and the advertising platform provides a key tool for us to develop future revenue streams,” he said.

The transaction will take the form of a tender offer followed by a merger, said Verizon, with AOL becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of Verizon upon completion.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals, but Verizon expects the deal to close this summer.

Source: Mobile World Live. Ken Wieland

Vodafone open to higher network spending after two-year boost

Vodafone open to higher network spending after two-year boost

Vodafone branding is seen on the side of a London taxi in London November 12, 2013. REUTERS/Toby Melville
 
 
 
 

Vodafone is open to keeping network spending above its traditional levels once its two-year booster program has ended if it needs to respond to customer demand and competitor moves, its chief executive said.

Vodafone, the world’s No. 2 mobile operator, said this month that it would spend an extra 7 billion pounds ($11.3 billion) on its network in the next two years to put it in pole position for when the economy recovers.

The British group usually spends about 6 billion pounds a year on its network but Chief Executive Vittorio Colao told a Morgan Stanley conference in Barcelona that he could keep spending higher – or reduce it – depending on how his competitors respond.

“We are convinced that this is the right moment, to be very strong in two years time is the right thing to do,” he said. “Our current plan is to do a big boost then return to the normal level.

“But we could come down at a higher level (after the two years). Also if tomorrow there is a new macro crisis … and we think this (investment) was necessary for four years down the road and not two years, then we could go lower.”

“It is, if you want, a big tap that we can open and close to some extent.”

Strong growth in data consumption by smartphones, tablets and other devices means network quality is becoming more important in the fight to win and keep customers.

Vodafone believes an expected economic recovery in its core markets of Europe in a few years time will coincide with an increase in the amount of data consumers want to use, making network quality a big factor in how customers choose which operator they take.

With that in mind, Vodafone has decided to plough some of the proceeds from the $130 billion sale of its stake in U.S. company Verizon Wireless into infrastructure in a program called Project Spring.

It will spend the 7 billion pounds by March 2016 – a billion pounds more than originally planned and a year earlier than forecast.

Colao said that within five years he expected the one-time mobile-only company to be able to offer consumers across Europe a combined offering of mobile and fixed-line services, with the group planning to either buy, build or going into partnership with others to access fixed-line assets.

In order to lure customers, he is also keen to offer content such as music and sports clips through partnerships with media groups, but Colao made clear he did not want to become a content owner because the costs tended to only ever increase.

Since announcing the sale of its U.S. arm in the world’s third biggest deal, investors have started to question whether Vodafone could itself become a bid target now that it will be so much smaller.

Bankers have told Reuters that AT&T is looking for targets in Europe, with Vodafone the leading candidate because it would provide instant scale across the region.

Asked about his thoughts on a deal, Colao said all he could do was focus on improving his own assets.

“You must implement the best strategy for the assets you have and that is what I think we are now clearly doing,” he said.

“Then if somebody comes and says you have really beautiful assets … then that is a statement that has value for everybody.”

Source: Reuters. Kate Holton

 

Telstra claims world first on LTE broadcast

Telstra, Australia’s biggest operator, says it has completed the world’s first LTE broadcast session on a commercial LTE network. Using kit from Ericsson, the demonstration included live video feeds (sport) and devices receiving a large file using a single LTE broadcast channel.

By streaming the same content to multiple devices at the same time – similar to a TV broadcast – it is claimed that mobile operators can make more efficient use of network capacity than transferring multiple data streams separately.

“The trial is an important step in testing this technology to see how it provides network efficiencies while providing consumers the content they want in a high-quality experience,” said Mark Wright, Telstra’s executive director of networks. “Our goal is to ensure consumers can get the content they are looking for easily and to explore the wider benefits that might be obtained using broadcasting technology.”

Thomas Noren, Ericsson’s VP and head of project area radio, argued that LTE broadcast gives mobile operators the chance to monetise their media and network assets for new services. “Revenue generation and cost-saving opportunities are significant and provide an attractive value proposition for mobile operators,” he said

Qualcomm Labs’ LTE broadcast SDK and middleware running on Snapdragon processors was also used in the trial.

Other large operators are showing keen interest in LTE broadcast technology. AT&T chief executive Randall Stephenson, speaking at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia conference last month, indicated that 700MHz spectrum bought from Qualcomm two years ago would be used for LTE-based TV broadcasting and so ease traffic congestion on its cellular network.

Verizon Wireless, however, is expected to be the first in the US to deploy LTE broadcast, using next year’s Super Bowl as the launch event.

Ericsson’s Mobility Report 2013 predicts that video traffic in mobile networks will grow by around 60 per cent annually until 2018, driving demand for LTE broadcast services.

Source: Ken Wieland MWC