Category Archives: Communication industry

Updates from ITU

10 things you didn’t know rely on the ITU Radio Regulations
ITU – Earlier this year, the 2020 edition of the ITU Radio Regulations was published.

When it comes to allocating radio frequencies, the Radio Regulations are the ultimate tool. They ensure the use of the radiofrequency spectrum is rational, equitable, efficient, and economical – all while aiming to prevent harmful interference between different radio services.

But did you know just how many technologies rely on spectrum, and by extension, the Radio Regulations – some of which we use every day? Read on to discover some of the most important tools and activities that rely on a well-regulated radiofrequency spectrum:

1. Television

Whether terrestrial (analogue or digital) or satellite-based, broadcast television is among the most popular means of informing and entertaining the public. Even if the end user’s TV is connected via terrestrial broadcast TV or cable, a substantial amount of TV content has been distributed by satellite, which relies on the use of the radiofrequency spectrum.

2. Broadcast (FM or AM) radio

Despite the rise of digital radio, broadcast radio remains one of the most vital means of distributing information and entertainment. This is especially true across the African continent, where it has been argued that ‘FM radio reigns king of the media industry.

3. Mobile and smartphones

Cellular communications have been transformative since the mid-1980s to the present, and are expected to continue connecting people, things, data, applications, transport systems and cities in smart networked communication environments. Advances in cellular technology are expected to transport huge amounts of data much faster, reliably connect an extremely large number of devices and process very high volumes of data with minimal delay.



Updates from Ciena

What are the current challenges and opportunities for today’s submarine networks? What’s next? Find out what will be covered in our upcoming webinar with TeleGeography.
Current state of the global submarine network
By Brian Lavallée – Internet traffic patterns have shifted, and volumes have surged, as the telecom industry addresses the “new normal” where people are increasingly working, learning, and playing from home. Although the global network infrastructure has bent in certain parts of the network, it hasn’t broken. This is a testament to how reliability and availability is in the DNA of our industry and is more important than ever before.

According to TeleGeography, global Internet bandwidth rose last year by 35%, which was a major increase over the previous year’s 26% growth. This increase was driven largely in response to the global pandemic and represents the largest single-year increase since 2013. It also raised the most recent four-year CAGR to 29%. Being able to connect with each other, and to machines, has consistently increased in importance, but in 2020, this took on a whole new level of importance related to our social and economic well-being.

The pace of technology innovation in the telecom industry has accelerated over the past decade in response to growing demands related to our increasing affinity for always-on broadband connectivity. Even the once closed and proprietary world of submarine networks has evolved with the advent of Open Cables, programmable coherent modems, ROADMs, active branching units, C+L band, and more recently, open APIs, intelligent data-driven automation, and analytics. Together, these amazing technologies address challenges related to network scalability, availability, and flexibility during “normal” times. They’re even more important today as we’re mandated to increasingly work and play remotely. more>


Updates from Ciena

Guarantee end-to-end 5G performance
Ciena – 5G makes a new world of applications and services possible for both consumers and enterprises, humans and machines. But this comes with challenges to address. Service providers are asking themselves how they will differentiate and grow profitability in the face of new 5G use-cases with such diverse requirements. Enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB) devours huge chunks of bandwidth, ultra-reliable Low-Latency Communications (urLLC) require a lightning-fast response time for mission-critical applications, and massive Machine-Type Communications (mMTC) stress the number of simultaneous mobile connections. To stand out from the crowd and differentiate their 5G services, mobile and wholesale network operators alike must optimize their transport infrastructure to provide guaranteed end-to-end 5G service performance. 5G network slicing not only allows them to meet the requirements of different applications but also to grow revenues by offering tiered performance and SLA-based pricing, all while constantly optimizing network resources.

5G Network Slicing empowers operators, mobile and wholesalers alike, to dynamically support multiple 5G use-cases and applications to unlock new revenue streams. It brings flexibility to offer private 5G services over a public RAN infrastructure, creating new market opportunities. It enables the delivery of customizable and guaranteed end-to-end performance across multiple physical and virtual domains in the wireless and wireline network segments, creating new possibilities for eMBB, urLLC, and mMTC use-cases with tiered pricing while continually optimizing shared network infrastructure. more>


Updates from ITU

On World Standards Day, let’s renew our resolve to protect the planet with standards
By Houlin Zhao – Today, ITU, together with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) celebrate World Standards Day 2020, this year dedicated to international standards’ contribution to environmental sustainability.

Under the theme ‘Protecting the Planet with Standards’, today ITU, ISO and IEC pay tribute to the experts worldwide who contribute to the development of international standards.

This year’s theme demands global action. We reinforce that action by developing international standards.

Standards development is a fundamental pillar of ITU’s mission as the United Nations specialized agency for information and communication technologies (ICTs).

ITU standardization is driven by contributions from ITU members and consequent decisions are made by consensus. The ITU standardization process ensures that all voices are heard, that standards efforts do not favor particular commercial interests, and that resulting standards have the consensus-derived support of the diverse, globally representative ITU membership.

They help us to share in the ICT advances changing our world, advances that are key to addressing humanity’s most pressing challenges and accelerating progress towards all 17 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. more>


Updates from Ciena

When it comes to 5G, the only path that matters is yours
The closed and proprietary mobile networks of the past aren’t welcome any longer. Find out how Ciena is helping customers benefit from a more open, automated, and adaptable 5G wireline network.
By Joe Marsella -After years of hype, I think it’s fair to say that 5G is here. Initial deployments are underway around the world. There’s genuine excitement for a new generation of applications that exploit the massive end-to-end performance gains that 5G will provide across the mobile network. From AR/VR to IoT to gaming to streaming, our industry will push 5G technology to its limits to give consumers and businesses rich and rewarding digital experiences.

But here’s the problem. I’ve travelled the world and spoken to network operators of every size, mobile and wholesale operators alike. They all say the same thing. If the full promise of 5G is to be commercially realized, this time it must be different. We’ll need to challenge the traditional, closed way of building end-to-end mobile networks.

The world is changing. Digital disruption, virtualization, and openness are all driving a change in how networks are built. Look, we don’t shop the way we used to 30 years ago. We order transportation services with the push of a button, and many kids don’t know what it feels like to wait until 8:00 pm for their favorite show to be on (or even worse, wait through commercials!) – because of digital disruption.

It’s time for that change to come to wireless networks. For the past 30 years, successive generations of wireless networks were built a certain way: closed. Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) and wholesale operators alike had to rely on very few vendors and their proprietary architectures, interfaces, and protocols. What if your locked-in vendor wasn’t innovating at the pace you needed to successfully compete? Well – you were stuck until the next generation network was upon us and hoped this time for open, standards-based solutions. more>


Updates from ITU

Here’s how we can meet the global need for digital skills development
More than ever, COVID-19 has thrown the need for digital skills and capacities into stark relief around the world. The newly published Digital Skills Insights 2020 report is a carefully curated collection of the best strategies to strengthen the capacities and skills needed to help everyone benefit fully from digital transformation, no matter where they live and no matter what their level of digital skill development. Below is my foreword to this timely new edition of the report.
By Doreen Bogdan-Martin – In the wake of the global pandemic, the importance of digital skills has never been so evident, nor so urgent. As those lucky enough to enjoy fast connectivity took refuge from the global health emergency by moving to a virtual environment to support economic continuity, education and interpersonal contact, those lacking access to digital networks and skills have been left even further behind.

As the world struggles to fashion a ‘new normal’ for the post-pandemic era, it is more apparent than ever that the ability to leverage digital technologies will be vital to the future resilience and prosperity of nations, communities and individuals. This timely new edition of Digital Skills Insights focuses on pertinent topics related to this pressing global need for digital capacity building and skills development.

Now in its fourth year, Digital Skill Insights aims to provide new perspectives and enhance knowledge among the ITU stakeholder community on issues impacting digital learning and skills development, featuring eight new articles from leading international experts, divided into two broad areas. The first set provides a broad overview of the discussion on digital skills demand and supply, new skills requirements in emerging job markets, and challenges related to future digital skills requirements. Issues covered include digital skills shortages in global labor markets, and how skills needs evolve in line with new technologies. They emphasize the need for accurate forecasts of digital skills requirements, and flexible digital skills acquisition approaches. more>


Updates from Ciena

Ciena and TELUS bring 800G to Canada, break worldwide transmission record
Ciena’s Helen Xenos had a front row seat as TELUS and Ciena turned up the first single-wavelength 800G in Canada across TELUS’s network, and at a record-breaking distance. Pictured above: Jean Gregoire, Network Integrity Sr Design Specialist at TELUS, standing in front of the WL5e equipment being tested in Quebec City.
By Helen Xenos – What do Canadians do for fun when their favourite hockey team is out of the playoffs? Some of us – members of the TELUS and Ciena teams in particular – push the limits of what can be achieved in optical networking and realize new milestones for the industry along the way. I was lucky enough to have a front row seat to the action when the team turned up an 800G wavelength from Toronto to Quebec City across a world record-breaking 970km distance. And, I can attest that the excitement and pride was just as strong as watching my home team win the Stanley Cup.

As I have described previously, with Ciena’s WaveLogic 5 Extreme (WL5e) being the only 800G product available in the market (since April of this year), the optical industry is in the early adoption phase of 800G deployments. Here, we are describing the state of the art coherent optical technology available in the market that is capable of offering higher capacities per wavelength than previously possible for any link in the network through variable line rate transponders, and that can support line rates up to 800Gb/s. The technology allows for high quality, high speed connectivity to end users using fewer wavelengths, resulting in reduction in space, energy consumption and cost per bit.

TELUS is one of the early 800G technology adopters who is in the process of augmenting their network with Ciena’s WL5e. A world-leading communications and information technology company, TELUS supports 15.3 million customer connections spanning wireless, data, IP, voice, television, entertainment, video and security. Their longstanding commitment to putting their customers first fuels every aspect of their business, making them a distinct leader in customer service excellence and loyalty. It’s no surprise then that TELUS has repeatedly earned accolades over the years in respect to their world-leading wireless networks. This year alone, TELUS was recognized by several independent industry-leading experts, including UK-based OpenSignal, US-based J.D. Power, Seattle-based Ookla, Victoria-based Tutela, and New York-based PCMag, for their network excellence, for both urban and rural coverage. more>


Could a Computer Think Like a Human?

Why quantum and neuromorphic processing systems are paving the way for the next generation of artificial intelligence, potentially reshaping business for decades to come.
Morgan Stanley – As enterprises embed data technologies into business processes, the potential cost savings from reductions in inefficiencies, downtime, and human error could be measured in the trillions.

However, the capability to analyze these vast amounts of data is still a tall task for today’s computer processors. Consider that the digital universe in 2020 is approximately one yottabyte in size, or one trillion terabytes—and growing each day. But imagine a computer that could analyze 200 million pages in less than 3 seconds, synthesizing enormous amounts of data—and then making conclusions on that data. Taken further, imagine a computer that has sight, or could actually understand smell.

“The future of computing will not—and cannot—be based on ever-increasing processing power,” says Shawn Kim, Head of the Asia Technology team for Morgan Stanley Research. “Instead it will rely on understanding and drawing inferences from massive collections of data.”  In other words, computers that can use data to learn, adapt, evolve and “think,” much like the human brain.

Two new computing paradigms aim to make that possible within a decade. Quantum computing, which just a few years ago sounded equal parts hype and promise, is moving into the cloud, capable of solving problems that would take the world’s fastest supercomputers years to tackle. Another paradigm, neuromorphic computing, is also emerging as a powerful complement to classical computer design—known as von Neumann architecture—and promises to help machines learn and think. more>

Updates from ITU

World Space Week: How ITU improves life on Earth by supporting satellites
By Mario Maniewicz – The theme of this year’s World Space Week, ‘satellites improve life,’ reminds us that satellite applications are ubiquitous in our daily lives, even if we barely notice them.

Watching your favorite TV series, finding your way to the restaurant you booked tonight, having access to broadband Internet while at home, work or on the move, consulting the weather forecast when planning tomorrow’s picnic… all of these activities rely on the use of satellite systems. They also take care of your safety when you are traveling by air, sea or land, and they have been saving human lives by providing communication services to assist in disaster response and relief efforts for decades. And the technologies and applications that power satellites depend on the same physical phenomenon: radio waves.

But did you know that the radio-frequency spectrum is a finite natural resource? This is where the pivotal role of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) comes into play.

Since no national sovereignty exists in outer space, the international regulations adopted within ITU directly shape most legal and regulatory frameworks for space systems.

One of these international treaties governs the use of the radio-frequency spectrum and associated satellite orbits, both geostationary and non-geostationary: the Radio Regulations. Together with numerous standards, ITU uses the Radio Regulations to ensure that the use of radio frequencies on Earth and in outer space are managed in a way that allows for the harmonious coexistence of the various radio systems we use every day.

A long tradition of supporting space applications

In 1963, just six years after the historic launch of the first-ever satellite, Sputnik, ITU organized a conference to allocate frequency bands for space radiocommunication purposes. At the Extraordinary Administrative Radio Conference, more than 400 delegates from 70 ITU Member States gathered in Geneva to allocate radio frequencies to outer space activities for the first time in history. more>


Updates from Ciena

Because you asked. Adaptive IP.
In light of the digital disruption being driven by 5G, IoT, AI, and edge cloud, many of our customers have asked us to help them reimagine their IP networks in a way that allows them to scale in a simpler and more cost-effective way. We listened and answered their call with Ciena’s Adaptive IPTM. Ciena’s Scott McFeely explains how this breakthrough solution is delivering IP differently by leveraging automation, openness, and simplicity to give our customers the competitive edge they need from access to metro.
By Scott McFeely – IP, or more formally referred to as Internet Protocol, is the common language that enables billions of interconnected humans and machines to “talk” to each other on a daily basis for business and consumer applications and use cases. IP is the “language” and foundation of the largest human construction project ever created – the internet – and it works because it’s based on open industry standards.

The internet has evolved over time and will continue to do so well into the future, as more humans and machines come online with new and evolving applications and use cases, such as 5G, Fiber Deep’s Converged Interconnect Network (CIN) architecture, and IP Business Services. This means that the way IP networks are designed, deployed, and managed also needs to evolve to maintain pace.

Over the decades since its introduction in the 1970s, by the legendary Vint Cerf and Bob Kahn, IP has continually evolved to maintain pace with ever-changing application and end-user demands. This evolution has also led to new RFCs and protocols being standardized, adopted, and deployed within routers (at last count there were over 8,000 RFCs and protocols). It has more importantly led to many of these protocols associated with IP no longer being required, updated, or maintained. This is analogous to human languages where words, phrases, and even whole languages, such as Latin, are no longer commonly used over time

What do we do with these obsolete protocols? We can eliminate them from modern IP networks to reduce storage, compute, complexity, and operating costs. We call such IP networks “lean” and it allows operators to move away from traditional box-centric IP network designs running ever larger and more complex monolithic software stacks, as many traditional IP vendors have and continue to implement today.

Operators are asking for something different. They are asking for Adaptive IPTM, a simpler way to deliver IP. more>