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Nov/Dec 2009 | Volume 1/Number 6
Industry News

AT&T Changes Position on Skype
Reversing its earlier position, AT&T Inc. in early October said it will now let iPhone customers use Internet phone services such as Skype on its 3G mobile network. The move eliminates a controversial ban the U.S. telecom giant had in place blocking Apple Inc. iPhone users from placing phone calls using Skype and other Internet phone services on its network. The decision now opens the door for iPhone users to benefit from competitive efforts offering less expensive international calls and text messaging, officials said. The network currently permits iPhone use of Skype, but only through Wi-Fi.

BroadSoft Gets Broader with Packet Island
VoIP application software provider BroadSoft Inc. has announced its intent to purchase privately-held, Cupertino, Calif.-based Packet Island. The latter company is a provider of SaaS-based quality of service assessment and monitoring tools for VoIP and video networks and services. Michael Tessler, president and CEO of BroadSoft, said the deal will broaden BroadSoft’s range of cloud-based communications offerings, provide revenue growth opportunities and create long-term value for its service provider customers.

First States Get Broadband Stimulus Funds
The first states have been awarded federal stimulus money to collect information on the availability of broadband services in their states. The data will be used to create an interactive Web-based map showing available broadband services and providers by address. States receiving broadband stimulus funds from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, which along with RUS and the FCC is administering the broadband stimulus program, are Arkansas, California, the District of Columbia, Indiana, New York, North Carolina, Vermont and West Virginia.

Speakeasy Blocks and Tackles
Competitive service provider Speakeasy is the latest company involved in blocking call completion. The company reportedly is refusing to complete calls to certain free conference call or free adult content sites, according to Public Knowledge, a Washington, D.C.-based public interest group. The news comes amid the AT&T-Google throw down in which the big telco charges the search giant with blocking Google Voice calls to rural carriers.
www.att.com www.google.com


Alvarion Wins Two WiMAX Deals Abroad WiMAX equipment supplier Alvarion Ltd. announced new wins with Clearwire International LLC and Kenyan mobile services provider Safaricom. Clearwire International, a holding entity of Clearwire Corp., has tapped Alvarion to equip it with a mobile WiMAX 802.16e solution for a deployment in Spain. As for the Safaricom deal, Alvarion has been awarded a three-year turnkey contract to provide its BreezeMAX solution. Safaricom is the largest mobile carrier in Kenya and East Africa, and provides integrated data and voice communication solutions. Both deals involve deployments in the 3.5 GHz frequency band.

Nortel Accepts Ciena's MEN Offer Nortel Networks has agreed to Ciena Corp.’s stalking horse bid of $521 million for its optical networking and carrier Ethernet businesses. The offer, for which Ciena will pay $390 million in cash plus 10 million common shares, includes Nortel’s business assets, plus patents and other intellectual property, according to reports. Ciena has said it plans to retain 2,000 Nortel employees, or 85 percent of the Nortel workforce. www.ciena.com

GC Brings Ethernet WAN to the World
Global Crossing now offers to enterprise and wholesale customers its EtherSphere family of services – which includes point-to-point, point-to-multipoint and multipoint-to-multipoint options – in Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America and the U.K. The Global Crossing EtherSphere WAN services, which ride over the carrier’s MPLS backbone, are supported by numerous access methods. Through the company’s EtherExtend Flex access service and U.K. EtherSphere service, enterprises will be able to connect to Ethernet transport services from 150 locations, including nearly 80 Cisco 7600 series provider edge routers, supporting 26 countries.

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