Monday, December 24, 2012

New Kid on the Block

Juniper made a hefty investment last week with its acquisition of the little known startup: Contrail Systems. Contrail had been on the market for a mere two days before Juniper made its move to obtain it. The price paid by Juniper for the company was marked at $176 million, quite the price for such a young group. A purchase of this magnitude seems bizarre at first glance, but with the Software Defined Networking (SDN) work Contrail focuses on it becomes very apparent why Juniper decided to make this expenditure. SDN companies have become the hot new technology that everyone wants to get in on; Contrail is just one of many who have seen interest from big IT companies. Though, it could be said that this purchase looks like a defensive move by Juniper in response to VMWare’s attainment of Nicira (another SDN company) a few months back. By making this move, Juniper might be looking to keep up with this emerging technology.

Software Defined Networking, while still in its infancy, is getting some major attention from big networking players like Cisco, IBM, VMware and the like. Basically, SDN makes use of software that allows IT personnel to create a network they can reconfigure quickly and centrally without having to fiddle with individual hardware, which is both costly and time-consuming. This blossoming technology promises to offer companies significant savings by making their networking systems more efficient while at the same time cutting out the need for expensive routers and switches.

What this means for IT departments is more freedom to choose between vendor hardware. At Approved we are blown away by how many Arista coded SFP+’s we’re selling now in such a short period of time as they crush Cisco in most environments price per port. Arista doesn’t support a lot of L3 functions, no BGP, and no IPv6, but they seem to be disrupting Cisco and others on top of rack, large and small clients, international orders as well.

-The Approved Optics Team

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Expanding Enterprise

Cisco Systems Inc. disclosed a deal this week with PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia Tbk. This deal will allow Cisco to deploy approximately 100,000 access points across Indonesia which can be used to offload mobile data and offer more efficient wireless broadband services. A spokesman for Cisco explained, "This will be the largest deployment of Wi-Fi access points by a single service provider in Asia." Cisco’s latest strategy is just one of many new ideas it is employing as it looks for a way to offer high speed data services to a broader customer base. The company is showing how serious it is in the world of carrier Wi-Fi as it is also planning to acquire Meraki Networks Inc. in an effort to further stake a claim in the wireless community.

Aside from expanding into Asian markets and the wireless field, Cisco is also in the process of transitioning into a full-fledged IT vendor as opposed to the communications vendor it is today. Cisco’s CEO, John Chambers, announced that most of their future sales would be greatly diversified with services. Chambers hopes that the company will see a 25% or higher increase in revenues from services within the coming years. While that number might not seem like the largest figure, it does indicate a significant shift in the company’s business model. Moreover, Chambers is banking on his company’s ability to think big as they move toward the future. In a constantly evolving market, companies with the foresight to look ahead stand a far greater chance for smoother and more profitable futures

-The Approved Optics Team

SFP+ Cable Distances defined by Core Size and Band Width

Did you know a standard SFP+ SR supports a link length of only 26m on standard Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI)-grade multimode fiber (MMF). Using 2000MHz*km MMF (OM3), links up to 300m link lengths are possible. Using 4700MHz*km MMF (OM4), up to 400m link lengths are actually possible.

Distances of MM SFP+ 10G SR's

Core Size (Microns)
Modal Bandwidth (MHz*km)***
160 (FDDI)
200 (OM1)
500 (OM2)
2000 (OM3)
4700 (OM4)
Cable Distance

Distances of LRM's


Friday, November 30, 2012

Profits Look Rocky In Quarter 3

The third quarter has many businesses in a bit of a slump as far as profits are concerned.  Calix, a major supplier in the telecommunication equipment industry, was one of these businesses.  The company released a statement earlier this month showing a significant decrease in revenue by 2.8% from this time last year.  It wasn’t all bad news for Calix though.  President Carl Russo pointed out that revenue might be down, but there is still growth compared to the last quarter. 

Calix isn’t the only company that has seen major losses going into the third quarter.  Applied Micro Circuits Corporation joins the group of companies struggling with revenue.  The optical communications and computer data storage company released a detailed financial report with losses clearly stated at a 33% drop in profit from last year.   Applied Micro faces a tough year ahead.

Despite difficulties for the above mentioned corporations, there is one company now on the rise.  Comcast Corp. made the choice to serve businesses that employed more than twenty individuals.  By moving up-market and serving larger companies, Comcast has seen a sizeable increase in revenue.  The Vice Chairman and CFO reported earnings of over ninety million alone from these mid-sized companies, or about fifteen percent of the total revenue produced by business service customers. Overall Comcast has seen a thirty four percent rise in business services revenue. With profits steadily rising, Comcast is poised to make record profits by year's end. 

-The Approved Optics Team

Monday, October 15, 2012

House Intelligence Committee on Oversees Sellers

Earlier this week the U.S. House Intelligence Committee released a detailed report warning U.S. companies against Huawei and ZTE. Reuters and other news sources reported that these two companies have been classified as potential threats to U.S. security due to their close ties with the Chinese government. Companies that had used Huawei equipment reported allegations of unexpected behavior, including routers allegedly sending data to China late at night. While the committee did not go as far as banning the companies, it did urge American businesses to avoid Huawei and ZTE in their telecommunication projects. This new report has made it even more difficult for the two companies to expand in the U.S. market. 

The biggest concern brought to light by the committee, as outlined in the report, was that allowing Chinese organizations access to the telecommunications networks in the U.S. could compromise the nation’s infrastructure. A key part of the report was that the country’s infrastructure is highly interconnected and includes everything from rail networks to water systems. The report indicated that a disruption in one could have a ripple effect that could compromise many others. 

"Throughout the months-long investigation, both Huawei and ZTE sought to describe, in different terms, why neither company is a threat to U.S. national-security interests. Unfortunately, neither ZTE nor Huawei have cooperated fully with the investigation, and both companies have failed to provide documents or other evidence that would substantiate their claims or lend support for their narratives," "Huawei, in particular, provided evasive, nonresponsive, or incomplete answers to questions at the heart of the security issues posed. The failure of these companies to provide responsive answers about their relationships with and support by the Chinese government provides further doubt as to their ability to abide by international rules," stated the report.

-The Approved Team

Monday, October 1, 2012

From Neighborhoods to Fiberhoods

The FTTH Council convened in Dallas on Monday to update the community on the progress of fiber-to-the-home networks all across North America. Their report emphasizes running fiber directly to individual homes, so FTTC (fiber-to-the-curb) and FTTN (fiber-to-the-node) were not represented in the report. The findings of the report indicated a very bright future for the fiber optics industry in this country and North America as a whole. Though, this information should come as no surprise to those in the field as the need for products and services in the fiber optics world have been steadily increasing over the last decade.

With nearly nine million homes already connected, up from around six million in 2010, growth in this sector seems poised to make large bounds. An estimated 24 million homes passed (homes passed being the number of homes where a fiber connection is available, such as a homeowner with a pre-existing connection, or that could call and order a connection) have shown a gain of about ten percent in the last six months alone.

Reasons for this growth could be that many larger companies have come aboard the fiber train, chief amongst them Verizon and its Fios internet. Google as well has stepped into the scene with its fiber network as it is now finally being deployed in Kansas City, and AT&T is increasing the number of homes being developed with FTTH compatibility. Although, it would be negligent not to mention the contribution smaller companies are making to get both current and future residences fiber ready. While these companies are making some rather remarkable strides, one has to remember that in the grand scheme of things this technology is still a fledgling one compared to the infrastructure of other communication technologies. Nonetheless, it is one that has and will continue to show growth in North America and across the globe.

According to the president of RVA LLC (the market research firm in charge of tracking FTTH data for the council), Michael Render, it was revealed that the number of parties interested in FTTH services had risen to 44% in the US alone. Statistics such as this strongly imply a positive trend for the community. As the rise in companies and organizations interested in fiber optics grows, so too will demand for high quality components for the industry. Knowing this, we here at Approved Optics have taken the steps necessary to provide quality products to this industry.

Approved Optics is a company fully prepared to fulfill the needs that this growing market demands. With an emphasis on quality, Approved tests all of its products and includes a lifetime warranty for your peace of mind. Fiber to the home will one day be as commonplace as copper wiring is today. While the execution of such a monumental task may seem daunting, it is a necessary step towards progress, progress that Approved Optics is proud to be a part of.
-The Approved Optics Team

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

100G Coming to the Forefront

The European Conference on Optical Communications (ECOC) came to a close a few days ago. In its wake it leaves a bounty of information for what's to come in the world of communications. As the biggest European event on optical communications it is a hub for those in the fiberoptics technology industry.
Some of the biggest highlights this year came in the form of 100G modules and companies like JDSU and Oclaro rushing to get these news modules out on the market. This comes as good news for companies looking to meet the demands of a world demanding faster and more efficient communication.
Sunset Digital is one such company that hopes to make use of 100G technology. The company seeks to create a backbone out in Tennessee, one that will serve to bring broadband services to those in more rural and impoverished areas. With the aid of a 24 million dollar award from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Sunset Digital is able to move forward with these plans.
To meet these ends, Sunset has brought in the services of Ciena Corp. and had them deal with the logistics of the operation. It hopes that they will be able to service delivery, service visualization, and monitor the network as a whole during the transition.

-The Approved Optics Team