BBH Report Home Page
July 15, 2003 Provided by System Dynamics Inc.

Heard on the Net

News about People and Companies Influencing The Broadband Home


People News

Jonathan Christensen has been appointed CTO and VP of Products at FaceTime Communications. Jonathan was previously at Microsoft where he spearheaded Real-Time Communications (RTC) and was a founding member of the "Greenwich" project for enterprise IM. Aloha Jonathan! ( www.facetime.com )

Nick Finamore has joined wireless LAN infrastructure chip developer Engim as CEO. He was formerly at Intel. ( www.engim.com )

Douglas Sabella was named COO of Terayon. Previously he was with Tumbleweed Communications and Lucent Technologies. ( www.terayon.com )

Paul Salzinger has become Worldwide VP Sales at Ensequence, an interactive TV software company. ( www.ensequence.com )

Bob Schack was named EVP of worldwide sales and business development at Ellacoya Networks. Schack was previously with Cisco Systems. ( www.ellacoya.com )

Mark Stalica joined Lemur Networks as VP, World Wide Sales. Stalica was previously with Terayon. Lemur also named Cathy Talmadge and Robert Christopher as Regional Sales Vice Presidents. ( www.lemurnetworks.com )

Michael Tribolet has been named EVP of operations at Vonage. He was previously with Dialpad Communications. ( www.vonage.com )

Bob Weatherford has joined Broadband Services, Inc. as VP, National Accounts, East. ( www.broadbandsvc.com )


Company News

--Acquisitions

Comdial has acquired most of Soundpipe's assets for 250,000 shares of Comdial common stock and cash. Comdial intends to integrate Soundpipe technology into its third generation IP Telephony products. ( www.comdial.com ) ( www.soundpipe.com )

WaveRider Communications Inc., a developer of non-line-of-sight wireless broadband technology announced a definitive agreement to acquire Avendo Wireless Inc. ( www.waverider.com ) ( www.avendowireless.com )

--Funding

Bermai, Inc. closed a $12 million B round of financing to support delivery of the company's complete 802.11x chipset portfolio starting in the third quarter of 2003. ( www.bermai.com )

BigBand Networks has raised $15 million in its fourth round of venture capital financing. ( www.bigbandnet.com )

Flarion Technologies announced that the T-Mobile Venture Fund is making an investment in them. Financial terms were not disclosed. ( www.flarion.com ) ( www.t-venture.de )

Orthogon Systems, a broadband wireless company, has obtained $7 million in new venture capital. ( www.orthogonsystems.com )

Vivato, a Wi-Fi infrastructure company, announced it raised $44.5 million in its Series C funding round, bringing the total investment in the company to $67 million. ( www.vivato.net )

--Other News

Bloomberg Television launched an interactive financial news channel in the UK on Sky. On the service, viewers can create a personal portfolio of shares which can be displayed as a personal ticker whenever they are watching Bloomberg Television. See an excellent demonstration video (http://www.broadbandbananas.com/bloomberg.wmv) courtesy of Broadband Bananas (http://www.broadbandbananas.com). ( www.bloomberg.com )

Broadcom announced that its "54g" access point reference design is among the first products to achieve Wi-Fi Certification for 802.11g. ( www.broadcom.com )

CableLabs has issued the PacketCable Multimedia Specification and Technical Report, establishing a roadmap by which cable consumers may enjoy new advanced IP-based broadband services. The spec foresees a wide variety of graphically-rich services such as interactive games and streaming media delivered via cable’s IP-based network. ( www.cablelabs.com )

Centillium Communications Inc. has announced the Palladia 220, an ADSL 2/ADSL2plus-compatible chipset for CPE that delivers data rates up to 50 Mbps, extends the reach of ADSL up to 22,000 feet and supports a full suite of connectivity options including high-speed Wi-Fi. ( www.centillium.com )

Intel announced its intention to develop silicon product based on the IEEE 802.16a standard that will provide a broadband wireless access alternative to cable and DSL. Intel also announced it is partnering with Alvarion to develop IEEE 802.16/WiMAX-certified wireless broadband systems. Both Intel and Alvarion are active participants in the WiMAX Forum, whose members promote adoption of the IEEE 802.16a standard and certify the interoperability of compliant equipment. ( www.intel.com ) ( www.alvarion.com ) ( www.wimaxforum.org )

Listen.com announced that in June its Rhapsody subscribers streamed 11 million songs. This together with Apple's iTunes early success seems to show that legal music services are coming of age. It is not clear how much effect the RIAA crackdown on illegal file sharing has had on getting users to sign up for legitimate music services. ( www.listen.com ) ( www.apple.com/itunes )

Muse.Net is a new online service from Mediacode, which lets people with high-speed Internet connections transform their own music collection from physical songs stored on a machine into a set of titles that can be played wherever their owner wants to play them. Unlike file-sharing software, the Muse.Net service — which Mediacode sells for about $20 a year — allows just one person at a time to access songs in a collection. Mediacode principals Robert Lord and Ian Rogers are promoting the idea of location-independent media, making your media available at any Internet-connected PC, just the way your email is. ( www.muse.net ) ( www.mediacode.com )

Scientific-Atlanta has announced their SmartLAN Home Networking System, which uses existing in-home phone wiring for delivering high-speed data and voice services. The users' wall telephone jacks are replaced with SmartLAN outlets to deliver services around the home. This product looks very similar to one from SercoNet we wrote about in BBHR 4/16/2003 (http://www.broadbandhomecentral.com/report/backissues/Report0304_8.html). ( www.sciatl.com )

PCCW of Hong Kong, via their Poundradio entity, was the successful bidder for 13 of 15 regional fixed wireless licenses auctioned in the United Kingdom. The auction for the 3.4 GHz spectrum generated $12.4 million for the U.K. government. This means that PCCW is close to having a national license in the UK for broadband fixed wireless. The government's goal for the spectrum is to provide fixed wireless access broadband connections for areas unable to have access via other delivery methods such as ADSL and cable. ( www.pccw.com )

P-Cube Inc. announced the SmartStart–P2P Program, a structured program of products and services that enable broadband service providers to understand the impact of broadband applications, such as Peer-to-Peer P2P, on their networks. ( www.p-cube.com )

TiVo announced an agreement with AOL to allow AOL users to program their home TiVo television recording service remotely, via a section of AOL's Web site. The feature is free for AOL subscribers and is available to TiVo users with a Series 2 unit. The DVR must be connected to broadband. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. ( www.tivo.com ) ( aol.com )

UEI announced that its Nevo home control solution will come standard on all new HP iPAQ Pocket PC h2200 series devices. Nevo is an embedded solution that transforms an electronic display into a visual interface for home control of TVs, home theaters and other electronically managed appliances. ( www.uei.com )


Briefly Noted

The 2003 World Radiocommunication Conference, meeting recently in Geneva, Switzerland, reached agreement on global rules for license-free spectrum in the 5 GHz band. The key decision is to make an additional 255 MHz of spectrum in the 5.47-5.725 GHz band available under the same rules as the current 5.25-5.35 GHz "middle U-NII" band. This spectrum can be used either indoors for additional channels for 802.11a/Wi-Fi, or outdoors for 802.16a/WiMAX. An active FCC Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeks to develop the US rules for this band. ( www.itu.int/ITU-R/conferences/wrc/wrc-03/ ) ( www.fcc.gov )

Intel, Bell Canada and VIA Rail Canada announced plans to equip select VIA 1 train cars with wireless Internet access for passengers traveling between Montreal and Toronto. The four-month pilot gives business and personal travelers with Wi-Fi enabled laptops or PDA devices the ability to wirelessly access the Internet, check email and connect to corporate networks while traveling on the train. Similar trials have been established in Sweden on the Göteborg-København trains. ( www.intel.com ) ( www.bell.ca/accesszone ) ( www.viarail.ca )

U.S.- The Supreme Court has decided to review cases relating to Missouri, to decide if states can block local governments from offering local phone and Internet service (FCC v. Missouri Municipal League, 02-1386). A growing number of local jurisdictions and public utility companies have started providing telecom services to residents. Some other US states, such as Florida, Texas and Virginia, have restrictions similar to Missouri's. ( www.appanet.org/LegislativeRegulatory/broadband )

Verizon Avenue demonstrated a prototype phone at the National Apartment Association meeting--it acts as a cordless phone when you're at home and a mobile when you're away. The new Verizon ONE phone will be rolled out early next year, state-by-state, to residents of selected multi-family communities where Verizon Avenue offers bundled telecommunications services. Although this is not about broadband per se, Verizon's new bundle puts together local and mobile voice services with high speed Internet and Wi-Fi hotspots, thus upping the ante on what is in "the bundle". The service will include broadband access up to a maximum connection speed of 1.5Mbps; up to six free Wi-Fi hot spots in multi-family common areas; six e-mail addresses and 20Mb of storage. ( www.verizon.com/avenue ) ( www.naahq.org )

--Groups and Forums

The CE Linux Forum (CELF) has been founded by eight consumer electronics companies: Matsushita, Sony, Hitachi, NEC, Philips, Samsung, Sharp and Toshiba Corp. The Forum intends to promote the use of the Linux platform for digital consumer electronics devices. The organization will discuss and formalize technical requirements for extensions to Linux for CE audio/visual products and cellular phones, publish those requirements and evaluate open source contributions. ( www.celinuxforum.org )

The Digital Home Working Group (DHWG) has been formed by seventeen leading consumer electronics, computer, and mobile companies. The organization is dedicated to the simplified sharing of digital content, such as digital music, photos and video, among networked consumer electronics, mobile devices and PCs. The group consists of industry leaders including Fujitsu, Gateway, HP, Intel, IBM, Kenwood, Lenovo, Matsushita Electric (Panasonic), Microsoft, NEC CustomTechnica, Nokia, Philips, Samsung, Sharp, Sony, STMicroelectronics and Thomson. ( www.dhwg.org )