Verizon, China Telecom, Huawei, others team at ETSI to research AI in networks

Verizon, China Telecom and Huawei are among the companies in the ETSI standards association that voted to create a new “Industry Specification Group” that will explore how artificial intelligence might be used to improve the deployment and operation of telecom networks.

Specifically, ETSI announced the elections of a chair and vice-chair for its new Industry Specification Group on “Experiential Networked Intelligence” (ISG ENI).

“The purpose of the group is to define a Context Aware System using Artificial Intelligence (AI) based on the ‘observe-orient-decide-act’ control model,” ETSI said on its website. “This enables the system to adjust offered services based on changes in user needs, environmental conditions and business goals.”

The group will “improve operators’ experience regarding network deployment and operation, by using AI techniques,” Huawei’s Raymond Forbes said on ETSI’s site. Forbes is the chairman of the new group.

“By introducing technologies such as SDN, NFV or network slicing, the network becomes more flexible and powerful,” added China Telecom’s Haining Wang, the group’s vice-chair. “Nevertheless, the complexity of the future network is not reduced, but transferred from hardware to software, from the network itself to management and operation, from equipment to people. Experiential Networked Intelligence is expected to help operators to solve these problems.”

The group said it would work on the topic with other standards organizations including IETF, MEF, 3GPP and others.

Aside from Verizon, China Telecom and Huawei, other members of the ETSI’s artificial intelligence group include the China Academy of Telecommunications Research of MIIT, the Interdisciplinary Centre for Security, the Reliability and Trust/University of Luxembourg, PT Portugal, Samsung R&D Institute, Wings ICT Solutions and Xilinx.

ETSI, or the European Telecommunications Standards Institute, creates a variety of standards for fixed, mobile and internet communications.

This isn’t the first time artificial intelligence has been discussed in the realm of telecommunications. For example, AT&T’s Brian Daly said last year the carrier is experimenting with AI to make its processes more efficient. And Verizon earlier this year said its “Exponent” initiative will include big data and AI to help carriers monetize troves of data through the application of advanced machine learning techniques and deep analytics. Indeed, SoftBank’s Masayoshi Son said earlier this year that the “singularity”—the idea that the invention of artificial superintelligence will trigger massive technological growth and cultural change—will happen in the next handful of years.

To view original article, please visit Fierce Telecom

China Telecom picks Keysight tech for NB-IoT device test

China Telecom is using Keysight Technologies’ mobile-IoT test platform to help accelerate its Narrow-Band IoT (NB-IoT) chipset and module certification progress. Based on the E7515A UXM wireless test set, Keysight said it is the only all-in-one test platform vendor to support China Telecom’s NB-IoT RF conformance test and power consumption verification.

Keysight’s mobile-IoT test platform enables the operator to simulate real-world conditions so it’s able to verify critical performance, such as power consumption, RF performance and interoperability, when rolling out new NB-IoT applications, Keysight said in a press release.

To view the original article, visit Telecom Paper

China Telecom Brings its Global MVNO, CTExcel, to Hong Kong

HONG KONG, CHINA, Mar 30, 2017 (Marketwired via COMTEX) — CTExcel now connects customers in four global markets on a single integrated network for data, voice, and text.

Businesses and individuals can enjoy a range of mobile services across Mainland China, Macau and Hong Kong, all on one mobile plan and one SIM Card.

CTExcel’s high quality solutions and packages connect Hong Kong customers with the world, and benefit global travellers on business or leisure alike.

China Telecom Global (CTG) today announced that Hong Kong’s Office of the Communications Authority (OFCA) has licensed the company to offer Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) services in Hong Kong. CTG has expanded its mobile network footprint into Hong Kong with its CTExcel brand, giving corporate clients and consumers seamless and affordable access to 4G networks around the world through a single SIM card. Hong Kong marks the fourth international market in its repertoire, adding to the company’s other launches in the United Kingdom in 2012, France in 2013 to cover the European region, and the United States in 2015.

The launch was marked with an opening ceremony attended by CTG’s management team and over 150 business partners and customers. During the event, Mr. Jacques Bonifay, CEO of Transatel and Mr. Gerrit Jan Konijnenberg, CEO of Uros were also on stage to make the announcement together with CTG’s management team, that they will be using China Telecom’s network to provide 4G roaming service to their customers travelling in Mainland China.

Integrating its telecommunications infrastructure from all four markets into one mobile network aligns with CTExcel’s vision of lowering the connectivity barrier globally. The breadth of CTExcel’s tailor-made global telecommunications portfolio provides users with access to international high-speed 4G LTE service and Mobile WiFi in over 100 countries, as well as the ability to perform IDD calls and SMS at some of the most cost-effective rates in the market.

By leveraging the network and service capabilities of its mobile business in Mainland China and Macau, CTExcel now offers Hong Kong customers a seamless and consistent mobile connection to different regions. It has also unveiled plans to roll out its “one-card-multiple-numbers” SIM card solution, which will allow customers to activate local numbers in multiple regions on a single SIM. The initiative caters especially to those who have close connections in different markets, allowing them to be contacted via local mobile numbers in a more convenient and cost-effective way.

“Along with announcement of the ‘Belt and Road’ strategy, Chinese enterprises have speeded up their pace of overseas expansion. The telecommunication demands of Mainland China, Hong Kong Macau, Europe and the Americas continue to increase. Coupled with China’s booming outbound tourism sector, an even greater need arises for services that simplify and streamline the process of staying connected to home, particularly in nearby locations like Hong Kong that often act as connecting hubs to the rest of the world,” said Mr. Deng Xiao Feng, CEO of China Telecom Global. “As the first batch of telecom companies from China to offer mobile services beyond the Asian market, we’re committed to providing our customers with the same world-class connectivity that they can expect from our home-grown network.”

Flexible and all-around packages to enterprises and individuals CTExcel also provides bespoke solutions designed to meet the needs of travellers locally and internationally. Besides providing travellers the convenience of stable and high-speed mobile services locally and abroad, CTExcel also combats overseas roaming costs and meets demands for stable Internet connectivity on-the-go, through a Mobile WiFi solution that is supported in over 100 countries and regions, allowing businesses to “pool” data across employees in different markets. The MVNO also provides 24/7 customer support hotlines, and low-cost IDD and global SMS rates to both businesses and consumers.

“CTExcel can now provide a range of solutions that are excellent in both quality and dependability to businesses and consumers in both Mainland China and Hong Kong” says Mr. Deng Xiao Feng, CEO of China Telecom Global. “Reliable access to 4G LTE connectivity in multiple markets, backed up by global customer service support and cost-effective alternatives such as our Mobile WiFi service, makes staying online hassle free and less worrisome for today’s highly mobile, always-on generation of travellers and entrepreneurs.”

CTExcel’s SIMs and services will be available for Hong Kong customers in the coming quarter of 2017 through local convenience stores, CTG’s retail and commercial partners, and via online purchase. CTG’s existing and prospective business customers can expect CTG’s enterprise business team to serve their mobile requirements together with their global wireline business.

To view the original press release, please visit Marketwatch

Inspur Teams Up with China Telecom and Intel, Announces the First Carrier-Grade Rack Scale NFV Solution at MWC 2017

BARCELONA, Spain, March. 1, 2017 /PRNewswire/ Inspur announced the first carrier-grade rack scale Virtualized Network Function (NFV) solution with China Telecom and Intel at Mobile World Congress 2017. Based on the OpenStack open source platform, the solution implements (VNF) lifecycle management using X86 infrastructure and virtual computing, storage and networking technology. It conforms to the NFV standards of ETSI (European Telecommunication Standard Institute), and provides agility, speed, reliability, and stability for communications service providers (CSP).

In recent years, Verizon and AT&T in the United States, Japan’s NTT, Deutsche Telekom and other major carriers throughout the world have announced a number of new network reconfiguration plans, stressing the need to use the latest Software-defined Networking (SDN) and NFV technologies to build the next-generation network infrastructure, and have achieved initial results.

Dr. Ou Liang, Director of China Telecom Guangzhou Research Institute NFV technology, said “China Telecom, Inspur and Intel teamed up to develop a hyper-scale NFV infrastructure (China Telecom NFVI Rack 1.0), which leverages Open Source technology and is the carrier’s first self-designed hype-scale NFV Rack, and the first time exhibiting in an industry show. This joint partnership has achieved a key milestone in network reconstruction and providing reliable carrier-grade infrastructure for all types of telecom cloud.

Leijun Hu, Vice President of Inspur Group said “the NFV is network reconstructed by Computing, is the main way to achieve ICT integration. As a computing platform solutions, provider, Inspur has a clear competitive edge in the computing filed, with rich experience and proven solutions in cloud computing, data centers and high availability. While traditional telecom suppliers have a strong understanding of user demands, Inspur has already established strong partnerships with Nokia, Siemens, Cisco and other industry leaders. Inspur’s leading computing technology and partners’ programs provide telecom customers with an integrated NFV solutions. As a Gold member of the OpenStack organization and the Platinum member of OCP, Inspur is committed to Open Platform and Open Source, and will actively participate in the global NFV open source projects and collaborate with industry partners to accelerate the NFV networking industry.”

To view full article please visit PR Newswire

Ofo Partners With China Telecom, Huawei To Improve Smart Bike Tech

Beijing-based bike sharing firm ofo has formed a partnership with China Telecom and Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. to improve technology related to smart bikes, which has swept across the nation by storm lately.

China Telecom will provide nationwide wireless Internet coverage for ofo, while Huawei will equip ofo bikes NB-IoT (narrow band Internet of Things) chips and other telecommunication technologies.

With better Internet coverage and improved chips, ofo bikes will suffer less from smart lock malfunction, poor stability and high failure rate of solar charging that supply electricity to the central hardware of the bikes that allow users to lock and unlock vehicles.

“The partnership with Huawei and China Telecom will provide better consumer experience for our users in the world,” said Dai Wei, founder and CEO of ofo.

Launched in 2015 in Beijing, ofo has distributed over one million smart bikes equipped with GPS and smart locks in over 40 cities in the world. The company claims to have over 15 million users globally and taking a 51% market share of the bike sharing industry in China in 2016.

Mobike, ofo’s largest rival, has claimed the same saying that it is the largest bike sharing company in China. But as of January, Mobike operates in nine cities around China with hundreds of thousands of bikes in operation, the firm said previously in an email.

ofo received tens of millions of U.S. dollars from Didi Chuxing in September 2016. One month later it received US$130 million venture funding from CITIC Private Equity, Coatue Management and Xiaomi Inc.

Mobike received an undisclosed strategic investment from Singapore’s state investment firm Temasek Holdings and Hillhouse Capital earlier this week. The firm raised a total of over US$300 million since the start of 2017, including a US$215 million series D funding from Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Warburg Pincus last month, and an undisclosed amount of money from Foxconn Technology Group a few weeks later.

To view original article, visit China Money Network

SWM5 Wins Submarine Project of the Year at Global Carrier Awards

China Telecom is among the consortium that won the Project of the Year – Subsea award for the Southeast Asia–Middle East–Western Europe (SEA-ME-WE 5) submarine cable.

The award was presented at the Global Carrier Awards in Paris on November 8, 2016 and recognizes the project’s “strong industry commitment, financial stability and technical know-how in developing one of the most ambitious and successful cable projects.”

The SEA-ME-WE 5 cable system spans 20,000 kilometers and connects 16 countries across three continents from Southeast Asia to Western Europe, with a capacity of 24 Terabits per second.

“The SEA-ME-WE 5 cable system uses advanced 100 Gbps technology and is optimized for future upgrades to 200/400 Gbps to provide low-latency bandwidth and enhanced network diversity to meet the rapidly expanding demand for data transfer between Europe and Asia,” says Joe Han, President of China Telecom Americas.

SEA-ME-WE 5 Breaks Through Technological Barriers

After beginning construction in September 2014, the SEA-ME-WE 5 came into service in December 2016 and uses main endpoints that are carrier-neutral/open Points-of-Presence (PoPs) alongside a network of cable landing stations (CLS). This represents a technological breakthrough and means the SEA-ME-WE 5 is fully capable of meeting future demand.

China Telecom is proud to have worked alongside 19 of the world’s leading telecommunications providers in the 16-nation consortium that includes companies from Bangladesh, China, UAE, Myanmar, Indonesia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Pakistan and Egypt.

“China Telecom is among the leading Chinese IT service providers and the SEA-ME-WE 5 is part of our commitment to bringing enterprise internet to China and beyond,” says Mr. Han. “The project marks a global communications milestone and represents a significant systems upgrade for a worldwide network of users.”

Connecting Asia to Western Europe and the Middle East

The SEA-ME-WE 5 spans from Singapore in the east to France in the west, with PoPs at Singapore, Palermo (Italy) and Marseille (France). Cable landing stations also connect Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Oman, UAE, Qatar, Djibouti, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Turkey.

The SEA-ME-WE 5 is designed to facilitate network interconnection and is expected to improve performance with up to 20 percent latency reduction. It is also the first Europe-to-Asia cable to provide advanced PoP-to-PoP connectivity from open hubs in Europe.

The SEA-ME-WE 5 joins China Telecom’s vast global network of 33 submarine cables and high-speed terrestrial links that connect 72 countries and regions around the world with a total international transmission capacity of seven terabytes. China Telecom’s fiber cable network spans more than 83,000 kilometers and is the largest optical fiber network in the world.

“This is a major win for businesses in Southeast Asia that will now have a world-class data connection to the Middle East and Western Europe,” says Mr. Han. “It provides a sevenfold increase in capacity along the route and ushers in a new era of digital growth that will empower business innovation across the globe.”

For more information, hi-res images or to organize an interview, please contact Ming Wei, Director of Solution and Delivery, at weiming@ctamericas.com

About China Telecom Americas

China Telecom Americas is a wholly-owned US-based subsidiary of China Telecom Corporation, one of the world’s leading providers of integrated communications and information technology services to customers in over 70 countries around the globe. With headquarters in Herndon, Virginia, and offices in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, San Jose, Toronto and Sao Paolo, China Telecom Americas is advancing transpacific enterprise connectivity through a suite of locally-based, turnkey services from network architecture, cloud, and data center services to equipment management, security, content delivery, mobility solutions and more. Discover more at www.ctamericas.com

How China Telecom is Connecting Countries Across Asia with the APG Line

The Asia Pacific Gateway (APG) submarine fiber optic cable line is now operational in Vietnam and will be rolled out across the Asia-Pacific region throughout 2017.

With a capacity of 54 terabytes per second, the APG has the highest capacity of any network in Asia and is 20 times faster than the Asia-America Gateway (AAG).

The new network is set to increase international transmission throughout the Asia-Pacific region while reducing the load on the existing AAG.

The $450 million undersea cable project will connect eight countries – Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Taiwan, China, Japan and Korea – and was initiated in May 2009.

China Telecom Plays Leading Role in APG

China Telecom continues to play a key role in the development and implementation of the APG in partnership with an international consortium that includes PLDT (the Philippines), Chunghwa Telecom (Taiwan), China Unicom, KT Corp. (Korea), NTT Communications (Japan), Telekom Malaysia and VNPT (Vietnam).

The APG joins China Telecom’s vast global network of 33 submarine cables and high-speed terrestrial links that connect 72 countries and regions around the world with a total international transmission capacity of seven terabytes.

“The APG is a key strategic step in China Telecom’s journey to becoming one of the leading Chinese IT services providers in the world,” says Joe Han, President of China Telecom Americas.

“We are honored to be working alongside some of the region’s finest telecommunications companies to bring world-class network capacities to the rapidly developing Asia-Pacific business community.”

The APG is the latest addition to China Telecom’s fiber cable network that spans more than 83,000 kilometers and is the largest optical fiber network in the world.

“As one of the world’s leading Chinese internet service providers, China Telecom continues to build our expansive global network to serve our rapidly growing customer base of multinational enterprises looking for reliable, scalable and secure network services,” says Mr. Han.

APG Supports Business Growth in Asia-Pacific

The construction of the APG was completed in November 2016. It spans 10,900 kilometers from Singapore in the south to Japan in the north, with cable landing stations at East Coast (Singapore), Kuantan (Malaysia), Songkhia (Thailand), Da Nang (Vietnam), Tseung Kwan (Hong Kong), Toucheng (Taiwan), Nanhui (China), Chongming (China), Busan (Korea) and Shima (Japan).

Facebook also sees the APG as important to the company’s growth in South Asia and invested an undisclosed amount in the project in 2012.

In a statement at the time, Facebook said the APG will “[make] it possible for us to provide a better user experience for a greater number of Facebook users in countries like India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Hong Kong, and Singapore.”

“The APG will significantly increase internet speeds for businesses and consumers in the region,” says Mr. Han. “The network will improve data transfer speeds to North America, which is vital to supporting business growth and improving user experience.

“China Telecom is committed to investing in the Asia-Pacific region as it emerges as one of the world’s centers of economic growth.”

For more information, hi-res images or to organize an interview, please contact Ming Wei, Director of Solutions and Delivery, at weiming@ctamericas.com

About China Telecom Americas

China Telecom Americas is a wholly-owned US-based subsidiary of China Telecom Corporation, one of the world’s leading providers of integrated communications and information technology services to customers in over 70 countries around the globe. With headquarters in Herndon, Virginia, and offices in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, San Jose, Toronto and Sao Paolo, China Telecom Americas is advancing transpacific enterprise connectivity through a suite of locally-based, turnkey services from network architecture, cloud, and data center services to equipment management, security, content delivery, mobility solutions and more. Discover more at www.ctamericas.com

China Telecom, CMMB venture to deploy advanced network for ‘connected car’ services

China Telecom, the world’s eighth largest wireless network operator by subscribers, has agreed to collaborate with Global Vision Media Technology on rolling out key infrastructure that will support nationwide, satellite-based “connected car” services.

Global Vision Media is a joint venture between Hong Kong-listed CMMB Vision Holdings and Global Broadcasting Media Group, a subsidiary of the state-owned China Radio International.

“Under the agreement, China Telecom will render its terrestrial 3G and 4G mobile network to combine with the company’s L-band satellite broadcasting network to develop a convergent mobile delivery network,” CMMB Vision chairman and chief executive Charles Wong Chau-chi said in a regulatory filing on Tuesday.

The cooperation with China Telecom, which had 215 million mobile subscribers at the end of December, marks CMMB Vision’s latest effort to step up the commercial deployment of a new “multimedia broadcasting service platform”, capable of bundling high-quality video, audio and internet data services, as well as precision navigation, to hundreds of millions of potential subscribers in the world’s biggest car market by sales.

That platform will be made possible by the mainland-developed multicast technology known as Converged Mobile Multimedia Broadcasting, which CMMB Vision has long been promoting. The Global Vision venture serves as the company’s operating arm.

CMMB Vision plans to deploy a nationwide trial network for its multimedia broadcasting platform this year, paving the way for commercial deployment next year.

In April, Wong pointed out that “satellite mobile broadcasting is the most effective way of distributing entertainment services to vehicles”.

“China is the world’s largest car market with more than 250 million vehicles, yet there is a severe lack of in-car entertainment and media services,” he said at the time, noting the limited coverage and expensive data rates under existing 4G network services.

Apart from satellite capabilities, Global Vision will provide media content and channel programming, in its latest collaboration, while China Telecom will also deliver its internet data centre facilities and online content distribution network, according to Wong.

China Telecom told the South China Morning Post on Tuesday that it will “continue to adopt an open approach in exploring collaboration opportunities and develop the service eco-sphere with business partners”.

Global Vision’s pact with China Telecom followed a partnership it forged in January with the China Internet Information Center, which runs the leading portal for Chinese news and information services targeting a global audience.

Wong said the cooperation with China Internet Information Center will enable Global Vision “to aggregate, develop, and create a variety of video, audio, and data content suitable for in-car consumption”.

In December, Global Vision announced a series of strategic alliances with seven major domestic suppliers of car-mounted mobile terminal electronic devices that would help jointly promote and develop new applications under its proposed multimedia broadcasting service platform.

Those suppliers are Huizhou Desai Xiwei Automotive Electronics, Datang Instrument Technology, Shenzhen Hang Sheng Electronics, Yixin-Jiangsu Science and Technology, Xiamen Yaxun Network, Shanghai Botai Yueqin Electronic Equipment and China TSP (Yuante) Company.

“Collectively they represent the complete supply-chain for research and development, manufacturing, testing, installation and sale of car-mounted applications and terminal devices,” Wong said.

Read original article on South China Morning Post

China Telecom has big US plan

January 15, 2016

An emerging player in the US mobile space is quietly expanding its user base by tailoring its services to the Chinese population.

China Telecom Global launched CTExcel – its US mobile service – in May, making the telecommunications giant the first Chinese mobile virtual-network operator in the US.

The move pits the state-owned enterprise against American giants Verizon Communications Inc. and AT&T Inc.

“After several months of work, we have established the foundation,” said Feng Sun, director of mobile business for China Telecom Americas, based in Herndon, Virginia. “The growth rate is speeding up, and we are expecting a boom this year.”

Marketed as “Customized for Chinese”, CTExcel offers four packages to US-based customers. For $45 a month, a user not only can make unlimited domestic calls but also unlimited calls and texts to China. The package also includes three gigabits of 4G LTE data.

The economical rate is achieved by the technology of dual number, explained Sun. When buying a CTExcel SIM card in the US, a user also will be assigned a Chinese virtual number for calls forwarding between China and US.

“It also enables your family and friends in China to call you without worrying about the international fee because they are calling a Chinese number,” Sun told China Daily. “This is our distinctive advantage compared to the American service providers. We have access to the Chinese numbers. They do not.”

Soon the service will also work the other way around. When a US-based user goes to China, he or she will be able to get a Chinese SIM card that has the original US number assigned to it.

“When someone calls your American phone, you can pick up with your Chinese SIM card in China,” he said. “The callers won’t be able to know that you are actually in China.”

There are four target groups for China Telecom’s mobile services: the more than 4 million Chinese Americans; the 2 million Chinese tourists visiting the United States annually; the 300,000 Chinese students at US colleges; and the more than 1,500 Chinese enterprises in America.

China Telecom has big US plan

Sun said that China Telecom Americas has paired with student organizations at more than 100 US colleges. Starting with freshmen, the company hopes to gradually convert all Chinese students to China Telecom.

For 2016, he said the primary goal is to expand in the Chinese-American community and appeal to Chinese tourists.

“We have customer service in both Chinese and English,” he said. “This greatly helps travelers and immigrants who don’t speak English.”

CTExcel services can now be purchased at a dozen of telecommunications retail stores in the San Francisco Bay Area, and by the end of January, they will expand to more than 20 vendors, Sun said.

China Telecom Global had a booth at this year’s CES 2016 in Las Vegas, where about 1,000 Chinese exhibitors flew in from China for the consumer electronics event.

For $28, a Chinese traveler can make unlimited calls in the US and to China for 14 days, along with unlimited international texts and 1 gigabit of 4G LTE data.

“We told [the Chinese attendees] about our packages, and they were excited,” Sun said. “They blamed us for not telling them earlier, because some of them have already bought expensive packages from American providers. Next year, we will do a better job. They will all be able to get the service before getting here.”

China Telecom to build telecommunications node in China-Belarus industrial park Great Stone

China Telecom Group will build a telecommunication node inside the China-Belarus industrial park Great Stone to provide communication services inside the park, BelTA learned from Kirill Koroteyev, First Deputy Director General of SZAO Industrial Park Development Company.

China Telecom Group and SZAO Industrial Park Development Company signed an agreement on cooperation in the area of information and communications in Minsk on 27 December.

A daughter enterprise, China Telecom BLR, with the charter capital of $1 million has been established. The money has already been invested. As much as $3-5 million is supposed to be invested next year.

Initially the newly established company will set up a communication node inside the park. The company may implement other communication projects later on, assured Kirill Koroteyev.

China Telecom Group is among the world’s top 500 companies and the world’s top 10 providers of telecommunication services.