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NASA shoots for 200Mbps networks on swarming satellites
Friday, 10 November 2017 19:27
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The Optical Communications and Sensor Demonstration CubeSat design. Image: NASA/Ames Research Center

Orbital ATK will on Saturday * launch a Cygnus spacecraft on a supply mission to the International Space Station, with one of its payloads being a pair of CubeSats that NASA hopes can demonstrate 200 megabits per second downloads, from space, and how small satellites can be operated in harness to build networks or complex machines.

Known as the Optical Communications and Sensor Demonstration (OCSD) experiment, this effort commenced in October 2015 when a single 1.5-unit (1.5U) CubeSat went aloft to test designs of the two sats going

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Qualcomm touts deal with Chinese giants to really consider using $12bn of its chips
Friday, 10 November 2017 15:58

Qualcomm says it has struck a deal, of sorts, with four major smartphone vendors in China that could possibly be worth $12bn.

Emphasis on the "possibly".

The chip designer says the non-binding 'memorandum of understanding' agreements will bring Xiaomi, Guangdong OPPO, and Vivo Communications to the table in an attempt to hammer out licensing deals to use Qualcomm chips in its mobile phone designs.

The announcement was made as part of President Trump's visit to China, where Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf attended as part of the White House trade delegation tagging along for the trip.

"I’m honored to represent Qualcomm

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Vodafone signs deal with CityFibre to connect 5 million homes with full fibre
Thursday, 09 November 2017 22:34

Vodafone has inked a deal for a full-fibre network built by CityFibre, which could connect up to 5 million premises over the next eight years.

The network is expected to reach one million homes in 12 towns and cities by 2021, and could be extended to another four million in 50 locations by 2025, with construction commencing in 2018.

The initial build is expected to cost up to £500m over 20 years depending on demand.

The first customers are expected to be connected from next year, with Vodafone having the exclusive marketing rights while the network is under construction. The

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OVH data centres go TITSUP*
Thursday, 09 November 2017 21:48

Updated Power outages have brought some OVH data servers to their knees, and unspecified issues have broken optical cable routing in Europe for POP.

OVH boasts it is used by "155 out of the 1000 largest European companies" and "20 out of the 500 largest international companies".

According to the outage site downdetector, over 100 watchers have reported issues with OVH hosting and email since around 7:37 UTC.

CEO Octave Klaba tweeted that "2 separated 20kV lines are down" and said the team was trying to restart generators for its Central Europe SBG1 and SG4 data centres.

Also, optical links

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Openreach boss says he'd take a burning effigy on the chin
Thursday, 09 November 2017 20:37

Interview "Look, if you can't get decent broadband, it is a real pisser," said Openreach boss Clive Selley in response to a Devon village's decision to burn an effigy of one of its vans on bonfire night.

The place in question, Templeton, struggles to get 1Mbps. But Selley reckons that is why BT's controversial voluntary offer to connect 98.5 per cent of premises to at least 10Mbps by 2020 is so important (that is opposed to the government's original plan of a mandatory 100 per cent by 2020).

BT has said it will cost around £600m, which it will recoup

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Google's software-defined network – and its significance – both just accelerated
Thursday, 09 November 2017 19:32

Google last week announced that it has started using version 2.1 of its Andromeda software-defined networking stack.

Why are we bothering to report that?

A couple of reasons. First, it's fast. Google says it “reduces network latency between Compute Engine VMs by 40% over Andromeda 2.0 and by nearly a factor of eight since we first launched Andromeda in 2014.”

Other clouds don't often discuss this stuff. They all do software-defined networking (SDN), but Google tries harder to makes a virtue and a differentiator of its efforts in the field. Google's also recently added added “Dedicated Interconnect” to its cloud,

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