A Question for Global Crossing

July 17th, 2008

In my series of questions for carriers during earnings season, I now turn to Global Crossing.  As hard as it is to do with this company, we must set aside questions about history here.  The idea is to draw out information we can use to understand the present and get hints of the future. [Read more →]

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Earthlink and the Power of Cashflow

July 17th, 2008

NSP Strategist at Rad-Info had a post Monday about Earthlink's travails, which prompted me to go and see how their stock had done lately.  What I found actually shocked me:  the stock has come back up.  Not way up, but I had expected a collapse to match the disasters they have been through lately. [Read more →]

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SK and Sprint: Implications for Sprint Wireline?

July 16th, 2008

Unstrung has an article today about the SK/Sprint talks that are supposedly going on, with an interesting comment on the future of XOHM. Specifically, they note that SK Telecom has a experience and interest in Wimax, and the relationship with Clearwire may be integral to what is going on here.

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Selling Dark Fiber

July 16th, 2008

LightReading had an article yesterday about how Cox is upgrading its national network from leased wavelengths to dark fiber.  Comcast did the same thing a short while back, and Cox's move wasn't exactly a secret so there's no big shock value.  But it did disturb the ashes of an old argument, specifically whether selling dark fiber IRUs is a smart move for a carrier or not.  In this case, the carrier is [Read more →]

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Followup to A Question for Level 3

July 16th, 2008

I have a few details and clarifications for my question to Level 3 which came up in private communications.  First, many thanks to all who commented publicly or privately, you have been very helpful. [Read more →]

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A Question for Cogent

July 15th, 2008

The next question in this series goes to Cogent Communications.  Once again, the idea is to elicit a useful response.  First though, let me add a disclaimer.  Cogent's CEO Dave Schaeffer has a style that drives me nuts - like fingernails on a blacboard, and in the past that has led me to dismiss the company itself too easily.  I try to look past that now, but I don't always succeed.  That said, here is my question: [Read more →]

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What were they thinking?

July 15th, 2008

Computerworld reports that the state of Tennessee is finally migrating its primary datacenter to a new location.  Why?  Well, it seems that there were a few minor problems with the location... [Read more →]

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A Question for Level 3

July 14th, 2008

Since Level 3 reports first amongst the nextgen carriers - in just 10 days, they get the first question.  As I said in my introductory post on this subject, my purpose is to elicit a useful response.  Therefore I need to ask about something they a) know the answer to, and b) are likely to be willing to talk about.  So without further ado:  [Read more →]

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Composing Effective Questions

July 13th, 2008

Earnings season begins soon, and at all public telecoms and internet infrastructure companies we will of course have the obligatory conference calls at which analysts will ask their usual questions.  But in my humble opinion (are bloggers allowed to claim a humble opinion? LOL), most such questions are overly pedantic and do not elicit useful responses.  Now that I have a blog and, hence, a voice that might actually be heard, I want to try to do something more than grumble about it.  [Read more →]

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Tales from the Field – Crime and Punishment

July 13th, 2008

Contributed by the_highwayman

If he had to do it again, I'm sure he would be more careful.  But as a field tech for a major carrier, he was frequently sent out to Central Offices (CO) and after a while the locations blur a bit.  In this case, he was dispatched to an unmanned CO in a very rough neighborhood in New York City to do an install. The door was a bit sticky, but he just got down to work.  After a little while it dawned on him that the door might not have latched and this might be a bad idea, [Read more →]

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Because that's where the routers are?

July 11th, 2008

On Thursday there was yet another burglary in a UK datacenter.  Another?  Yes, quite a pattern here it seems - 5 in the past 20 months, at least one of which was quite elaborate and made off with over $4M in equipment.  When asked why he robbed banks, Willie Sutton replied famously 'Because that's where the money is'.   If you caught one of these guys who are walking off with routers, servers, line cards, or whatever, [Read more →]

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ClearCurve fiber demo

July 11th, 2008

If you're reading this blog, you probably know at least something about fiberoptic cable, and you probably have heard of the new bendable cable Corning came out with in the last year or two, called ClearCurve.  I also had heard of it, but I had never seen it nor really had a good feel for it.  If you're anything like me, wikipedia might help some but you don't really understand something until you see it in action - and in the case of this new fiber I hadn't yet so I didn't.  Until now anyway.  This is a really clear, down-to-earth demonstration of what it is and how it works from YouTube. [Read more →]

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Telecom Ramblings is 2 months old!

July 11th, 2008

It has been an amazing ride since May 9, racking up over 45,000 pageviews and 20,000 visits.  All in all, I've been having a great time doing this so I'm going to keep on trucking.  My thanks to all who have contributed, thejuice and the_highwayman for their posts and so many of you for your comments, kind emails, and regular readership. [Read more →]

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Level 3's Communications SG&A

July 10th, 2008

One of the critical numbers to watch when Level 3 reports earnings in two weeks is their Communications SG&A expense.  However, it is rather difficult to figure out what it ought to be due to the noise from one time events and integration expenses.  Therefore, I put together a table to help me figure out what the real trend is.  [Read more →]

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Carriers to Acquire CDNs, again?

July 10th, 2008

A Yankee Group analyst is now predicting that more carriers will be jumping into the CDN space by buying existing CDNs.  As I posted once before, I don't think there is that big a hubbub here.  Certainly there are carriers sniffing around, and I do agree that Verizon or British Telecom might join the fray.  [Read more →]

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So Many New Datacenters

July 9th, 2008

Today I saw an article about a $1.9B datacenter farm being built in Scotland, and it brought home to me just how many new datacenters are going up right now.  Terramark just announced its NAP of the Capital Region, Savvis, Equinix, and Internap are all building out large amounts of colocation space.  The credit markets may not be available to the rest of us, but if you build datacenters you can pretty much raise what you want. [Read more →]

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Google Launches Lively

July 9th, 2008

Today, Google launched a service called Lively, which seems to be a 3d chat application with avatars.    I am curious just where Google is going with this, are they taking on Second Life?  In the promo materials they say one can put a YouTube video on a virtual TV in your virtual Room - hmmm...  Bandwidth usage!  Of course, watching your own avatar watching TV seems a bit daft, but... [Read more →]

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Fake 100G?

July 8th, 2008

A few weeks ago I posted a series on the road to 100G, and one of the points I made was that there is an industry bias against bandwidth aggregation.  Well, here is a case in point.  The online magazine xChange reports that one 'prominent industry analyst' called it “Infinera’s fake 100G demo” because it was done via bandwidth aggregation. [Read more →]

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Telecom Straight Shooter

July 8th, 2008

I was perusing the server logs for this blog tonight and was surprised to find that a new telecom blog has sprung up!  Dave Rusin, the CEO of AFSNetworks and an occasional commenter on this blog, has started Telecom Straight Shooter.  He's not kidding about that name either folks, Dave is the real deal and he pulls no punches.  Welcome aboard Dave!  I have added you to my blogroll and to my RSS newsreader.

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Content taken down a peg

July 8th, 2008

Ryan Lawler over at Contentinople reports that there are in fact skeptics over the common sentiment that content is king.  According to a Lehman analyst, the ability to monetize digital media assets is likely to be counterbalanced by a an accelerated decline in traditional media.  [Read more →]

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Level 3 and the Buffett Factor

July 7th, 2008

My last post suggested that big money might revisit the telecom space.  This time let’s look at the relationship between Warren Buffett and Level 3. Tomorrow is the 6 year anniversary of Buffett’s cash infusion, where alongside Longleaf and Legg Mason he invested $100M in convertible bonds.  At the time, all the other nextgen backbones were falling like dominoes, Global Crossing and Wiltel were already in BK court, Genuity was sinking fast, Broadwing and Cable & Wireless were frantically planning amputation.  [Read more →]

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Telecom and the Return of the Big Hitters

July 7th, 2008

As telecom valuations linger at multi-year lows, the chances that big money value investors may make another foray into the telecom space are increasing.The last time it happened was in 2002-2004, when Buffett threw a lifeline to Level 3, Leucadia scooped up WilTel, Carl Icahn took over XO, Singapore along with Carlos Slim and Richard Rainwater took over Global Crossing, and even Wilbur Ross [Read more →]

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Ike's business VoIP survey

July 5th, 2008

Ike Elliott has posted the results of his first business VoIP survey, and it is definitely worth a read.  He has two followups, one analyzing the retail/wholesale angle and one analyzing the different approaches to quality of service.  For investors however, only a few of these companies are public - 8x8, Inc (NASDAQ:EGHT, news, filings) and cbey. [Read more →]

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