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Current Topic: Telecom Industry

What's behind the DoD's asinine reaction to WiFi 'Peril:?
Topic: Telecom Industry 1:36 am EST, Dec 30, 2002

] "WiFi is scaring the government not because it's a tool
] of terrorism but because it's a tool of unregulated
] political dissent. "

This article misses the giant economic impact of giving away free 802.11 access on the business models of the major carriers/service providers, some of whom have spent billions on G3 license purchases. But it's still a fun little rant.

What's behind the DoD's asinine reaction to WiFi 'Peril:? - the place for BROADBAND
Topic: Telecom Industry 4:08 pm EST, Dec 24, 2002

Well, in a recent SpeakEasy e-mail they mentioned this broadband/DSL oriented site. I actually wasn't expecting much except that it turns out they are extremely broad in their coverage. A lot of nuggets of news. Also, surprisingly, they seem to be global in their coverage and there is a constant stream of it (about every two hours something new is posted).

If you want to get updates regarding Telecom, Broadband, P2P, and anything else even marginally related to broadband services this looks like the place. - the place for BROADBAND

C&W to shutter IDCs and fire staff
Topic: Telecom Industry 6:46 pm EST, Nov 13, 2002

C&W is going to put the hammer down on a lot of their datacenters and whack at least 3500 people.

Oh, BTW, the economy is recovering. No. Really!

C&W to shutter IDCs and fire staff

Lucent to Cut 10,000 Jobs as Its Losses Keep Mounting
Topic: Telecom Industry 9:36 am EDT, Oct 25, 2002

Lucent announced plans to cut an additional 10,000 jobs and forecast a larger-than-expected quarterly loss, signaling that its problems are far from over.

Down to 35,000 employees, from 123,000 two years ago. Taking a $4B charge. Nine consecutive quarterly losses. Stock down 90% on the year. $8.2B in outstanding debt.

Serious doubts remain about Lucent's goal of attaining profitability and remaining relatively intact.

Jeff Kagan: "Lucent is already a memory as the company is a shadow of its former self, and it may not be quite done shrinking yet."

Lucent to Cut 10,000 Jobs as Its Losses Keep Mounting

The COOK Report On Internet
Topic: Telecom Industry 5:32 pm EDT, Sep  4, 2002

This issue of the COOK Report explores peering, transit and exchanges for the first time since about 1999. While a lot has changed, a lot remains the same.

Estimates of the capacity utilization of the Tier 1 backbones show them to be lightly utilized ... Over the past five weeks we have had conversations ... [which] suggest that the [Tier 1] oligopoly is engaging in behavior that could blow up in a manner similar to the capacity swaps that blew up earlier this year.

ISPs are beginning to use tools to do load balancing of their upstream connections in real time.

The Tier Ones, by peering in their tight oligopoly, may have rendered themselves irrelevant.

Andrew Odlyzko: "I find the prospects of smaller networks being able to bypass the Tier Ones fascinating. The development of tools [that do this] is also very interesting."

The COOK Report On Internet

Telecom Wreck Provides an Opening for AT&T
Topic: Telecom Industry 2:27 pm EDT, Sep  1, 2002

The thinning of competition, along with the potential to whisk away customers from its suffering rivals, should allow AT&T to survive its own dubious investment of more than $100 billion to acquire cable assets.

... AT&T is an "attractive long-term deep-value play" ...

Many analysts still fear a nightmarish possibility: that WorldCom and the rest of what Mr. Johnstone calls telecom's "living dead" -- companies reorganizing under Chapter 11 -- emerge from bankruptcy, relieved of their crushing debts and hungry enough for customers to cut prices sharply.

Telecom Wreck Provides an Opening for AT&T

Deals Within Telecom Deals
Topic: Telecom Industry 12:24 am EDT, Aug 27, 2002

An article about the sneaky financial dealings of the telecom industry. Time Warner Telecom, Sonus, Qwest, Williams, Winstar, Global Crossing, Corvis, Tellium, Lucent, Sycamore, WorldCom, Alteon, Nortel, and others.

... The fact that companies and their executives profited from investments in fledgling suppliers may help explain why there was such a gross misallocation of capital in the sector, and why networks that cost billions to build fetch far less in bankruptcy auctions.

This article implies a problem that is much more broad then likely existed. There were a lot of these sort of relationships in the industry, and not just between big telecoms and small equipment companies, but also between small telecoms and big equipment companies. There are many reasons for getting involved in a deal like this. Telecoms want cheaper gear and good support for it. Equipment dealers want environments that push the technical limits of their gear and/or need large customers who validate their offerings in the marketplace. Throwing stock into the deal is little different then lowering a price. If the equipment didn't work, or wasn't used, or wasn't really bought, then thats obviously a problem, but the overall value of telecom networks in the current environment has to do with sellers pressured by debt and an overcapacity in infrastructure rather then an inflation of the value of *new hardware.*

Extent of network capacity in most cases was based on demand estimates made by investment firms. Most people were not building capacity just to buy equipment. Its not impossible that this occured, but most of the industry is not guilty of this.

Deals Within Telecom Deals

KT selects Lucent for Optical Upgrade
Topic: Telecom Industry 2:40 pm EDT, Aug  2, 2002

Lucent Technologies will supply KT (formerly Korea Telecom) with an advanced optical system that will allow KT to quadruple capacity of its existing networks. This marks the first major introduction of 10-gigabit technology to South Korea's largest communications service provider's long-distance transmission networks.

Under the terms of the contract, Lucent will deliver 25 WaveStar TDM 10G (STM-64) systems by the end of September to upgrade KT's current 2.5 gigabit-based city-to-city networks in Gyunggi, Chungcheong, Jeonra and Gangwon province to 10G capacity-based networks. The commercial service is scheduled to start this November.

KT selects Lucent for Optical Upgrade

Level 3 Makes Offer for Williams Comms.
Topic: Telecom Industry 4:11 pm EDT, Jul 25, 2002

Level 3 has offered $1.1B for Williams Communications Group, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday.

Here Comes Warren Buffett. (Look for a push to consolidate as a means of accelerating the inevitable collapse while localizing the damage as much as possible.) If we combine six debt-ridden companies into one, the mountain of debt will be so high as to be make bankruptcy unavoidable. And consolidating the carriers will eliminate competitive network build-outs, reducing the need to buy new telecom equipment. Excess equipment on hand is sold at cut-rate prices to pay off the bondholders. These factors lead to the collapse of suppliers. That's the idea, anyway.

It isn't going to get better until it gets as bad as it can possibly get. The sooner the telecom world collapses, the sooner it can be rebuilt. ("Can" is the operative word; it's not clear that anyone will be interested in doing so.)

Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated.

Level 3 Makes Offer for Williams Comms.

Telecom Bankruptcy Wave May Become Self-Perpetuating
Topic: Telecom Industry 3:59 pm EDT, Jul 25, 2002

As a handful of telecommunications companies begin to trickle out of bankruptcy protection, analysts fear their financial reorganizations could have unintended consequences that exacerbate the industrywide meltdown.

The spate of bankruptcy filings so far is doing little to solve the industry's underlying problem.

So far, only a tiny fraction of telecommunications companies have survived bankruptcy protection. But those that have are going to make their presence known.

Meta Group: "There's a theory that ... bankruptcy [is] a healthy move and a way to wipe away the debt. But the probability of that happening is very low."

Another analyst: "The problem here is that networks never go away. As each of these guys go bankrupt, the pain spreads to everybody else."

The LA Times gives its readers a lesson in Telecom 101. Welcome to the real world, people; it's over.

Telecom Bankruptcy Wave May Become Self-Perpetuating

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