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Monthly Archives: January 2015

Microsoft’s first quarter proving its ability to become a dominant force in cloud computing with superior cloud offerings

Following the results of the previous quarter described as Microsoft is ready to become a dominant force in cloud computing with superior cloud offerings, a Windows ecosystem under complete renewal, first signs of Surface-Lumia-Xbox successes on the market, and strong interest in technology partnerships by other industry leaders [this same blog, Oct 24, 2014] now we have the following (as touted by Microsoft):

Jan 26, 2015: From Microsoft Earnings Release FY15 Q2

Microsoft Cloud and Devices Momentum Highlights Second Quarter Results 
Commercial cloud revenue grows triple-digits for the sixth consecutive quarter, reaching an annualized revenue run rate of $5.5 billion

  • Commercial cloud revenue grew 114% driven by Office 365, Azure [Enterprise Mobility Suite see in the earnings call below] and Dynamic CRM Online, and is now on an annualized revenue run rate of $5.5 billion
  • Surface revenue of $1.1 billion, up 24%, driven by Surface Pro 3 and accessories
  • Office 365 Home and Personal subscribers increased to over 9.2 million, up 30% sequentially over prior quarter
  • Search advertising revenue grew 23%, with Bing U.S. market share at 19.7%, up 150 basis points over prior year
  • Xbox console sales totaled 6.6 million units, with strong holiday season performance
  • Phone Hardware revenue of $2.3 billion, with 10.5 million Lumia units sold driven by growth in affordable smartphones

Jan 26, 2015: From Microsoft’s (MSFT) CEO Satya Nadella on Q2 2015 Results – Earnings Call Transcript regarding the above “Cloud and Devices Momentum” emphasized as the positive sign about Microsoft futures

I’m encouraged by the progress we’re making in our transformation to become the productivity and platform company for the mobile-first and cloud-first world.

Azure services continue to grow in appeal to enterprise IT and developers with rapid improvements across hybrid services, premium cloud storage and VM offerings, enhanced data and data analytics offerings. Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Suite is one key of product innovation that I would like to highlight given the growth and uniqueness of our offering. Microsoft offers a comprehensive solution that brings together mobile device management, mobile application management, hybrid identity management and data protection into a unified offering via EMS.

Office 365 now includes new app experiences on all phones and tablets for mobile productivity.  Further, we have released completely new scenarios. This includes Office Sway for visualizing and sharing ideas; Delve, to help search and discover content; Office 365 Groups to make it easier to collaborate; and Office 365 Video for secure media streaming for businesses. Finally, we continue to invest in enterprise value by integrating MDM and the Enterprise Mobility Suite into Office 365; new encryption technologies and compliance certifications; and new eDiscovery capabilities in Exchange.

[Amy Hood:] Office 365 continues to be a priority for CIOs, as both existing and new customers move to the cloud.  This transition accelerated, with 45 percent of our renewal seats in Office moving to the cloud this quarter.

Q: What’s driving the increase in cloud margins within the commercial other segment?

A: [Amy Hood:] We’ve seen a mix shift as we have moved Office 365 and Azure to our premium service and to premium SKUs within our cloud environment, that is one of the drivers that helps improve margin growth. In addition, we’ve done a lot of hard engineering work I believe over the past six quarters to be able to take advantage of more utilization and capacity over time.

A: Overall, the shift to the higher layer services is the real driver here, which is obviously Office 365 and its various levels is one factor. The other one is what I talked about in the Enterprise Mobility Suite, that’s really got fantastic momentum in the marketplace because the solution has really come together and is fairly unique, as well as Dynamic CRM. So these are all got a different profile in terms of margin and they are all now pretty high growth businesses for us. So when you think about our cloud, you got to think about the low-level infrastructure. Even there we now have premium offerings and then we have higher level services. So that aggregate portfolio is what helps us move up the margin curve.

In Dynamics CRM Online, we added 53 markets this quarter, bringing us to 130 markets around the world.  And we are bringing together CRM with Cortana, Yammer, Power BI and Skype to add unique value for customers.

Q: Over the last several quarters you’ve opened up a number of the products to different platforms, Office in Android and with Minecraft and Skype, you’ve got a number of really multiplatform products and services. Could you quantify so far to what extent you’ve seen benefit and as this plays into the free upgrade for Windows 10 at least for a limited period, how you expect this to play out benefitting the business case of your products across the portfolio? 

AOverall at the highest level, our strategy here is to make sure that the Microsoft Services i.e. cloud services be it Azure, Office 365, CRM Online or Enterprise Mobility suite are covering all the devices out there in the marketplace. So that, that way we maximize the opportunity we have for each of these subscription and capacity based services. So that’s the core rational for why we are doing cross platform.

Now the next question is what’s the uniqueness of Windows? And the uniqueness of Windows comes because we don’t think of these services and their application end points as apps, but fundamentally core to the Windows experience. So we are building them natively into windows. So for example, when you log into Windows, you are logging in with Microsoft account or Azure ID. When you have files, they are synching with OneDrive. Outlook is the email client for Windows. So that’s how Windows will differentiate and not to mention, our Gaming and Xbox Live experiences.

So overall, we will build a differentiated Windows because our application experiences for our cloud end points will be native in windows and at the same time, we will make sure that our services are available on all end points driving more usage, more subscription growth. So the best way to measure our progress is Office 365 subscription growth, Azure growth and EMS growth.

We are expanding our capabilities in the cloud through five new acquisitions.  Last week we announced an agreement to purchase Revolution Analytics, the leading provider of statistical computing and predictive analytics, which will enable our customers to unlock big data insights.  We bought HockeyApp, a leading mobile app testing and development service to enhance Azure services for mobile developers.  Our acquisition of Aorato accelerates our ability to give customers unique security capabilities by tapping into behavioral intelligence around Identity and access spanning on-premises and the cloud.  We’re bringing on new capabilities in machine learning as applied to eDiscovery and other enterprise compliance processes with the acquisition of Equivio; and we also welcomed Accompli, a provider of innovative mobile email applications for iOS and Android.

The common theme across all these acquisitions is advanced data analytics and machine learning driven capabilities that improve with more customer adoption and usage.

We are also making progress in our CONSUMER cloud services.

Office 365 Home and Personal revenue grew nearly 150 percent year over year as we added 2.1 million net new subscribers since last quarter.  Bing U.S. search share continues to grow as does search revenue with 23 percent growth this quarter.

However, it’s how our strategies are coming together with Windows 10 that give me the greatest optimism.  The vibrant social gaming community on Xbox Live will span Xbox, Windows PCs, tablets and phones.  With Windows 10, gamers on a PC, tablet or Xbox console can play together and games on Xbox One can easily stream to a Windows 10 PC or tablet.  It’s also getting clearer how the games people love today will evolve to mind-blowing experiences in the future when designed for the mixed reality that Windows 10 and HoloLens create – just imagine what is possible with Minecraft.  Gaming truly is a valuable part of millions of people’s lives and Microsoft will excel and increase our lead.

[Amy Hood:] Revenue in our Devices & Consumer Other segment grew 30 percent.  As noted earlier, Xbox Live transactions and first party games performed well, and contributed to this growth.  Additionally, Search revenue growth was strong, with improvements in both rate and volume.  Within display, revenue declined on our MSN portal, though we saw revenue growth across other Microsoft properties.  We are also pleased by our gross margin expansion in this segment.

[Amy Hood on Q3 guidance:] In Devices and Consumer Other, we expect revenue to be about $2 billion reflecting continued progress in key areas like Office 365 Home and Personal, Xbox Live and Search.

Q: How should we think about monetization Satya for the Windows devices sub 9 inch?

A: One of the comments I had made in my remarks was some momentum we’re seeing in our consumer cloud services. So for example, the store monetization, Bing monetization, Xbox Live monetization as Xbox Live monetization as Xbox Live now in fact is going to span devices are all things that drive monetization for below 9 inches. So I think of device gross margin in some cases because we are building devices like the phones as well as this post sale monetization using our consumer cloud services as the two additional levers that we have in order to be able to monetize Windows devices.

We are making progress with our own devices – both those in market driving positive results and those we have recently announced.

This quarter we surpassed the one billion revenue mark with Surface for the first time.  The value proposition of being the most productive tablet is resonating.

[Amy Hood on Q3 guidance:] In Computing and Gaming, we expect revenue to be $1.5 to $1.7 billion.  This range reflects normal seasonality coming out of the holidays for our Xbox and Surface businesses.

Q: Have you done any assessment in terms of the set you’re seeing in Surface Pro 3 definitely is a real productivity device. To what extent is that cannibalistic from what would have been Windows PC sales and to what extent do you think you’re expanding the market opportunity with that device?

A: I think it’s definitely expanding the market opportunity. One of the things that I feel very good about is the risk we took to introduce the two-in-one category and I feel now that we see that in fact inspire even a lot of activity in our own OEM ecosystem and we see many good designs coming because it’s viewed as a category that drives growth. And so from that perspective I feel good about leading because that’s one of our strategic goals, which is we want to create new categories, foster more demand for the entire ecosystem.

Further, sales for Lumia phones topped 10 million units, growing 30% year over year this quarter with strength in devices such as Lumia 500 and 600 series – our affordable smartphones.  In this segment of the market the combination of our brand and value standout and we plan to continue to build a beachhead here.

[Amy Hood:] We articulated our plan for the Phone business back in July, and we are executing to plan.  With our Lumia portfolio of phones, we are driving volumes in the low price device category.  We sold 10.5 million Lumia phones this quarter, an all-time high.  We also sold over 39 million non-Lumia phones, even while we make changes to the product portfolio and manage this business for profitability. We are looking forward to bringing new products to market that will showcase the features that we presented at our Windows 10 event last week.

[Amy Hood:] Our integration and restructuring efforts have been focused on optimizing resources across the company which includes reducing the expense base in our Phone business.  To date, we have integrated the manufacturing and supply chain teams across Microsoft, while also rationalizing our phone manufacturing capacity.  In operating expense, we committed to reducing $1 billion from the Phone cost base, which we have done.  We continue to look for opportunities to drive further efficiencies.

[Amy Hood Q3 guidance:] In Phone Hardware, we expect revenue to be $1.4 to $1.5 billion.  This range anticipates accelerating year-over-year growth in Lumia units driven by our affordable smart phone devices. We also expect both volumes and ASPs of Non-Lumia devices to continue to decline in Q3.  With this lower aggregate revenue base, we expect gross margins, which include non-cash amortization, to be lower for the next couple of quarters.

We are also creating new device types that open up new markets and opportunities for Microsoft.  In October, we launched our first wearable – the Microsoft Band.  And just last week we revealed to the world Microsoft Surface Hub and Microsoft HoloLens – two new device categories made possible with Windows 10.  Surface Hub will revolutionize group collaboration and meetings.  HoloLens and Windows Holographic computing will make mixed reality applications part of everyday life across work and home.

Intel Outlined Future of Computing: launching its RealSense™ 3D cameras and technology together with its True Key™ cross-platform application, and a 3-D collaboration with HP

Important remark: Another significant part of the outlined future of computing came by the simultaneous announcement of the Intel Curie Module prototype with the new Intel Quark SE SoC—the first end-to-end solution designed for wearables already detailed on this blog [Jan 8, 2015].

Jan 13, 2015: from Intel IoT-Connected Demos, Fireside Chats, Innovations Led the Way at CES post on the IoT@Intel blog

RealSense 3D Computing

Devices with an Intel® RealSense™ 3D camera have three lensesDevices with an Intel® RealSense™ 3D camera have three lenses: a conventional camera, an infrared camera, and an infrared laser projector. Together, the three lenses allow the device to infer depth by detecting infrared light that has bounced back from objects in front of it. This visual data, taken in combination with Intel RealSense motion-tracking software, create a touch-free interface that responds to hand, arm, and head motions as well as facial expressions.

Jan 8, 2015: To understand the superior capabilities of Intel RealSense™ 3D cameras and technology over previous technologies like the Microsoft Kinect watch this HP Sprout 3D Scanning Demo | #CES2015 (full information see in the HP Sprout + Intel RealSense Technology video embedded in the end of this post)

 Combining a scanner, depth sensor, hi-resolution camera and projector into a single device, Sprout by HP allows users to take physical items and seamlessly merge them into a digital workspace. The system also delivers an unmatched collaboration platform, allowing users in multiple locations to collaborate on and manipulate a single piece of digital content in real-time.
⇒Information on “Sprout by HP” – Oct 29, 2014 by Intel Chip Shot: HP Introduces Sprout, based on Intel Core i7 with Intel RealSense Technology
Today, HP introduced Sprout by HP, an immersive computing platform that combines the power of an advanced, all-in-one desktop computer based on a 4th generation Intel Core i7 processor. Sprout’s user interface creates a unique experience that breaks down the barriers between the digital and physical worlds. The Sprout Illuminator, a capture and project system which includes Intel RealSense technology, combines a scanner, depth sensor, hi res camera and a projector to allow users to take physical items and seamlessly merge them into the digital workspace. Sprout by HP will be available in the United States for pre-order beginning on October 29th.
⇒as well as of January 7, 2015 from:  HP Selects Intel to Power HP Multi Jet Fusion Technology
Intel Core i7 Processors power other facets of HP’s Blended Reality ecosystem, including Sprout by HP, an immersive computing platform that combines multiple devices — a scanner, hi-resolution camera, Intel® RealSense™ 3D Camera, projector — into a single device, allowing users to take physical items and seamlessly merge them into a digital workspace.

Jan 15, 2015: from Intel Corporation (INTC) CEO Brian Krzanich on Q4 2014 Results

We recently launched RealSense 3D camera technologies and other examples extending our IP. ??We don’t sense?? as redefining imagining in a variety of computing devices. It’s also making its way to all sorts of new and unanticipated applications, highlighting the value of taking outside-in view, investing ahead of churn and shaping nascent technology.

The earlier than the videos embedded in this post you can play together here:  or find in the below „Favorites” playlist by Intel® RealSense™ YouTube channel: 20 videos of 49 minutes total time of play
Intel’s CES 2015 keynote was among the best
The Verge
8:19
Laserlife Teaser
Choice Provisions
0:28
Jim Parsons crashes their “Wedding” | Intel RealSense™
Intel
0:24
Jim Parsons makes a trip to the “DMV”| Intel RealSense™
Intel
0:30
In the Lab With Jim Parsons | Intel® RealSense™ Technology
Intel
0:31
Jim Parsons Plays Flight Attendant | Intel® RealSense™ Technology
Intel
0:16
2014 faceshift IDF Reel
BeYourAvatar
1:35
Perceptual Concept Video
Intel Perceptual
1:09
ASUS N751 with Intel Realsense 3D camera
Notebook Italia
1:59
Intel RealSense camera – 3D scanning, face recognition, hands tracking
Notebook Italia
6:39
Intel RealSense
Atticus Wu
0:12
Intel RealSense camera controls a Thymio II robot with gestures (Deutsches Museum project)
parrotsonjava.com
1:06
Intel RealSense – Robotic Arm Tech Demo
HardwareZoneMY
0:16
There Came an Echo Trailer 1
Iridium Studios
1:29
Dragon Assistant by Nuance
Nuance Dragon
1:31
There Came an Echo: Iridium Studios on Using Voice Recognition to Control Your Gameplay
Intel Software TV
4:14
Fun with IntelRealSense
MRM McCann
0:07
Intel RealSense 3D camera will see Depth much like a Human Eye.
Rajamanickam Antonimuthu
5:48
Bill Gates Talks the Next Big Thing (Late Night with Jimmy Fallon)
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
2:44
Achin Bhowmik: Interactive experiences with perceptual computing Achin is the director of perceptual computing at Intel, where he leads the development and implementation of natural, intuitive, and immersive human-computer interaction technologies and solutions.
TEDInstitute
10:17

Jan 14, 2015: Check out the beautiful pre-show entertainment for Intel’s CES 2015 keynote, featuring Intel RealSense technology made available by Intel® RealSense™ YouTube channel

 For more information please visit http://www.intel.com/RealSense and follow the communications at http://www.facebook.com/IntelRealSense, http://www.youtube.com/IntelRealSense and http://www.twitter.com/IntelRealSense

Jan 8, 2015: Chip Shot: Intel® RealSense™ Technology at CES 2015 with videos inserted here for your convenience from the Jan 14 collection of new videos on Intel® RealSense™ YouTube channel as well as with additional information from Getting familiar with Intel RealSense technology part of the detailed Intel® RealSense™ Technology and Software at CES 2015 post on the Intel® Developer Zone

This week at CES Intel provided more details on Intel RealSense Technology  and system availability, as well as a glimpse of what’s possible.

 Join the Intel RealSense technology group for a bite-size tour of the Intel booth, one RealSense demo at a time.
 A complete guided tour of the 110ft long tunnel packed with RealSense cameras on the Intel booth.

Device manufacturers including Acer, Asus, Dell, Fujitsu, HP, Lenovo, and NEC are delivering systems spanning tablets, 2 in 1s, notebooks and All-in-One desktops with Intel RealSense 3D cameras.

 Intel RealSense Snapshot is a first-of-its-kind [most basic] solution that takes photography to another dimension with multi-camera, depth-enabled Intel® Atom™ processor-based tablets. It was demonstrated during Intel’s CES 2015 keynote onworld’s thinnest tablet, Dell Venue 8 7000” which was launched in January 2015 for $399 and also won the Best of CES for Innovation 2015 award. Capturing a high-definition depth map optimized for photography along with your full-resolution image, you can change focus and take measurements with a touch of a finger, add dynamic effects and motion, and discover things in your photos you never thought were there! The keynote demo shows depth based real-time refocus as well as depth based colour filtering effects.
This is a Jan 4 video from the CNET’s coverage of CES 2015 “liked” by Intel® RealSense™ YouTube channel. In more general terms the Intel RealSense 3D camera for PCs is redefining how you control your devices, and enables new ways to interact in gaming, entertainment, collaboration, and content creation. Featuring full 1080p color and a world-class depth sensor, the world’s first and smallest integrated 3D camera delivers real-time depth sensing for all-in-one PCs, laptops, and 2 in 1s that is so precise it enables truly natural and immersive interaction.

Intel has also worked with over 65 developers who are building apps  specifically for Intel RealSense technology. Demos during Intel CEO Brian Krzanich’s keynote showed what else is possible now and in the future, from wearable technology to help the vision-impaired to autonomous drones. Get more information.

Jan 6, 2015: A glimpse of what’s possible with Intel RealSense Technology from the detailed Intel® RealSense™ Technology and Software at CES 2015 post on the Intel® Developer Zone

In his CES keynote, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich highlighted a number of ways Intel RealSense technology is bringing cutting-edge computer/human interactions to the marketplace.

Food Network with Intel RealSense 3D Camera: Intel and Food Network have collaborated to create a cooking application that uses Intel RealSense technology to eliminate the need to touch the device and instead use gesture control and voice commands on an Intel RealSense 3D camera enabled device for easy scrolling through the application and navigation of recipes in real time.  This will be available in the Spring of 2015.

All-in-one PC with 3D Display Concept: Intel showcased a futuristic “3D I/O” technology that integrates Intel RealSense technology with a specialized glass screen to enable an immersive, hologram-like experience without the need for additional eyewear.  It is available to experience in Intel’s CES booth.

Watch what happens at the 2015 CES Intel Keynote when 3D input, powered by Intel RealSense technology, is combined with 3D output, via our “floating display”. The results are right out of a science fiction film.

Intel RealSense 3D cameras can also provide intuitive, sight-based capabilities for solving complex problems in different application and devices.

Intel RealSense technology and wearables: Looking into the future, Krzanich also demonstrated a wearable technology research project that can help vision-impaired people navigate their environments more easily and safely. The wearable solution places sensors on clothing, equipped with Intel RealSense 3D cameras that sense the vicinity and trigger vibrations as a feedback mechanism, helping people to navigate their environment.

Intel RealSense technology inside Robotics and Multi-copter drone: Intel demonstrated an iRobot® AVA® 500 video collaboration robot equipped with Intel RealSense cameras to support the platform’s autonomous navigation and obstacle avoidance technologies.

Watch as Brian Krzanich introduces iRobot’s teleconferencing robot with autonomous navigation, featuring Intel RealSense technology. iRobot is using Intel’s real-time depth-sensing technology to build more intelligent, more useful robots. Check it out!

In addition, Intel highlighted the growing possibilities for multi-copter drones, including the inspection of fields and power lines, delivering goods, and even monitoring endangered species. As these drones become smarter, they can see, react, and even move safely through the environment. During the CES keynote, Intel created a make-shift obstacle course inside the CES keynote ballroom and demonstrated a number of AscTec* Firefly multi-copter drones equipped with Intel RealSense cameras that provide 360-degree sensing and enabled with unique collision avoidance capabilities. Intel’s RealSense camera module, which weighs as little as 8 grams and is less than 4mm thick, brings depth perception to drones both indoors and outdoors with minimal impact to payload and flight times.

Watch as Brian Krzanich plays a game of “drone ping-pong” and showcases a “drone obstacle course”, featuring both AscTec’s self-navigating drones and Intel RealSense technology.

Jan 6, 2015: from the Intel CEO Outlines Future of Computing press release with the related video inserted from the Jan 14 collection of Intel® RealSense™ YouTube channel for your convenience

Krzanich demonstrated a range of capabilities that will be introduced in products by the end of the year, including True Key, a newly announced cross-platform application by Intel Security to address the hassle of passwords. The True Key application uses personal factors like the face, device or fingerprint to make logging in easier and safer. True Key is supported on iOS*, Android*, Windows*, Mac*, and across all your favorite browsers. It will also be preinstalled on devices from HP* and Lenovo* and a part of McAfee LiveSafe in the coming months. Visit www.truekey.com for access to the limited release of True Key.

 Watch as Brian Krzanich showcases Intel RealSense technology and Intel True Key at his CES 2015 keynote.
CES 2015 Intel Keynote: Intel RealSense Technology + ADT  Watch as Brian Krzanich demonstrates how Intel RealSense technology, ADT, and Intel True Key are marrying security with convenience. He shows a multi-factor authentication system for a home security system, using a person’s phone, as well as facial recognition powered by Intel RealSense technology and Intel True Key, to allow a person to unlock a door.

Jan 6, 2015: from the Intel CEO Outlines Future of Computing press release with the related video inserted from the Jan 14 collection of Intel® RealSense™ YouTube channel for your convenience

As computing moves further into the third dimension, Krzanich welcomed Dion Weisler, executive vice president of HP’s printer and personal system’s business. Weisler discussed how HP is working to enable a blended reality ecosystem and announced that the Intel® Core™ i7 processor will power the company’s forthcoming HP Multi Jet Fusion technology, engineered to resolve critical gaps in speed, quality and cost. Weisler said the added performance and scale of Intel’s technology is critical to realize the full potential of 3-D printing.

 CES 2015 Intel Keynote: HP Sprout + Intel RealSense Technology. Watch as Brian Krzanich showcases HP’s Sprout, featuring Intel RealSense technology. Sprout makes it easier for people to play, create, and teach. Learn more at sprout.hp.com.

SK Telecom is surging ahead to deliver 5G services in a close partnership with Ericsson and other partners

– 5G 2015⇒2019 – Incremental Evolutionary Development and Standardization of 5G Technologies for the New Era of Wireless Internet of the 2020’s and 2030’s: An Outlook as of January 1, 2015
– Wi Euiseok [of SK Telekom] on Innovating Phone App for the Smart 2.0 Era [this same blog, January 9, 2015]

January 5, 2015Korean Telco to Showcase Smart Home, IoT Devices at CES South Korea’s largest telco SK Telecom has unveiled plans to launch new devices this year to help drive the company’s growth in smart home and Internet of Things. The Korea Times reported it will be showcasing some of these at this week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, featuring seven new offerings in audiovisual, wellness, and education. SK Telecom said it had expanded its current “smart appcessory” business to include the “lifeware” division, to focus on promoting the company’s smart home and Internet of Things businesses as new growth engines.

More information:

December 29, 2014:

SK Telecom Commercializes World’s First Tri-band LTE-A Service [press release]

  • Launches tri-band LTE-A service by aggregating three different frequency bands: At its peak speed of 300Mbps, users can download a 1GB movie in just 28 seconds
  • Plans to offer a strong coverage by building more than 26,000 2.1GHz base stations within the first quarter of 2015
  • With the aim to deliver the highest quality of service, the company will first allow a group of consumers to experience and evaluate the service
SK Telecom (NYSE:SKM) today announced that it launched commercial tri-band LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) service for the first time in the world.
Tri-band LTE-A service offers data speeds of up to 300Mbps by aggregating three component carriers in three different frequency bands: 20MHz bandwidth in 1.8GHz band, 10MHz bandwidth in 800MHz band, and 10MHz bandwidth in 2.1GHz band.
The service is four times faster than LTE and 21 times faster than 3G service. For instance, at its peak speed, Tri-band LTE-A service allows users to download a 1GB movie in only 28 seconds.
Prior to today’s commercialization of tri-band LTE-A Carrier Aggregation (CA), SK Telecom has been offering LTE-A service by aggregating two carriers: It launched 150Mbps LTE-A service by aggregating 10MHz bandwidth in 1.8GHz band and 10MHz bandwidth in 800MHz band in June 2013, and began 225Mbps Wideband LTE-A service by aggregating 20MHz bandwidth in 1.8GHz band and 10MHz bandwidth in 800MHz band in June 2014, both for the first time in the world. The company has developed the world’s first tri-band LTE-A CA technology in January 2014 and successfully demonstrated the 450Mbps tri-band LTE-A by binding three 20MHz bands at the Mobile World Congress 2014, held in Barcelona, Spain in February 2014.
Moreover, with the successful commercialization of tri-band LTE-A CA, SK Telecom not only secures an important edge in LTE-A 4-band CA and 5-band CA, but also moves a step closer to realizing 5G service. The company, under its technology roadmap on 5G, is making aggressive efforts to develop the world’s fastest telecommunication technology.
SK Telecom plans to offer an unmatched tri-band LTE-A service coverage in Korea. In order to provide tri-band LTE-A service, base stations that support three different frequency bands are required. Tri-band LTE-A is offered in areas where coverage of all three component carriers intersect./Tri-band LTE-A is offered in areas where signals from all three frequency bands – i.e. 800MHz, 1.8GHz, 2.1GHz – overlap
Since the company has already secured Wideband LTE-A coverage in main areas of all 84 cities nationwide – meaning that it already has in place 800MHz and 1.8GHz base stations – it can offer tri-band LTE-A service by simply adding 2.1GHz base stations. The company plans to build more than 26,000 2.1GHz base stations within the first quarter of 2015 to provide its customers with the fastest mobile telecommunications service in Seoul/ Seoul Metropolitan Area, central areas of all cities nationwide as well as all subway lines in Korea.
Galaxy Note 4 S-LTE, the first tri-band LTE-A capable device, will first be sold limitedly to a group of consumers who wish to use the service ahead of others and provide feedback on issues including its performance (e.g. speed, transmission stability, etc.) and convenience features. Through this process, SK Telecom aims to further improve its tri-band LTE-A service to better meet its customers’ needs and provide them with greater value through new mobile value-added services optimized for the ultra-fast tri-band LTE-A. SK Telecom subscribers, including this group of early users, will be able to enjoy the new service at the same price as LTE.
Lee Jong-bong, Executive Vice President and Head of Network Division said, “With the launch of the world’s first tri-band LTE-A service, we will not only provide our customers with unprecedented network speeds, but also offer differentiated and diverse mobile value-added services that meet customers’ needs and interests.”
About SK Telecom
SK Telecom (NYSE: SKM, KSE: 017670), established in 1984, is Korea’s largest telecommunications company with more than 27 million mobile subscribers, accounting for over 50% of the market. The company reached KRW 16.602 trillion [$15.2B] in revenue in 2013. As the world’s first company to commercialize CDMA, CDMA 2000 1x, CDMA EV-DO and HSDPA networks, SK Telecom launched the nation’s first LTE service in July 2011. SK Telecom also became the world’s first mobile carrier to launch 150Mbps LTE-Advanced and on June 26, 2013 and 225Mbps LTE-Advanced on June 19, 2014 through Carrier Aggregation. Backed by rapid nationwide deployment, a rich device lineup and diverse mobile value added services, the company secured over 16.3 million LTE and LTE-Advanced subscribers as of October 2014. Also, based on its strength in network operations business, SK Telecom is seeking new growth engines by building ICT convergence business models in areas of healthcare, enterprise solutions, media and education. For more information, please visit www.sktelecom.com or email to press@sktelecom.com
<Attachment 1>: Evolution of SK Telecoms Mobile Telecommunications Services 
SK Telecom - Evolution of Mobile Telecommunications Services -- 29-Dec-2014

December 7, 2014: Wearable device plans take off in Korea: … According to the nation′s biggest telecom providers,… the number of subscribers to wearable device rate plans is increasing fast. SK Telecom′s “T-Outdoor” service… which is tailored to wearable devices… saw its number of subscribers surpass 25-thousand… just little over a month after it was launched. The service, which is tailored for Samsung′s “Gear S” smartwatch … allows the users to make and receive phone calls without their smartphones. …

October 21, 2014: SK Telecom Publishes White Paper on 5G Technology [press release]

  • Released a white paper on 5G network system, the next generation’s mobile communications technology expected to be commercialized in 2020, at 5G Global Summit held during the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference
  • Covers vision, core technologies, services and etc., suggesting future directions for R&D of 5G technology in academia and industry
  • Plans to lead development of the next generation’s mobile communications technology by accelerating activities as a chair company of 5G Forum in Korea and expanding cooperation with global telecommunications equipment manufacturers
SK Telecom (NYSE: SKM) today announced that the company published a white paper on 5G to suggest new direction for technological evolution to 5G, the next generation mobile communications network.
SK Telecom’s white paper on 5G is now available to the public at 5G Global Summit which is an international 5G conference held on October 20 and 21 during the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference in Busan.
Expecting the era of 5G to arrive in 2020, the white paper outlines analysis, direction and methodologies of 5G network explaining vision, core technologies, services, requirements and spectrum.
Based on its multi-dimensional analysis on 5G network from both user’s and operator’s perspectives, in particular, SK Telecom suggested User Experience, Connectivity, Intelligence, Efficiency and Reliability as 5 Great Values to pursue in the next generation telecommunications technology.
In the paper, SK Telecom anticipates the 5G system architecture to consist of three layers that are service, platform and infrastructure and mapped major technology categories and enabling technologies for each layer. As 5G network-based services, the paper proposes hologram, immersive multimedia*, hyper-connected IoT** among others.
* Immersive multimedia service: deliver realistic multimedia content using a variety technologies including AR(Augmented Reality), VR(Virtual Reality) and hologram.
** Hyper-connected IoT service: connect all ___objects including diverse sensors, smart devices and cars based on large-volume wireless network to bring convenience and innovation to people’s daily lives.
SK Telecom as a chair company of 5G Forum, an industry-academia R&D partnership for 5G in Korea, expects the white paper becomes a basis for diverse future discussions on 5G development including standardization.
Meanwhile, SK Telecom plans to push ahead with further cooperation with world-class telecommunication equipment manufacturers for development of the 5G telecommunications technology. Recently, the company signed a MOU with Samsung Electronics on October 20 for joint research and development of 5G technologies [with aim to provide large-volume high-quality services including AR (Augmented Reality) and hologram based on giga-bit data rates], and millimeter wave mobile communications technology for 5G*** is being demonstrated in World IT Show 2014.
*** Millimeter wave mobile communications technology for 5G: a technology to use ultra-high frequency bands over 30GHz for telecommunications. The technology, combined with Massive MIMO, enables delivery of giga-bit level data rate.
Earlier, SK Telecom also teamed up with Nokia and Ericsson last June and July respectively for research and development of 5G mobile communications technology and, under such initiative, FDD-TDD aggregation technology and giga-bit data speeds using ultra-wideband transmission technology were demonstrated.
Park Jin-hyo, Senior Vice President and Head of Network Technology R&D Center at SK Telecom, said, “SK Telecom is pleased to publish a white paper on 5G mobile communications technology and thereby suggest the directions for future discussions and research. The company will continue to take the lead in a range of R&D activities for the 5G technology and become the industry leader in the global market as well as in Korea.”
SK Telecom’ white paper on 5G technology is now available for download on the company’s website.

November 17, 2014SK Telecom and Hyundai Livart partner up to create world′s first ′smart furniture’

October 30, 2014:
SK Telecom and Ericsson Develop Smart Wake-Up Technology [press release]

  • Smart Wake-Up Technology decreases interference between base stations and therefore improves data transmission speeds by controlling operation of idle base stations during late night and early morning
  • Improves energy-efficiency of networks by reducing energy waste through intelligent cell operation
SK Telecom (NYSE:SKM) today announced that the company, together with Ericsson, the world-renowned telecommunications technology and service provider, are the first to develop Smart Wake-up, a technology that dynamically wakes up small cells when traffic enters the cell, improving operational efficiency and user experience.
Smart Wake-Up is a new technology to control the operation of idle base stations during late night and early morning. Through intelligent operation control, the base station will be turned off when no mobile phone is detected within the cell boundary, but if any device comes into the coverage then the base station will automatically sense it and reactivate itself.
■ Smart Wake-Up
ST Telecom - Ericsson -- to develop Smart Wake-Up for 5G -- 30-Oct-2014
With the support of Smart Wake-Up, decreased number of active base stations will reduce interference between cells and therefore speed up the data transmission between base stations and devices.
Applying the technology, SK Telecom expects to save operating costs of base stations and enhance durability of networking equipment by mitigating power waste of inactive base stations while improving energy-efficiency of networks.
Energy-efficient network has been rising in importance along with environmental pollution and energy consumption and, accordingly, lively discussions concerning the issue are taking place globally, for example, in ‘Green Touch’, the global consortium for improving the energy efficiency of ICT, and 3GPP, a group for telecommunications technology standardization. Also, energy efficient networking, as a core technology for the next generation mobile communications network, is one of the major agenda items in 5G network discussions including 5G Forum and 5GPPP.
In the recent tests of the technology, SK Telecom confirmed that use of Smart Wake-Up increased data throughput by 18% and reduced power consumption of the base station by 21% while still providing seamless service by reactivating the cell if detected access by a terminal.
Park Jin-hyo, Senior Vice President and Head of Network Technology R&D Center at SK Telecom, said, “Once commercialized, SK Telecom expects the Smart Wake-Up technology to substantially enhance efficiency in networking equipment operation by achieving both network quality improvement and energy saving”.
Thomas Norén, Vice President and Head of Radio Product Management at Ericsson, said, “Ericsson is pleased to cooperate with SK Telecom to maximize the customer experience; especially in today’s environment where the number of LTE subscribers and mobile data traffic is soaring fast. Together with SK Telecom, Ericsson will continue its efforts in technology development to improve the efficiency of network operation”.

January 8, 2015CES 2015: The Power of 5G Erik Ekudden, VP, Technology Strategy, discusses the importance of Ericsson’s innovation in 5G development – leading the way forward to deliver faster, high-performance mobile broadband that meets the growing challenges of the Networked Society in 2020.

July 21, 2014SK Telecom and Ericsson Achieve World’s First Demonstration of Elastic Cell, a Key Enabler for 5G [press release]

  • The Elastic Cell technology will transform the current cell-centric network environment to a user-centric one.
  • Demonstrating data transfer rate improved by up to 50 percent at the cell-edge, SK Telecom aims to commercially launch the technology by 2016.
SK Telecom (NYSE:SKM) today announced that the company, together with Ericsson, the world-renowned telecommunications technology and service provider, successfully demonstrated the Elastic Cell technology on July 21. The technology, demonstrated for the first time in the world, is expected to become a key enabler for 5G.

Elastic cell, also known as Flexible Cell, is a new technology that enables multiple cells near the handset to cooperate for every transmission thereby creating a user-centric environment, compared to the current cell-centric one where each handset communicates with only one specific cell.

ST Telecom - Ericsson -- 1st demo of Elastic Cel for 5G -- 21-July-2014

A serving cell receives information on nearby cells from a handset and selects a group of cells that can improve the network quality in the cell-edge for transmission while temporarily turning off the cells that cause interferences. As a result, Elastic Cell can ensure more seamless data transmission by preventing possible quality degradation that can occur when the handset moves across cell boundaries.
According to SK Telecom and Ericsson, the demonstration confirmed that the technology can improve data transfer rate by up to 50 percent at the cell boundary areas compared to the existing LTE network. With an aim to commercialize Elastic Cell by 2016, SK Telecom will continue to advance the technology.
Once applied, Elastic Cell will enable SK Telecom to provide the most optimized network service to each individual device regardless of its location while bringing the company one step closer to achieving the goal of ‘1Gbps data throughput anywhere’ which is also one of major issues in the minds of ‘METIS (Mobile and wireless communications Enablers for the Twenty-twenty Information Society)’, an EU project for 5G research, and 5G Forum, an industry-academia R&D partnership for 5G in Korea.
Park Jin-hyo, Senior Vice President and Head of Network Technology R&D Center at SK Telecom, said, “SK Telecom, together with Ericsson, succeeded in the world’s first demonstration of Elastic Cell which is expected to become a prerequisite for the next generation network.  We will continue to take the lead in developing a variety of technologies necessary to evolve cells.”
Thomas Norén, Vice President and Head of Product Area Radio, Ericsson says: “With this new technology SK Telecom takes an important step toward the next generation of mobile networks. Consumers will benefit from the improved seamless experience wherever they are in the cell and while on the move. SK Telecom has been a leader in technology development of 4G and beyond and we are proud to support the developments.”
Earlier on July 6, the two companies signed a memorandum of understanding at Ericsson’s headquarters in Stockholm, Sweden for joint research on 5G technologies.

January 9, 2015#CES2015: Ericsson 5G evolution will drive economy and jobs Ericsson global CTO, Ulf Ewaldsson

Wi Euiseok on Innovating Phone App for the Smart 2.0 Era

Amidst quests for ‘newness’, we need to take a deeper look at the things that are already there and question their taken-for-grantedness. Wi Euiseok of SK Telecom makes a compelling case for innovation that stems from reinventing technologies that go unquestioned, things that could and should be better.

What It Is Isn’t What It Should Be [Seoul Digital Forum, May 21, 2014]

We have witnessed great strides in the field of mobile telecommunications over the past three decades. Thanks to the remarkable advancements in network speed and smartphone performance, the industry is currently flooded with mobile services such as games, messenger services and video contents. However, ‘phone,’ the most frequently used app in smartphones, was left behind, remaining unchanged all these years. Thus, we made it our task to adapt this app to the Smart 2.0 Era, marked by convergence, connectivity and integration. Here, we present ‘T Phone,’ SK Telecom’s innovative communication platform that will take the ‘phone’ to the next level.

Wi Euiseok, Executive Vice President & Head of Product Planning Division, SK Telecom

Euiseok Wi is Executive Vice President and Head of Product Planning Division of SK Telecom. Since starting his career in 1990 after receiving a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from KAIST, Wi gained extensive experience in the field of ICT by working at over 20 different companies including Solvit System, where he took charge of workstation development in 1990, and Serome Technology, a company he co-founded in 1993.

Dreaming of a world where all computers are connected via the Internet, Wi jointly established Inet Inc., Korea’s first non-carrier Internet service provider (ISP) in 1994. He then joined NHN Corporation (now NAVER Corporation) in 2006 and contributed to the growth of the company by achieving remarkable success with the in-house search advertising platform.

In 2012, Wi joined SK Telecom as the Head of Product Planning Division, tasked with creating new growth engines through the development of new and innovative products. Recently, he grabbed global attention by releasing T Phone, the world’s first integrated phone dialer platform built by a mobile operator, thereby opening a new chapter in the field of ICT.

Original: http://www.sdf.or.kr/2014/en/frame.jsp? p=mainSessions_enView&td=1&i=10000000252

2015: Intel Curie Module prototype with the new Intel Quark SE SoC—the first end-to-end solution designed for wearables

Details about Intel achievements last year (mentioned in the 2nd half of this video as well): 2014: A bleeding edge effort in chips (SoC), COM and software technology (inc. Wind River) for already marketable wearables by Intel has enabled its overall 2015 strategy in IoT and allows to expand its wearable ecosystem with an ‘art of the possible in technology’ article of Dec 11, 2014 – Jan 3, 2015 on this same blog to present Intel’s much more advanced state of its 5G effort (albeit not named as such) than either Ericsson’s or Qualcomm’s. See the 5G 2015⇒2019 analytical page of Dec 30, 2014 for details on the latter.

A “dedicated sensor hub processor and pattern classification engine” (as per Intel CEO Brian Kranich) based on the low-power  32-bit Intel Quark SE SoC with:

  • 384kB Flash memory,
  • 80kB SRAM and
  • a low-power integrated DSP sensor hub with a proprietary pattern matching accelerator that allows it to identify different motions and activities
    quickly and accurately

Intel Curie Module -- 6-Jan-2014This is coming in a fairly unique and novel circularly shaped PCB  module with dimensions of a US dime approximately (~18mm diameter) that can power a solution the size of a button. The PCB module is also containing the other essential components needed to bring digital capabilities, including wireless connectivity, to wearables such as :

  • Bluetooth low-energy radio
  • 6-axis combo sensor with accelerometer and gyroscope
  • battery charging circuitry (PMIC)

“This product just came fresh from our labs, so to show you that it’s working, we created a simple app,” Intel CEO Brian Kranich said at CES 2015. He demonstrated how the button-sized Intel Curie Module was measuring his steps and sending that data to an app on his smartphone.

It is ideal for “always-on” applications such as social media, sports and fitness activities. This can enable efficient and intelligent wearable solutions for a broad range of form factors—including rings, bags, bracelets, pendants, fitness trackers, even buttons.  The module has been designed from the outset to be very power efficient. It can run for extended periods from a coin-sized battery.

To speed the development of wearable products based on the Intel Curie module, Intel is providing a complete software solution that includes a small and efficient real-time operating system (RTOS) together with reference wearable applications called Intel® IQ Software Kits. These software kits are designed to help fashion, sports and lifestyle companies incorporate advanced functionality into their wearable designs, help speed time-to market, and ultimately provide people with a product experience that offers greater utility and value. The kits include the embedded software that runs on the module together with companion smartphone applications and associated cloud capabilities.

The module is scheduled to ship in the second half of this year.

“In the future, we will see wearable products created by companies that have historically never used silicon before…It’s now up to the ecosystem to innovate with this technology; rings, bags, bracelets, pendants and yes, buttons, will all be possible.”
–Michael A. Bell, corporate vice president and general manager of the New Devices Group for Intel

From Congratulations to ESA Rosetta team on successful comet landing! post of Nov 12, 2014 by Paul Parkinson on Wind River blog:

Wind River has recently expanded the potential options available to system architects by providing the VxWorks 7 Microkernel Profile, which brings DSP RTOS levels of extreme scalability to general purpose processors – enabling an application to be scaled to a footprint as small as 20kbytes, which can be used to achieve extremely fast boot times and operate in extremely resource-constrained environments for applications on earth and in deep space.

“The VxWorks Microkernel is a small footprint, highly optimized operating system designed to meet the needs of tomorrow’s wearable and IoT technologies. … Design, develop, debug, and test kernel features, drivers, and/or BSPs [Board Support Packages] for the VxWorks Microkernel Real Time Operating System (VxMicro RTOS)”
–from Wind River Job Ads

From Designing a Great Wearables Experience post of Aug 6, 2014 by Michael A. Bell on Technology@Intel blog:

Intel® IQ Software Kits

Intel® IQ Software Kits are a set of software and features that will enable a number of different functions on wearable devices developed using Intel technology. These software kits will package together the related algorithms, device software, software for smartphone apps, and cloud software for device management and analytics capabilities.

As a first step, we are announcing the first two software kits to enable capabilities related to people’s biometric information and social interactions, called Intel Body IQ and Intel Social IQ, respectively.

Intel Body IQ software will enable a range of capabilities for measuring a person’s biometric information, such as:

  • Counting steps
  • Calculating calories burned throughout the day
  • Automatic and real-time recognition of activity
    • Walking, Running and Biking
  • Smart notifications based on customized goals
  • Visual device notifications for status
  • Richer visualization of data and status on companion smartphone app
  • Full visualization and summary of all personal data through a cloud portal

Intel Social IQ software will enable a range of capabilities tracking a person’s social interactions, such as:

  • User designated phone calls, SMS and social network notifications
  • Device-to-device single state social communication
  • Notifications related to the brand of the device, sent by device OEM
  • Accompanying phone app to configure filtering options
  • Cloud portal for device company to push brand notifications

The Intel Body and Social IQ software kits include smartphone and cloud components that complete the experience by providing rich visualization, analytics and device management capabilities, both for the users and customer brands.

Through Intel IQs we look forward to providing our customers with the option to more easily integrate advanced technology into their designs. As we continue to push the boundaries of wearable tech and explore new capabilities, our goal is to evolve the software kits over time and expand with even more compelling capabilities.

We believe that wearable technology will reach its true potential when designers at sports, fashion, lifestyle and even technology companies have the freedom and latitude to distill their vision and design experience into smart devices.