Agere Announces Multiservice Solutions

Agere Systems announces new Festino system card solutions for multiservice communications network equipment

June 2, 2003

5 Min Read

ATLANTA -- Agere Systems (NYSE: AGR.A, AGR.B) today announced its Festino(tm) system card solutions for multiservice wireline and wireless networking equipment aimed at accelerating the deployment of more versatile and lower cost equipment solutions and network services. The solutions, which will consist of validated reference designs, can reduce equipment system development costs by more than 50 percent and cut the cost to deploy services for communications service providers by more than 30 percent. The new Festino solutions will be demonstrated at the SUPERCOMM trade show (Agere booth #21246) here June 3-5.

Agere will provide validated reference designs that integrate optical components from Agilent Technologies, the No. 1 provider of optical transceivers, and line interface chips from Exar, a leading provider of T1/E1/J1 and T3/E3 multi channel Line Interface Units (LIU) chips. Agere has also entered into an agreement with Celestica, a world leader in electronics manufacturing services (EMS). Celestica will work with Agere to offer customized solutions to equipment suppliers, based on Agere's validated reference designs.

"The capital expense budgets of network service providers have declined by more than 35 percent over the last two years, operating expense is being squeezed, but network traffic continues to grow," said Allen Nogee, a principal analyst with In-Stat/MDR. "Service providers are being challenged to deploy new revenue-generating services with minimal equipment investment. Agere's Festino solutions are aimed squarely at helping to address this challenge."

"Festino represents a new way of doing business in the communications networking industry," said Sohail Khan, executive vice president of Agere's Infrastructure Systems Group. "Network equipment suppliers increasingly want to invest less time and money on standard system elements, and are looking to strategic component vendors for design, integration and validation expertise, such as Festino solutions."

By providing a reference design of integrated software and components, Festino system card solutions also help network equipment companies to significantly reduce development costs. With R&D budgets totaling upwards of $24 billion last year, equipment companies can redirect their cost savings to developing features that differentiate them in the marketplace. In addition, equipment manufacturers will be able to reduce their own design costs by using Celestica's expertise in providing customized design and manufacturing services.

"We are pleased Agere chose to work with Celestica as its provider of design and electronics manufacturing services," said Joseph Mixsell, vice president, Global Design Services, Celestica. "Our heritage in design services will allow us to bring a tremendous depth and breadth of capability to bear for Agere. Celestica's industry-leading design capabilities will bring new levels of customization, reduce costs and improve time-to-market for Agere and its customers."

The first three applications of Festino system card solutions target the $8.5 billion market for multiservice networking equipment. The Festino Optical Transport Solutions, Aggregation and Grooming Solutions and Converged Network Solutions are targeted for use in line card system reference designs that use a set of pre-validated, interconnected chips and optical components in a networking system to perform aggregation, switching and transport of communications signals in a network. This solution can accelerate network equipment providers' time to market by up to a year.

Agilent is providing integrated fiber optic transceivers for all three Festino solutions. The company offers the industry's broadest line of transceivers for enterprise, storage and metropolitan network applications.

"The importance of providing these types of integrated solutions for our customers has never been more apparent," said Dick Chang, senior vice president and general manager of Agilent's Semiconductor Products Group. "As the world leader in fiber optic transceivers, Agilent delivers economical, high-performance solutions for networking. By working with other industry leaders such as Agere, Exar and Celestica, we can provide even more value to our customers, and help them to reduce their time to market."

The Festino Optical Transport Solutions will center on Agere's MARS(tm) Synchronous Optical Network/Synchronous Digital Hierarchy (SONET/SDH) framer chips, including the MARS Universal. This chip is the industry's most integrated, full-featured and versatile framer for multi-service access and metro networks. The chip scales from rates of 155 megabits per second (OC-3) to 10 gigabits per second (OC-192). Also included in the solution are the company's FlexTime(tm) clock switch chips. The Optical Transport Solutions can reduce the costs of designing and testing optical line cards by nearly 60 percent and significantly improve time to market.

Festino Aggregation and Grooming Solutions will include Agere's high-performance mapper devices for multi-service access from its FlexMap(tm) family, and the company's FlexTime clock switch chips. Exar's line interface unit (LIU) chips are also used in Agere's Festino Aggregation and Grooming Solution. Exar's offerings will include its T1/E1/J1 with the company's proprietary R3 Technology(tm), as well as their leading T3/E3/STS-1 LIU chips and LIU Jitter Attenuator combination devices. The solution is targeted at network edge applications where voice and data lines come together, such as multiservice network access systems, third-generation wireless radio network controllers, access concentrators and voice gateways.

"Exar is excited to be working with Agere as part of the Festino System Card Solutions," said Dr. Roubik Gregorian, Exar's chief operating officer. "The combination of Exar's interface solutions with Agilent's transceivers, and Agere's mappers and switches will drive dramatic improvement in system performance, board space requirements, cost savings, and design flexibility, making the Festino Solutions unique in the marketplace."

The Festino Converged Network Solutions address data and packet networking technology, such as Agere's industry-leading Ethernet over SONET and packet over SONET. The foundation of the Converged Network Solutions is Agere's Ethernet and packet framer and mapper, MARS-P, as well as its multiservice data path processor family, including Agere's APP550 traffic processor chip family. Coupled with Agere's packet switching chips, these solutions form the foundation for today's and tomorrow's data, packet and next-generation Ethernet networking systems.

Agere Systems

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