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MWC: 5G Cloud will help telcos get to “5G-ready”

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At Mobile World Congress in Barcelona last week, VMware announced a comprehensive 5G Telco Cloud platform that will support both 4G and 5G, helping service providers get to “5G-Ready” faster.

“5G is at a massive inflection point, and planning decisions made today will have far reaching financial and operational ramifications for CSPs going forward,” said Shekar Ayyar, executive vice president, strategy and corporate development and general manager, Telco NFV Group, VMware.

“By moving away from the inflexible, hardware-defined architectures of the past, and rolling out 5G as a fully-virtualised architecture right out of the gate, telcos will be able to beat competitors to market with new value-added services and improve the performance and operational efficiencies of their networks.”

VMware announced new and enhanced solutions spanning the company’s telco portfolio that help ease migration to 5G without sacrificing performance or monetisation of existing networks. These include:

  • VMware Smart Assurance 10, which will provide full integration with VMware vCloud NFV, VMware’s NFV Infrastructure (NFVI) platform, along with new carrier-oriented advancements in VMware NSX-T Data Centre.
  • VMware NSX-T Data Centre, a core component of vCloud NFV that provides a software network overlay across the complete NFV infrastructure and supports multiple telco use cases. The new VMware NSX-T 2.4 release delivers higher levels of cloud-scale, operational simplicity, resiliency, and performance. This includes IPv6 support, near line-rate speed, high availability, and scalability to tens-of-thousands of unique networks per NSX-T Data Centre instance.
  • VMware HCX, which enables CSPs to build hybrid highways interconnecting heritage infrastructure and 5G environments on which commercial OpenStack ecosystem workloads can be migrated to the new distributed, multi-cloud architecture. VMware HCX delivers migration capabilities that can be integrated into Day 1 and Day 2 operations, helping CSPs seamlessly mobilise the applications to 5G with minimum downtime. VMware Integrated OpenStack (VIO), with VMware’s support for Kubernetes orchestration capabilities complement VMware HCX in delivering migration and multi-cloud connectivity.
  • *Project Photon has released Photon OS 3.0, a minimal lightweight Linux operating system (OS), that provides an open, flexible, and stable foundation for edge, IoT, and modern application environments.
  • VMware Pulse IoT Centre and Photon OS can now support multiple IoT use cases across the value chain of organisations with a consistent, secure and scalable infrastructure. Running the VMware Pulse IoT Centre agent with Photon OS on IoT devices enhances the security of these otherwise highly vulnerable devices with certificate, DNS, and security token services. Additionally, VMware Pulse IoT Centre’s over-the-air update capabilities can deliver security patches and BIOS updates to IoT devices as well as updates to the Photon OS running on edge devices. VMware Pulse IoT Centre and Photon OS also support the implementation of containerised applications such as data analytics and data filtering, among others, close to the point of data origination in IoT use cases.

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Google announces its ‘Netflix for gaming’

The new gaming platform, Stadia, promises high-definition gaming on TVs, computers, and mobile devices, writes BRYAN TURNER.

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Google has announced that it has moved into the gaming space, and it focuses on two big aspects of gaming: streaming of games for gamers, which will allow gamers to game anywhere with a fast, low-latency Internet connection; and audiences that watch gamers in-game.

This is a big move in making gaming accessible to more gamers, as it reduces hardware costs, by utilising the benefits of low-latency cloud computing. This will be achieved by using a globally connected network of Google data centres. Gamers who stream games are most likely already using a high-speed, low-latency Internet connection, so access to the Stadia platform will be an added expense.

Through the Stadia platform, gamers will be able to access a large library of games at all times, with no installation time, on virtually any screen. Scaling of hardware like CPU, GPU, memory, and storage is also possible, as one would for cloud server resources.

Google will be leveraging its other platforms, like YouTube, with Stadia streaming. It claims that 200-million people are watching game-related content daily on YouTube. This allows, for example, Stadia players to jump in with other Stadia players – no downloads, no updates, no patches, and no installs.

For console players, Google has designed a custom controller.

The controller was designed to establish a direct connection from the Stadia controller to Google’s data centre through Wi-Fi for the best possible gaming performance. The controller also includes a button for instant capture, saving, and sharing gameplay in 4K resolution. It sports a Google Assistant button and built-in microphone, as many Google products do, for voice control. 

The device is expected to be released later this year, pending FCC approval.

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Nintendo announces Stranger Things 3 game

The Netflix Original show is set to launch a retro-style game on the Nintendo Switch.

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In collaboration with Netflix, developer BonusXP has created Stranger Things 3: The Game. It is the official companion game to Season 3 of the hit original series. The game and latest season are expected to launch on US Independence Day, the 4th of July, a date that will, of course, stick in American gamers’ memories.

This adventure game blends a distinctively retro 16-bit art style, reminiscent of games from the time when the series was set. It is claimed to have modern gameplay mechanics to deliver nostalgic fun with a fresh new twist. Players will be able to experience their favourite show through a mix of exploration, puzzles, and combat.

Just ad in the show, teamwork is at the heart of Stranger Things 3: The Game. Players can team up in a two-player local co-operative, or in single player mode alongside an AI partner. Players can choose to play as one of twelve characters from the show, each with different abilities and attributes. Together, they’ll play through familiar events from the series, while also uncovering never-before-seen Stranger Things secrets, ensuring a fun experience for those new to the world of Stranger Things as well as for those familiar with the series.

Key Features:

  • Experience the show in a new way, exploring the eerie world of Hawkins to uncover new mysteries beyond what’s seen in Season 3.
  • Jump right into the action of this pick-up-and-play adventure: gameplay mechanics that allow players from beginner to advanced skill levels to get in on the fun.
  • Take your game to a higher level by trying out different character combinations and collecting all the secrets the expansive world of Hawkins has to offer.
  • Team up with a friend, leveraging drop-in/drop-out local co-op to take on the mysterious monsters of Hawkins together. While playing solo, use a collection of “buddy commands” to control both characters and still experience all the fun.
  • Choose from 12 playable characters, each with their own unique talents and stats.

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