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Inmarsat : Broadband in the sky to create $5.2bn market in the Middle East by 2035

Inflight broadband has the potential to unlock a £5.2 billion market within the Middle East region by 2035, finds new data released today from the Sky High Economics: Quantifying the commercial opportunities of passenger connectivity for the global airline industry report.Carried out by the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in association with Inmarsat, the worlds leading provider of global mobile satellite communications, the study forecasts that airlines in the region will take a £1.3 billion share of the boost in ancillary revenues.Market potentialBased on current IATA data and industry sources, Sky High Economics shows that airlines around the world will benefit from four new revenue streams:Broadband access charges providing connectivity to passengers inflightE-commerce and destination shopping making purchases on-board aircraft with expanded product ranges and real-time offersAdvertising pay-per-click, impressions, sponsorship deals with advertisersPremium content providing live content, on demand video and bundled W-IFEC accessQuantifying growth opportunitiesThe research argues that as passenger numbers grow globally, so too will passenger expectations for access to high-quality inflight connectivity. The data shows that when it comes to passenger value brought about by new, Wi-Fi enabled ancillary revenue streams, airlines will benefit from an extra £3.21 per passenger. At present, airlines around the world average an additional £17 per passenger from traditional ancillary services like duty free purchases and inflight retail, food and drink sales.Also, despite the gradual blurring that has occurred in the airline type selected by many business passengers, the Middle East region continues to represent one of the higher revenue opportunities for both domestic and international FSCs (Full Service Carriers) in 2035, the split is LCC (Low Cost Carriers) at £239m vs FSC at £511m.

The research confirms the very strong position many global FSCs have that are based there.Dr. Alexander Grous, department of media and communications, LSE and author of Sky High Economics, said: The airline industry is rapidly evolving across the world, including the Middle East. This research shows that airlines have a clear strategic opportunity to become distinctly more retail-focused and reap the benefits of this.Ben Griffin, vice president, Middle East, Africa and South Asia at Inmarsat Aviation, commented: The latest advancements in satellite technology have unlocked exciting new opportunities for airlines to enhance their passenger experience, increase their operational efficiencies and grow important new revenue streams.

Having the right capabilities in place from the cabin to the cockpit is the key to benefitting from everything that a connected aircraft can offer, today and in the future. As the Sky High Economics report has identified, airlines in the Middle East are extremely well positioned to take a lead with the game-changing new trend.Inmarsat is transforming the global aviation industry by bringing complete connectivity to every aircraft and flight path in the world. It is the first and only provider with a complete next-generation High-Throughput Satellite (HTS) network spanning the world.

Inmarsat is also the only aviation broadband provider capable of connecting the complete aircraft from cabin to cockpit.Inmarsats world-leading passenger solutions are complemented by its industry-standard certified safety and operations services. GX Aviation is the worlds first global, high-speed inflight broadband service from a single operator. It allows airline passengers to browse the Internet, stream videos, check social media and more during flights, with an on-board connectivity experience on par with mobile broadband services available on the ground.(c) 2018 All KUNA right are reserved 2017.

Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (Syndigate.info)., source Middle East & North African Newspapers

Milton Keynes first city to get gigabit-speed fibre broadband from Vodafone and Cityfibre

Milton Keynes is set to become a hi-tech city, with news that it is the first community to benefit from Gigabit-capable full fibre broadband under the new Vodafone and CityFibre Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) programme. The project will see a private investment from CityFibre of at least GBP40 million (EUR45.2943 million) into a state-of-the-art digital infrastructure for Milton Keynes. Today’s news follows the announcement two months ago of a strategic partnership between Vodafone and CityFibre.

Milton Keynes is the first location to be announced as part of this partnership, which will involve FTTP being made available in approximately 12 cities and reaching one million homes and business across the UK. By using fibre-optic cables for every stage of the connection from the customer’s home to the Internet, Vodafone will be able to provide residents of Milton Keynes with extremely fast and reliable broadband services capable of Gigabit speeds (1,000 mbps). At that speed, hospitals will be able to download a 2 gigabyte CT scan in just 17 seconds instead of 11 minutes over a standard broadband connection and film fans will be able to download the latest 25 gigabyte Ultra-HD blockbuster in 8.5 minutes instead of 6 hours.Milton Keynes first city to get gigabit-speed fibre broadband from Vodafone and Cityfibre

With population and employment growth and high levels of productivity, Milton Keynes has been identified by the Centre for Cities as one of five Fast Growth Cities in the UK, with significant potential for the future. Vodafone and CityFibre are committed to helping the city, which celebrated its 50th anniversary last year, to meet this potential through the provision of a future-proofed digital network on a par with the best connected cities in the world. CityFibre will start construction of the new FTTP network in Milton Keynes in March this year.

This will be an extension of its existing 160km full fibre network in the city. CityFibre will use modern build techniques to deploy the network quickly and minimise disruption. Once completed, nearly every business and home in Milton Keynes will have FTTP access.

Customers in Milton Keynes will be able to pre-register for the service from today from this link[1], with the first live services expected towards the end of 2018. Milton Keynes was chosen as the first city because of the city’s strong tech sector, the council’s forward-looking commitment to ‘smart city’ initiatives, and the strength of its support for the project. The extent of CityFibre’s existing fibre network in the city and the absence of any alternative digital infrastructure, helped make Milton Keynes a prime candidate for selection.

Milton Keynes first city to get gigabit-speed fibre broadband from Vodafone and Cityfibre

Nick Jeffery

Cllr Peter Marland, leader at Milton Keynes Council, said: “We are delighted that Milton Keynes has been selected as the first city in this full fibre roll-out by Vodafone and CityFibre. As a modern city that prides itself on its smart city ambitions and projects, we are perfectly positioned to make the most of this major private investment in our digital infrastructure. We know that the city will get behind this project to ensure that every home and business unlocks their digital potential.”

Vodafone UK chief executive Nick Jeffery commented: “Milton Keynes is fast becoming a UK leader for productivity and growth, with its economic prospects only likely to improve following the opening of the East West Rail project. We believe that residents deserve a digital communications service to match their ambitions. This is why we are providing gigabit-capable connections to transform the way we live and work.”

Greg Mesch, chief executive at CityFibre added: “The partnership between Vodafone and CityFibre aims to tackle the huge problem the UK faces in terms of digital inadequacy and will help fulfil our vision of a Gigabit Britain. We are at the early stages of creating the Gigabit fibre network that the UK needs and deserves, and with the announcement of Milton Keynes as our first project we are well on our way to making this vision a reality. Full speed ahead.”

Advanced fibre networks are also critical for mobile networks, providing the very high-capacity backhaul connections required for new Internet of Things products such as smart home sensors, as well as future 5G mobile services from the early 2020s.

Comment on this article below or via Twitter: @IoTNow_OR @jcIoTnow[2][3]

References

  1. ^ link (www.vodafone.co.uk)
  2. ^ Twitter: @IoTNow_ (twitter.com)
  3. ^ @jcIoTnow (twitter.com)

Crucial MX500 review

With the majority of PCs and laptops having SATA ports, companies that make SSD drives are determined to support this technology even if superior interface options are available. The Crucial MX500[1] is aimed squarely at those people who have traditional spinning hard drives or older-generation SSDs, and fancy something better, bigger or just a new drive in their system for more capacity. With new models from Samsung and others, what makes the MX500 the SSD you might want?

Let’s find out.

Crucial MX500: Price

The MX500’s price is best described as aggressive. At just over GBP70 (£80) for the 250GB, and around GBP125 (£140) for the 500GB capacity reviewed here, those SSD makers who don’t supply their own NAND modules are going to find their margins squeezed if they want to compete. Looking at these figures in more detail, the cost per GB goes down as the capacities increases, making the 2TB drive the most cost-effective choice, for those that can afford one that is.

The benefit of the 2TB is that it also has the greatest TBW (Total Bytes Written) endurance, making it even more desirable. Compared with the competition, the MX500 is cheaper than Samsung’s 850 Evo[2] (and the coming 860 Evo), the SanDisk Ultra II, the Kingston SSDNow UV400 and OCZ Toshiba Trion 150 Series. To get a 500GB drive at this price point encompasses the Kingston A400, Sandisk SSD Plus, Panther AS300 or Western Digital’s Blue SSD.

And of these drives, only the WD Blue offers anywhere near the performance of the MX500. See our list of the best SSDs[3] to buy for more alternatives. In short, the MX500 offers premium performance for budget level expenditure.

Note that you can get this SSD in two different form factors – see Features & Design below for more.

The Crucial MX500 range

Form factor

Capacity

Part Number

Sequential
Read MB/s

Sequential Write MB/s

Random
Read IOPS

Random
Write OPS

TBW

2.5in

250GB

CT250MX500SSD1

560

510

95K

90K

100TB

500GB

CT500MX500SSD1

560

510

95K

90K

180TB

1TB

CT1000MX500SSD1

560

510

95K

90K

360TB

2TB

CT2000MX500SSD1

560

510

95K

90K

700TB

M.2 2280

250GB

CT250MX500SSD4

560

510

95K

90K

100TB

500GB

CT500MX500SSD4

560

510

95K

90K

180TB

1TB

CT1000MX500SSD4

560

510

95K

90K

360TB

Features and Design

We’re not sure what happened to the MX400, because the prior model in this series was the MX300, a decent design that broke new ground when it first appeared back in August 2016. For those who like SSD history, the Crucial M500 was the flagship product in 2013, so the MX500 isn’t really a follow up to that device. Since then the inexpensive BX300 has appeared, succeeding the BX200[4], and now the MX500 replaces both that and the M500 in a single solution.

With Crucial not offering a ‘Pro’ series equivalent tier, the MX500 stands entirely alone as the flagship SATA SSD. Crucial MX500 review

Initially it comes in four sizes (250GB, 500GB, 1TB and 2TB) for the 2.5in Form Factor and three (250GB, 500GB and 1TB) for the M.2 Type 2280 SSD. Before anyone with an M.2 slot on their motherboard gets overly excited, the M.2 version is a SATA drive and not PCIe NVMe, and therefore has identical performance to its hard-drive-sized siblings.

Another comparison worth noting is that the era of getting different performance levels at each capacity is now truly behind us with the MX500. Because irrespective of capacity these drives all have identical quoted read and write performance, and this even extends to the IOPs. Where they differ, in other than capacity and price, is that the larger drives have greater TBW (Total Bytes Written) values, giving them a theoretically longer life expectancy.

There isn’t anything unusual about this, because logically if you have twice as much space then and each byte can be written X times before it fails then you can write twice as much data before hitting that limit. On the MX500 the scaling of TBW values is a little uneven, but the largest 2TB drive has 700TB TBW, the equivalent of writing a 50GB Blu-ray disc to the devices every day for 38 years straight. The 500GB drive we tested would have lasted nearly a decade doing the same exercise, should lifespan be a concern for you.

Another interesting feature added to this design is Integrated Power Loss Immunity, a mechanism that protects the drive from incomplete writes should the power be unexpectedly cut in mid-operation. All drives can become corrupted during power failures, especially if the part of the process still to complete is the updating the master file tables at the time, so this type of protection is very useful. It might not protect you from partial file write, but the drive should at least have a readable structure after the power comes back.

Crucial MX500 review

In the box along with the drive Crucial provides a plastic spacer, used in those laptops designed for older (and thicker) 2.5in hard drives, and instructions as to where you can download a free version of Acronis True Image HD software, for easy data migration from your existing drive. Having ticked the boxes for price and functionality leaves the MX500 only one hurdle left, performance.

Crucial MX500: Performance

This isn’t the very quickest SATA SSD we’ve ever tested, but it’s hardly slow either. The profile of this design is one that is strong at reading, acceptable at writing and better at both than any previous Crucial SSD design.

Benchmarks

Our typical weapons of choice for benchmarking SSDs are CrystalDiskMark and AS SSD benchmark, both of which provide accurate, reliable synthetic benchmark data.

CrystalDiskMark Random

Crucial MX500 review

Forgetting all the SSDs that use PCIe connections, the Crucial MX500 is one of the fastest SATA drives we’ve ever tested for reading on this test.

Marginally slower than the Integral P Series 4, it kicks the older BX200 series to the kerb. Sequential writing is also good, but not best in class. It’s on par with the Samsung 850 Evo, and a bit slower than the Kingston SSDNow KC400.

Again 4k reads are excellent, where 4K writes are good but no rosette.

CrystalDiskMark All 0x00 (0 Fill)

Crucial MX500 review

Like the Random results, the MX500 is a strong contender across many tests, but manages all its exceptional results on the reading side of the coin. The Random Sequential Q32T1 score is excellent where conversely the write is good, but not exceptional. That said, the write speed on 4KiB is great.

If there is a weakness here, it is in the Random Write 4KiB Q32T1 test, where the numbers are much lower than we’d of expected.

AS SSD read/write

Crucial MX500 review

Wishing not to put all our testing eggs in just the CrystalDiskMark basket, AS SSD provides a good opportunity to support (or contradict) our other benchmarks. The Sequential Read performance of the MX500 mirrors the CrystalDiskMark results, being exceptionally good. But, as per the previous tests write performance isn’t as strong compared with the likes of the Samsung 850 and 750 Evo, Kingston KC400 and the Toshiba Q300.

This trend continues through most of the elements in this test, where read performance is wonderful and write speed is decent, but not remarkable. The only exception to this is the 4k-64 Write test, where the MX500 is better than almost anything else we’ve previously tested.

AS SSD Copy Benchmark

Crucial MX500 review

The Copy part of the AS SSD application simulates moving a range of file sizes defined as ISO, Program and Game. ISO was quicker than another other SATA SSD, as was Game.

The oddity of this test is that the MX500 delivers higher scores on the ISO part of this test than it should be capable given the SATA interface. The numbers for Program speed are more believable if high, and the Game test is about twice what it should be.
It would be prudent to assume that the way the MX500 organises its cache has somehow flummoxed this benchmark.

AS SSD Compression Test

Crucial MX500 review

This test doesn’t provide comparison numbers. It’s more about spikes on the graph and how these represent processing logjams for variably compressed data.

What we’re looking for is reasonably parallel performance tracks for reading and writing, and a lack of random spikes. The gap between the lines could be narrower, but it’s hardly wide. And, the spikes appear in roughly the same place on subsequent tests.

We’ve seen straighter lines and fewer spikes, but this isn’t a bad result by any standard.

Should I buy the Crucial MX500?

With SATA III 6GB/s connection being a limitation than SATA connected drives can’t easily circumvent, companies that make them have been forced to get creative to differentiate their products in the market place. Where some SSD makers have taken to giving their new products a very high TBW, Crucial has taken a slightly different tack. That’s not to say that the TBW on the MX500 is poor, it isn’t.

The performance is also generally good, within the limitations imposed by the SATA interface.

Those that want the ultimate speed will be sourcing PCIe M.2 SSDs that the SATA MX500 just can’t compete
With price being the key strength of this design makes it seem unlikely that Crucial will revamp the BX series drives anytime soon.

References

  1. ^ Crucial MX500 (uk.crucial.com)
  2. ^ Samsung’s 850 Evo (www.techadvisor.co.uk)
  3. ^ best SSDs (www.techadvisor.co.uk)
  4. ^ BX200 (www.techadvisor.co.uk)