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The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) and QuEST Forum, a global association dedicated to quality and sustainability in the information communication and technology (ICT) industry, have reached an agreement to merge to create a larger organization. - John Chambers may have been the synonymous figure at Cisco, leading the company as its CEO and then as executive chairman. All of that will come to an end when he steps down from his position in December when his term expires. - As service providers accelerate their 100G and 400G deployments, it’s clear that two vendors—Ciena and Cisco— are gaining the benefit as key suppliers in these sectors. Cignal Al confirmed the role these two vendors are taking in the market in its 400G market forecast. - TDS Telecom is a fan of deploying FTTH in the last mile, but as a telco that serves rural areas with copper facilities the service provider targets deployments in areas where it can make a business case work. - Verizon told the FCC that gaining access to a more efficient pole attachment process will enable the service provider to more effectively expand small cells to enhance wireless coverage and the supporting fiber facilities for wireless backhaul. - OFS, the optical fiber and connector subsidiary of Furukawa Electric, plans to nearly double its 2016 optical fiber manufacturing capacity by 2019 and to increase its optical fiber cable manufacturing capacity. - Windstream says the advent of SD-WAN and Office Suite will enable it to breathe much-needed life into its SMB ILEC and SMB CLEC units, which have seen revenue struggles in recent years. - Uniti says dark fiber and managed service small cell backhaul requests from the nation’s largest wireless operators in the Tier 2 and Tier 3 markets it serves are growing. - China Telecom Global has launched its SD-WAN service portfolio for multinational corporation (MNC) customers, selecting Versa as its primary vendor. - The Broadband Forum has published the distributed virtualized Customer Premises Equipment (vCPE) standard, aiming to provide network standards for the growing SD-WAN segment for businesses. - CenturyLink is not afraid that SD-WAN is going to cannibalize its long-standing MPLS revenue base. Instead, the service provider sees SD-WAN as being a complementary element in its broader business service portfolio. - Amdocs has developed what it says is the first network functions virtualization (NFV) platform based on Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP) for service providers. - Verizon is no longer considering a large-scale acquisition of a major cable MSO as a way to get the fiber infrastructure it needs to support a multipurpose fiber network for 4G and 5G wireless and enterprise services. - Andre Fuetsch, president of AT&T LABS and CTO, has been named chair of the ONF's board following the restructuring of the group as an open source-centric organization. - Frontier is taking a bullish stance on FTTH, with plans to roll out service to 50,000 to 100,000 homes over the next two years. The service provider's network expansion is just one of several moves it has planned following a series of subscriber declines in recent quarters. - Comcast Business has taken another step forward with its network virtualization plans, announcing the debut of its SD-WAN product that it plans to offer in conjunction with its 1 Gbps DOCSIS 3.1 broadband service for businesses.   - AT&T business customers will soon be able to move workloads between any of their public, private and hybrid cloud platforms by leveraging the telco’s enhanced NetBond for Cloud service. - Level 3 Communications, which will soon be part of CenturyLink, continues to threaten the global Ethernet services ranking long enjoyed by Orange Business Services and AT&T. - Verizon has been surprisingly mum about the progress it has made with network virtualization plans, prompting some to wonder how far along the service provider is or if it has a large announcement pending. - AT&T has an opportunity to continue competing in the $70 billion business services market, but the service provider says that business customers’ investment is being hampered by high corporate tax rates. - CenturyLink has moved the date of closing its pending acquisition of Level 3 to the end of October, giving remaining state and federal regulators more time to complete reviews. - Vodafone has joined the Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP) Project as a Platinum member, giving credence to the growing software-based effort by providing its perspective as a major global service provider deploying SDN and NFV. - As AT&T assesses Equifax’s recent cyber breach, the service provider said there was no breach of its systems or of the data it maintains and that the perpetrators targeted only Equifax systems. - AT&T has finished testing a single-wavelength 400 Gigabit Ethernet data speed over its production network, capping off the final phase of what has been a multistep trial that began last year to evolve its Ethernet service portfolio and open network vision. - Windstream is confident that it can move the needle on its broadband subscriber base by enhancing speeds and competitive pricing. But the service provider has its work cut out for it as cable operators like Charter Communications and Comcast lure customers with gigabit offerings. -