The Beacon

February 2021

The Beacon

February 2021

Our Plan of Action

Our Innovation is Always On

 

Carl Russo

Chief Executive Officer, Calix

As many of you know, we began our all-platform journey with a simple insight into the future of networks and service-provider business models. The insight was that, in the future, all services would be delivered over a single, converged, subscriber-facing network. Core and central would be the requirement that the services would be always available, and the network be always on. 

The revolutionary AXOS platform now has Always On capabilities. 

Our pursuit of this goal resulted in the revolutionary and unique AXOS® platform. A multi-binary, componentized and stateful operating system, fully abstracted from any hardware resource. While demonstrated many times—including live onstage at our ConneXions conference in 2017—we’ve held the Always On functionality in abeyance as we created processes that would allow our customers to put this to best use. 

Our platforms (AXOS, EXOS®, and Calix Cloud®) enable us to innovate at a phenomenal rate—literally daily. However, this rate of innovation would ultimately be counterproductive for you, our customers, because you must operationalize, educate, market, and ultimately deliver these new offerings to your subscribers. 

The value of the Calix quarterly release cycle. 

This is why we settled on our quarterly cadence of 91 days, whereby all new offerings are delivered to you on the second Tuesday of the second month, every quarter. And now, with the latest 21.1 quarterly release cycle, we have begun the Always On revolution. On a limited basis, the Always On capability will be applied to certain functions in our platforms. Over time, we’ll expand the application of this capability to more areas of our platforms.  

This is just another example of the power of Calix platforms. To learn more, please read Teresa McGaughey’s article below. During this quarterly release cycle, we also announced:

  • Updates to Calix Marketing Cloud, so marketing teams can drive tailored campaigns that address the needs of valuable subscriber segments with the simple push of a button.
  • Enhancements to Calix Support Cloud, so support teams can benefit from an integrated and customizable “cockpit” view of the subscriber experience, enabling them to be proactive and efficient when addressing subscriber issues.
  • New Premier Support Services, which ensure that the platform powering your GigaSpire® BLAST systems and the Revenue EDGE solution is always current.

Every 91 days, our quarterly release cadence is our commitment to creating value for you. When you win, we win. Once again, we have delivered another release cycle full of innovations designed to help you simplify your business, excite your subscribers, and grow your value.

Please enjoy this February edition of the Beacon. Coming soon, many of you will see three new quarterly newsletters designed to keep you informed, educated, and inspired based on your role: Marketing Success Beacon, Customer Support Beacon, and Leadership Success Beacon. We’re excited to deliver these offerings as we partner with you to build a successful future.

 

Business Transformation Profile

TWN Delivers Subscriber Services at Turbo Speed Thanks to Investment in 10G XGS-PON

Rural Americans have seen a growing need for internet services over the past 20 years. Many turned to their local utility providers for help. And those local utilities? Many of them turned to TransWorld Network, Corp. (TWN).

For more than two decades, TWN has delivered fixed wireless broadband connectivity through local utilities. Now, with an established reputation as a leading WISP, TWN is disrupting the industry with the announcement of a new fiber-network buildout across the U.S.

Keeping rural communities on the right side of the digital divide

For years, fixed wireless broadband has delivered sufficient speeds for rural communities. Now, that’s beginning to change. “For more than 20 years, we have helped local utilities keep their communities on the right side of the digital divide,” said Ami Rodriguez, vice president of sales and marketing for TWN. “But as subscribers demand more advanced network services, we need to reevaluate our business model as well.”

To best serve rural utilities and subscribers, TWN—one of the largest WISPs in the country—will transform its broadband network to fiber-to-the-home.

Unmatched broadband services built on comprehensive technological solutions

Rapidly building a cost-effective fiber network across multiple regions is no small task. For guidance, TWN turned to Calix Professional Services. “Calix is the only company with a comprehensive solution that shares our view of the network, recognizes the need to evolve to meet increasing bandwidth demands, and delivers the true carrier-grade solutions we need to make our fiber transformation a reality,” said Rodriguez. 

TWN is deploying 10G XGS-PON using the E9-2, with 2.5 Gigabit uplinks into subscriber homes, to deliver cutting-edge services with a competitive edge. The team selected the AXOS® E9-2 Intelligent Edge System and AXOS Subscriber Management Module (SMm) to simplify the build and reduce network complexity. Now the company can deliver subscriber services within just four weeks of network installation in a new community! 

Their commitment to excellence doesn’t stop when the network is built. With tools like Calix Support Cloud (CSC) and Calix CommandIQ® Personalization Services, TWN ensures an unmatched subscriber experience every step of the way. With support from Calix, TWN will remain an industry leader, utilities will remain competitive providers, and rural communities will remain connected for decades to come.  

 

Your Recommended Action Plan 

 

Did you miss ConneXions? Don't worry.

You can still access all of the recorded sessions
in the On Demand Library

 
 

Revenue EDGE Insights

Create Big Wins for Your Marketing and Support Teams

Naylor Gray

Area Vice President, Product Marketing, Calix

We believe companies with the best data win. That’s why each component of the Revenue EDGE is designed to help you take advantage of subscriber data—which is your most valuable asset. The consumer giants would love to take that data away from you, but our business model helps you retain control of it so you can own your subscriber relationship and keep loyal, happy customers for generations to come. 

Updates to Calix Marketing Cloud. 

With our latest quarterly release, we focused on updates to Calix Marketing Cloud that will enable you to take critical steps in the pursuit of owning subscriber data and leveraging that data to target customers effectively. This will help you dramatically reduce churn and increase revenue. For example, Calix customers like STRATA are leveraging the full Revenue EDGE, including the behaviorial insights in Calix Marketing Cloud, to effectively target subscribers who would benefit from new services and experiences. By doing so, they're driving adoption of their branded mobile app (a 60 percent increase); they've also seen a 59 percent increase in downloads of EDGE Suites apps (like ProtectIQ for enhanced virus and malware protection of the home network).

In our 21.1 release cycle, we've announced updates to Calix Cloud that will help you deliver insights that are even more intuitive and actionable. Here are the highlights (you can also watch our Calix Cloud Marketing UI demo).  

  • Data Visualization: You can now see Insights, Recent Campaigns, and Trends on the homepage—this will help you focus your efforts and trigger new ideas for marketing campaigns. With the enhanced data visualizations, you can apply new filters and create new, focused audiences. For example, think of your work-from-anywhere subscribers, then filter by a number of devices and bandwidth usage to create your own customized audience for your next campaign. 
  • Machine Learning: You can now leverage machine learning to generate focused micro-segments, enable targeted communications, and deliver those communications at the push of a button. For instance, you can simplify marketing operations by automatically sending in-app mobile notifications to subscribers with high-bandwidth usage on lower-tier plans to offer them bandwidth upgrades. This will fuel revenue growth for you.  

Make no mistake, the consumer giants have revolutionized the use of behavioral data to improve insight and process efficiency. However, armed with these latest updates, you can quickly and easily leverage behavioral data to achieve world-class process efficiency, high-impact performance, and greater ROI on your marketing campaigns.

We are here to help you win. To quote Kim Grellner, VP marketing, sales, and service for Oklahoma-based Pioneer Telephone Cooperative, this latest quarterly release "[keeps] our marketing and customer service teams aligned and running efficiently. We have always prided ourselves on being the local company that delivers the ultimate subscriber experience with cutting-edge technology, and this latest release reinforces that mission."

 

Your Recommended Action Plan 

Intelligent Access EDGE Insights

Never Suffer 65 Percent Planned Network Outage Rates Again

Teresa McGaughey

AVP, Intelligent Access EDGE Marketing, Calix

Now more than ever we live in an always-on world. Most of us use video at home daily to attend work and school virtually—add that to the plethora of smart-home cameras, door locks, and light switches, and you can see how homes must now be connected to function.  

The challenges of running a network in an always-on world. 

Did you know that if your subscribers are using Arlo or Ring cameras to monitor their vehicles in the driveway, the video captured is stored in the cloud? So, if you decide to perform a software upgrade in the middle of the night and take the network down, your subscriber may not capture that moment when his or her car is broken into.

Because networks are used 24 hours a day, seven days a week, you don’t have the opportunity to perform software upgrades in the middle of the night and reduce the impact on your subscribers. In addition, performing upgrades typically requires coordination to ensure your business subscribers have the proper notice in advance of network downtime (per their service-level agreements). And then you must consider the overtime required for personnel to do those upgrades. At Calix, our focus has been to simplify the network and the operation of it. That’s how the AXOS platform and our vision of a network with Always On capabilities were born.

The AXOS network meets subscriber’s needs—today and into the future. 

When AXOS was first launched, it was with the promise of delivering an Always On network experience. This experience is possible due to the architecture of AXOS. Its stateful and modular architecture ensures that individual modules can be restarted without impact to the other services running. 

Prior to release 21.1 AXOS already had the ability to self-heal or restart a module during normal operation when an issue was detected. We have taken the next step in our journey with the ability to perform in-service software upgrades. Moving forward AXOS will support Always On upgrades for most maintenance releases (a release outside of the normal cadence release). We will continue to expand on this capability in coming quarterly releases. It is truly exciting to see our vision becoming a reality.   

 

Your Recommended Action Plan

Customer Support Insights

Outperform Consumer Giants With a Faster, More Advanced Support Solution

Martha Galley

Senior Vice President, Customer Engagement and Services, Calix

When your company is up against a billion-dollar brand, it can be easy to focus on your competitor’s advantages. They boast mind-boggling marketing budgets, widespread brand awareness, and tens of thousands of employees. But there’s one area where they simply can’t compete with you: subscriber experience.

As the smaller, local service provider, you can go deeper with each customer and provide unmatched customer service in less time. How? With Calix Support Cloud (CSC). Our 21.1 quarterly release updates put you in control, so you can deliver a world-class experience the consumer giants simply can’t match.

UX and UI updates to simplify advanced troubleshooting.

As a CSR, your goal is to make the subscriber feel seen and understood, but you also need to resolve issues quickly. Sometimes, those goals can feel at odds. Should you provide advanced troubleshooting with personalized service? Or should you focus on efficiency and time to resolution? With the new updates to Calix Support Cloud, you won’t have to choose. 

Following the release, Calix Support Cloud will feel like an intuitive, customizable “cockpit.” Advanced troubleshooting will no longer require extensive training or tedious log snooping. In just a click or two, you’ll have the exact information you need to diagnose and address any customer issue. From now on, you will know more—faster—so you can provide efficient, informed support on every call.

Preserving efficiency throughout the transition.

This update has massive potential to elevate your subscriber experience and simplify your internal processes. However, dramatic changes always carry risk of temporary setbacks unless you’re fully prepared. Equipping your team now for the upcoming overhaul will ensure you don’t lose efficiency in the transition.

At Calix, we are here for you. Meet with your customer success manager and take advantage of the Circles of Success now. Use the assets we provide to develop your migration plan for trialing and rolling out the new UI. Be prepared to test it and enable your team for the migration. Take these steps today, and your team will soon provide an experience that attracts and keeps subscribers for life—no matter who your competitors are.

 

Your Recommended Action Plan 

 
 

Services Insights

How Highland Telephone Cooperative Stays Ahead of Subscriber Demands

Tom Schroer

Senior Director, Services Marketing, Calix

When it comes to your network, are you ahead of the curve—or just keeping up with current demands?  

With our quarterly release, the AXOS® Subscriber Management Module (SMm) is now available on the Calix Aggregation Service Manager (ASM3001), which enables you to aggregate and manage subscribers across legacy and new networks in one integrated framework. Essentially, this combination of SMm, the E9-2 Intelligent Edge System, and the ASM3001 allows you to place critical network functions close to the subscriber. The results? You can reduce the steps required to provision subscriber services to six—nearly an 80 percent decrease. 

Our latest upgrades will help you prepare your network for the long haul to handle subscriber demand for higher speeds and improved availability. If you’re in doubt, just ask Highland Telephone Cooperative (HTC), which turned to Calix Network Consulting Services and the E9-2 Intelligent EDGE system to develop a simplified network architecture that would improve traffic management and network efficiency. 

Four factors that influenced HTC’s network transformation with Calix.  

  1. Best practices and partnership. Calix Network Consulting helped HTC’s engineering team and brought vital best practices into the design process. Coupled with exceptional response from the Calix Support organization, they now have a strong expertise from Calix on their side.   
  2. Improved capacity. With the E9-2 Intelligent EDGE System, HTC will be able to deploy 100 Gbps transport, allowing them to offload existing Calix nodes and grow their network strategically.  
  3. Design flexibility. The E9-2 system provides design flexibility with increased transport capacity and enables HTC to take advantage of the benefits of pushing routing capabilities and subscriber management functions further toward the subscriber edge of their network. 
  4. Solution interoperability. The HTC team found it advantageous to expand the investment they’ve made with Calix solutions. They’re pleased with Calix’s track record of developing systems that interoperate seamlessly. 

We can help you scale your engineering.  

Do you want to transform your network like HTC? Find out how Calix Network Consulting is helping HTC overcome bandwidth concerns and implement Layer 3 benefits with design best practices and expert guidance as they simplify their network with the E9-2 Intelligent EDGE. 

 

Your Recommended Action Plan 

 

Sponsor Spotlight

GLDS Best-of-Suite Billing and Broadband Service Provisioning

GLDS provides a “best-of-suite” customer management, billing, and service provisioning system for the broadband services market. Privately held since its founding in 1980, GLDS delivers a leading turn-key BSS/OSS needed for today’s fiber deployments. GLDS has installed their products for more than 800 operators spanning 47 countries on five continents, including 49 U.S. states. 

GLDS and their products are the result of real-world operator experience beginning in 1963. This expertise results in purpose-built software addressing the unique needs of today’s broadband operators. Ongoing development incorporates the most current engineering innovations, changing regulatory requirements, and direct input from our family of customers.   

Calix and GLDS collaborate to help customers and their subscribers.

The partnership between GLDS and Calix facilitates turnkey, integrated provisioning solutions across the Calix product line, enabling mutual Calix and GLDS communications service provider (CSP) customers to deliver a fully automated subscriber life cycle. 

Tightly integrated with the Calix products AXOS, the web-based GLDS MyBroadbandMarket product gives SMx and CMS operators a branded, configurable customer self-subscribe experience that automates work-order creation, scheduling and service delivery. Plus, field personnel are empowered with the GLDS WinForce tech workforce management solution for autonomous customer engagement. GLDS provides a unique end-to-end solution for Calix FTTX service delivery and provisioning of Calix Cloud.   

Through their collaboration, GLDS and Calix have automated regression testing of new AXOS/SMx releases on a nightly basis—ensuring that features and functions needed for the integration work seamlessly for operators as new revisions of software are released.   

A shared commitment to excellence. 

The continued commitment of GLDS to the Calix Intelligent Access EDGE and EDGE Suites continues to empower operators who leverage customer insights with Calix Marketing Cloud for the modern customer experience-focused marketing teams. Supporting the most challenging wireless customers is made easy by synchronizing the GLDS customer management system with Calix Support Cloud equipment and subscriber details. 

With numerous vendor partners, the GLDS “best-of-suite” approach provides operators with a central platform to bill, manage customers, and automate voice, video, access, and Wi-Fi service delivery.  

Visit the GLDS website at www.glds.com or reach out to sales@glds.com for more information. 

Calix Academy

Take the Guesswork Out of Training and Enabling Your Teams

Training new hires or upskilling your employees should not require you to follow clues or wander around blindly looking for answers. Here are some great tools you can use to find the right path to success.  

Calix Academy Learning Path: Calix Academy is here to help your teams start their learning journey by offering courses from introduction and overview to advanced features and troubleshooting. Start your journey by downloading our learning paths.   

Calix Documentation Library: Browse hundreds of documents written by Calix experts, about everything from product guides to services overviews. Documents are added and updated quarterly.  

tacTV: Need an answer fast? Check out the tacTV library of product and enablement videos developed by our technicians. These instructional videos are one-to-five minutes long and provide quick instruction about our products and services.  

Calix Community: Want to engage with peers, share insights, and learn best practices? Calix Community is a great resource to ask questions, gain knowledge, and find answers from your fellow Calix experts and advocates.  

Customer Success Virtual Engagements: Participate in interactive and engaging experiences with our Customer Success team. Discuss best practices and new functionalities among our experts and Calix customers. 

Contact your account manager or Training@Calix.com to learn more about how to best train your teams in today’s digital world. You can also check out our current Calix Course Catalog.   

 
 

Calix Community News

Featured Blogs and Resources

Top 5 Recent Blog Posts

 

Each month, we highlight the top five recent Calix Blog posts to make sure you don't miss out on the latest news and insights from Calix experts and industry guests.

  1. Wi-Fi Can Resolve Many of Your Help-Desk Calls
  2. Two Seismic Disruptions Happening in Telecommunications Right Now
  3. Plan for the Unexpected by Getting Network Architecture Fundamentals Right
  4. All the Engineering Elements that Go into the Design of a Carrier Class Wi-Fi System
  5. Yes, You Can Offer Subscribers a Cool-Looking Wi-Fi System for Their Coffee Tables 

And don't forget to follow us and check out other insightful articles here.

TAC TV Featured Video

How to Provision an ERPS Ring on AXOS Systems in SMx

Login required.

 

Featured Resources

Customer Resources to Help Keep You on Track

Webinars

  • CommandIQ New UI Overview and Demonstration
    Wednesdays
    11 AM EST | 8 AM PST
  • Intelligent Access Edge: Network Architecture Best Practices
    Friday, March 12
    1:00PM EST | 10:00AM PST
  • Creating Marketing Campaigns Using Data
    Tuesday, March 9
    1:00PM EST | 10:00AM PST

Visit the Calix Virtual Engagements page for a full schedule of sessions (login required).

Release Webinars

  • Marketing Cloud 21.2 Release Update
    May 10, 2021 | 1:00PM EST
  • Support Cloud 21.2 Release Update
    May 11, 2021 | 1:00PM EST

Visit the Calix Virtual Engagements page for registration links (login required).

 

Recent Software Releases

EXOS

Mature*

  • EXOS 21.1.0 (XGS-PON ONUs)
  • EXOS 21.1.0 (NG-PON2 ONUs)

Early Adoption**

  • EXOS 21.1.0 (GigaSpire BLAST u6, u4, u12) 
  • EXOS 21.1.0 (BLAST mesh u4m, GigaMesh)

AXOS

Mature*

  •  AXOS Sandbox: vE7-2/vE3-2/vE9-2 OLT 21.1.0

Early Adoption**

  • SMx 21.1.0
  • AXOS 21.1.0 (E7-2)
  • AXOS 21.1.0 (E3-2)
  • AXOS 21.1.0 (E9-2 OLT)
  • AXOS 21.1.0 (E9-2 ASM3001)
  • DPx 21.1.0.1

* Mature status means the software release is the latest production version recommended for use.

** Early Adoption status means the software release is with select customers conducting field evaluation and providing feedback.
This program requires Calix pre-approval. If you are interesting in joining an Early Adopter group, please go to the Software Center (link below), browse to the desired software release, and click the "Request Software" link to submit a request.

^ Calix Cloud R21.1 and CommandIQ R21.1 are preview editions only. Release 20.4 remains the active version on production Calix Cloud instances and in the app stores until May 2021.

 

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