I might be a tad challenged at programming my new Smart TV but that doesn’t mean that I don’t keep a close eye on technology trends. It’s one of the reasons I think that the agenda for our IP Vision meeting is so critical. This year’s IP Vision Conference & Expo looked at the intersection of business and technology in our rapidly-changing industry. Carriers and solution providers conducted most sessions jointly to demonstrate real-world examples of how new technologies can and are being used to lower costs and diversify revenues. Something top of mind for all of NTCA’s membership. The event’s sold-out show floor exhibited the latest technologies from the most innovative companies in the industry, and provided excellent networking opportunities.
The first pre-conference workshop was conducted by NeoNova, and focused on cyber security, managed wi-fi, and broadband video. Cisco held the second workshop, taking a deep dive into cyber security for both carriers’ networks, as well as for customers. Both completely critical issues for RLECs.
The following day, the main conference kicked off with a keynote from Colin Dixon, founder and CEO of market research firm nScreenMedia, who provided data and insights consumers’ changing media consumption habits (a fancy way of how we watch TV and other video, for the most part). Attendees then heard from industry insiders Jeff Smith of GVNW and Larry Thompson of Vantage Point, who examined the business and technical aspects of the evolving communications marketplace – and address of the question of “who should be making decisions” – in a discussion moderated by Chris Beatson of NeoNova. I love Jeff and Larry and respect them greatly, but Colin really does have the better accent…but not everyone can hail from the UK!
Another highlight was an appearance by the FCC’s CTO, Dr. Henning Schulzrinne, who discussed the continuing transition of communications networks to IP-based technologies. He also covered robocalls and spoofing, the implementation of IPv6, the Internet of Things, and Next Generation 911. Whew!
The afternoon launched three tracks: Voice/Video/Data; IT; and Wireless. These tracks covered topics including the deployment of data centers; skinny bundles; 5G; NFV/SDN; and larger changes in the video market. Other sessions took deep dives into IPv6, IoT, and Managed Wi-Fi services. Timely on wireless given recent FCC activity.
The next morning’s sessions topics included cyber security; controlling costs through caching (with a presentation from Google’s Global caching program), transit and peering strategies; and generating new revenue through handset repair. The tracks wrapped up with discussions covering central office and network transitions; mesh wi-fi and analytics, and smart grid strategies.
The closing keynote from Pete DeNagy of Acommence Advisors looked at how technologies and market demands will change the industry by 2020. Pete examined big data; mobile & IoT; the COPE device (corporate-owned, personally enabled) business model; cord cutting; and cyber security, among other topics.
Sound wonky enough? That’s exactly the reason that we need to do a better job reaching deeper into NTCA member companies to ensure that staff that should be following these technology trends have the opportunity to come to the one show where these topics are tailored specifically to rural, community based providers and their teams. April 23-25th in New Orleans. Be there!