<ed.note>I've learned about a decade ago if you want to know where the world is going to be 5 years from now in terms of technology that affects the average citizen you watch Andy Abramson, Ken Rutkowski and Jeff Pulver. Jeff watches and creates all
things telephony and he recently sent this missive out re: HD Voice. My advice: if
you have traditionally poopooed eHealth, telehealth, and ROWE in healthcare —
your game is about to change; your boat is about to be refloated; your canary is
about to molt; your scotch is about to hop — well, you get what I mean, or literally — you HEAR what I am SAYING.</ed.note>
Putting the Cable Industry on notice. HD Voice is happening.
I had an interesting time at the CableLabs Summer Conference at
Keystone Resort, Colorado. When I first arrived I had a chance to
catch up with the teams from both AudioCodes and IP Gallery and a few
of the familiar faces I have gotten to know over the years involved in
the communications industry.
Looking around the reception on Monday afternoon, it was clear to me
that the telecom recession was over, with the room packed with vendors
and about 1,000 people from around the world who made the trek to
Colorado for the CableLabs Summer Conference.
This was a closed conference with the majority of the sessions only
open to the members of Cablelabs.
If there was one session at the CableLabs Summer Conference that a
Cable company’s Chief Strategy Officer should have been at, it was the
HD Voice session which I greatly appreciate being invited to be a part
of. I say this because after listening to Orange’s Vivek Badrinath,
Executive Vice President, Networks, Carriers, and Platforms, it is
clear to me that consumer HD Communications is a reality, it IS
happening and it is going to happen faster than anyone may have
Vivek was welcomed warmly and embraced by the CableLabs delegates.
During his talk I was thinking of the Twilight Zone Episode “To Serve
Man” where (according to Wikipedia) a race of aliens known as the
Kanamits lands on Earth and promises to be nothing but helpful to the
cause of humanity. Initially wary of the intentions of such a highly
advanced race, even the most skeptical humans are convinced when their
code-breakers begin to translate one of the Kanamit's books, with the
seemingly innocuous title, "To Serve Man."
Sharing their advanced technology, the aliens quickly solve all of
Earth's greatest woes, eradicating hunger, disease, and the need for
warfare. Soon, humans are volunteering for trips to the Kanamits' home
planet, which is supposedly a paradise.
All is not well, however, when a code-breaker discovers the Kanamits'
true intentions: Their book, "To Serve Man", is a cookbook, and all
their gifts were simply to make humanity complacent.” (if you haven’t
seen this episode – you can watch it here).
Given the fact that France Telecom / Orange already has over 500,000
customers who have subscribed for their HD Voice offerings and that
their numbers are going to continue to grow as Orange rolls out their
HD Communication offers across Europe, I couldn't help but make the
connection between Vivek and the leader of the Kanamit's.
If I were involved with a cable company, I would have categorized his
talk as an early wake-up call and understand the worldwide Cable
industry was put on notice to be on the lookout for other incumbent
operators who have both a broadband offering and wireless offering to
follow in the footsteps of France Telecom / Orange and use HD
Communications as a platform to retain and grow their customer base.
Now is NOT the time for the Cable industry to continue to take a “wait
and see” approach with HD Communications but rather now is the time to
commit to residential trials for HD Voice consumer if the cable
industry wants to protect what has become their multi-billion dollar
monthly cash cow known as “digital voice services.”
Over the next few years, the growth of consumers who subscribe for HD
Communications offered by both wireless and broadband service
providers will help lift the communications industry.
“Fear, Greed and Disruption” remain my three favorite words and I am
enjoying this moment in time in the history of communications. I
remain a big fan of France Telecom for continuing to lead and innovate
with HD Communications.
Friends who would like to learn more about HD Communications are
invited to attend the next HD Communications Summit taking place on
September 15th in New York City.
The HD Communications Summit Agenda (Update #1)
On September 15th 2009 at New World Stages in New York City, I am producing HDComms, the HD Communications Summit. HDComms will bring together the emerging worldwide HD Communications ecosystem and we will explore the state of "HD Communications" and where things are headed. If you have a vested interested in the future of communications, please consider joining us in New York City next month.
HD Communications Summit Agenda
(as of August 18, 2009)
– Welcome – Daniel Berninger, Executive Director, HDConnect
– Jeff Pulver – CEO, pulver.com – "Accelerating the Conversion to HD"
Step 1 – The HD Technology Roadmap
– Nimrod Borovsky, VP Marketing, Enterprise Business Group, AudioCodes
– Martyn Humphries, VP/GM, VoIP Line of Business, Broadcom
– Jan Linden, VP Engineering, Global IP Solutions
Case Study: Lessons Learned from SD to HDTV
Robert Graves, Chairman, ATSC Forum
HD Innovations Panel: Moderator – Slava Borlin, VP Products, SpiritDSP
– Mike Eastman, VP Sales, WYDEVoice
– Alan Percy, Director Business Development, AudioCodes
– A. Ryan Heidari, Director Technical and Product Marketing, Qualcomm
Step 2 – Triggering End User Demand
Jeff Rodman, co-founder, CTO Voice Division, Polycom
Rick Krupka, VP Business Communication Services, Uniden
HD in Action Panel: Moderator – Daniel Petrie, CEO, SIPEz
– Joyce Kim, VP Marketing, Global IP Solutions
– Chalan Aras, VP of Product Marketing, Polycom
– Dave Frankel, CEO, ZipDX
Step 3 – Toward a Fully Functioning HD Ecosystem
– Josh Bottum, Director Business Development, Cisco
– Mike Rude, VP Business Development, DSPGroup
The HD Value Chain Panel Moderator – Michael Stanford, WireEvolution
– Michael Jablon, VP Digital Phone Strategy, Time Warner
– Tony Stankus, Product Manager Emerging Technologies,Gigaset Communications USA
– Mike Storella, Director Business Development, snom
HD Carrier Interconnection Panel:
Moderator – Daniel Berninger, Executive Director, HDConnect
– Eli Katz, founder and CEO, XConnect
– John Butz, Director New Product Development, Neutral Tandem
– Alan Bugos, VP Advanced Technology and Engineering, iBasis (invited)
Step 4 – The Path to HD Mass Market Adoption
– Rod Keller, CEO, Gigaset Communications USA
– Alla Reznick, Dir Product Management, Global Advanced Services, Verizon
Mobile VoIP Panel:
Moderator – Brough Turner, Chief Strategy Officer, Dialogic
– Tobias Kemper, VP Social Media and Communication, Nimbuzz
– Diego Besprosvan, CTO, MailVision
– Mahesh Makhijani, Director Technical Marketing, Qualcomm
Perspectives on HD Tipping Points Panel
Moderator – Doug Mohney, Editor in Chief, HDConnectNow
– Anatoli Levine, Director Product Management, RADVISION and President, IMTC
– Richard Buchanan, Chief Marketing Officer, Ooma
– Jake MacLeod, VP and CTO, Bechtel Communications(invited)
Interested in the future of communications? Register TODAY for next month's HD Communication Summit.