The slides we used for our four part Wireless Tutorial at the 4G Wireless Evolution conference in Miami last week are now up on the web.
History and Evolution of Mobile Radio
Part One covers the history of mobile wireless from the earliest days
to the latest 4G technology.
Part one is also available as a webinar recorded in 3 sections last fall.
IEEE Wireless Ethernet Keeps Going and Growing
Part two covers the IEEE wireless systems: WiFi, WiMAX and more...
Mobile Broadband: New Applications and New Business Models
Part three covers emerging world of mobile broadband access and some of the applications it enables.
White Spaces and Open spectrum Issues
Finally, part four focuses on Open spectrum and the recent decision by the FCC to permit unlicensed devices to operate on unoccupied TV channels - the so called TV White Spaces. In the end, there's alot more that will be possible eventually...
I'm in Miami for the 4G Wireless Evolution conference which is being held in conjunction with Internet Telephony Expo. Fanny Mlinarsky and I are kicking off the conference with a comprehensive wireless tutorial starting at 10:30 this morning. So no pictures of Miami Beach or warm weather until after our all day event is complete.
Up coming conferences:
On Monday, Fanny Mlinarsky and I will be giving an all day Wireless Tutorial (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) at the 4G Wireless Evolution conference in Miami. Since the shows are co-located, I'll also be at Internet Telephony Expo East 2009, Monday through Wednesday (Feb. 2-4). If you will be in Miami for either show and want to connect, send me an email.
And at the end of the month, I'll be at Freedom to Connect (F2C) in Silver Spring, Maryland -- policy discussions inside the Washington DC beltway!
Again, if you are attending any of these shows and want to connect, send me an email.
Sasha Meinrath is Research Director for the New America Foundation's Wireless Futures Program and will be one of the speakers at eComm 2009. I've just read his comments in a recent interview by Lee Dryburgh on the eComm blog. Sasha has a particularly good explanation of an arcane concept, interference temperature.
Why does this matter? It's one way to open up otherwise assigned radio spectrum to new uses without impeding existing uses. The FCC made an attempt to float the idea in 2003 but after much comment (and pressure from those with existing licenses), they backed off in May 2007. It's still a good idea, so perhaps Sasha's explanation will help get it back on the table.
The second one that we've been fighting for, and have lost thus far, is what's called "Interference Temperature," which is that, in the same way, at a rock concert people in the audience can whisper, or yell for that matter, and not be disruptive to the concert itself, we want to see very low powered usage <permitted> on occupied channels.
The idea is, if you're sitting next to a 100,000-watt television transmitter and you want to utilize a device to connect your laptop computer to your television, fifteen feet away, you should be allowed to do that in the same space.
Thank you Sasha. That beats all the gobbeldygook spouted between 2003 and 2007.
I look forward to talking with Sasha at eComm 2009 in San Francisco in March.
Sorry, no magic answer. But I look forward to eComm 2009 to provide a lot of ideas in the first week of March. The speaker lineup is posted and the list is both impressive and diverse. Like last year, the format is a single track with a veritable firehose of information, mostly in 15 minute and 5 minute talks.
Based on last year and what I know of the speakers on this year's list, it fair to say Lee Dryburgh has done an excellent job of picking interesting and bleeding edge speakers. I'm also on the speakes' list and I have to say I'm working hard to make sure my 15 minutes lives up to expectations.
Even though this is a terrible time for conferences, eComm has signed up an impressive list of sponsors. The facility (The San Francisco Airport Marriott Hotel) is larger this year and so there is still room for additional attendees, but early bird prices end this week. Also the extra 20% off you can get my mentioning my name ends this Friday, so if you are thinking of attending sign up this week.
So here's the deal, if you mention my name you get 20% off. More specifically, if you enter the promo code "BroughTurner" (case-sensitive) at the appropriate point during registration, you'll get 20% off the registration fee.
Apparently IT conversations has just made the presentation "Own the Network" that I gave at eComm last March more readily available as I've gotten three emails about it in the past 72 hours and notice that Michael Graves just mentioned my presentation in a blog post about US broadband policy.
IT Conversations summary of the presentation is short and to the point:
I attended a number of conferences in 2008, both interesting and not so interesting. One conference stands out, for the range of interesting speakers and the variety of interesting people I met. That was the first Emerging Communications Conference, eComm 2008, organized by Lee Dryburgh. Many of talks from this conference are available on Slideshare and as podcasts on IT Conversations.
eComm 2009 is scheduled to take place at the San Fransico Airport Marriott, March 3-5, 2009. I highly recommend you check it out.
This is not a trade show with vendors hawking today's products and multiple tracks full of vendor product pitches.
Presenters have been chosen for the quality of their proposals: is it new? is it disruptive? what will the audience learn? (As an adviser, I've been in on those discussions). Like last year, the format is one track spread over three days, with 15 minute presentations, 5 minute lightning presentations, panel discussions and social time. It all adds up to a veritable fire hose of information.
There's a list of speakers here. Major topics for 2009 (so far) include:
* Mobile Social Networking (MoSoSo)
* Open Handsets & the Open Ecosystem
* Both Voice and Video Evolution
* Convergence of Media with Personal Communications
* Open Spectrum
* Open Communication Platforms
* Leveraging Cloud Computing
* Social Computing
* Towards 4G Wireless
* P2P and Decentralization of Telecoms
* Communications enabling business processes, especially B2C
* New Forms of Contactability and Connectability
* Emerging Markets
And last, but by no means least, if you mention my name you get 20% off. More specifically, if you enter the promo code "BroughTurner" (case-sensitive) at the appropriate point during registration, you'll get 20% off the registration fee. This works now, while early bird rates are in effect, and I'm told it will also work right up to the last minute ("late", not on-site registration), although then it's 20% off the full conference rate, and only if the event is not sold out!
I hope to see you there.
One of the major complaints about Skype is it’s a closed system. Skype provides PSTN connectivity (SkypeOut and SkypeIn) but no way to connect to other VoIP services. Of course 3rd parties have been providing work arounds, but until now there’s been nothing from Skype provoking major complaints from some in the community (see this letter from Gizmo Project founder Michael Robertson).
The Skype-Asterisk deal announced this morning means Skype is officially supporting multi-channel connectivity to an open source SIP platform. That in turn means an Asterisk box can function as a gateway between Skype and any other SIP-based system, inlcuding Gizmo. If the Asterisk box is used as a gateway, the Asterisk dial plan adapts between Skype names, SIP URIs and PSTN numbers. It’s early days, but this looks like a significant win for every VoIP community. It’s also likely to provide a boost to Skype’s efforts to attract business users.
They announced an early beta program starting today, to be followed by a public beta and, presumably, a stable release at some point. The additions to Asterisk will be licensed code available from Digium at a price and the Skype-specific code will not be open, but Mark Spencer, CEO of Digium and founder of Asterisk, suggested the connectivity code would be licensed much as G.729 code is today. (G.729 code requires a license, not for the software, but for to cover royalties to patent holders).
We’ll await further details, but this looks to be very significant. Stay tuned.
The eComm 2009 website is live.
As some of you already know, the date was picked through a feedback process conducted on Facebook. It's March 3-5, 2009 in California.
I attend a lot of conferences and trade shows and, as I look back at the past year, the most interesting conference I attended was eComm 2008. Typically conference organizers start with a list of sponsors and/or exhibitors and then do their best to build an interesting conference, given their primary objective of facilitating sponsors' and exhibitors' promotional efforts.
For eComm, Lee Dryburgh (the principal organizer behind eComm), started with an idea ― emerging communications ― then went after speakers who had something relevant to say and were known to be good at saying it, finally he sought sponsors and attendees interested in discussing emerging communications. The result was a really interesting set of talks and a fascinating set of people in attendence.
If you are at all interested in where communications is going, subscribe to the eComm 2009 blog and think about attending eComm 2009.
I’ve just arrived in Phoenix to attend AstriCon, the Asterisk open-source PBX convention. While I’ve roughly followed various open-source telephony movements (Asterisk, sipX/SIPFoundry, Freeswitch, YATE, OpenSIPS), my focus has been on mobile networks and mobile applications for several years now. So I need a quick catch up and AstriCon looks to be a great way to start.
If you are attending AstriCon and want to meet, send me an email (the handle is “rbt” and the domain is nmss.com) or call my mobile 617 285 0433.
I'll be at Internet Telephony Expo West in Los Angeles beginning late morning tomorrow. I have a few meetings scheduled tomorrow afternoon and two presentations later in the show. NMS also has a booth on the show floor where I should be when I'm not otherwise engaged.
At 9am on Wednesday, I'm giving a Wireless Tutorial (3G, 4G and beyond). Caution: it's nearly two hours and goes into mobile communications in some depth!
Then on Thursday at 1pm, I'm on a panel, Exploring Next-Generation Video Standards, with Jeff Van Dyke (of Dialogic, and formerly of Snowshore).
So far those are my only commitments, but there many people I hope to catch up with. If you want to meet, send me an email (rbt at NMSS dot com) or call my mobile (617-285-0433).
PS: Next week I'll be at AstriCon in Phoenix (actually Glendale, AZ), Tuesday-Thursday, if by chance you'll be in Phoenix.
Three days of rapid pace content, mostly 15 minute segments with no overruns! Presentation were mostly high level, focused on industry insight and direction. Almost all were good or very good and some were excellent. Almost no pure product pitches. And, most important, tons of interesting people. In fact it appears there were ~220 people and perhaps as many as 250 who attended at least part of the event.
In short, one of the best events I've attended.
I was completely immersed, and besides the WiFi was misconfigured the first day, so I didn't attempt blogging. Others have done a great job. Technorati has a good list. Andy Abramson has a rundown of early media coverage although Google News has more of course.
The credit for making it all happen goes to Lee Dryburgh. Thank you!
Above photo thanks to James Duncan Davidson.
I'm leaving for northern California early tomorrow (Tuesday) to participate in eComm 2008 in Mountain View March 12-14 and then Spring VON.x in San Jose March 17-20. I'll be back in the office Friday March 20th.
At eComm 2008, I'm speaking on Thursday and moderating on Friday:
Most of my weekend is uncommitted, as yet... suggestions?
Then at VON, I'm speaking on Tuesday and Wednesday and running a session in the "Unconference."
If you are attending either of these events or live in or are otherwise in the area and interested in meeting, please send me an email using "rbt", i.e. my initials, at nmss.com.
Dawn Nafus, Ph.D., an anthropologist at Intel, discusses why a technology company would have an anthropologist on staff, and exactly what she does for them. Dawn will be speaking at the eComm Conference being held March 12 - 14, 2008 at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA. Her topic will be “Context Aware Technologies” and how they can assist different cultures and countries around the world.
About 4:30 minutes into the interview, Pat Lynch asks Dr. Nafus why there are only a few women on the program at eComm and indeed at most high tech conferences. She doesn't have a simple answer but she does point out it's a myth that women's position in high tech is getting better gradually over time, at least in Silicon Valley. Silicon Valley is very young in the grand scheme of things, it has little or no history. And yet, it has reproduced the male dominated culture that was a characteristic of older industries. Now older industries are improving at a greater rate than high tech.
I just recently read Herman Goldstine's classic history of the early days of computing, The Computer from Pascal to von Neumann. Interestingly, some women play key roles, not just Ada Byron (Lady Lovelace), but multiple women during and after WWII. And when I think back to the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) that I joined as a student in the early 1970s, there were more women involved in programming, and the mathematical side of the computer industry than in traditional industries. Also my first part time job was with a small company where 25% of the software staff (1 out of 4) were women. :-)
I look forward to hearing Dr. Nafus speak on "Context Aware Technologies" at eComm this coming week. Hopefully I'll also get a chance to talk with her, as she mentioned some references to recent literature on women in high tech.
The Emerging Communications Conference 2008 is shaping up to be a different and fascinating event, not the least because yours truly is moderating a panel with some really interesting panelists.
will drive wireless innovation?
Brough Turner, NMS Communications
Jonathan Christensen, Skype
Rich Miner, Google
Christopher Allen, iPhoneWebDev.com
Chris Sacca, Angel Investor
Paul Golding, paulgolding.com
Benoit Schillings, Trolltech/Nokia
There are no operators here, nor traditional equipment vendors, so I don't expect this to be an IMS vs. Internet debate. That discussion is getting old. The folks here each represent real approaches to mobile innovation. I still look forward to controversy, but between approaches that each seem more plausible than IMS. :-)
Ignoring my bias, there are tons of other interesting people attending. As the schedule indicates, this is not your typical telecom conference.
Here's the eComm summary from the conference PR people:
eComm 2008—the inaugural Emerging Communications Conference—was born from the ashes of O'Reilly's ETel Conference to track and help drive the major disruption beginning to transform the multi-trillion dollar telecommunications industry. From industry visionaries to bleeding-edge technologies, cutting-edge academic projects to incumbent telecom players and garage-based hackers, eComm is designed as the only telecommunication forum to embrace and promote radical change. eComm is poised to make history on March 12-14, 2008, at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View. For more information and conference registration, please visit www.ecommmedia.com.
At the Emerging Communications Conference eComm 2008, I'm moderating a panel "Wireless Innovation, with or without operators." This will be a discussion — smart people from differing camps responding to (hopefully) probing questions from yours truly, and the audience. Points of view represented include Google Android, J2ME/JavaFX Mobile, iPhoneWebDev.com, Skype and Trolltech Qtopia (Nokia), plus Chris Sacca, formerly head of Google's wireless initiatives. I've been thinking about subjects and questions for the panel. As a start, I'll set down my current views, then seek others' views and questions.
2007 Breakthrough — Public discussion of "Open" wireless networks
For the first time ever, US mainstream media is talking about open handsets and open networks. It started with the iPhone launch in June, as people discussed pros and cons of the Apple-AT&T lock in. Then Google proposed, and the FCC partially adopted, a set of open access criteria for the 700 MHz auctions that are currently in progress. Finally, speculation about a G-Phone got resolved when Google announced the Open Handset Alliance and Android open source mobile phone software.
In the near term, we won't see open wireless Internet access at 700 MHz — that will take years. The 700 MHz spectrum doesn't even become available until analog TV is turned off (scheduled for February 2009). Then building out a network takes time, independent of whether it's WiMAX, HSDPA, EVDO or LTE. And at this point, neither base stations nor mobile devices are available for the 700 MHz band. Vendor's will talk a good story, but are unlikely to make major product investments until they know they have orders in the pipeline.
There are two areas that should drive innovation in the US wireless market over the next 24 months.
Open mobile Internet access in advance of 700 MHz services
As I've pointed out elsewhere, US competition to offer mobile Internet access is about to ratchet up significantly, as T-Mobile USA uses the spectrum they acquired in the 2006 AWS auctions to go head-to-head with AT&T, Verizon and Sprint. In 2006, T-Mobile USA spent more than $4B to buy additional spectrum that will allow them full national coverage. Then they committed another $2.7B to build out 3G mobile coverage on this spectrum. Recently, they've disclosed $10B of investment for 2007-2009. In addition to these four cellular networks, there's at least the threat of a national WiMAX network, between Clearwire and/or Sprint. Finally, WiFi access points continue to proliferate. Four plus competitors is enough to unbalance a market, so it's likely we'll see affordable flat rate data bundles that are effectively open access at some point in the next 24 months.
Here's the real excitement, at least in the next 24 months. The iPhone is truly a break through device, if nothing else it's the first mobile Internet browser that really works. Every other handset vendor has embraced iPhone concepts and is scrambling to bring out their own next generation devices.
Meanwhile phones based on the Android stack should show up later in 2008. During the next 24 months we'll see if the Google initiative has a significant impact on handset software. Remember, Google doesn't have to make money on their software (as Microsoft does with Windows Mobile) or on handsets (as Nokia does with Symbian).
Finally, there's an open question of where, in the handset stack, maximum innovation will occur. John Puterbaugh distinguishes five layers where innovation might occur:
I might have separated out mobile Internet browsers and mobile AJAX as an area that deserves a layer of it's own, but you get the idea. Yes, there is no single answer for mobile application development and that's a problem, but it's also prompting an enormous amount of competition and innovation.
Do you have questions for the panel?
I look forward to a lively discussion at eComm 2008 in Mountain View California on March 14th and hope to see you there.
In the spirit of full disclosure, NMS Communications is a member of, and contributor to, the Open Handset Alliance, primarily through our LiveWire Mobile subsidiary. But then we're also active in various GSM Association working groups including contributing to the GSMA's (IMS-based) Video Share Project and we've delivered IMS handset software for Symbian, Windows Mobile and several other environments.
I'll in California quite a bit in March and April, but the highlight is my first week, when I'll be speaking at a new conference, eComm 2008, March 12-14. While the conference in new, the community is established and fascinating. eComm 2008 being put together by Lee Dryburgh, who was on the program committee for O'Reilly's eTel conferences. When O'Reilly cancelled eTel 2008, Lee took the initiative to keep that incredible community alive. He was soon joined by many others.
The first thing I look for in a conference is interesting people, then new ideas. eComm promises an abundance of each. The focus is next generation personal communications and the schedule is set up for rapid fire delivery inlcuding many 5 minute and 15 minute sessions. As far as new ideas goes, this will be a fire hose!
*** Correction: 12/21 ***
The conference is being held in the Computer History Museum in Mountain View. This easily beats the typical conference facility, but it means there are only 300 paid admissions available. Registration has opened, here. If you register before the end of 2007, the $1495 registration fee is marked down to $1195.
I look forward to seeing you there.
Some notes from the first after lunch session at Connect 2007 in Madrid yesterday, entitled Community Goes Mobile. Dave Penny (VP Biz Dev at NMS) moderated, with panelists:
The first key point is communities don't align with operators. The lead example in every market is SMS. Until there was universal connectivity, SMS never took off. David is particularly vocal that social networks have to span multiple operators to succeed. This is interesting as Yospace currently runs SeeMeTV for 3 in the UK and Look At Me for O2 in the UK and a similar service for 10 other operators in various countries.
Big discussion of charging models. If Facebook is free on the Internet, why pay for mobile access. Conclusion, you'll never get someone to pay per transaction, but you might get someone to pay an Internet access fee, especially a fixed known flat rate fee (like x per day for all day and y max for all month Internet access).
Another interesting point is that mobile operators are doing deals with Internet brands (like Vodafone UK with MySpace) because the Internet brand has more recognition than the mobile brand.
Of course there are no operator representatives on this panel to hold up their end... :-)
Dean did a quick survey of the audience which showed most people were carrying 3 or 4 devices, i.e. one or two mobile phones, one PC, a camera and/or a blackberry. There is no convergence of devices. People use specific devices for specific purposes.
Piotr (who was the star of this panel) points out the dynamic process of deciding what devices you might use and how it's frequently related to your identity position. Example: your CEO just got a Blackberry, so you'd like one also. Alternately, you are a photographer, you need something more than a camera phone.
Matt says consumers are very smart. They know what they want and what they like and they are unique, each making different choices between convenience & mobility or content at different price points.
Pierfranco mentions blurring of mobile and PC, also the idea of discovery – point phone at an item and get Internet info about that item. On another note, in Italy, you can tell pre-paid from post-paid by the number – that makes your number a status symbol. 80% of Italian subscribers are on pre-paid but post-paid can be a status symbol.
Piotr points out many mobile operators know little of their customers because their customers use multiple pre-paid SIM cards. Some pay higher per-minutes costs to preserve their anonymity, but many just do it to minimize roaming expense. Pierfranco counters that this depends upon the country. In Italy, the operator knows the identity of prepaid subscribers. Also, in Italy prepaid users are not all at the low end – there are more subscribers with 300+ Euro handsets in Italy than anywhere else in Europe.
Piotr describes iPhone as a new walled garden. Matt is actually using an iPhone and views it as a poor phone but a breakthrough media device and a breakthrough way to access to the real Internet. Matt lists browsers as the key interface to access diverse information, but we still need multiple UIs. People choose the user experience to solve specific problems. Matt uses Google, Yahoo messenger, a TV, a PC and a Mac. Dean counters that the MS Windows consistency drove the PC's success. Point by audience member that the fragmentation of the mobile world holds back innovation.
I personally expect Google's Open Handset Alliance to go a long way to solving handset fragmentation, but only over a 5+ year time frame. But I was in audience and the time was up before I got a chance to chime in.
The second session at Connect 2007 in Madrid is Application Innovation with John Orlando, NMS CMO moderating and panelists:
This panel is slide presentations and covers material that's interesting, but mostly already familiar to me. So my comments will be brief... (sorry).
Gianluca's focused on video infotainment which appears to be taking off in Italy. While he's active in some really cool stuff, today's talk covered market statistics and more conventional applications.
Yospace has their "SeeMeTV" service running on 12 operators now, but David comments that it's been a struggle compared to launching a service on the Internet. If you're not familiar with SeeMeTV, it's a service that allows subscribers to upload cameraphone videos via MMS. Others can browse content that people have uploaded. It costs 30 pence or more to download a clip. The original contributor gets money everytime someone watches their clip. The revenue share is 10%. The SeeMeTV service bridges 12 operators, so contributors get cash back from users across multiple operators. Paybacks to contributors are via PayPal, not the operator. All-in-all, it's a mobile service which could be run over-the-top but, based on David's comments, they only work through operators because operator endorsed (on-deck) is the only viable approach today. Even so, they don't get customer demographics from the operators, just billing and an on deck position.
Colm from Xiam is focused on mobile advertising. Xiam's edge is in automated analysis of subscriber demographics so it's possible to target content to users when the price points is 30 cents or 1-2 Euros. On the Internet, Amazon can show dozens of potential offers, but on the mobile phone there is only space and time to make a very few offers. Currently they get 3X click through by targeted offers on mobile phones at Orange UK.
Anssi is founder and CEO at Aito is focused on providing customer analytics to mobile operators. Their software mines the operator's data to figure out the services individual customers use and the constraints and problems they encounter. The goal is to figure out specific problems that need to be fixed, both technical issues and communication issues.
Interesting, but running over slightly which killed the Q&A which would have been the best part.
The session was entirely Q&A (no slides) which resulted in a great discussion – broad ranging and much better than talking heads reading slides! Luca has already written up his reactions.
I'm writing this after the fact as, at the last minute, I was tagged to participate, filling in for Vincenz Wagner of Jamba who's arrival has been delayed. The opening session at Connect 2007 in Madrid was entitled "Industry Overview" with Joel Hughes, VP & GM of our Mobile Applications business moderating. In the end the panelists were:
Since I was participating, I have only a few interesting items (at least interesting to me) that I noted during this discussion:
Philip commented that the predominate use of 3G is to connect PCs to the Internet, i.e. dumb pipe mobile Internet access. Philip also mentioned Triple Play, which seems old hat to me, as innovative in (parts of) Europe. I argued that this was marketing innovation (bundling), not really a new service. We agreed the innovation was in cost and convenience of the services.
Several panelists seem to think that innovation would come by porting Internet applications to the mobile space. I argued that was currently true, but only because the Internet was open and mobile was still closed. There are many characteristics of mobile (like mobility and intimacy) that will foster new applications but we don't yet have the open environment that allows zillions of developers to experiment.
At one point, I made a derogatory comment about most VoIP being just digital POTS. The ensuing discussion brought out the parallel between Skype (which combines voice and IM) with what's happened in mobile telephony, i.e. the combination of voice and SMS to achieve the same objectives. Either way, people want to determine the actual availability of the person they are about to call and people need a way to communicate when they can't talk.
The third and final Connect conference of 2007 is taking place in Madrid on Wednesday and Thursday, November 7th and 8th and I'll be there. My blog comments on earlier conferences are here (& 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8).
Day One has a heavy focus on mobile industry issues and mobile applications. And, it's conducted as panel discussions with few or no slides. Perhaps this only works because there are good speakers, chosen to promote controversy and discussion, but it really works! In both 2006 and so far in 2007, the nature of the discussion has been much, much better than at a typical industry show. The session descriptions for November 7th are here and the speaker bios are here. If you can be in Madrid on Wednesday, you should attend.
Day Two is a more traditional developers conference focusing on NMS technology and products that are used to create many of the applications discussed by the Day One executives. Check out the Day Two program.
I'm an articles guy not a news blogger, so I didn't even try to compete with the numerous people blogging last week's VON conference. In any event, I was double booked much of the time. The best part of VON is the people I meet and the one-on-one discussions but let me mention a few impressions of note:
One interesting tidbit: I finally got to hear from ooma and get the answers to two questions that had plagued me about their distributed termination approach. Distributed termination means calls, carried long distances by VoIP, can terminate in a remote city using another subscriber's local line. My issues:
The conference itself felt a little smaller than last year in Boston or last spring in San Jose, but booth traffic appeared to be good. Also, there were more sessions and more tracks and more experimentation, as PulverMedia is obviously trying to reinvent itself and the show. I have some specific suggestions which I will offer to Carl Ford, but it may be another week or two before I get a free moment to write them out.
Here's a photo of the show floor on Tuesday at lunch time.
"The RIPE 55 meeting has just concluded. There was much debate on what to do on the imminent depletion of the unallocated IPv4 pool in 2010. We could do nothing or we could create a market place and facilitate transfer of IP-adresses, but it's all a train wreck waiting to happen. This is best shown however by a beautiful song "The day the routers died" also available on Youtube written and performed by Gary Feldman. So please all upgrade to IPv6 soon, or else you will not get 40Gbit/s to your mother."
and points to this wonderfully funny video:
Fall VON 2007 in Boston
I'll be VON from late Monday afternoon until Thursday afternoon next week. I'm speaking on the panel,
Trend Spotting on Thursday, November 1, 2007, 9:00am - 10:15am with:
• Ofer Gneezy, President & CEO, iBasis
• Timothy Jasionowski, Chief Technologist, Mobile Solutions Unit, Nokia
• (M) Todd Keefe, President, For Immediate Release, Inc.
• Don Price, Director Product Management Converged Communication Division, Avaya
• Brough Turner, SVP and CTO, NMS Communications
I haven't figured out my conference schedule in detail yet. I know I already have a few specific commitments and there are several sessions in the Innovator's track that I want to attend. Otherwise I expect to be at the unconference as much as time will allow.
Connect 2007 in Madrid
The following week I'll be in Madrid for the European Connect 2007 conference. Day One is mobile industry discussions between operators and major players in mobile applications and the mobile business ecosystem. Day Two is an NMS Developers conference.
Day One follows the panel discussion format, i.e. no (or very few) slides, but rather, articulate speakers with diverse points of view generating actual controversy on stage and via questions from the audience. This brings out a much better sense of the real issues than attending the usual trade show panel with talking heads promoting their companies' products and services.
I'm moderating the final panel of the first day using the same subject as in Boston on October 3rd, i.e.
Increasing Service Velocity
After much hype about IMS, the industry is increasingly focused on one of the many promises of this network evolution, "increased service velocity" for the operator. As part of the IMS architecture, the service delivery platform provides the means to create and deliver rich media applications quickly and easily in the operator's network. Unlike the silos that exist within operator networks today, the service delivery platform provides a horizontal layer that enables use of network resources for multiple applications. Is it all that simple? Hear from a panel of experts who are well-experienced in the realities of IMS and understand what's involved in improving service delivery and service velocity.
Unlike the Boston conference, I've got more diversity on this panel, so the discussion should be even more exciting. :-)
About 12 hours ago I had a long IM chat with Carl Ford about the Innovator's track at the VON conference. The Innovator's track is already very interesting, but Carl is going one better and running an unconference based on the ideas of FooCamp and Barcamp. Carl's is the VONCamp Unconference.
FooCamp is an invitation only event. BarCamp is open to anyone. VONCamp is open to anyone who is attending VON. Otherwise, the formats are similar.
The first order of the day is to determine the order of the day. Tom Howe will lead this, but it's a free form way for the attendees to develop the agenda. As Carl puts it:
The Innovators Forum is a series of sessions that show case companies in our more traditional format. However dialogue in these sessions is encouraged. The VONCamp Unconference is harder to describe, because it gives people a chance to self identify as a speaker. At the present time there are 12 speaking slots. If you've got something you want to discuss that's outside the formal program, VONCamp Unconference is the place to do it. We also have a SpeedDating session.
Here are the rules:
- There are no rules.
- Everyone is equal. Everyone is a rockstar.
- Give back to the conference by participating actively. "Active participation" might mean giving a presentation, helping with a presentation, blogging or podcasting the event, or whatever other creative ways. While everyone is encouraged to lead a session, there are only twelve slots available.
- All sessions must obey the Law of 2 Feet - if you're not getting what you want out of the session, you can and should walk out and do something else. Hopefully you will walk the show floor!
This should be very interesting! Thank you Carl. Hope to see you there.
I have some knowledge of 3G activities in China through NMS’s involvement with mobile video projects for various operators and equipment providers in China. But, as I’m never sure exactly what’s subject to non-disclosure agreements, I’ve remained mum. However yesterday, John Sun of Datang Mobile Communications Equipment gave a presentation at Connect 2007 in Guilin in which he talked publicly about the current “large scale” application trials, so there are some things I can discuss.
If you haven’t been following 3G in detail, there are three major standards. They're all based on code division multiple access (CDMA) modulation, but they are otherwise incompatible. Their common names are:
CDMA 2000 has been the leader in available bandwidth, at least until recently, and 3GSM is the clear market share leader. Meanwhile, TD-SCDMA remains in trial. In fact, outside of China, TD-SCDMA is generally dismissed as a negotiating ploy by China to obtain acceptable patent cross licensing agreements with Qualcomm, Ericsson and the like.
But I haven't seen any discussion in English of the extent to which TD-SCDMA is already being deployed in China. True, China has not assigned any 3G licenses, but under the name “application trials,” experimental TD-SCDMA networks began running in four cities in 2005. It took longer than expected to get the system running, however, since April 2007, these “trials” have been extended to ten cities and have been substantially enlarged to what I might call “deployment scale.” Here are the cities:
China Mobile has TD-SCDMA networks in eight cities (in red on the map). China Netcom has a single TD-SCDMA network in Qingdao and China Telecom has a TD-SCDMA network in Baoding. Interestingly enough, SKT is apparently running a trial in Korea. I hadn't heard of that trial prior to John Sun's presentation and I don't t have further details on what's going on with TD-SCDMA in Korea.
Handsets support TD-SCDMA/ GSM/ GPRS so their are no gaps in voice coverage. They also support 3G video telephony (3G-324M). Frequency bands are 1880–1920 MHz and 2010–2025 MHz and all spectrum is available for either direction as TD-SCDMA uses TDD (which alternately transmits & receives on the same frequency).
China has committed to offering 3G mobile telephony in the 2008 Olympic cities. I assume that will be W-CDMA if it's to be of any use to foreign visitors, however, it's also clear that TD-SCDMA service will be available in the Olympic cities. Everyone wonders when 3G licenses will finally be awarded, but licenses are just a political act. Construction of 3G networks is the time consuming part and that is clearly underway.
Tags: 3G, 3G Video Telephony, 3G-324M, China 3G, China Mobile, China Netcom, China Telecom, Connect 2007, Connect 2007 Asia, Datang, Datang Mobile, Datang Mobile Communications, NMS Communications, NMS Connect, TD-SCDMA
The second session at Connect 2007 Asia is entitled "Application Innovation" with George Cheng of NMS Asia moderating. The panelists are:
Ricky Chan is first. Vidiator is a US company, but has substantial deployments in Japan, Korea and Hong Kong. Their focus is video content streamed over IP to the widest possible variety of handsets. The talk is interesting, but they are the Asian outpost of a US company that I was already somewhat familiar with. As far as I can tell, they only deploy on 3G networks as that's the only way video over IP is at all responsive.
Ben Chiu is co-founder of NaturalTel in Taiwan. Again the focus is video, but here it's user-to-user video, i.e. video blogging, live video chat (with availability, a.k.a. presence), video message box and video call screening. This is video-centric social networking and, in typical Asian fashion, it works on both the PC-based Internet and on mobile phones. Mobile access is the most common approach. Ben has plenty of screen shots, many of attractive Taiwanese girls, but all the text is in Kanji so I'd have a hard time participating.
Their mobile service leverages 3G circuit-switched video. Ben claims they are generating $20 per month of extra ARPU from those who've adopted this service. That sounds very steep for Taiwan where average voice ARPU is on the order of $23-$25. I'll try and get clarification from Ben directly at the end.
Ben is followed by Joseph Lia from Emma Group in Hong Kong. Their focus is mobile gaming. Joseph leads off by quoting Jupiter Research as estimating "that nearly one-third of worldwide mobile entertainment revenues generated in 2009, will represent mobile gambling revenues." Emma Group is another company that's built a service on 3G video telephony. Here's a diagram of their platform:
and here are some of their mobile games. First the slots:
All in all, very interesting! None of these are open Internet applications and the last two are not even IP, instead using video over circuit-switched data, i.e. 3G video telephony, but they are small companies whose applications are being deployed by operators. That's very different from the US where it takes months or years to cut a deal with an operator and only the well heeled need apply.
Note: John Sun's presentation was also very interesting, but focused on TD-SCDMA infrastructure, so I'll treat it in a separate post.
I hope to have a better print in due course. When I do, that will show up in my Flickr account. Meanwhile,
Bob Schechter, CEO Of NMS Communications, kicked off the Connect 2007 conference in China with a global overview of mobile markets. One interesting point he mentioned was the terrible performance of the equipment provider segment despite rapid growth in mobile subscribers.
Here are the market values of some major communications equipment companies as prepared by Goldman Sachs a few weeks ago, i.e. before Ericsson went down 25%:
The rank here is Cisco, Nokia and then RIM! (equipment and service), Ericsson, Motorola, Alcatel-Lucent, etc.
If you look at the stock price performance of major equipment providers, it’s awful. Here are the stock prices of Cisco and Nokia — neither has recovered the value they had the bubble that peaked in 2000. Meanwhile solution companies like RIMM and Apple are far above their 2000 price levels.
Not a pretty picture for the equipment business.
There's free WiFi in the lobby, but WiFi connectivity in the Sheraton Hotel’s conference area is from China Mobile. This costs 100 Yuan per day. What's worse, it worked well for the first 30 minutes or so, but then became extremely unreliable — slow to the point of timeouts, which precludes creating posts through the normal Typepad interface. So this is composed in Blogjet and will be uploaded later via the hotel’s in-room wired access.
The first day of the US & EU conferences are 100% panels — no presentations. The Asia Connect conference is more presentations and less Q&A. This is partly to deal with language issues, but mostly it’s cultural. It’s harder to get tough questions, or any questions at all, from Asian audiences. They are too polite.
I'll be in Guilin all next week for Connect 2007 Asia. I've been to quite a few places in China, but never Guilin, despite the fact that Chinese friends insist it's the most beautiful place in China.
The occasion is the Asian version of our Connect 2007 conferences. While it's being held in China (which complicates visas for some potential attendees), registered attendees are from all over Asia. The conference format includes a mix of presentation and panels with some great speakers.
For me, this is tremendous event as Asia leads both the EU and the US in mobile service innovations. Interestingly, that's not just in the 3G areas like Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and Singapore, but in Malaysia, India, Pakistan and so on, and most importantly in China. Few in the west are paying attention, but entrepreneurs in China have been innovating in both Web 2.0 and mobile value-added services. I look forward to talking with some of these innovators live during Connect 2007.
I may not be able to blog every session live (as I'm participating in three of them), but I learned a few things from my attempt to blog the Boston conference live (here, here, here, here, here & here) so I'll record what I can.
OK, that title is designed to grab your attention, but it's also the reasonable takeaway of people in the audience at the last session yesterday, i.e. day one at Connect 2007 in Boston.
The session was entitled "Increasing Service Velocity" and the session description focused on IMS and service delivery platforms. I wasn't involved in setting up the session or signing up the speakers, but a few weeks ago I was recruited to moderate the session. The panelists from left to right were:
So there's a slight problem. Everyone here is smart and knowledgeable, but everyone (with the possible exception of Susan) is involved in creating or selling IMS or IMS products. Panel discussions are always better if you have divergent points of view, i.e. controversy on stage! Since I was moderating, I obviously couldn't blog it live or even take notes. Luckily, George Kontopidis did take notes (and the picture above), so that helps me reconstruct events. George's complete notes are here: Brough1.jpg, Brough2.jpg and Brough3.jpg.
Some of the specific comments on service deployment platforms (SDPs), their relationship to the rest of IMS and to deployment of actual applications included:
Kjell - SDPs are essential to the development of actual services, but the problem here is too many standards in what's exposed to the developer. Kjell alluded to pressures from operators that may result in the major equipment vendors converging their service creation environments, but he couldn't give specifics or a date (beyond soon, within the next year).
Susan said operators think of IMS as the solution for new services. They are generally very conservative (particularly on the operations side) and wouldn't dream of opening up their networks for something like web services.
Doug offered that IMS and higher level development environments, including web services, are not conflicting. IMS is the platform, but it's standardization stopped below the application layer. IMS needs web services and/or other development layers to actually realize new services.
And it was Jouni who offered "IMS is not about killer apps, it's about a killer environment" i.e. IMS is the platform but it needs (the non-standard) SDP layer above to support service creation.
On the subject of what is actually real, there was some consistency. Kjell and Jouni both said there were a few commercial deployments for specific applications like video sharing. Susan said she couldn't identify any IMS deployments with full service, but knew of several with partial services, i.e. IMS lite. And Doug commented that he knew of pieces of IMS deployed in many operators, but nothing that's pretty or matches the IMS vision as yet. On the other hand, everyone on the panel was confident that things would continue to improve. There were joking remarks that 2008 would be the year of IMS. In response to the question of when I would be able to hand off a video sharing session across operators, there was some agreement that the GSMA was working on this, so it might be solved in the next 1-2 years (although it could take longer to propagate to AT&T !).
There's a lot more in George's notes...
Dean Bubley did the best job shaking up the panelists (via questions from the audience).
And the sense I was left with (as were several members of the audience with whom I talked later) is roughly as summarized in my title above. IMS is plumbing that helps operators manage their networks and is a great platform to support a variety of new services, but it will take higher layers (not part of the standards) to actually facilitate new applications, In addition, there are many, many other issues to resolve, both technical (like integration with billing systems and other operator IT infrastructure, simplification of handset diversity issues, and so on) and business model related, i.e the extent to which will operators open up to new applications.
In any event, an interesting session!
Joel Hughes, General Manager for Mobile Applications at NMS, is moderating the second to last session at Connect 2007 entitled "Mashups: Web Meets Telco" with panelists:
Matt Gross, Director of Product Management, WHERE by uLocate Communications -- a GPS-based platform for location aware services. Other value they bring is that they have negotiated deals with several US operators (Alltel and Sprint) and they make these services available to 3rd parties.
Kevin Nethercott, President and COO, LignUp -- talking about their web platform to program PBX functions and do enterprise mashups, specifically mentioning Mashup Camps and applications prototypes done in 15 minutes.
Sam Aparicio, CTO, Angel.com -- an IVR and call center solution that exposes a web API for control. His example application is a mashup with Salesforce.com.
This real time blogging is new for me. Perhaps the resulting notes will only be useful to me... In any event, this is going to be more stream of consciousness...
First impression: there are several sources of telephony controlled by web interfaces, but they all cost money or are just sandboxes. No one has mentioned APIs that let developers also participate in billing, or ways that web telephony can be available at or near free. Surely one or the other is needed to see this industry take off.
For now, all the discussion is about enterprise developers. Mashups are a new way for enterprises to develop their IVR and call center solutions. So far, no examples of developers targeting consumers. Alan has mentioned that BT's API has also been used for Salesforce.com integration.
Sam just alluded to a Verizon API. I'm not sure what he's referring to. I'll try and ask afterward...
Now Alan is discussing cost. When location data cost 25 pence per inquiry, no one used it. No one has a good suggestion of how these kind of services should be priced. What about an application that needs two database dips, an international phone call and two international SMSs? General agreement that this is an issue, but no specific suggestions or pointers to solutions.
The popular APIs to mashup with (besides Salesforce.com) are Google Maps, Flickr, Facebook and Amazon (for storage), at least today.
Now Joel has explicitly asked how things are priced. Amazon is priced by the GByte per month and Salesforce.com is by user per month. Enterprise telecom groups either buy the platform or pay per transaction until they buy the platform. Their issues are reliability and minimizing costs.
Matt Gross describes the value uLocate brings to Sprint is to handle the long tail of developers that Sprint can't deal with directly.
Alan says BT's Web21c has helped expose issues and challenges. They are still experimenting. As far as location goes, the pricing is still too steep. Alan expects that Google and others will note the GPS coordinates of every cell site, retrieve that from the handset and skip interfacing with the operator. Operators will have to price their location info appropriately or they will be bypassed. Consumers do seem willing to pay for safety-related location-based services.
Relation of mashups with IMS. North American operators are adopting IMS to control VoIP telephony, but IMS is just the base for connection control. The broader service delivery platform is less standard and yet that's what's required as the platform that supports web services. SIP-based applications going a lot slower than web APIs. In the end it's applications that matter. No one on this panel cares about IMS except as an underlying layer that supports their web APIs.
A question from the audience: how do you see the handset interfaces w.r.t. mashups. Kevin is focused on voice telephony. He doesn't see the mobile handset as the application UI for now. In the long term, he expects browser-based user interfaces, but for now, he's doing voice. Alan seems to agree. Handsets are so different that all you can rely on is basic voice and SMS. Sam complains that even the so-called open API phones, you can't actually to deep features on the handset. This crew is focused on voice.
Dave Penny, VP at NMS, is moderating the first session after lunch entitled "Community Goes Mobile" with panelists:
Prakash Iyer, Founder and CEO, envIO networks -- a market centric approach to recommendations and content discovery. They are still in stealth mode, but already he's said more than shows up on their website.
Nicolas Arauz, Co-founder and Managing Director, Xipto LLC -- some notes earlier today...
Dan Melinger, CEO, Socialight -- location aware social recommendations particularly useful when you want friends comments on where you are right now.
Jouni Welander, Head of New Solutions US, Nokia Siemens Networks -- most people know NSN...
Some comments I found interesting:
Jouni showed a Nokia Siemens forecast that by 2016 there would be 5 billion people connected. I can't imagine it will take that long... Of course they are talking about real people, not just subscriptions, but still... Why so long?
Jouni also mentioned a study that says 12 million people used mobile devices to access social networking sites in June 2007. Half of these were US users accessing either MySpace or Facebook.
Prakash differentiates mobile community by location but also by the different characteristics of the mobile environment. On the other hand, neither Prakash nor Dan see the need for different services on the Internet and on mobile -- they will just be different interfaces to the same community. Nicolas focuses on how personal the mobile device is, e.g. spam on a mobile is much more intrusive.
A lot of discussion about location and privacy issues. All of the panelist seem to assume that location is something that may become available from the service providers. So far, no one has mentioned Navizon which I wrote about last week. The real issue is trust and the need to push control of location information to the user. Edge solutions sound best to me, but everyone seems to assume they'll have to work with operators to get location info.
A long discussion of swarming, i.e. too many people including completely unrelated people showing up for a suburban party, political protests, or related, cyber bullying. Also discussion of privacy in virtual worlds and in your on-line social persona. The panelists are worried about privacy, but everyone on the panel is over 30. My impression (even though I'm over 50) is that today's youth are much more comfortable with living their lives publicly. Or to put it another way, it used to be if you lived in a small town, everyone knew everything that went on. Today, it's not just in a small town.
Making money -- social networks must appear to be free as they are on the Internet. Money comes from driving traffic (on a flat rate plan), perhaps by offering some premium service to a subset of users and, eventually, by advertising and advertising-like activities, for example, content discovery and content recommendations.
In response to a question, Nicolas made the point that your closest contacts on your mobile may churn quite rapidly but can be represented by who you've communicated with in the past 24 hours and/or past week. To me that suggests that a mobile social network client should capture all your phone calls and SMSs and ask you if they are people to add to your social network (and if so, where and how they are to be added). And, sure enough, three minutes later Nicolas added the idea that your biggest mobile social network is the people you call and SMS in any given day.
General agreement that mobile social networking won't really take off until it is available across operators. Exclusive deals won't promote widespread adoption.
Dan suggests that handset standardization should come through browsers, although this will take time to roll out.
**** Minor corrections 12 Oct 2007 *****
Tags: community, connect 2007 nms connect 2007, envIO Networks, mobile community, nms communications, Nokia Siemens, social networking, Socialight, Xipto
Ewald Anderl, CTO and VP at Kirusa
John Puterbaugh, Ph.D., Founder and Chief Strategist at Nellymoser
Russ McGuire, Strategy at Sprint Nextel
Ken Olewiler, Managing Director of PUNCHCUT
Jud Bowman, CTO at Motricity
Here's what struck me from the discussions:
Interesting comment from Ken, reinforced by Dean, that US consumers are willing to carry bulkier devices, perhaps in belt pouches, compared with Europeans.
Russ from Sprint-Nextel disavows doing their own innovation. He says they recognize they are not the innovators, they just want to be sure they attract the innovators in a fashion that doesn't result in them becoming a dumb pipe -- refreshingly honest!
John points out that off-deck user interfaces are better than most carrier user interfaces even though the carriers can pre-load user interface software onto the phones. There are particular problems with billing, i.e. jumping into and out of billing screens.
Universal admiration for the iPhone's user interface. Jud notes that even if Apple sells 20 million iPhones, that's a drop in the bucket of a billion plus handsets per year. The point is 40 other handsets vendors are scrambling to include parts of the iPhone's user interface. Ken expects a flood of copies, many of which will be by wanna-a-be's, who don't actually understand what Apple has accomplished.
Negatives: iPhone voice calling isn't great. The SMS user interface (with no tactile feedback) is impossible to use behind your back, in your pocket or under the school desk (where you can't see the screen).
But there is still universal admiration from all panelists, including Russ at Sprint. Russ does point out that Apple set the bar with the Mackintosh, but it was a (comparatively) closed ecosystem and Windows won in the end. So Apple has raised the bar for everyone - that's good. But who wins in the end is not clear.
Digression on smart phones... Russ makes the point they are like a Swiss army knife, great to have a pair of scissors but they are not as good as a real pair of scissors. Russ uses that to promote Sprints new WiMAX service Xohm, where they expect 3rd party device vendors to go wild.
Ewald is very much in favor of AJAX on the mobile phone as it reduces the application's footprint on the device to zero. Jud confirms that user purchases go up tremendously when users succeed in downloading a Java application. He can't wait to see wider deployment of AJAX capable browsers so he can avoid the need to have the user download an Java application.
Dean's wrapup is theres no one layer that determines success.
There are four application vendors on the Applications Innovation panel at Connect 2007 in Boston. These folks got 3 slides each and 5+ minutes to explain what they are about.
Colm Healy, CEO, Xiam
-- mobile content discovery based on the automated discovery of consumer preferences.
Sunil Vemuri, Co-founder and CPO, QTech, Inc. -- Their product reQall helps people remember things (to do lists, names of people you meet, shopping lists, etc.) using a combination of mobile phones, web, WAP, SMS.
Nicolas Arauz, Co-founder and Managing Director, Xipto -- Endorsement-based mobile advertising where consumers choose to run advertising during the ringback tone interval, but only for brands and ads they are willing to endorse. In exchange they get credits for the mobile service.
Karen Cambray, CFO, Groove Mobile -- Full track download pioneer. Two million songs in your pocket.
Some immediate comments from the analyst and investor communities:
Seamus McAteer of M:Metrics -- the US is not the mobile backwater people usually say, at least for music services. Subscription services are the only really viable models today. Per transaction sales pale in comparison to monthly subscription revenues. It's not rational (on the consumer's part), but it's what consumers want.
Stan Reiss, General Partner, Matrix Partners -- it's still very early for mobile Internet. So far there is not a good model for how to monetize the mobile Internet. The operator's view that they are going to charge per transaction is very inhibiting (versus "free" on the Internet). Carriers are making money and content folks are making money, but startups in the middle are being squeezed out. Investors are looking for business models that can stand up to the carriers.
Strong counter from Nicholas at Xipto that you have to think about attention. There's real (advertising) money in having a user's attention. Of course Xipto is still in fairly low profile, but his argument included compelling figures for what advertisers might pay per ringback play (to one caller) compared with the content sale (music purchased a few time per year).
Seamus seems to agree that advertisers will pay substantially to reach people in any venue. So there is a substantial opportunity in offering brands access to mobile subscribers.
Stan points out the cost of advertising on the web is extremely low. The challenge with mobile is the carriers view of the cost of transferring content to the phone is still unreasonable. Example, the US carriers are unwilling to do anything that costs less than a dollar.
Karen points out that Europe is ahead of the US in allowing off-portal or off-deck, i.e. wholesale, content sales. The key is getting reasonable charges for data usage. Some discussion of data charging models that are emerging in Europe, including capping the data fee per day.
Dean Bubley again had a good question from the audience: most users in the world are prepaid, not subscription. Both Seamus and especially Stan commented that it's easier to make money in markets w/o a lot of prepaid, if only because the consumers are wealthier.
Some highlights from the first panel at Connect 2007 in Boston...
Andrew Budd of mBlox is very articulate on the need for wholesale models, i.e. not the "real" Internet, but a mobile world where operators allow (facilitate) customer access to 3rd party content. This is the compromise position between the typical walled garden operator and the completely open Internet (which Dean Bubley pressed in a question from the floor). Andrew's argument against the wide open mobile Internet is roughly that we don't want the 900 number meltdown that we saw in the US in the 1990s (when premium rate services became associated with scams and porn).
Likewise, Jud Bowman of Motricity, clearly expects the "real" Internet to win eventually, but in a long transition in which operator run programs dominate. Jud made an interesting point I need to double check: PC's are only upgraded every 4-6 years (can it be that bad?) whereas mobiles are upgraded every 2 years (in the US). The implication is we'll see very rapid change in the mobile market in the next 2-4 years as handset vendors learn from the UI of the iPhone and 3G data capacity continues to evolve.
Michael Scully, Director of Music, Mobile Content and Data, at Virgin Mobile USA was the one operator representative on the panel and, as might be expected, (and completely legitimately), pressed the point that Virgin Mobile has a relationship with their customers that centers around a very personal device - their mobile phone.
Another set of numbers (from Andrew Budd) that I need to check out: The mobile industry is worth $700B whereas the Internet is only worth $150B. That was partly contested by Seamus McAteer of M:Metrics but I didn't hear an alternate set of numbers.
Listening to the first panel at Connect 2007 and my first reaction is Wow - No slides is the way to go! Perhaps it's the quality of the speakers or Bob Schechter's moderation, but the nature of the discussion is much, much better than at a typical industry show.
The first of the Connect 2007 conferences is this week in Boston (subsequent events in China in two weeks and in Spain in five weeks). Last year's conferences provoked some really interesting controversy, uncovered some interesting (bizarre?) mobile applications, had fun and highlighted some western vs. Asian approaches.
I'll be moderating the panel "Increasing Service Velocity" on Tuesday afternoon and presenting "IMS: Lessons Learned" at the end of the day on Wednesday afternoon.(hopefully a few will stick around,,,).
Here's the list of speakers for day one:
Industry Overview Session
Andrew Bud, Executive Chairman & Co-founder, mBlox
Prior to Executive Chairman, Andrew was the CEO of mBlox, the world’s leading mobile transaction network, which he co-founded in 1999 and led to profitability. Andrew was head of mobile technology for Olivetti SpA in Italy. He became the founding technical head of Omnitel (now Vodafone Italia). He led the European development of DECT (the predecessor of WiFi), and launched Europe's first wireless LAN system. He was a Director at Connect Communications Group, and was the Group Marketing Director with Azlan plc, the £200m European distributor of internet technology. Earlier he was in mobile technology R&D with PA Technology. Andrew is a Board member of the global Mobile Entertainment Forum (MEF), which he helped found in 2001. In 2005 he was appointed to the Board of ICSTIS, the UK regulator of premium-rate telecoms services. Andrew is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of the IEE, and is a graduate of the University of Cambridge.
Hassan Ahmed, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer and Chairman, Sonus Networks
As chief executive officer and chairman, Hassan Ahmed is responsible for the strategic direction and management of the company. Prior to joining Sonus Networks as president and CEO in 1998, Dr. Ahmed was executive vice president and general manager of Ascend Communications’ Core Systems Division, which grew under his direction to a $1 billion business. Before Ascend’s acquisition of Cascade Communications, he served as Cascade’s chief technology officer. Previously, Dr. Ahmed was president and founder of WaveAccess, a pioneer in high-speed wireless network products. Additionally, he has held the positions of product engineering manager, Analog Devices, and director, VSLI Systems, Motorola Codex. He was also an associate professor at the Graduate School of Management, Boston University. Dr. Ahmed holds a BSEE and MSAE from Carleton University and a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Stanford University.
Seamus McAteer, Co-Founder & Chief Product Architect/Sr. Analyst, M:Metrics
As co-founder, chief product architect and senior analyst at M:Metrics, McAteer determines how services are shaped to match client needs. He is also the company's primary evangelist. McAteer has been analyzing the wireless industry since its inception and has been assisting clients in the wireless and portable computing sectors since the early 1990s. Most recently, McAteer was managing partner at Zelos Group, a boutique advisory services firm focused on wireless and voice applications. Prior to founding Zelos Group, McAteer was a director and research fellow with Jupiter Research, where he headed Jupiter's coverage of new technologies and services. Before joining Jupiter, McAteer focused on wireless services and pervasive computing as a senior analyst with SRI International. McAteer is frequently sought as a speaker and expert commentator. He has been quoted in numerous international media outlets, including: the New York Times, USA Today, Nikkei Weekly, Wired Magazine, the Associated Press and a variety of trade journals. He has made frequent TV and radio appearances, commenting on technology issues for CNN, Fox News, NPR and TechTV. McAteer often speaks at prestigious industry events. He received an undergraduate degree at Trinity College Dublin, and a Diploma in Advanced Marketing Techniques from the Dublin Institute of Technology.
Application Innovation Session
Colm Healy, CEO, XIAM
Colm, 42, co-founded Xiam Technologies in 2004. A frequent speaker at industry conferences, he has over 7 years experience in the mobile marketing and content industries. A seasoned executive, Colm previously held senior positions with Price Waterhouse Coopers and the Bank of Ireland in Dublin, New York and London. Colm holds a Masters Degree in Management Science (first class honors) and a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from University College Dublin and is a graduate of the Stanford University Leadership 4 Growth program.
Stan Reiss, General Partner, Matrix Partners
Stan Reiss, a General Partner in the Waltham office, joined Matrix Partners in July of 2000. Prior to Matrix Stan was a manager in McKinsey & Company's electronics practice, where he led teams that advised technology companies on strategy and operational issues. He also brings to Matrix experience that he gained designing chips with National Semiconductor's Local Area Network Group. Stan holds a BSEE with distinction from Cornell University as well as SMEE and SMOR degrees from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where his research focused on optical communication networks. He also holds an MBA with high distinction (Baker Scholar) from the Harvard Business School. Stan serves on the boards of 4th Media, Intelliden and Noble Device Technology.
Sunil Vemuri, Co-founder and CPO, QTech Inc.
Sunil oversees product development at QTech and contributes to the company’s product vision. Prior to QTech, Sunil worked at France Telecom and Apple Computer. Sunil’s interests include Human Memory Assistance, Information Retrieval, Information Extraction, Information Visualization, Knowledge Acquisition, Organizational Memory, Speech Recognition, and Interface/Interaction design. He has three patents and his research has been extensively covered in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Newsweek, CNN, and MIT Technology Review. He received his Ph.D. from MIT’s Media Lab, his Masters Degree in Computer Science from Stanford University, and his Bachelors Degree in Cybernetics from UCLA.
Edwald Anderl, Chief Technology Officer and Vice President, Kirusa
Anderl brings to Kirusa more than 20 years of leadership and executive experience in the telecommunications industry, with a proven track record of building teams that deliver innovative solutions to market. Prior to joining Kirusa, Mr. Anderl led the software and customer care teams at Xebeo Communications in developing and delivering state of the art software releases into successful trials. Mr. Anderl served at Avaya as development director, where his team successfully engineered and deployed an innovative class of Internet communications applications. Previously, he was Chief Technical Officer for the IP Business Applications Group. Mr. Anderl has had an extensive career at Bell Laboratories and AT&T — where he headed development teams specializing in data networking software for voicemail and unified messaging systems, as well as other applications and system level products. He holds several patents for Smart Card technology that were invented during his tenure at AT&T Bell Laboratories. Mr. Anderl holds both a BS and an MS in Electrical Engineering from Rutgers University.
John Puterbaugh, Founder & Chief Strategist, Nellymoser
John Puterbaugh, Ph.D., founder and Chief Strategist of Nellymoser, Inc. has over 15 years experience in creating and developing interactive multimedia solutions for IP networks, mobile phones and other consumer products. Before Nellymoser he was CTO of Reelworks, which provides voice technology solutions for the film and entertainment industry. He was also part of the early team and held a number of senior management positions at Voxware, Inc., one of the first companies to provide Internet voice chat and real-time streaming solutions for companies such as Disney, Microsoft, Nokia and Netscape. He holds patents in wireless voice platforms, voice analysis and synthesis, user-generated ringtones, and in sound transformation. Educated at Princeton University, Dartmouth College and Oberlin College, he has taught courses and lectured on interdisciplinary topics related to music, computers and cognition. John is a frequent speaker at industry events including the CES, CTIA, Game Developers Conference, Digital Music Forum, 3GSM on a wide range of topics such technology roadmaps for Mobile TV, on-deck and off-deck strategies, and business models for mobile music.
Jud Bowman, Chief Technology Officer, Motricity
Jud Bowman is the chief technology officer and the general manager of media & entertainment for Motricity and is responsible for overseeing the company's technology and product strategy and managing Motricity's efforts serving the mobile businesses for global media and entertainment companies such as MTV, BET, Warner Music and Universal Music. Bowman is a founder and chief architect of one of the industry's leading mobile content delivery platforms, Fuel, that has delivered more than $750 million of mobile content to date, and has been named as one of the world's “Top 100 Young Innovators” by MIT's Technology Review and one of “Tech's Best Young Entrepreneurs” by BusinessWeek in 2007. Prior to being named chief technology officer for Motricity, Bowman was co-founder and chief executive officer of Pinpoint Networks, which merged with PowerByHand in 2004 to form Motricity. Bowman led Pinpoint to a leadership position in the mobile content market providing software and services to mobile operators and raised $20 million in venture capital. Bowman was instrumental in leading the integration of PowerByHand and Pinpoint Networks and raising over $200 million in venture capital for Motricity, and has helped grow Motricity to over 300 employees globally.
Russ McGuire, Strategy, Sprint Nextel
Russ McGuire is a leading strategist and visionary in the telecom industry. As director of strategy for Sprint, he is responsible for developing the strategic vision and competitive strategies for the $40 billion+ telecommunications giant. Mr. McGuire is also the author of The Power of Mobility, a book about how businesses can prosper in the next technology revolution which will be published by John Wiley & Sons in the fall of 2007. His daily weblog on these topics can be read at www.law-of-mobility.com. Mr. McGuire's experience includes 20 years in the telecom industry. Prior to joining Sprint, Mr. McGuire was Chief Strategy Officer for TeleChoice, and prior to that he was vice president of strategic development for Williams Communications. Mr. McGuire has also founded or co-founded two technology start-ups. He began his telecom career as a software developer for Northern Telecom.
Ken Olewiler, Managing Director, PUNCHCUT
Ken Olewiler heads the business practice of Punchcut. Under his strategic direction, Punchcut works with device manufacturers, operators, and major entertainment brands to leverage emerging mobile technologies to enhance and improve mobile user experiences. Ken’s deep understanding of the challenges and opportunities in the mobile sector has allowed him to drive effective user experience design solutions for a range of industry-leading mobile technology companies. Past successes include initiatives and projects with a range of strategic partners including carriers, OEMs and major entertainment brands. Other major brands well-served by Ken’s expertise include Disney, Yahoo!, Cisco Systems, Sun Microsystems, The Discovery Channel, and Hewlett-Packard.
Community Goes Mobile Session
Prakash R. Iyer, Founder and CEO, envIO networks
Prakash Iyer is a co-founder and CEO of envIO networks. Prior to envIO, Prakash led Product Development at Motorola for Push to Talk, IMS and Seamless Mobility. He joined Motorola in 2003 through the acquisition of Winphoria Networks, a pioneer of Mobile Wireless SoftSwitch and Push-to-Talk applications for the wireless market. Mr. Iyer's earlier career includes roles as a Department Head and a Distinguished Member of Technical Staff at Lucent Technologies Bell Labs. He has authored numerous patents, and has a number of pending patent applications in the telecom infrastructure and applications space.
Nicolas Arauz, Co-founder, Xipto LLC
Nicolas Arauz is the Managing Director and a Co-Founder of Xipto, a unique mobile advertising content solution built around 'Micro- endorsement'. Xipto connects individuals to brands, campaigns, and issues they love, and enables them to share these passions with their friends using their mobile phones. Prior to Xipto, Nick spent more than a decade developing social and community-driven brand strategy and experience design for consumer retail and technology brands, developing projects that leverage real- world experiences, social media and mobile devices as platforms for crowd-sourced marketing, fundraising, and change-forecasting; and advising F500 companies on how to effectively drive marketing efforts through emerging social media. He is also a co-founder of 88bikes, a peer-driven social fundraising project that donates bikes to children in developing countries.
Dan Melinger, Co-founder and CEO, Socialight
Dan Melinger is a co-founder and the CEO of Socialight (http://socialight.com), the platform that lets anyone create communities around location-based content. Socialight users find information and share stories with friends about places they go to. Publishers create, manage, and grow user communities around their location-based content with Socialight’s location-aware mobile and web interfaces. Previously a technology consultant, Melinger has worked with leading global financial institutions, helping them to develop and deploy mobile solutions. He also has experience in radio and television production, working with media outlets including CNBC and Bloomberg. Melinger holds a Master's degree from New York University's Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) and a B.A. in Communications from the Annenberg School at the University of Pennsylvania. In 1999, his undergraduate thesis explored the potential impacts of P2P before Napster became a dirty word. In 2005, Melinger helped found the New York chapter of Helsinki-based global organization, MobileMonday (http://mobilemonday-ny.com/), a group that fosters NYC's mobile industry.
Mashups: Web Meets Telco Session
Matt Gross, Director, Product Management, uLocate
Matt's path to product management started with writing code and led to a position managing the best-selling mobile application in the US. Matt previously managed MapQuest Mobile, a product which by late 2005 accounted for 20% of US mobile application revenue. While at MapQuest, Matt was also responsible for launching an enterprise mapping platform to handle 2.3 billion transactions annually for customers including Orbitz and Travelocity while retiring 4 legacy products. Previously at ActiveStrategy, Matt directed technical sales of executive dashboards to C-Level staff at Intel and Carlson Companies, and at eCal Corporation launched the first commercially-available XML calendar service for companies including Reuters and Disney. Matt is the co-founder and lead organizer of Mobile Monday Boston, one of the largest Mobile Monday chapters globally. Matt's education includes a B.A. from Swarthmore and coursework at the University of Ghana in West Africa. He keeps people posted on what he's thinking about at his blog, entangledparticles.com.
Kevin Nethercott, Founder, President and COO, LignUp Corporation
Kevin brings over 20 years of experience in international sales and business development, and over 10 years of experience in the Voice over IP (VoIP) industry. As founder and CTO of SkyWave, Inc., a Pulver 100 company, Kevin pioneered the deployment of VoIP technologies, established the first operational VoIP network in Japan, and developed the first real-time VoIP billing engine. Kevin’s leadership at SkyWave has forged successful strategic relationships with leading IT systems integrators such as Net One Systems, NEC Systems Integration and Construction, NTT-ME, K Solutions (KDDI Group), Sun Telephone and Hitachi Information Technology Co. As co-founder and Executive Vice President for iCall, Inc., Kevin spearheaded the company’s efforts through two rounds of private financing, directed the acquisition of strategic technology assets, and established strategic alliances with industry leaders Cisco and NEC. As a recognized leader in the VoIP industry, Kevin was also responsible for the creation of the VoIP Forum of Japan and is a member of its board of directors. Kevin is fluent in Japanese, is a regular speaker at VoIP conferences and holds a B.A. in Marketing from Utah State University in Logan, Utah.
Michael Zirngibl, President and CEO, Angel.com
Michael is the Founder and President of Angel.com and is responsible for the company's business, product and technology strategies. A prolific industry speaker, Michael holds numerous voice messaging patents and continues his track record of technology innovation. Driven by his vision to make speech applications as ubiquitous and easy-to-use as the Internet, he established Angel.com - the fastest growing provider of turnkey speech and IVR solutions as a service. To date, more than 1,600 customers have implemented hundreds of voice applications from virtual receptionists and virtual call centers to interactive polls for grassroots activism. Prior to Angel.com, Michael led product management for Microstrategy Inc.'s Broadcaster and Telecaster voice messaging products. In addition, he was the founding partner of Marketing and IT consulting firm in Munich, Germany. He holds a master's degree in business administration from Ludwig-Maximilian University in Munich. His master's thesis investigated innovative marketing strategies for new communication networks, such as one-to-one personalization based on real-time analysis of customer behavior.
Alan Quayle, Consultant, Business and Development Services
Alan has 17 years experience in the telecommunication industry, focused on developing profitable new businesses in service providers, suppliers and consultancies. He consults extensively around the world on SDP (Service Delivery Platform), CDM (Content Delivery Management), ODP (On-Device Portal), and IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem) with operators such as AT&T Mobility, BT, Etislat, M1, Swisscom, T-Mobile, Verizon and Vodafone; and suppliers such as Adobe, Alcatel, BEA, Ericsson, Huawei, Leapstone (Motorola) and Nokia Siemens Networks. The focus of current projects is identifying opportunities in adopting the emerging service creation methods of the Internet. For more information check out his website, www.alanquayle.com or his Linked-in profile for endorsements from his customers http://www.linkedin.com/in/alanquayle.
Increasing Service Velocity Session
Mr.Johansson has 21 years experience in the telecom industry. Kjell
has been with Ericsson since 1985, and has recently been solution
responsible for the Ericsson IMS-based product portfolio and
professional services, in the AT&T account. In this role, Kjell has
worked closely with the AT&T CTO and CMO groups and with select
partners to design and align Ericsson solutions with customer short-
and medium-term requirements. Kjell has also been responsible for
alignment of the Ericsson and AT&T long-term technology
requirements & roadmaps within the context of the strategic
partnership. Prior to joining the AT&T account, Kjell has held a
number of Product Management positions within Ericsson, including one
in the HQ organization in Sweden as P&L responsible for our global
SS7-portfolio, and one in the Market Unit for North America managing
the Ericsson Mobile Core Network portfolio for North American
accounts.Kjell has a background in Software R&D and advanced
systems design, and served as a principal systems architect within the
Ericsson switching division, specializing in call control and
Doug Tucker, CTO, Ubiquity Software Corporation
Doug has been with Ubiquity since 2004 and has been working to advance Ubiquity’s SIP SOA development strategy. Doug has more than 20 years of research and development experience, including developing one of the first IP telephony products to distribute audio and video over TCP/IP networks. In his varied engineering career, Doug has held the positions of VP Engineering, CTO, and Chief Scientist, working in both visionary architecture roles and core product development in a number of companies, including MCK Communications, Videoserver, ClearOne, PictureTel, and Codex Corporation/Motorola. He has also served as a consultant specializing in VoIP product definition, architecture and development for companies such as Siemens, Microsoft, Intel, and Spectel/Multilink. He holds a Bachelor of Science, Electrical Engineering degree from Fairfield University and is literate in a multiplicity of programming languages, development environments and communications protocols and actively participates in the standards process.
Susan Norris, Communications Industry Advisor, Norport Technology Management
Susan brings more than twenty-five years of diverse telecommunications, business, and education experience to her advisory role in Technology Management. Since 2Q03, she has formally consulted with companies ranging from high-tech start-ups to much larger telecommunications vendors. As preparation for her advisory role, Susan held increasingly responsible positions within the Service Provider arena. Most recently, as Assistant Vice President of Network Systems Development at Sprint, she was responsible for the technical design, development, and implementation of its 2.5G network infrastructure.
I'll be in France next week. On Tuesday and Wednesday I'll be at the AdvancedTCA Summit Europe 2007 at Disney's Newport Bay Club near Paris. I have other meetings in and around Paris on Monday afternoon and Thursday, then I'm flying back to Boston on Friday morning.
On Tuesday afternoon I'm organizing, and speaking in, Tutorial T2B - AdvancedTCA/MicroTCA in Next-Generation IMS Networks, and on Wednesday morning I'm representing PICMG in Session 203: COTS Ecosystem (organized by Mountain View Alliance).
If you are attending the AdvancedTCA Summit, please say hello. Or if you are otherwise in Paris next week and want to meet, please send me an email or text chat on Skype.
The programs and panelists for this year's Connect conferences are pretty well developed, and session descriptions and participants' names are rapidly being filled in on the Connect conference web site. You might want to check it out.
Day one of each conference is devoted to industry issues and innovative applications. For industry issues, panelists have been selected to represent differing points of view, which typically results in edgy discussions and real controversy, both on stage and between panelists and members of the audience. Some of the innovative applications have been a bit edgy as well, like this Virtual Girlfriend video telephony application exhibited at Connect 2006 in Europe.
Day two is a more traditional vendor-sponsored developer conference that targets NMS customers and prospects and delivers deep dives into NMS products and development tools.
Whether you are interested in day two or not, day one should be interesting for anyone in telecom. Also, if you subscribe to this blog's RSS or email feeds, I'm incredibly flattered, and would like to meet you. :-)
As I write this, I’m attending an NMS seminar for about 100 developers in Seoul, Korea. Ordinarily, before I speak to such an audience, I try to plant a question with a friendly in the audience, just to satisfy my western sensibilities — I don’t feel I’ve been successful if there are no questions from the audience. But today I forgot (jet lag?), so no questions. Of course there were no questions for the next four speakers, either. I’m not a fan of generalizations, but this reflects a basic difference between Asian audiences and western audiences.
I see a similar effect in our Connect Conferences. The US and EU Connect Conferences feature panel discussions with panel participants selected, in part, to generate controversy in the ensuing discussion. The Asia Connect Conference has some of this, but a lot more straight presentations.
So how does information get transferred, aside from death by Powerpoint? Certainly Asian development teams are every bit as productive as western teams, if not more so.
Over lunch I had a long conversation with a Korean engineering manager. He had attended Columbia University in the US and was still impressed at how western students asked questions and Asian students were quiet. When I pressed him on his current sources of information, his answers (paraphrased) were:
From my perspective, it’s important to be accessible and to find ways to let people know I’m approachable. This blog has helped, but so have my other articles, webinars, etc. In fact, a common approach line is to thank me for something I’ve written and then move on to asking a question.
The biggest change, in the 15+ years I’ve been visiting Asia, has been the web. Now it’s much easier to provide written material and it’s feasible to distibute audio and seminar presentations, i.e. webinars. Now if only I could get over my craving for audience interaction…
There are a variety of people and at least three companies (Mindspeed, Voice Age & GIPS) here at Communications Developer Conference that are involved with wideband voice codecs of one form or another, and at least one presentation discussed the 2006 Ericsson/ T-Mobile trial I've mentioned before. So at every opportunity, I've asked people who might have inside knowledge why the 2006 trial hasn't been followed by the launch of mobile handsets with AMR-WB codecs.
While I've heard no good answer, one person who I regard as credible claimed we would see wideband mobile handsets by Christmas this year and at least one operator would be promoting them and supporting them. He then insisted that he could say no more — NDAs, etc.
It's just a rumor, but after promoting the idea of wideband for more than ten years, I'm desperate enough to grasp at straws!
I'm leaving for the Communications Developer Conference (formerly VoIP Developers conference) early tomorrow morning and will be at the conference Tuesday afternoon and all day Wednesday. It's a smaller show but very focused and thus a good venue for our developer platforms business.
On Wednesday morning, 8:30am - 9:15 am, I'll be giving a talk, Voice SMS - Merging VoIP & Mobile to Create A Compelling Service in the Wireless/Mobility track. It's a subject I've written about before as, among other things, the two largest Voice SMS applications companies, Bubble Motion and Kirusa are both customers of NMS.
Then, on Wednesday afternoon, 4:00pm - 4:45pm, I'll be presenting Connecting Your SIP-Based Hosted Contact Center to the Rest of the World in the SIP Development track. This is a bit more techie — Connecting IP-based three-tier IT architectures with the relatively monolithic PSTN in diverse parts of the world — SIP & ISUP, SIP & ISDN, high availability issues for SIP proxies and PSTN call routing, and so on...
NMS has Booth 119 (to the left as you enter the exhibit hall), where we'll be featuring our Vision VoiceXML Server and the MG 7000A AdvancedTCA media blade. We'll also be promoting our ever popular AdvancedTCA Ecosystem poster, but you could get one by mail by registering here. Tim Cook and Marcello Frederico will be manning the booth.
If you will be at Communications Developer 2007 and want to meet, drop me a line.
It's great to see something I'm interested in, and have written about, picked up by The Economist.
It appears that's how long it's taken for Jensen's study to make it's way from a conference presentation (here are the original slides) to publication in a peer-reviewed journal, i.e. “The Digital Provide: Information (technology), market performance and welfare in the South Indian fisheries sector”, by Robert Jensen, to be published in the Quarterly Journal of Economics, August 2007.
Not to boast, but the graphics in my original post beat the text in the Economist article although that text is good:
...starting in 1997 mobile phones were introduced in Kerala. Since coverage spread gradually, this provided an ideal way to gauge the effect of mobile phones on the fishermen's behaviour, the price of fish, and the amount of waste.
As phone coverage spread between 1997 and 2000, fishermen started to buy phones and use them to call coastal markets while still at sea. (The area of coverage reaches 20-25km off the coast.) Instead of selling their fish at beach auctions, the fishermen would call around to find the best price. Dividing the coast into three regions, Mr Jensen found that the proportion of fishermen who ventured beyond their home markets to sell their catches jumped from zero to around 35% as soon as coverage became available in each region. At that point, no fish were wasted and the variation in prices fell dramatically.
Missing from the Economist article were some significant results Jensen provided in his January 2006 talk. At that time, he concluded by pointing out other impacts, beyond prices and reduced waste of fish. The advent of cellphones also led to a 6% increase in educational enrollments and a 5% increase in the probability of using of healthcare when sick. All this with no government programs and no new funding of existing programs.
I'm off to attend the CTIA conference in Orlando Florida. Unlike our fairly broad exhibit at VON, CTIA is a very focused show for NMS — focused on our applications for mobile operators. As a result, our primary presence is two meeting rooms, which our sales and business development folks have booked up for pre-arranged meetings.
We do have one exhibit, in the TI booth ( Hall B1, Booth 2335), where we're showing our MyCommunity video sharing client and our IMS client software, which happen to run on a TI OMAP processor (among others). Our video sharing client is part of a GSMA-compliant, “see-what-I-see” application that allows people to share video in real-time while maintaining an existing voice call. The user is able to switch the video share feature on and off during a call and our application supports pause and resume, as well as store and forward when it front ends our Mobile Publishing capability.
If you will be at CTIA and want to meet, email me (email@example.com) or call me (+1 617 285 0433). I have a lot of commitments, but not 100 %.
Corrected Javad Boroumand 27 March 2007 - rbt
Wednesday afternoon, in the 'VON Theatre' on the show floor, Gordon Cook ran a session entitled Special Cook Report BOF: What does it mean to be an Internet Company? with Javad Boroumand from Cisco, Roxanne Googin, Publisher, High Tech Observer and John Waclawsky, Chief Software Architect, Motorola.
It was relatively small, in a noisy location and didn't answer the question posed, but it was the most interesting session I attended, in part because of a 20 minute discussion with Roxanne and Gordon afterwards.
Javad spoke first explaining what National LambdaRail is, and CAIDA's Commons Project. The key difference between National LambdaRail (NLR) and Internet2 is that NLR owns their own dark fiber whereas Internet2 is paying for backbone services. This gives NLR enormous flexibility in trying new technology at layers one and two, i.e. below IP. The Commons project is an attempt to combine the NLR backbone with community and municipal networks that are willing to participate in CAIDA measurement programs, thus getting low level data on Internet performance that supports basic research and lower costs for muni networks.
John went second, speaking about the evolution of edge devices in an open network. I've heard John speak on this subject and I've talked to him in the past (most recently at F2C), so this was interesting, but not new to me.
Last up, before open discussion, was Roxanne with the financial picture, in part based on her 'Paradox of the Best Network,' i.e. competitive IP networks are not a good investment (capital repellent, in her words) but monopolies (or duopolies) won't give us the broadband access we want and need for economic growth. Unfortunately, she ended by posing the problem but not suggesting a solution or giving any call to action - thus my comments during the BOF and in our discussion afterward.
Responding to questions, Roxanne made it clear she was advocating unfetter municipal experimentation by any of the 22,000 municipalities in the US and/or interested community groups. I couldn't agree more. Yes, there will be a lot of mistakes, but to the extent we foster widespread experimentation, workable models will emerge. Unfortunately, municipalities in many states have been slowed or completely blocked by state legislation and/or state and national regulation, mostly the result of highly effective lobbying efforts by incumbent operators (ILEC and CableCos).
I was struck by the combination of NLR purchasing their own dark fiber and Roxanne's advocacy for municipal experimentation, but I didn't get to push my thoughts until our post session discussion. My points:
This suggests the best focus for municipal activities is point-to-point (home run) dark fiber from each business and residence to a central aggregation point where enough other fibers come together that multiple competitive ISPs (and other service providers) are attracted. Then individuals get to pick which ISP they want to light their fiber.
Of course while my idea of what a municipality should do is right :-), it would be a terrible idea to impose it, nationally or otherwise. Roxanne is completely correct that we need to give our 22K municipalities permission to do whatever they want and then see what emerges.
Tags: broadband, broadband access, dark fiber, Gordon Cook, John Waclawsky, muni networks, municipal networks, Roxanne Googin, Tracy Futhey, VON07