Eslambolchi Tries On New Hats
Former AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) CTO Hossein Eslambolchi has resurfaced as everything but a corporate executive. He's a blogger, a consultant, an author, and -- wait for it! -- a venture capitalist.
Eslambolchi, a one-time Light Reading Mover & Shaker left the "new AT&T" in late 2005 after its merger with SBC. At the time we reported it, AT&T could "neither confirm nor deny." (See Source: Eslambolchi Out at 'New' AT&T.)
Eslambolchi has set up his own operation, 2020 Venture Partners, which he describes as “my venture partner firm, which is more of a consulting firm.”
He recently published a book, 2020 Vision: Business Transformation Through Technology Innovation (whew, that's a mouthful).
So what’s he really doing? No deals to speak of yet. But after all, it’s 2006, so you have to start with a blog first. Of course, Eslambolchi’s got one. It's in the blog that he'll cover the emergence of what he calls the “diagonal convergence.” Sounds downright spooky and futuristic, doesn’t it? He also plans to crank out more Top Ten Lists, which he has shared in the past with Light Readers. (See Eslambolchi's Top Ten .)
Eslambolchi’s got some other zingers. Such as:
- “IP routing will be dead in 10 to 15 years.” So he says. It will be replaced by XML routing, in which an entire message is switched, rather than deconstructing packets and reassembling them. “There’s no reason why we wouldn’t move to XML switching. You switch the message at the line rate.”
- ”The current Internet is 30-plus years old and it’s fundamentally broken.” What’s the problem? It wasn’t designed for multimedia applications. Hence, the migration away from IP routing and toward application-layer switching. “People are putting band-aids around it. We should be thinking about the Internet 2.0, and focus on building an Internet that supports all sorts of applications.”
- ”In the 21st century, it’s not about the best hardware, it’s the best software.”
- ”WiMax is going to be very hot,” says Eslambolchi. That’s because it will become a truly global wireless standard, unlike, say, GSM and CDMA which compete with one another.
- Access bandwidth will follow the path of Moore’s Law, yielding the average Joe about 40 Mbit/s to the home in 2010.
Of course, what we really wanted to know was whether AT&T’s Lightspeed program was working, and whether it can get rid of the "jitters." (See AT&T Still Has IPTV 'Jitters'.)
Eslambolchi’s response was diplomatic, as expected. But he did offer this: He believes the incumbent telcos are going to move more quickly to beef up access bandwidth in order to compete with the cable players. And eventually, that means fiber to the home, not the node.
”With copper, no matter how much you try with VDSL you are still going to be limited,” says Eslambolchi. “AT&T is doing fiber to the node as a first step, but they ultimately have to eventually go fiber to the home.”
Eslambolchi also points out that access bandwidth is only part of the problem. The other is the aforementioned problem with the Internet -- that it is based on routing packets rather than switching applications. “The access bandwidth: It’s 1/100th of the problem. The jitter problem: You are dealing with hundreds of applications. If anybody can figure it out, AT&T can."
— R. Scott Raynovich, Editor in Chief, Light Reading