What's Cookin' at Cable-Tec Expo?
This month's entry is a Q&A with Suddenlink Communications Senior Vice President and CTO Terry Cordova, who is also serving as Program Committee Chairman for the 2011 Cable-Tec Expo, which takes place Nov. 15-17 in Atlanta.
Light Reading Cable: What do you see as the top three engineering issues faced by cable operators as we head into this year's Cable-Tec Expo?
Cordova: Only three? In all seriousness, we'll be addressing dozens of issues and opportunities, but here are the topics that are at the top of most engineers' lists: Transition to IP video for greater service flexibility across multiple platforms; the plans around the Next Generation Video Architecture to support the access of content to untethered devices inside and outside of the home; deployment of high-margin, highly reliable business services; energy management that can reduce costs and ensure the availability of network powering; home networking and certification of devices; and the need for ever-higher levels of excellence in our installations and dealings with our customers.
Light Reading Cable: How have items such as IP video and wireless services risen on the engineering agenda over the last couple of years, and why? Have you seen a similar shift of focus on IPTV and wireless at Suddenlink as well?
Cordova: We've recognized the need to address the multi-platform opportunities that have been created by changes in consumer behavior, the desire of our customers to access content anywhere on any device and the rapid pace of technological innovation. Most of the opening session and our engineering workshops will focus on IP and wireless issues, and our Next-Generation Video Architecture Pavilion and even SCTE's Capacity Management Symposium on Monday, Nov. 14, also have been programmed to address operational challenges that have been raised by the MSO community.
From the Suddenlink perspective, we're continuing to make it easier for our customers to access content when and where they want it. Our Suddenlink2GO, [email protected] and Docsis 3.0 expansion initiatives reaching 90 percent of availability by year-end are all part of a comprehensive plan to offer outstanding untethered service delivery through a Suddenlink portal anywhere in the U.S., both inside and outside the home, on any computer with a high-speed Internet connection.
Light Reading Cable: What kind of message do you expect to send to your constituents in your opening remarks at Expo?
Cordova: It really comes down to a few key things: 1) Cable has the marketing positioning and the network flexibility to give customers the new array of services they seek; 2) We are once again at a great point in our industry history, where commercial services will begin to be a very meaningful element of our growth and with the introduction of untethered device content access, the power of the cable network and what we represent is once again delivering great opportunity; 3) The industry is committed to providing the technical education our engineering workforces need drive new services, reduce costs and increase customer satisfaction; and 4) At the end of the day, our success comes down to how well we use our technology and our skills to provide superior service for our customers.
Light Reading Cable: If there's one thing you hope attendees come away with at this year's show, what would it be?
Cordova: We'd like them to leave Atlanta even smarter than when they arrived. We've got the best and brightest of the cable technology community in our opening session, we've programmed more than 70 individual workshop presentations, and we've got a show floor full of innovative products and services. We want Expo to be an unparalleled learning experience for everyone who walks through the door.
One large opportunity for this will exist in our Next Generation Video Architecture Pavilion, where we are endeavoring to bring all the pieces together for engineers to come and see all the components from content acquisition, storage, transcoding and the streaming of content both in the home and out. Ultimately, I hope everyone leaves feeling great about the future and being a part of an industry that offers great opportunities for those of us who work in it and for the customers we serve.
— The Staff, Light Reading Cable