Attracting Talent in the Connectivity Industry

At neuco we’re at the forefront of recruitment for the connectivity industry. On Episode 10 of The Connectivity Matters Podcast we spoke to Virtyt Koshi, the SVP and General Manager for EMEA at Mavenir, about the struggles of attracting talent to the telecom industry. Read on to hear his insights on talent attraction in the sector.

Why do you think talent isn’t being attracted to the industry at the moment?

We really have to look at what’s motivating them and what they are excited about. What new areas are 18-25 years olds excited to join? We have not seen much happen in the telco industry for the last 10 years. However, there is an opportunity to establish something new. There is still capital around, there is still innovation happening and we’re seeing young people establishing their own businesses as a result. That’s very encouraging, because you see a lot of entrepreneurial skills and ideas coming from that. 

The telco sector itself is really guilty of not approaching top students in the market or driving the conversation and it becomes a vicious circle. If you don’t drive attraction top down then the results would be mediocre. I’m a strong believer that top down will always bring good results. There’s also a bit of a stigma with a legacy perception in the industry. 

What can be done to attract more talent to the telco industry?

Create a talent development function in the business. That function is absolutely critical for any success going forward. The HR function has had a stigma against it for years, but it is a critical role in any organisation, especially when it comes to the talent development and talent acquisition process. Having HR colleagues who really understand the vision we’re trying to achieve can help us understand how to go about it. If your people function is well organised and highly performing, everything else becomes easier. Talent Acquisition and talent development are absolutely critical for the performance and sustainability of the businesses going forward.

How important is retention to talent attraction? 

Talent has to enjoy what they’re doing and be compensated adequately for the difference that they are making to the team. In the same way, people are ambitious, and that ambition drives the team’s performance as well. They need to know what’s next, whether that’s within the company or outside the company. The company needs to foster happiness amongst their employees and make space for personal development. Your talent should know that by staying with the organisation they’ll have an opportunity to develop and reach the next level, otherwise they’ll look elsewhere. Happy people will stay in your company and make room for more junior hires, increasing positive attraction. 

To learn more about talent strategies in the connectivity industry, tune into Episode 10 of The Connectivity Matters Podcast

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

Inside Autonomous Robotics

Autonomous robotics has become a popular topic in the industry. On episode 9 of The Connectivity Matters Podcast we were joined by Nicholas Zylberglajt, Co-Founder and CEO of Unmanned Life to talk about the advances the company is making in the autonomous robotics space. Nicholas is a leader with more than 15 years of international experience, and with a focus on the technology and entrepreneurship space, he has been shortlisted as one of the 12 Most Impressive CEOs in the autonomous vehicle space, while Unmanned Life has been shortlisted as a top company in the same category. 

What’s your take on the current state of autonomous robotics?

The autonomous robotics industry is booming. Where we are today, post COVID, social acceptance has totally changed the narrative around autonomous robots. People were saying ‘robots are going to take my job’, but now the narrative is that robots are helping us solve certain problems, making work safer in areas that we cannot reach etc, etc. Combined with the economy needing to become more efficient, and robots becoming more cost efficient, the robotics market is booming. For a company like us, now is a perfect moment for the rollout of autonomous robotics. So social acceptance, pricing of autonomous robots going down and improvements of the overall infrastructure has allowed a massive deployment of robotics. Even with the tech downturn that we saw last year, the valuations for robotics companies did not go down, they went up. All these trends are happening at once, so the robotics market really is booming.

What’s more important for the growth of the sector, social acceptance or proven technology? 

Social acceptance always needs to be there. Let’s take the example of drones. We have very interesting data coming from regulators, saying that they want drone delivery to be used more widely, but they want this to be done safely. If we are deploying drones, we are always abiding by the rules and regulations. Although they are cumbersome, these will allow us to become much more socially accepted. For me, social acceptance always needs to come first. The trend in terms of the market being ready and the deployment infrastructure, that’s something that we cannot force. It has to happen as the wider world is ready for it. 

Which autonomous robotics use case are you most excited about for the future?

I would say that the security of premises, search and rescue for first responders, and anything else that is making jobs safer, more efficient, or enhancing human work is what excites me the most. For example, with first responders, you have the concept of the golden hour with wildfires. The concept is that if you intervene in the first hour, you can save lives. If you can deploy robots, or drones in this case, quickly enough that firefighters can have situational awareness, you can save lives, and you can save costs. 

We are working with the telecom operators and partners to deploy networks of autonomous drones over 5G that will cover wildfire hotspots and that will allow the first responders to intervene within their golden hour. These are tangible use cases that we can work on. Finally on sustainability, you can also use robotics to deploy reforestation, emissions capture, carbon capture and mapping, so you can trace how the progress has happened and monitor the progress of that reforestation. These are all use cases that we are working on with our partners, and our technologies enable.

What will ‘autonomous everything’ look like in the next few decades?

The way that I present our vision is that society will have achieved progress, thanks to autonomous robotics. We need to have the right checks and balances on technology, because where you will have AI and robotics in every single aspect of the economy and society, and it will be safer, more efficient, and faster. But, we need to make sure that’s being monitored. Basically, in all of the use cases I was describing, you can apply that technology in other sectors of the economy by orchestrating different types of robots. Imagine that an intelligent CT was functioning with robotics and intelligent AI – the autonomous everything is when all of these are functioning harmoniously without impacting the progress and cohesion of society.

To learn more about autonomous robotics and the work that Unmanned Life are doing in the space, tune into The Connectivity Matters Podcast here

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

Preparing for the Mobile World Conference

The Mobile World Conference is fast approaching, and is one of the highlights of the connectivity calendar. On Episode 8 of The Connectivity Matters Podcast we were joined by Kaitki Agarwal from A5G Networks, where she is the Fo-Founder, President and CTO, to talk about the upcoming event. Kaitki has created a culture of innovation and has over 50 patents pending and granted, making her the perfect person to talk us through the innovations we’ll see at the upcoming conference.

What are you expecting from the Mobile World Conference show?

There are a lot of evolutions happening in the mobile industry and in our network. Technologies are coming together. I’m excited to see how these technologies are impacting our day to day life, what are the new use cases, and so on. The real use cases will appear when we start using these technologies in our network, and when we have connectivity based on 5G. An example would be in healthcare for remote patient monitoring. Eventually, as we start using the technology, new use cases will start coming in as well. We’ll start using technology as a tool. As we start exploring new ways of doing things and new solutions, there’s going to be an evolution again. It’s going to be a journey.

I view MWC as an event where everyone comes together to share thoughts and innovations. It will be a great event to see how everything is coming together and how people are approaching problems. It shows us what we’re working on as an industry, and how our innovations are being realised as solutions. At A5G, we will be demonstrating some of the innovations behind realising the autonomous network in our vision. It’s a huge undertaking to enable autonomous networks in every part of the network, and A5G is doing its part. We’re focusing on autonomous packet core for 4G, 5G and Wi-Fi converged packet core for enabling self-optimising, self-configuring and self-healing networks. That’s what our charter is, but it will be good to see what other areas the audience are interested in developing during our demonstration. MWC allows us to bring all these things together, learn and share our knowledge.

You mentioned autonomous networks; other than that and 5G networks, is there any other tech that will be featured that we should look out for?

MWC covers almost all the aspects of the network. It starts from the radio network, all the way to different silicon and software innovations, use cases, verticals etc. I think we’re going to see a lot of conversations about why we need certain services, how telecom is going to evolve, whether to use private cloud or public cloud or hybrid and how the telco cloud infrastructure is going to evolve, what is the better approach? All these things are going to come together when we can hear from different thought leaders. There’s a lot to learn and discuss. I’m looking forward to learning from my peers at MWC.

Are there any verticals in particular that you think the show will have a big impact on this year?

I don’t think there’s any particular vertical I would single out at this point, because it’ssuch an evolving industry. There are a lot of different things happening. For example, everyone is talking about IoT convergence and bringing sensors into their network. There are several use cases based on our discussion with the customers and the problems they are trying to solve. They are evaluating if 5G is the right technology for them to use to solve those problems, mostly because they need either low latency or mobility, which cannot be solved with the current technologies and infrastructures. What we will see is how innovations in a particular area are being monetized and creating impact. I don’t expect to see a big announcement that we’ve proven that 5G is the best thing out there. We’ll see progress and evolution.

What would your top three tips be for somebody attending MWC that’s coming up?

Get good shoes; you will be walking a lot.

Look for different areas of technology. There are a lot of different things being covered at MWC. It’s not technically possible to see everything or listen to every panel, so be prepared to identify beforehand what your priorities are and create a map of those things. I always figure out, ‘What sessions are important to me? What technologies do I want to understand better? Where do I want to build connections from a 5G point of view?’ Machine learning is one area that is big this year, and AI is becoming our new normal. I would recommend getting involved in that and finding the touch points that connect with what you’re doing.

Try to learn as much as you can, and keep an open mind. There are a lot of new things that you may not see the relevance of immediately. It’s always good to keep an open mind and learn things that may not be there that may not seem relevant immediately, but from more of a long term thing that may become irrelevant. So that’s what I would say.

To hear more about Kaitki’s work in the 5G space, tune into The Connectivity Matters Podcast here.

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

Developing New Solutions in the Broadband Space 

On Episode 7 of The Connectivity Matters Podcast we spoke to Peter Vandenengel, the VP Broadband Solutions in North America for SAGEMCOM. He shared his insights on the way tech is developing in the broadband space, including the way companies like SAGEMCOM are developing new solutions to meet a variety of rising needs. Read on to hear what he had to say. 

What do you see as the big technology evolutions within the broadband space?

If you’re looking at it from a home network perspective, there’s obviously WiFi seven just around the corner, which brings great advancements in speed and brings 320 megahertz channels. It also brings multilink operations, which allows you to use all the radios in a given gateway to provide throughput in the home. A lot of the operators are skipping over WiFi six E because it was sort of in between six and seven, so they’re getting ready for Wi-Fi seven instead. That’s the next big thing that we’re going to start seeing in 2024. 

A lot of the operators, whether they’re a cableco or a telco, are looking for speeds above 10 gig. On fibre today you can get up to 10 gig for telco, but now we’re looking at some operators who are developing at 25 gig, and most of them are looking towards 2026-2027 for 50 gig services. The way cycles work means that we have to start planning for that now. That’s what’s coming next from a technology point of view; more speed to the home, and then better ways to use that speed with WiFi seven in the home. 

We’re still feeling challenges throughout the market to deliver current products. There’s a lot of uncertainty in the market with the economy slowing down and a recession looming. I think next year we’ll be hunkered down, then in 2024 we’re going to see the adoption of these new technologies in a big way.

When you’re developing a new solution, what’s your general approach to doing that? 

You have to be open-minded and you have to be a bit of a hunter. I try to go in looking for what the customer wants, even if that means asking them dumb questions. You’re just continually probing and understanding the way the market is thinking. The way the industry typically works for CPE is by coming up with a generic product, then you work with your telecom providers to create a generic platform that doesn’t necessarily meet any one person’s or one company’s needs. From there you can build and customise and adjust as required. Customers will come up with their list of requirements, but you have to make a bit of a bet on what that generic product is at the beginning, so that you have the flexibility to move forward. 

My advice is to make sure you’re networking a lot and asking a lot of questions. I mentioned the word ‘hunter’, and that’s really what you’ve got to do. You have to go out there, sniffing around, to really figure out what people are thinking. In that initial meeting they’ll tell you what they’re thinking, but it might take a couple more meetings to really understand their business and the problems they are trying to solve. It requires a constant curiosity and willingness to get things wrong early, so that you can figure out the right path quickly.  

How would you go about tailoring those solutions for different clients?

That goes back to the goal of doing things efficiently. In the networking space, the margin for hardware isn’t huge, so you have to be very efficient in the way you develop your generic products and maintain your flexibility to adapt it to customers. Obviously we don’t want to shortchange a customer, so if our platform or our reference platform doesn’t meet their needs, we want to make sure that we can adapt it. That means working with a great team of engineers, coming up with designs that could be flexible on the fly, with some modifications that can be changed at the factory. It’s really just about being as open as possible with the team doing the actual development. 

When I take on those customer requirements, I’m digesting it, feeding it to the r&d folks, listening to them on what’s going to work and what’s not going to work and then being the bridge between the development team and the customer. That is never easy, because if a developer is not face to face with a customer, they can say no or just brush you off, because they don’t have to face the wrath of the customer. But for a product manager like me, I’m developing relationships with both sides. I can ask the questions that get engineers thinking in different ways, which could help them find flexible solutions that meet the customer’s needs. 

To learn more about developing new broadband solutions, tune into Episode 7 of The Connectivity Matters Podcast here

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

Prioritising Customer Experience in the Connectivity Industry

On Episode 6 of The Connectivity Matters Podcast we sat down with Richard Hart, the Global Connectivity Director at Quectel. Richard’s career has spanned over 15 years, working with connectivity giant Vodafone before moving to Quectel in 2021 to lead their global connectivity proposition. We spoke to him about how focussing on customer experiences can bring the industry forwards. 

How do you approach customer experience as you scale up a quick sales connectivity business?

Customer experience has been our focus now for a long time. The customer is genuinely at the heart of every decision we make. Patrick, our co-founder and CEO, is always out talking to customers, and that feedback comes right back into the organisation. We value seeing the world through the customer’s eyes, understanding how what we do impacts the customer and how the customer subsequently behaves. Understanding those behaviours helps us shape their experience. You also need to accept that things go wrong, mistakes happen and technology crashes. Being honest about that and learning from it will make your customer’s experience better. They’ll trust you to fix it even when things do go wrong, because they know you won’t repeat the same mistakes. 

How would you ensure consistent customer experience when looking at a number of product lines which can be sold separately?

You have to take a step back and look at things holistically and understand the impact of the individual components. It’s important to understand that if you do something on one product, that will impact everything else as well. Whilst we put the customer at heart of everything, we still have a job to do. We still have a business to run. What we do is focus on collaborative working between departments and developing healthy behaviours. If you are going to deliver a superior customer experience than your competitors, you need a continual evolution of processes and services that meet your customer’s needs. Whenever you change things, think about how that impacts the customer, and communicate the changes clearly. 

What can be learned from having different interactions with a particular customer for different products?

Customers have three or four contact points with an organisation. Those contacts have to talk to each other, because the customer expects you to know what your colleague is doing and if it’s going to impact them. Does the left hand know what the right hand is doing? It should! From a competitive point of view, providing that information will keep you ahead, because again, it’s about good customer experience. That’s why internal communication is so important, because it allows you to feed back all the different points of view and build your team as a whole. 

What does a good customer experience actually look like?

We all have companies and brands that we think of as good and bad, so I try to get my team to think about that when they’re creating customer interactions. We all know what it feels like to have a positive experience with a company. Good customer experience is just the basics. It is about communication. It’s also admitting when you’ve got a problem. It’s being transparent in terms of ‘this is what we’ve done to ensure it doesn’t happen again’, or ‘we’re investigating a new follow up’. That’s all it is; doing right by people. 

There’s a standard that customers expect when they interact with you. Whether they use a phone or a self service platform, there are basic products and solutions that underpin your customer experience. Some things are really important to customers and if you understand what you’re supplying, you need to put service levels around that. Accommodating the customer experience is based on what vertical and solution it’s supporting. You need to get that infrastructure in place. 

To hear more about putting customers at the heart of your connectivity company, tune into the full episode of The Connectivity Matters Podcast here

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

The Future of In-Home Connectivity

The Connectivity industry has been leaning towards the in-home market for some time. Improving networks and the development of Smart Home technology has seen consumer expectations rise, putting strain on service providers. On Episode 5 of The Connectivity Matters Podcast we spoke to Shane Paola, the VP of sales at Plume Design, about how in-home technology is shaping the industry. Plume Design is creating a new category of Smart Home experiences, leveraging cloud and AI, which Shane unpacked with us. 

Read on to find out what challenges are currently facing in-home connectivity providers.

What’s the current state of the Connectivity industry?

It’s about the in-home experience right now. We’ve built these phenomenal networks, so customer expectations are extremely high, they want to add more devices into their homes than ever before. The rise of connected homes and devices within our clouds isn’t slowing down. People are embracing Smart Home technologies, so connectivity inside of the home is becoming increasingly important. Companies are trying to support the needs of customers on their Smart Home journey, while also delivering the experiences that people expect from the bandwidth they’re subscribing to. 

What are you most excited for about the future of the Connectivity industry?

It’s all heading for personalization and the in-home experience. One service provider has basically gone from managing five or six tariffs and cut it down to two. They’ve said, ‘Here’s our basic package, it’s £29.90 a month and you get this minimum level of service. Or there’s our max bundle.’ They’re not advertising speeds and feeds, they’re just saying, ‘We’re gonna give you the greatest in-home experience with the best WiFi mesh environment, covering your house with connectivity. You’ll always get the maximum available bandwidth when it’s provisioned in your area and you never have to worry about it.’ That’s a phenomenally bold and disruptive move, which I think the rest of the industry should look at. Customer dissatisfaction and negative experiences create a churn from one provider to another, which is a nightmare. Providers have to manage sunsetting tariffs and trying to move their customers onto new platforms as well as trying to retain their customers. It’s a great sign that companies are starting to move their focus on customer experience rather than the speeds and feeds.

Which use case would you find most useful in your home that you don’t currently have?

I want to see a Smart Home environment. Different vendors are building things that don’t necessarily interoperate with each other, so it’s hard to create an integrated system. There’s a fair bit of buzz around the new Matter system and its potential. IOT bodies are building towards the Matter framework, which will hopefully standardise things in terms of internet connectivity in Smart Home environments. What we’re missing is simplicity. Big companies typically compete at a device level or an application level, but they need to realise that for the best customer experience they need to collaborate. That’s what I want to see happen in my home.

To hear about the work Shane and Plume Design are doing to advance the industry, tune into the whole episode of The Connectivity Matters Podcast here. 

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

How does working for a business with one vertical strength impact its diversification into other verticals?

On Episode 4 of The Connectivity Matters Podcast we spoke with Erik Carlson, the SVP of sales for Maritime, Energy and Government at Anuvu. With over 20 years of executive leadership experience, growing and driving revenue across the likes of Panasonic Avionics, ConvergeOne and Hitachi, Erik deeply understands the industry and has plenty of enthusiasm for revenue generation. 

We spoke about his experience across a variety of industries and how important it is to focus on the customer at all levels of the business. 

What advantages do you have coming from a different industry into connectivity?

The pace at which I work and we run our teams is much higher than a lot of the people who’ve come out of the satellite community. A lot of them have old government roots, which means they tend to move a little slower. My background is much more Silicon Valley. Think about it in context. How are they operating? How are they thinking? How are they iterating on technology? That’s my world. There’s a professional ruthlessness that needs to be respected, and I try to operate in a very similar fashion. The fact that I came from different industries gives me different perspectives on learning customer markets incredibly quickly. While everything I do is about global connectivity below the clouds, we also have an aviation and aviation entertainment business. Below the clouds, those are all different customers, who have different end user requirements. My advantage is my ability to learn that voice of the customer, and to really care about that customer, that’s allowed for the speed at which these successes have been happening for us.

How have you gone about learning the voice of the customer?

I always work from the customer backwards, I do everything in reverse. Look to identify how something is getting to the customer. It’s not the guy who buys connectivity, it’s who his customers are. We need to map not just where our clients are operating, but also what their itineraries and routes are, and who else is in the area. If you look at oil leases, they are basically divided up plots of land out in the ocean, and you can see other rigs from yours. Similarly, each satellite is able to pump down a certain amount of capacity on Earth in a single place. Starlink is doing some brilliant things to amplify that, but if there’s only one legal provider on the planet, and everyone wants that service, you’re going to have a pinch point there. It’s great for me to talk about my customers, but if I’m not taking care of their entire ecosystem, I’m not a partner. There’s a lot of dynamics there, which are going to come into play. If you start with your customer, you’ll have a guiding light upon which to lead the business.

How do you find working for a business with a track record and visibility in one vertical, and how does that impact the verticals that you’re in charge of?

The biggest thing I look at is the leadership team. It’s all about understanding the leadership team’s exit strategy timeline and their worldview. Anuvu brought me on their mission, and their passion was to commit to this business, and that’s what I was looking for. The other thing happening there is that results drive decisions. What we’ve seen is that the business below the clouds is growing phenomenally, and there is an incredible harmony of above the clouds and below the clouds connectivity. Everyone looks at their customers uniquely, but there’s so much in common there and the leadership team here at Anuvu has been really clear about how we think about ourselves. 

Externally and historically, Anuvu has always been seen as ABA question, but what we are seeing is a lot of those customers who tried greener pastures elsewhere are realising that it wasn’t actually greener and they’re coming back to us. Another advantage in my role is that we are seeing customers that have explored other venues and had 2, 3 or 4 years and aren’t seeing the results, customer service or the care that they wanted. The Anuvu rebranding has been really important to help continue and maintain that below the cloud business. 

To hear more about the work that Erik and Anuvu are doing in the Connectivity industry, listen to the whole episode of The Connectivity Matters Podcast

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

How the Edge Air Solution is Affecting the Connectivity Market

Recently on The Connectivity Matters Podcast, we spoke to Raz Kivelevich-Carmi, the Chief Marketing and Business Development Officer at Cellium Technologies. With over 20 years experience from within the chipset ecosystem, Raz has invaluable insights into the tech that’s currently revolutionising the industry. We talked about the innovations happening at Cellium and how they’ll impact consumers. Read on to find out what’s coming next!

Tell us about Cellium’s Edge Air solution and how it differs from small cell solutions?

There are multiple technologies or topologies out there, ranging from full genome to small cell and all the way up to the oran types of solution, which is a very big hype these days. The databases have been around for some time, whereas the psyllium solution is, in essence, a desk-like solution. However, opposed to what standard desk does, we do it much better performance-wise as well as at a much lower cost than those existing solutions. The reason that the technology is based on an analogue-only type of deployment is that we do not do any analogue to digital conversions of any sort. We don’t utilise special cabling, most other deployments are going to be fibre which is an expensive means to transfer data from one end to the other, but we use standard copper cables which you have in your walls. If you don’t have them in your walls, we can put them into the walls at a much lower cost both for the equipment and the deployment cost itself. It’s very easy to put up copper wire, it’s much harder to put up a fibre wire. 

When you take all of this together, you’re getting an active DAS that works over copper wire in an analogue domain, with no need to do those conversions. The cherry on top of the cake is that we do it based on the SOC chipset that we have developed in house. The companies that do active DAS do all of those conversions. They take the RF signal, either they push it over coax cable, which is again very expensive, or they take it and they transfer it from analogue domain into the digital domain. In many cases, they then take the digital signal and then they push it to fibre and then they push it from one point of the building to another point of the building, then they do it again fibre to digital, digital to analogue and then they retransmit. The way that we do it is we take the RF signals and we drop them to a frequency which is referred to as an intermediate frequency, which is usually in the low hundreds of megahertz, and that can be pushed over a copper cable easily. I’m simplifying things that are chipped and are actually doing a lot in order to make it happen, but it’s much easier to keep the single analogue and push it across the wire. I make sure that I push it in such a way that I don’t degrade the performance. I do not add latency which all those digital technologies do. They modify the signal in order to have it passed from one point to the other in a robust way, which is very time consuming and expensive. That’s what we do, but we do it using our own chips. 

Some companies have chosen to take this path of analogue conversion only. However they do it with discrete components which isn’t very cost effective. This is why Cellium took the approach about two and a half or three years ago to, to take a system and to develop a chip that replaces those discrete components into a single chip. When they did it with discrete component, it was very expensive, which is the reason that they went for an SOC. We are the only company in the world today that has an SOC that does this RF live conversion. Again, this further reduces the overall cost of the system. When I compare it to the good performance active DAS, it’s where I have the merits of providing an active DAS at a very low cost. That’s the huge merit against those active DAS types of solutions.

So is the Edge Air solution suitable for all indoor vertical markets?

When we look at the market today, what we see is two segments. There is the private network segment, and then there is the bigger one, which is the eminent or the or the public domain. If you look at analysts, they would probably say that the public sector is going to account for about 70% of the entire 5G market, whereas 30%, will go into private networks. Now, there is a big difference between private networks and public networks from the deployment perspective, so I’ll touch each one of those and explain how the Edge Air solution does it. 

Let’s start with the public, which is the bigger segment, and probably the one that’s going to happen earlier in the game. One of the things that all the all the cell vendors and DAS vendors have seen is the fact that the majority of the MNO market today is what is called NSA or non-stand-alone, which means that legacy 4G is working alongside the 5G. Only about 10 to 20% of the seminars these days are using 5G standalone. That doesn’t mean that companies will immediately migrate from NSA into SA, but they will start to, and for the next three to five years they will continue using their legacy 4G cores and add 5G capabilities on top of it and have the cells work together. Now, this makes it harder for operators who now need to bring a box into the building that does NSA. They can do one of two things: they can rely on the 4G macro to penetrate in and to be synchronised with the 5G devices in the building, or they could bring 4G data into the building. In some countries it’s very common to have 4G data in the building, but in the majority of the countries that we’ve seen, what you see is the need to go into a building and put in a 4G and 5G transmitting and receiving element in. Now, that is a problem for many of the small sales companies because if you look at most of the small cells today, they are built around the Qualcomm chipset, there is a 4G Qualcomm chipset and there is a 5G Qualcomm chipset and you need to put both of them into the box and to have some collaboration between the two of them. In many cases, the 4G is coming from a different vendor altogether like Ericsson and Nokia, who are very common to be used as the macro vendor. But, going back to the box, you need to have 4G and 5G in the box in a single location and to get better coverage for both of them working together. 

Most of our customers would like to have a single box that has the capability to work on both systems. Now, this is where Cellium excels. Why am I saying that? Because the way that our system is built, it has two major components. One is called the CPU, which is the Cellium base unit, and one is called the CRU, which is the same remote unit or the radio unit. Our base unit interacts with third party equipment, we don’t compete with Ericsson, we’re not here to compete with Airspan. As I’ve stated before, we look at them as a signal source. What we do is distribute their signal across the building. We build our boxes in a way that interfaces with more than one vendor, so we can put in an Ericsson 5G and a Nokia or Huawei or a Samsung 4G and both of them will connect to our box. That CPU will then spread it to units across the building, and each one of those units will transmit both the 4G and 5G together from a single location. This is a great value to the customers because they need the 4G and 5G because they’re doing NSA. However, in the future, when they migrate away from NSA and reform their frequencies, they might be able to take out the 4G source signal source and put in another 5G signal source. Now it’s 5G, the cost of replacement or reforming for indoor types of deployment this way will be dramatically lower than replacing multiple small cells around the building. This is a future proof solution that allows the operators to build a system now and then move on to SA at a later stage with a very low cost of replacement. We wouldn’t make any money out of it at that stage, but customers will save a lot of money then. 

Let me just touch on the private network for a while. The private network is a very complex market these days, and there is a huge competition between 5G and WiFi. These two technologies want to play in the game of private networks. In the last two years or so everybody was saying private networks are 5G. This is because the 5G industry has been pushing this. In the recent year or so I’ve started to see more and more of the Wi Fi coming back and saying ‘No guys, we can do private networks’. You’re talking about quality of service, we know how to do quality of service, you’re talking about latency, we know how to do proper latency, you’re talking about security, we know how to do proper security. In my opinion, they will complement each other, in some cases it will be just WiFi, in some cases it’s just going to be 5G. In many cases, it’s going to be a mutual solution that serves the facility that it’s in. 

Now, the solution for private networks is going to look a bit different from the MNO that I’ve just described. Nobody cares about the NSA because these are private networks, so it’s going to be easy. From the 5G perspective, however, we need to facilitate the Wi Fi to go through the same infrastructure because at the end of the day, you don’t want to have one or two boxes that are in a single location and transmit WiFi and 5G over the same corporate wires. This is exactly what we’re doing in the private network. We’re building boxes that are doing 5G only. Our first products are 5G with what we call cascading capabilities. If there is a Cisco, Juniper or HP Aruba that is already in the facility, I don’t want to disturb that unit. The IT manager already bought that unit, he doesn’t want to take it off and replace it with a new one, but he does want to add 5G into the facility. So what we’re bringing in is our CRU remote units that are capable of 5G only. I facilitate the same infrastructure to work for 5G and WiFi. So, instead of having 4G coming in and 5G coming in, as I was explaining before, now only 5G will come in alongside the Wi Fi or Ethernet. I will facilitate both of them to go through the corporate wires into my box, and then I will spread the 5G and let the expert on WiFi spread the WiFi. 

To hear more of Raz’s insights into the industry and find out what advice he’d offer someone joining the sector, tune into the full episode of The Connectivity Matters Podcast

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

Virtualisation in the Connectivity Industry

On The Connectivity Matters Podcast we were joined by James Morgan, SVP of sales at DriveNets. James is currently responsible for DriveNets’ growth strategy and leading the company’s European activity. Previously working at Juniper Networks as Head of Global MSP and NAS sales, as well as founding several successful startups, James has over 25 years experience across connectivity. He spoke to us about his perspectives on developments in communication technology.

So what’s your take on the current state of telecommunications?

Well, it’s interesting and dynamic. If you look at telcos and service providers, and where they make their money, there’s a huge ecosystem that’s eating into their profitability. Bandwidth is increasing dramatically, price per bit is decreasing dramatically, and the telcos and the service providers are in the middle of all that. There’s an opportunity for any business today to take advantage of cloud and the almost infinite bandwidth that’s available to really expand their businesses as enterprises. There are definitely challenges that a lot of CEOs and CTOs have, such as hyper scalers moving into their territory. They have to have a frenemy type relationship there, because cloud is the biggest macro trend that we’ve seen in my career. They’ve got over the top players coming in making serious amounts of money using their infrastructure. Whether it’s a consumer or business, if there’s something wrong with the network, it’s seen as the service providers fault, rather than anything else from the myriad of things that affect it. It’s increasingly complex.

The growth rates are not anything like some of those other players that I’ve just touched on. Companies like Juniper and Cisco and Fortinet, who are providing services through service providers in some instances are also partnering with the cloud players and, and so on. It’s all pushing the value of the service provider or telco down. We’re trying to help push back against those forces that are against them. Telcos need to solve these big strategic challenges as they try to digitally transform. Companies that have been around for a long time seem antiquated, even mediaeval in some instances. They’re hanging on to systems, processes and infrastructure that they really need to change and transform.

Moving into the future, are there any particular technologies that you are particularly excited about that are on the horizon?

Yeah, there’s a lot of artificial intelligence, which is a big word. And there’s a lot of artificial intelligence washing that goes on in everything. Everybody’s got an artificial intelligence capability all of a sudden, but I think that when that’s harnessed in collaboration with human beings it has the potential to really transform a lot of areas and do a lot of good. Whether that’s in healthcare, medicine, research or education, there’s some real positives from that perspective. Everything is hyper-connected nowadays. We have infinite access to compute and store and network that creates a combination of all of those aspects, realistically. I still get buzzed off that I can set my alarm on my phone, or my alarm system, or I can see someone ringing the doorbell when I’m down the shops. I think everything’s got a little role to play, but fundamentally the interconnectedness of everything is what excites me. As long as it’s used for the right things, in the right manner.

What impact would you say virtualisation and cloud native software has had in the telecommunications industry?

When you look at telcos and service providers, they’ve got different domains of the network and different areas that I think there’s a lot of benefit to be had from virtualization. I mean, one of the things that I did when I left Intact was actually set up a small startup that was focused on virtualization and using IT infrastructure to pool resources. Fundamentally what that brings, if you look at what’s happened in data centres, the same thing starts to happen in networking and security. Virtualization brings an awful lot of flexibility and an awful lot of power. What we’re seeing is that desire to have a hyperscaling operational model. That’s part of the transition that needs to be happening in the search provider world, if they’re going to compete with hyper scalars, we’ve got to be agile and flexible and have speed when it comes to delivering services and what your customers want. Fundamentally it’s all about business outcomes, and what technology can bring to an organisation with the right vision and desire. It really revolutionises and transforms the way that they can operate.

But again, it’s a journey, right? It’s an evolution rather than a revolution. We’re certainly seeing a lot of virtualization in the open RAM space. There’s definitely virtualization in cloud hyper scalers with regards to value added services, whether that be security services or other types of applications. And again, the telcos are kind of caught in the middle a little bit and need to really harness and define their roles as to exactly what it is that they’re gonna be providing and offering to businesses. Because it’s a hyper connected world, but it’s also hyper competitive.

How do you think that virtualization will affect how we’re building and designing these networks?

I’m right in the heart of it with DriveNets. What virtualization brings operationally is it’s just a completely different transformation from a kind of a very fixed, modular legacy, monolithic type approach. It’s very much a chassis where you’re always limited by the capacity of that particular box. You can knit them together and you can get more scalable, etc. but you’re still dealing with everything box-by-box. What we see with virtualization and the advent of white boxes that are carrier class is the ability to really disaggregate and virtualize the entire network. The entire network effectively acts and as if it’s one router, for example, or one switch will be at a scale of distributed different countries, it doesn’t matter.

There’s a whole raft of operational benefits in terms of the way you manage that; everything down to the logistics runs on one or two different bits of white box software as opposed to five or six different routing boxes to do different functions. When you combine functions to offer a multi service approach the network becomes like a cloud, and that’s the bit that virtualization really brings. Then you can just drop containers into those networks, whether it’s a third party firewall, an edge router, a core router… It’s all interoperable, and it’s truly scalable. You just add more white boxes as you want more scale. The huge demand for capacity, has been driven by the ability of the technology to enable that.

To find out more about James Morgan’s insights on connectivity media, listen to the full episode of The Connectivity Matters Podcast.

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

What technology has had the biggest impact on the connectivity industry?

On the first episode of our newly rebranded The Connectivity Matters Podcast, we were joined by Chris Lennartz, the Vice President of Product Management for mobile services iBASIS. He’s had an incredibly successful career within the telecommunications industry, spanning over the last 20 years with a focus on strategic planning, business development and product management. Chris has also recently been voted number 18 in the top 100 most influential figures in the telco industry. We asked him for his insights on technology in the industry. 

What technologies do you think have had the biggest impact on the industry?

That’s a very simple one, it’s IP, because when I started, nothing was IP. Everything was TDM, everything was circuit switched. When IP came it completely revolutionised not only the cost of the network but the nature of the network and the way that the telecoms network interacted with a lot of different players, because suddenly the internet and telecommunications became one and a lot of new players came in. All the cloud stuff that we’re discussing right now started back in the 90s when the internet was opened up, and that completely revolutionised the telecoms industry. I know it’s been a long time since then, but if you ask me, that has been the biggest disruption and the biggest impact to the industry.

What impact do you think 5G has had and where do you see that progressing?

That’s a comparably disruptive impact. 5G is not only taking IP to a whole new level, it’s an evolution and revolution at the same time. If you look at evolution it’s more bandwidth. 4G already has more bandwidth than 3G, and 5G has more bandwidth than 4G, and that keeps going on and on. The most important thing about 5G in particular is that it revolutionises the way we look at networks. 4G was still a point network, then the whole virtualization thing came around. Now with 5G, you can make virtual networks from end to end spanning multiple networks. Network slicing will become very interesting if you look at specific IoT service providers or enterprises that need specific end-to-end connectivity with the specific quality of service or other parameters that you would normally do with a dedicated network. Now we can do it over the 5G network and just reserve a specific price for that, which makes it very interesting to have really one network that does it all. That will change the way we use the telecoms networks. 

The fourth industrial wave is really building on what 5G can give us. With the advent of private 5G networks, if you look at the predictions for them, it could be hundreds and even thousands of private networks that are being built. For example, it’s logical for airports to have their own network, given the fact that you have so many tourists or travellers in general to transport, all their suitcases to transport, on top of all the logistics and fleet management stuff that you need to do. How great would it be to have a network for yourself to do that? This proliferation of private 5G networks could really give a new boost to the way we automate the industry. 

Is there any tech on the horizons of either 5G or moving even further into the next generations that you’re most excited about in particular?

From a roaming perspective, it’s very exciting. It’s also challenging because on one hand, there will be even more bandwidth, but on the other hand there’s yet another new technology which is coming in. What we did right when LTE came along was go from SS7 signalling to diameter signalling. It was really good for us because at that time, we didn’t have market share, and disruption is always good for the challenger and not good for the leader. At that time, we were challenging the way things were so we took the opportunity to disrupt IP committee signalling, and we made a name for ourselves, and we built a solution earlier than anybody else. That’s why we became number three. 

Now, with 5G, this has happened again. This time we are leaders, which means that it can be a threat and opportunity at the same time. We’re going from diameter signalling to something that is called HTTP to signal, so yet another disruption. There will be a lot of companies that will think ‘hey, wait a minute, what I basically did 10 years ago, we can do now. So let’s do to them what they did to others.’ That’s challenging, but we need to challenge ourselves, it’s also an opportunity for ourselves, right? Because we are still number one, we can still get a lot of market share by doing this game right again, but there’s a lot more disruption this time to 5G than just the signalling changing its name. 

There’s also a lot more interesting use cases in roaming that will make you rethink the way we think about roaming. Today roaming basically means the traffic goes home from the visitor network, and is being handled there by the home operator. That takes 100 milliseconds in some cases, if you have to go from Singapore to Amsterdam, for example. However, if you have a self-driving car, that is simply not acceptable – the traffic can’t go halfway around the globe and then come back because that 100 millisecond is far too long. The latency of 5G for some specific use cases that all have to do with machine to machine or IoT should go down to less than 10 milliseconds. That means that traffic will need to stay in that specific region or in some cases, very close to the base station. That means that you have to start working with MEC on local breakout and applications being run, and very close to the base station. That means a reevaluation of the way we think about roaming. It’s going to be very interesting to see how all of these varieties of uses will need a variety of solutions. The way roaming works will be very different than 10 years ago when there were no devices, but just people going in on a day and using their phone.

To hear more about Chris Lennox’s insights into developments in the connectivity industry, listen to the full Connectivity Matters Podcast episode here. 

We sit down regularly with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

The future for Rivada Networks and RF Technology

In episode #72 of The Tech That Connects Us, we sat down with Declan Ganley, Founder of Rivada Networks

Declan is a well-known English-born Irish entrepreneur and businessman, and it was great to sit down and pick his brains in this conversation! We unpack everything from his plans for Rivada Networks, through to D&I and attracting talent.  

We hope you enjoy this episode as much as we did recording it. 

What does the future hold for Rivada Networks? 

We’ve done an RFP to procure our satellites. So, we’re going to have contractors build out the satellites, they get to our requirements, design, etc. And we’ll be able to talk more about that soon. But, the RFP is out there, and we’ve got great responses to it.  

We’re very excited that we will be moving to do an RFP to procure launch service at the end of this year. And, we’re adding to the team. So, we’re in Germany this week at an industry show: presenting, recruiting – we are looking to find the very best people in this industry, the best brains, the best talent in this industry, and asking them to come and join us. It’s a phenomenal project.  

You’re not just a cog in the system, you know, we want real entrepreneurs! 

What are your thoughts on RF technologies?  

RF technologies from the ground to space piece – The thing is, you want to use RF to get to your first cell site in space; and then you want to backhaul everything through space, landing it back down again onto the planet, and then backhauling it through subsea cables, terrestrial networks, etc with all the problems that they have, from a security standpoint, from a latency standpoint, etc.  

When it goes to space, we want to keep it in space until we have to land it at its endpoint destination, wherever possible. But RF is not going away. Our RF will be technology, the capabilities around it will improve. And, I think that that yes, certainly that there will be a role for optical links to space itself, I think that will happen.  

Radio’s really good. It’s got much more potential than we’ve extracted from it. Our whole philosophy is that we’ve just scratched the surface in terms of the potential of radio. The reason we haven’t got much more out of it is not that the technology can’t do more. It’s because of regulatory requirements. 

Diversity and Inclusion – how are you going to attract great people? 

I want people that work hard, and who have got a phenomenal work ethic. So, if you haven’t got a good work ethic, don’t call us! If you’re willing to work hard, and you’ve got the talent, we want to hear from you – end of story. We are already a very diverse organisation. But, to be very honest with you, it’s not that we set out to be diverse! We have just searched for people with the right skill sets and attitude.  

A big bias that doesn’t get talked about as much is age, that someone is “very old” – however, we want people on our board who have that experience, otherwise what’s the point? If they haven’t been through the “wars” then we will have to relearn everything.  

So wisdom, experience, all of those things really, really count. And yes, diversity is absolutely essential.  

If you’ve got the work ethic, you’ve got the talent, and you’re willing to stick your neck out and take some risks, we want to hear from you. My dad taught me about empathy about putting your putting yourself in somebody else’s shoes. How would you want to be treated? How would you want a member of your family to be treated in those same circumstances? That’s something that a lot of the world has forgotten. You know, being polite, being open-minded in that regard, and treating people decently is important.  

Listen to the full episode here.

Every Wednesday we sit down with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

The Current State of The Connectivity Market  

In another insightful episode of The Tech That Connects Us podcast, we were joined by Jillian Kaplan, Head of Global Telecom Thought Leadership at Dell Technologies, who shared her impressive career progression as a working mother and perspective on the current state of the connectivity market. 

We’ve highlighted some of the key points below and you can listen to the full episode here. 

How do you see the current state of the market? 

The focus is very much on 5G at the moment. And as we look at 5G, we need to make sure we’re looking closely at the technologies that build 5G. So, the core, the brand, the foundation, the edge. For Dell Technologies, we have hardware that’s very focused on edge use cases and telecommunications use cases, which is extremely important. 

In terms of the state of the market, the focus is on making sure that the investments that are being made can be monetized and on helping CSPs understand how this can be done. So, to his end, building truly open networks is something that’s extremely important and something we’re focused on at Dell. We partner with communication service providers instead of just selling to them, for example. All the while, recognising that going to an enterprise market is different than going to a consumer market. So, that’s the biggest shift I see; this trend towards openness and ensuring things are happening in partnerships. 

What opportunities do you see in creating open networks? 

When we look at vertical use cases, manufacturing is going to be huge. There are opportunities in healthcare as well, and retail. If you think about it, when you think about the jump from 4G to 5G, a lot of people thought 5G was overhyped, because the existing apps didn’t actually need 5G to run on your phone today. But there will be 5G apps built, I don’t think it is overhyped. I think it’s important for consumers to get on the 5G network so that they’re ready for when 5G apps are built. 

For example, autonomous vehicles is a hot topic, even though it’s not happening tomorrow. And it’s important, as consumers, to start building an understanding about the different aspects involved, automation, for example, and question how we can learn about these developments before they roll out. 

How do you think the industry will change in the coming years? 

I’m confident the industry will become more diverse as things progress. One thing I’ve learned form being in the industry for so long, is that, especially in telecommunications companies, people tended to start their careers there and retire there, which isn’t the norm anymore. Although in telecommunications, it’s still not abnormal. 

As these people retire, it’s going to bring a new wave of talent and we’ll start to see more certificate programmes. I’d love to see more communications and 5G and 6G and WiFi 6 certifications out there, bringing a younger generation of people into the industry. I don’t think it has the same coolness factor as cloud technologies amongst young people, but I consider it to be just as cool; we need to help people understand how awesome a career in this industry can be. 

What are some of the factors that can help boost the diversity in the industry? 

Certificate programmes would be amazing because people wouldn’t need to necessarily major in telecommunications. There are a lot of people who have majored in something else but are curious to now learn about the telecommunications industry. 

I’m leading the Grow Talent Stream within the Diversity Council, working on getting more diverse talent interested. And one thing we did at Dell recently was, we hosted a webinar to showcase women who are working within the company who don’t have technical backgrounds, to show that you don’t need to know how to code to work in communications or even high tech. I think it’s really important for everyone to understand that you don’t need to be an engineer to work in tech and telecommunications. 

Click here to listen to the full episode. 

Every Wednesday we sit down with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

Connectivity Unleashed – Dan Jeffery at MWC Barcelona

MWC Barcelona had a Connectivity Unleashed theme and provided over 61,000 people to meet face to face for potentially the first time in 3 years. The event saw over 1,900 exhibitors with over 49% of attendees at Director level and above from 124 countries.

Personally, it was my first MWC and I thoroughly enjoyed it even with a face mask. Despite the show’s capacity being around 60% to pre-covid times, it was a positive environment to be in. Also, with less people in attendance it was slightly easier to get from Hall 1 to 5 to 7 for those ill-planned back-to-back meetings!

The technology and information at booths only improved my knowledge and understanding of the market. I’m not a technical expert by any means but it really helped to join the dots of the last 2.5 years I’ve worked at neuco. Whilst I was impressed by the robot making drinks, I found the robot dogs somewhat scary and don’t even get me started on a robotic cat!

The AI telling me I was ‘hairless’ caused some laughs amongst my colleagues and aside from that, it was a pleasure to be in Barcelona with Laurie and Alistair.

Of the 6 key themes, here at neuco we took particular interest in 5G Connect. After over 100 meetings in 3 days between the 3 of us and around 25,000 steps per day each, the weekend was certainly needed to recover!

5G Connect was dominated by the talk on Open RAN with lots happening in the ecosystem. Whether it was existing partnerships being showcased or the opportunity to discuss new ones, collaboration seemed to be key. Several companies were providing demonstrations as an end-to-end solution or showing how powerful collaboration can be with the 5G Open Lab as one example. Rakuten Symphony acquiring Robin.io was major news for the Symphony sales effort as well as their new agreement with AT&T.

For all the positivity around Open RAN, John Baker, SVP of Business Development at Mavenir, was highly critical of Ericsson and Nokia for creating confusion. Clearly, the likes of Mavenir & Parallel Wireless are disruptors to the market but how much longer can Ericsson or Nokia protect their legacy and delay for?

As we move closer to deployments of more 5G networks, the market only looks to grow for those with 5G use cases or equipment providers on the networks. We’ve seen record sales years for some and whilst there are of course supply chain difficulties, hopefully the next 12-24 months will see further growth.

From a recruitment perspective, the conversations were very positive with ambitious hiring plans across different functions. Whether it was new commercial roles through internal growth or expansion into new verticals/regions, the market seems very buoyant. Of course, I can’t mention recruitment without asking if there’s a software-based company who doesn’t have a need for Software Engineers?

Also, it’s an exciting time for product and presales functions as new services or solutions are being developed and need either taking to market or sold. The demand for the fine balance between a technical understanding but being confident enough to have an external conversation, is only going to increase.

Most importantly from the event, I feel that a barrier was taken down by having face to face conversations and really appreciate the time from everybody I met. Dare I say it, I’m already looking forward to 27 February 2023 for the MWC23!

Connectivity Key Trends. neuco’s annual 2022 key trends report.

What’s in store for the Connectivity industry?

2022, where’s it going to go, what does it have in store?

We’ve collated key trends from some of the influential figures across the 4 sectors we recruit into – Cyber Security, Connectivity, Content & Media and Satellite & NewSpace.

We’ve spoken to experts from companies such as Sky, Orbit Fab, Casa Systems, and A5G Networks.

If you want to find out what we think will be the key trends for cyber security this year, then just click the link below to download now!

Click here to download now.

The current state of the connectivity industry

In episode #56 of The Tech That Connects Us, we had the opportunity to sit down with Ollie Anderson, SVP, Americas at Benetel

We had an in-depth conversation about everything connectivity related, from how he got into the industry (after a stint in the military) through to the more intricate details of his role and the current state of the market. 

We hope you enjoy it as much as we did recording it!

Which specific technology do you think has had the biggest impact on our industry?

“In my view, wireless broadband. It’s one of the biggest things and has enabled a lot of the content industry, a lot of the social media, mobile, you know, video distribution to do to handsets, etc. 

So, I think that has been the biggest thing. And now, going into the future, I think we are going to see more of augmented reality, virtual reality applications coming towards the consumers and being used at the industrial enterprise side, all enabled within wireless connectivity.”

How has the pandemic impacted the connectivity from your perspective and the industry?

“The need for connectivity has grown. And people have been realising that we need reliable connectivity. And now, when, when most of the world is working from home, we are using conferencing tools, just like we are today. So, I think the need for connectivity has grown immensely.”

Which region do you see as having the largest growth area between APAC and the Americas?

“So we see a lot of growth in Europe and in Americas at the moment. Both regions are extremely active and roll out 5G and so on. So, America, as far as Europe is a very active place for us.”

What do you anticipate being the big hot topics in the connectivity industry over the next 12 months?

“I think we are going to see a lot of private 5G solutions and deployments being done specifically for private networks, enterprises, industrial networks, and those alike. 

I think that will be clearly a trend. You see a lot of the cloud providers, for example, lining up their 5G solution offerings and bringing that functionality closer to the enterprise.”

If you’d like to listen to the full episode, click here to access it!

Every Wednesday we sit down with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

The 2022 Key Trend for the connectivity industry.

For episode 54 of The Tech That Connects Us we were joined by François Duchêne – VP Wireless Solutions EMEA at Casa Systems.  

Tom Wilding and Alistair Wilson spoke with Francois about OpenRAN, Private networks and 5G, as well as what the future hold for Casa Systems. 

One question they asked Francois was what will be a ‘key trend’ for 2022 in the connectivity industry. 

Here’s what Francois had to say… 

“I will say even more acceleration, not only in terms of the 5G but in terms of the connectivity you get for global IoT. 

The industry is changing in multiple areas. With 5G we are moving to 5G as a standalone to allow the slicing capabilities on everything in their network providing public edge computing. 

We’ll see more private manufacturing in these areas and the global IoT connectivity as we’re seeing more and more connectivity of multiple devices including cars, phones, watches etc. So we’ll see a rise of smart cities allowing all devices to have narrowband IoT connectivity. 

This connectivity needs to be international as well. Because we’re living in a world where everything is moving and these vehicles are travelling all over the world and will need to be connected.” 

Every Wednesday we sit down with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

What does the future hold for the connectivity industry?

Joining John Clifton and Tim Meredith on episode 52 of The Tech That Connects Us was Luis Beute VP Global Sales for Content Providers at Qwilt.

Luis takes us through how he made the jump from telecommunications to CDN and moved halfway around the world to do it too. Focusing on how he has taken as many lessons from colleagues and partners as from managers and mentors, this was a really great insight into Luis and his approach to balancing work and life.

One question we put to Luis was ‘what does the future hold for the connectivity industry?’, read on to find out his answer.

“I haven’t been a good visionary ever, but I’ll do my best. I believe as part of the habits we’re adopting because of COVID now there are many things we want to do from home that we used to do in person that virtual reality can really help with.  

In certain sectors it is already happening, take the real estate, for example, there are companies where you don’t need to visit the premises you are thinking of purchasing, it can all be done via VR. It’s also being adopted in the retail sector to some degree too. 

So VR has some future, but it’s also going to require some infrastructure characteristics that are yet to be widely adopted and that might take some years. 

5G, has already opened some doors but will continue to open more. If you think about it, what did you lack when we were only working with 3G? I’d say you weren’t missing many things. But then when 4G came along you can now watch very good quality videos on mobile for example. I think 5G will do the same, but more from an automation side including low latency.  

One of the applications for 5G I’ve been discussing is connected cars. This will take many years, as there needs to be the technology and the regulation for this. I’ll liken the advance of this technology to when e-commerce first launched, there was a lot of resistance from people to put your credit card number on the internet, so can you imagine sitting in a car without driving it or having somebody you know driving it? 

So a lot of the future advances will come down to the regulations and infrastructure around the applications of these technologies. I believe that this way has no return, I can’t say how long it will take but that’s the way we’re heading as an industry.”

Every Wednesday we sit down with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

What can the connectivity industry and everything associated with being connected learn from its past?

Episode 44 of The Tech That Connects us saw Omae Qaise the Founder and CEO of OQ Technology join Laurie Scott and Tom Wilding to cover 5G, IoT, the evolution of M2M, Albert Einstein & Elon Musk. 

In a moment of reflection, Omar was asked what can the connectivity industry and everything associated with being connected learn from its past? Here’s what he had to say. 

 “One of the biggest lessons learnt is that the model of developing your technology, your hardware and your own ecosystem from scratch which has often been the way with traditional satellite and communication business isn’t the right approach. 

 The problem is, there are still many new space companies and startups going in the same direction. This is a major difference when you look at the mobile telecommunication industry, they’ve been through that phase and nowadays there are standards, you have GSM, LTE or 5G and there are multiple operators, chip vendors, and hardware manufacturers who all follow a standard. You can connect sensors to phones, and phones to operators just by changing a sim card. Could you imagine if all operators used different sized and shaped sim cards? 

 That’s why the satellite industry is expensive. Connectivity specifically is down to the hardware. If we want to change this then we need to tap into the existing ecosystem that everyone understands and uses from North pole to South, from Australia to America to India. That is the mobile technology that our satellites can be used for as cell towers in the sky. Users can connect seamlessly, and they won’t know if they’re connected to a terrestrial network or a facility network. This is a first in the world because mobile chips they’re very cheap, and the connectivity is cheap and that’s because millions of engineering hours have been put into scaling that technology. There is already an ecosystem, with lots of participants and players. 

 If you compare a 4 or 5 dollar cellular chip with a satellite alternative, firstly each satellite operator have their own chips, which start at a few 100 dollars, not including a device! Now imagine if the 5 dollar cellular chip could do the same job as the satellite chip and the terrestrial chip, it’s not something that’s unheard of but it’s yet to be scaled. 

 This is really going to open up a lot of opportunities, allowing access for a lot of users and enable mobility between terrestrial and satellite technologies. That will then funnel into big data of massive machine communication, which is one of the biggest aspects of the 5G revolution.” 

Every Wednesday we sit down with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.     

The Disruptiveness of Kubernetes.

On Episode 41 of The Tech That Connects Us John Clifton and Dan Jeffery were joined by Subha Shrinivasan Senior Director, Customer Success at Robin.io.

Subha has over 20 years of experience across virtualization, datacenter, and cloud-native technologies. It was a great chance for us to talk about all things Kubernetes and more specifically the future of Kubernetes. 

Here’s what Subha had to say when it comes to Kubernetes. 

“Kubernetes is a very disruptive technology, and it’s going to disrupt two or three major trends we are seeing in the market. The first one is that it’s going to completely disrupt AI and machine learning. AI and machine learning are going to be the heart of every business in a few years from now, there won’t be a business that doesn’t use an AI or machine learning stack.

So, there is not going to be an AI or machine learning stack that is not deployed on Kubernetes, in the future at least 90% of the workloads that are built on EMR will be hosted on Kubernetes. 

Here’s why. See unlike other technology stacks such as AI and machine learning, which are actual services with technology that are constantly changing, it’s not just one application it’s a combination of multiple applications or what we call an application pipeline, that is stitched together to deliver AI or machine learning as a service. You don’t want to be locked into one technology stack, you want to be able to have the flexibility of being able to combine different stacks and adapt them for the use case.

Secondly, the integration with DevOps is going to be extremely critical as there is continuous innovation, development and improvisation going on. Machine learning is like a feedback loop, you derive certain analytics, you pass it back. So, it’s a process of continuous development. If you get locked into one technology stack or one infrastructure that is like this giant gorilla which is difficult to move, then you’re not going to be able to use machine learning efficiently and your results won’t be accurate. Then your predictive analytics will fail.

Kubernetes plays a major role in this because the way it is designed is that it’s very flexible to changes in your deployments. It’s logged into the infrastructure and then nothing is logged and sealed into the infrastructure, so you’re able to continuously move around the pods, you’re able to continuously move around the infrastructure and you’re able to use the same infrastructure and build any application or integrate with the DevOps stack and be able to move in a matter of a few hours or minutes rather than taking days and disrupting existing infrastructure.

My prediction is that there’s not going to be any Amazon stack in the future without coordinators on the platform.”

Every Wednesday we sit down with some of the biggest names in our industry, we dedicate our podcast to the stories of leaders in the technologies industries that bring us closer together. Follow the link here to see some of our latest episodes and don’t forget to subscribe.