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Sound Bites: Wi-Fi, Hybrid Networks, & Content Management

One of the behind-the-scenes sessions Motorola held at The Cable Show was an analyst roundtable with GMs John Burke (Broadband Home Solutions) and Joe Cozzolino (Access Networks). Here are a few of the nuggets I gleaned from that session, covering everything from cable’s wireless play to the cable IP video migration.

On Wi-Fi

As wireless broadband usage accelerates, Joe Cozzolino believes cable will pursue new Wi-Fi solutions aggressively. WiMAX and LTE will only get service providers part of the way in providing the bandwidth consumers demand. Wi-Fi will be a key piece of the puzzle for cable wireless services.

On IP Video

One analyst at the Motorola roundtable wanted to know how cable companies will be able to compete in an IP world. John Burke responded that many cable operators are addressing IP with infrastructure and even CPE upgrades. (Motorola’s HD set-tops have embedded DOCSIS modems now.) Some may make a complete shift, but most will take an evolutionary approach to introducing IP. The good news is that by moving the application environment into the cloud, it’s possible to distribute content and services across multiple types of network equipment. Metadata is an important piece of that content and service management.

On Fiber-to-the-Home

Does the cable industry need to push fiber to the home? According to Joe Cozzolino, the answer is probably “no” for the next decade. That doesn’t mean operators won’t need to push fiber deeper into their networks, but DOCSIS-based solutions will still dominate in cable for the foreseeable future.

On Tru2way

Where are things headed with Tru2way? According to John Burke, Tru2way is out there, but it’s unclear how much value it provides to operators. If operators truly want a multi-screen strategy, Tru2way doesn’t work.

On Video Management Software

Just how big is the video management market? John Burke highlighted several factors worth considering. If you think about an environment of constrained bandwidth, and the fact that consumers want access to more and more video, a lot of the value in delivery starts to accrue back to software solutions that allow operators to provide the highest value content. Motorola has invested significantly in that space, and the company’s acquisitions are an indication of where Motorola believes the market is headed.

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