Expo Hall Preview Party Showcases Whats Next

TELECOM 05 attendees got a two-hour sneak peek of whats next for the industry in Mondays Exhibit Hall Preview Party sponsored by Siemens and Starz Entertainment Group LLC.

There is extraordinary energy and enthusiasm for the new technologies on display on the TELECOM 05 exhibit floor. We can see a clear sense of momentum for the industry and everyone wants to know whats next for communications, said Walter B. McCormick Jr., President and CEO of USTelecom.

Following a ribbon-cutting ceremony with USTelecom Chairman Gene South, attendees were greeted by flat-screen TVs, laptops and client devices designed to showcase streaming video and images. IPTV and home gateway applications were out in force on the show floor, which featured more than 230 vendors.

At the Scientific-Atlanta booth, for example, a home gateway demo streamed Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith on a home flat-screen as well as a laptop.

Dave Davies of Scientific-Atlanta says H.264-compliant high-definition IP settop boxes and encoders are going to be a hot product at TELECOM 05. Theres a lot of interest in those products, he says.

Indeed, Amdocs Scott Kolman says the shift from traditional revenue streams to data services will be the overriding interest among attendees. All things IP, including IPTV and VoIP, will be hot, says Kolman and colleague Paul Struthers.

They expect convergence and service bundles to dominate TELECOM 05.

The move to carrier-class Ethernet was expected to be an enabler for many of these next-generation services.

Cisco Systems Inc., for example, made several enhancements to its product line designed to push Ethernet across enterprise and carrier networks. Ethernet is becoming a common protocol to all network operators traditionally operating at Layers 1, 2 and 3, says Mark Milinkovich, director of core edge routing for Cisco. We want to help carriers drive down the costs of delivering higher value services with QoS using Ethernet, he says.

Similarly, Ethernet is maturing and now its no longer a question of bits transmitted but service delivery, says Gary Bolton, the new vice president of marketing for Hatteras Networks. Being able to provide symmetric services will become critical as video and voice services over IP networks proliferate, he adds. The way service providers will differentiate themselves is through SLAs.

Fixed and mobile wireless also were expected to be newsmakers at the show. One of the more innovative examples of this comes from the unlikely source of the U.S. Department of Transportation, which has a spacious booth with two new cars (for show only). The USDOT is partnering with the auto industry to install radio transmitters in cars and on roadways, including intersections, to help prevent accidents and relieve traffic congestion.

Exhibitors expressed high expectations for the TELECOM 05 event. USTA has been a good show in the past. We have been impressed with the level of executives and engagement on the show floor, says Thomas Kampf, director of Global Fiber Product Management, for show sponsor ADC.

Colleen Rosander of Marconi Corp. says she is looking forward to meeting with customers and briefing them on new products, such as its new fixed-wireless solution. Tom Nolle of CIMI Corp. will be talking with Marconi customers today about issues including service-oriented architecture.

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