Keeping Pace in the IPTV Race

With the rapid pace of consumer, device and technology change in the IP video industry, some service providers likely feel keeping pace is about as easy as solving a Rubiks Cube blindfolded, hence the creation of a COMPTEL PLUS three-session IPTV track spanning three core topics.

The track, sponsored by Cisco Systems Inc., begins today with The Next Big Shift: Video over IP, which is designed to explain the mega trend and set the stage for the following two, more-focused, sessions. In this first session, FTTH Council Board Chair Kathy Harriman and President Joe Savage will discuss how next-generation service providers can overcome deployment issues and deliver new products and services.

Service providers, along with their infrastructure suppliers and content providers, are at the forefront of the IPTV development and deployment efforts today; all are trying to meet and enable the video usage needs of a wide variety of consumers seeking to evolve the experience beyond old-school TV viewing.

What were trying to do is allow people to experience services on multiple devices that they can personalize and enjoy inside and outside the house, which takes video well beyond sitting in front of a TV set, said Al Safarikas, director of global worldwide service provider marketing for networking giant Cisco, and a panelist on the first IPTV session.

For service providers to offer video to three or four screens a consumer may use for viewing TV, PC, mobile device, gaming console they first must converge networks and services, explained Safarikas, adding that this will enable the integration of communications services, such as telephony, with video to enrich the users overall experience.

As far as network infrastructure is concerned, Safarikas expects an increase in network traffic for service providers, but stressed service providers most pressing order of business is converging networking so that applications and offerings can span wireless and wireline networks.

The second session, Demand over Supply: IPTV and Bandwidth Management, features Ross Rehert, senior solutions engineer for Network Insight, and Steve Sklar, director of video product management for Qwest Communications International Inc.

The final track offering, The iTRACK Generation: The New Media Audience, will touch on how network service providers can maximize new media advances as well as bandwidth requirements and new delivery platforms. Leading the session will be Cisco executives Mac Plymale, director of West Coast operations, and Ronnie LaNasa, U.S. service provider theatre lead, unified communications Telepresence.

Cisco Systems Inc.

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