Thinking about the Futurecom

A major event took place in Sao Paulo, Brazil last month. No, I’m not referring to the Miss Universe Pageant that also happened at the same time at the Hilton in Sao Paulo. I’m referring to the Futurecom held at the Transamerica Expo. Futurecom is definitely the premier technology exposition in Brazil and in my opinion, the entire Latin America region. This year’s event featured a great participation from most major technology vendors, systems integrators, mobile and datacenter operators coupled with a many discussions lead by government and industry technology luminaries. It was a truly impressive event with a great deal of insight into the current and future direction of the telecommunications industry.

There was a wide variety of technology being discussed and showcased but a high percentage of the content fell under two major themes:

1) Newer, faster and more innovative ways to access and present data. The acceleration of mobile providers’ deployment of LTE technologies and the explosion of devices capable of exploiting the additional bandwidth was the leading topic. FTTH, satelite and other last mile technologies were also showcased.

2) The greater availability of data and applications to accomplish just about anything that you want to do. Cloud computing solutions have gained significant penetration in the Latin Market and continue to gain market share as enterprises become more confident in the integrity of their outsourced data. This in turn provides companies a means to quickly deploy new services. On the end user side, the app market for handheld devices is thriving as thousands of companies, organizations and individuals collaborate on snazzy new apps that can make use of the ever growing handheld computing power.

Comparing this with what I’ve learned in speaking with service providers and enterprises about their business concerns, it is clear to me that Futurecom reflects the pulse of the worldwide technology market. There seems to be an ever growing appitite by both businesses and consumers for new applications. This has driven widespread adoption of faster access technologies such as 4G LTE, FTTH and faster cable modems which in turn has opened up the opportuntiy for newer bandwith intensive applications. Applications are driving incredibly fast growth on the Internet and the means by which they are delivered is fundamentally changing the economy of the Internet. Applications such as over the top video ala Netflix drive huge bandwidth consumption and alter the economics of peering between providers and content delivery networks.

The importance of Internet access to business has also never been greater. Public and private cloud capabilities have enabled businesses to drive more of their own internal and external applications onto the Internet. This continued migration from facilities based applications towards cloud solutions and from proprietary applications to cloud based services has altered the risk profile for companies and has driven them to search for new solutions to mitigate these risks.

These were all front and center topics on the Futurecom show floor and in the various keynote addresses. Interesting discussions, very timely. I’m looking forward to next year’s Futurecom which is going to take place in Rio de Janeiro.

See you there.

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