Speaking Engagements & Private Workshops - Get Dean Bubley to present or chair your event

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Thursday, August 23, 2012

Upcoming Telco-OTT & Future of Voice events: US, UK, Asia & MidEast

The debate about Telcos & OTT / Telcos vs. OTT services refuses to die down, spanning VoIP, messaging, content and cloud services.

Recent months have seen continued debate at all levels of the industry. There have been countless articles written with various levels of apocalyptic and/or messianic tone. Skype, Google, Apple, Amazon and Facebook are becoming more entrenched in users' minds and smartphones, along with newcomers such as WhatsApp, Pinterest and Twitter.  We've felt the rumblings of WebRTC (more on that in coming months from me). We have seen operator CEOs opine on both perceived threats and opportunities (most notably Telefonica). We've seen organisations like ETNO try to flex political muscles, lobbying the ITU about the whole structure of the Internet and about permitting operators to levy transport charges (more like telecom-style termination fees) on 3rd-party applications and content.

We've also seen the difficulties of some Internet business models - notably Facebook, Netflix and Zynga. As such, these firms are unlikely to ever pay rent-seeking telcos any form of transport toll without additional value-add that helps their business. Google, BBC and others have ways around network-quality issues and are unlikely to ever pay for QoS, even if it becomes feasible.The only ways to "monetise" OTT services are those which enhance their current business and revenues, not tax what they're doing already.

We might see some traction in areas like customer data intelligence, identity, congestion or billing APIs, but the operators are desperately slow, especially where they attempt to collaborate.

In the meantime, customer expectations from voice and messaging are changing significantly. Users seem entirely happy without the need for "ubiquity", except as a last-ditch common denominator for people they contact outside their normal network. For almost every use-case of communications, there's something better, cheaper or cooler than phone calls or SMS.

With all this in mind, I'm going to be on the road over the next couple of months, participating in a broad variety of events, and speaking on the central themes of:

  • Clash of ecosystems: telecoms standards, apps & web
  • Telco-OTT services and strategies
  • Future of Voice & Messaging
  • Why telcos cannot hope to "monetise" OTT comms/content/cloud services if all they are offering is data transport
  • At some of the events I'll also be looking at network-side issues like policy & charging, or WiFi offload/onload models

The format of these events vary. Some are private vendor-led customer conferences at which I am a "stimulus speaker". Some are paid public conferences. I'm also doing various private behind-closed-doors workshops.
First up, on 20th-21st September, I'll be running a 2-day telecoms excellence course in Singapore with Clariden Events. Titled "Managing and Understanding Disruptive New Technologies in the Mobile Telecommunication Business", it will cover a broad array of trends around both communications services (voice, Telco-OTT, WebRTC etc), and the underlying infrastructure. It will cover both global and Asia-specific developments.

On 27th September I'm doing a webinar on Telco-OTT with Acme Packet. Details here 

Next up is the US, where Martin Geddes & I will be running a shortened version of our Future of Voice / Telco-OTT workshops as the pre-conference for Metaswitch's customer forum in Orlando, on October 1st. We're both also speaking or moderating panels in the main part of the conference.

Then, from 14-18th October, I'll be in Dubai at the ITU Telecom World Summit, attended by a variety of global telecom luminaries, including national telecom ministers and operator CEOs. I'm on a couple of panel sessions, including the "Battle of the Ecosystems", which will examine telco business models in the world of OTT services and consumer data. I'll be voicing a number of opinions, including the pivotal role of OTT, and the need to maintain a strict view of the "Real Internet" alongside any other non-neutral varieties of data service. My other session will be on "Service delivery", which will cover areas like IMS, RCS and WebRTC. I'll be arguing that operators and standards bodies need to look beyond legacy platforms such as IMS, if they are to survive the next decade.

October 23rd & 24th in London is the next iteration of my and Martin's full 2-day workshop series on Future of Voice / Telco-OTT. We'll be revamping the material to cover recent developments - from WebRTC, through outcomes from ITU, to updates on RCS/VoLTE launches. Full details are at www.futureofcomms.com and sign-up is here. These interactive, small-group events feature a careful mix of operators, vendors, Internet companies and developers - often with some regulators and investors thrown in as well. We've got a very strict 25-person maximum so we can give personal attention to everyone's specific situation, and encourage collaboration between people in the room.

I'll also be chairing the Total Telecom World conference in London on November 13th, which will also examine OTT disruption, and how to rebuild the telecom ecosystem to recapture growth and revenue.

There will probably also be a few other events I'll be at in 2012 - I've already got a Telco-OTT webinar (details soon) and a couple of private presentations/workshops booked in. I'll also probably be wearing my "Telco 2.0" hat at STL's Digital Asia event in Singapore on 3-5 December.

If you're interested in booking me as a stimulus speaker, event chair or panel moderator, please get in touch via information AT disruptive-analysis DOT com.

Lastly, one bit of advanced warning. I will NOT be attending MWC'13 in Barcelona next year, for all the same reasons that Alan Quayle eloquently discusses in this blog post. I think the move to the new out-of-town venue will destroy the nature of the event, and I've got no desire to suffer the "commute" to and from central Barcelona. However, I'll be extra making time available for meetings in London the week before - and if anyone fancies joining me, maybe we can organise some sort of Mobile London Congress instead, or at least a few drinks.

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