As the telecommunications industry prepares for the next ITEXPO in Austin, Texas, presenters and speakers are preparing their chops for interacting with leading vendors, service providers, clients and strategists in the industry.
To take a closer look at what’s taking place, TMC’s Rich Tehrani spoke with Andy Abramson, CEO and founder of Comunicano, Inc.
When asked about the most important trend in business purchasing decisions this year, Abramson pointed to the shift away from boxes to the promise of the cloud. As for the smartest thing companies can do in their tech strategy to prepare for the future, he believes they should get out of the way of purchasing. The Apple (News - Alert)-Samsung patent continues to gain traction in the media, capturing the attention of those who could feel the impact of the outcome. Abramson believes the case will draw more attention to the patent system and could lead to patent reform. The latter has the potential for positive change, something Abramson believes is necessary.
When asked his opinion on the role video should play in business communications, Abramson shared that it is the new voice that allows people to see one another. He does warn, however, that it is often misused.
As for NBC’s ubiquitous coverage of the 2012 Olympics, Abramson believes it was quite possibly, “the dawn of a new era in sports programming.”The topic of the upcoming presidential election was also discussed as Abramson believes the outcome will not be decided by technology, but what the candidates learn from technology. As for the new technology item he wants most, Abramson points to the BlackBerry 10. He also plans to use his smartphone for retail purchasing when the mobile wallet is more widely available.
For those ITEXPO attendees who plan to attend the panels he is participating in, The Future of Team Collaboration and Cozying up to Video Conferencing for Maximum ROI, Abramson promises great content. He anticipates a great event with optimal networking opportunities and Austin nightlife.When asked for a bold prediction for the future of tech, Abramson suggests the Microsoft Slate will win market share, but end up helping Apple and Google (News - Alert) in the long term. Their entire conversation follows:
What’s been the most important trend in business purchasing decisions this year?
The most important trend has to be the shifting away from boxes on the premise of all types and the move to the cloud. Software sitting on the cloud plus the marrying of the technology to mobile devices, giving people more access, more time and lower cost is the trend.
It gets demonstrated best when you think of cloud based video or audio conferencing, using an iPad or Android (News - Alert) tablet, maybe even an iPhone or Android smartphone and a service from Vidtel or others, with the iPad docked in a frame on your desk, that you then take with you and do the same thing from your hotel room. I’ve done this over and over again with CounterPath’s Bria on the devices and Vidtel in the cloud. No need for a room of desktop Polycom or Cisco video system.
What is the smartest thing companies can do from a technology perspective to prepare for the future?
Companies should get out of the old way of purchasing. Forget long term contracts or amortization of hardware and software. Things change too fast. The rate of advancement of processor speed and display technology is bringing more power into the hands of the user, not the IT department than ever before. Companies need to think in terms of years not five year to ten year life cycles for all things technology.
Will the verdict in the Apple-Samsung (News - Alert) patent case have ramifications for the technology market?
In the short term it will draw more attention to the patent system. In the long run it will lead to more patent reform, but not with the current administration in power in our government.
Do you think the U.S. patent system is effective or in need of reform?
The current patent system is broken, but the idea of intellectual property rights being protected is needed. Patents bring value but a lot of times being proprietary before you get your patent is as important so you have a going concern that can protect the patent when it gets granted. Apple is a fine example of how to use the patent system to propel both innovation and protect what they invent.
What role should video play in business communications?
Video is the new voice and enables people to see one another, but often times it’s misused. It would be better to give every employee Skype or CounterPaths Bria and an iPad vs. buying room based systems and only having the CEO and a few others be able to use Video in communications.
How would you characterize the ubiquitous coverage of the Olympic Games delivered by NBC?
NBC was able to take all their lessons learned from past Olympics, look at what the audience of today’s behavior is like and built programming for it that went beyond the TV. It was perhaps the dawn of a new era of sports programming coverage, and gave them their first real leg up opportunity vs. ESPN (News - Alert) who is already far down the road at multi-screen content distribution to speak to the changing audiences and demographics.
How important do you feel technology will be in deciding the upcoming presidential election?
This year’s election will be decided not by technology, but shaped by how the candidates use what they learn from technology carrying voters and how they apply what they gather up from the information and how the use technology to disseminate their message.
What’s the one technology item you want most? Why?
The new BlackBerry 10. It will be such a departure from the past, and made for business people who need more than what the iPhone or Android provides in the way of security.
Will you use your smartphone to pay for retail purchase when mobile wallet capabilities become widely available? Why or why not?
Sure. The less I need the carry, the less I can lose or leave somewhere.
What will attendees experience at your booth/session that will be unique at ITEXPO?
Great content. My panel members won’t be sharing what they want to say. The audience will hear what they want to hear and learn.
What are you looking forward to at ITEXPO?
Seeing Rich Tehrani and the great gang from ITEXPO, as well as networking with the forward thinking executives attending. That and hearing some amazing music at night in Austin.
Care to make a bold or surprising prediction about the future of tech?
Microsoft’s new Slate platform helps them win market share but it ends up being beneficial to Apple and Google in the long run.
To find out more about Andy Abramson and Comunicano Inc., visit the company at ITEXPO West 2012. To be held Oct. 2-5 at the Austin Convention Center in Austin, TX, ITEXPO is the world’s premier IP communications event. Abramson is a moderator for two sessions: The Future of Team Collaboration and Cozying up to Video Conferencing for Maximum ROI. For more information on ITEXPO West 2012, click here.
Edited by Braden Becker