Interop 2011 Day One Wrap Up

Day one of Interop has been great so far – I had video and written interviews with a number of companies such as Juniper Networks, Siemens, Brocade, ShoreTel, Navisite, Broadcom and Cisco. The videos will be posted soon – I will alert you when they are up or just go to our video page and click on the forthcoming Interop 2011 tab.

One point which came up repeatedly in my meetings is the micromanaging of budgets by CEOs – not just in small companies but some really big ones. It seems CXOs are scrutinizing new spending like at no time I have ever seen. Even if equipment has a rapid ROI – CEOs seem quite gun-shy and are holding off.

We are in a unique environment where there is more optimism in tech than I have seen since 2000 but spending seems slow – glacially slow in many cases because CEOs and other execs are being extremely cautious. One analyst experiencing this issue firsthand mentioned this is not a good sign because CEOs shouldn’t be managing nickels and dimes. Another person I spoke with working in the networking equipment market told me they have a new division focused exclusively on getting buy-in from CEOs because people at this level have been killing many deals.

Hopefully the situation changes soon because like the analyst above inferred – CEOs must have more important things to do like formulating strategy and ensuring the company stays competitive.

After the show I stopped by the Avaya Innovation Hospitality Lounge & Lab where I say a new web.alive immersive 3D demo on a kiosk which has improved a tremendous amount in resolution. Avatar driven communications is certainly not where I would have hoped (yet) but the demo the company showed of a virtual Coach store was quite impressive.

I also saw a VDI demo of an Avaya A175 Android-based tablet supporting a Remote Desktop session for communications control with media streaming directly to a device. In this manner, video and audio is streamed without the typical double-hop through the server needed. The company will soon have a software update which allows DVI output from the tablet – and there is also keyboard support BTW. I saw a similar demo on a thin client PC made by Wyse. Here is a photo of the display area.


There is so much more to share but I’ve gotta sign off and get some sleep – I have an early morning meeting to go over my presentation on online community building and social networking at a breakfast tomorrow, May 11th, 2011 at 8:00 am.

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