I recently had a chance to interview Arjun Roychowdhury, Director, IMS & Broadband Applications Hughes Systique Corp. Arjun will be a speaker at Internet Telephony Conference & Expo in September and I thought it worth getting his thoughts on a number of issues.
Please outline your new corporate initiatives.
We have started a SIP & IMS Technology consulting service that has hit a niche in the market. There are many market IMS services (VDC, In-Stat, Gartner etc.) but no pure 100 percent technology consulting solutions. To address this space, my company consults in SIP & IMS technologies, helping OEMs migrate to IMS, architecture consulting and standards update via subscription services.
How is IP communications changing your company’s strategy?
We believe that new application technologies like Flash and AJAX will become an integral part of an improved user experience for broadband apps. We also know, that very few companies who know ‘telecom’ also know these new technologies -you can find many flash programmers who can create flash web pages, and may telecom programmers, but hardly any who understand both worlds and appreciate them. We are bridging this gap by actively investing in training our teams on flash, flash-lite, AJAX and similar, so that they are in a position to deliver innovative applications that go beyond ‘call park’, ‘call transfer’ and ‘visual voicemail’.
How has SIP changed communications?
In good and bad ways. Good – mass deployments, helped people realize that IP actually works for communications. Bad – SIP is pretty much an over-bloated and overtly complex protocol today, nowhere close to the simplicity it started with. And several standardization and industry bodies have contributed to this problem by extending SIP in non-conformant ways to suit their purposes.
What is the biggest request coming from your customer base?
Surprisingly, it is ‘IMS related’. Some people don’t want to use ‘IMS’ as a word (sufficient negative hype on it) but when you cut down to the basics, all of them are asking us to help them evaluate, architect or help them migrate to ‘all IP, mobile focused, but wireline interoperable’ networks (if that is not IMS, tell me what it is) The other big request is from customers who find tracking 3GPP evolutions very time consuming, hard and expensive. So they want us to track it for them, just so that ‘they don’t miss the bus when IMS comes in.
What do you think the future of the market is?
For good or bad, the largest chunk of revenue still comes from voice. Therefore, future markets depend on how far you want to look ahead. I think non -voice revenues will continue to increase its success in ASPAC ahead of all other geographies.
How does the U.S. growth rate compare to the rest of the world?
As far as any innovative service goes, I find ASPAC, E.U. and U.K. (in that order) to really want to pay for new applications. It is at a point where large OEMs and carriers we talk to always insist on “tell us what we can deploy” that will enable customers to come to us. OEMs ask us to create applications that will convince operators to use them. This is rather different from the U.S. market, where the need for innovation seems to be less important from the big boy’s perspective.
What do you think of Google and Apple entering the telecom market?
I am hoping they will fuel the race for others to open on innovation. For example, when Gmail was launched it forced Yahoo! and Hotmail to innovate further, get faster, get prettier, give more space and continue innovating. I hope at least this much happens. Specifically, the US market needs an adrenalin injection when it comes to deploying innovation in carriers.
How about Microsoft?
Microsoft did a good job in SMB enterprises. I think that is their niche. Several years ago, pundits predicted Microsoft’s LCS and real-time suite will take over telecom and compete against operators, never happened. People also said that bundling SIP free in their OS will make other competition fade out – never happened. I think MS will continue to make inroads into the SMB enterprise space.
How will communications evolve over the next five years?
As phones become micro-tablets (powerful PCs), security will get increasingly important to solve. All operators in the “FMC” or “all IP” space would have deployed IMS without necessarily using the same three lettered acronym rollout screens for mobile phones. Recent innovations that have made it possible to have a rolled out screen that can get bigger than its compacted size — great for gaming or video-conferences — will become a reality. I hope fogscreen figures out a way to create a virtual projection system for mobiles.
WiMAX will make mobile broadband a reality at an affordable cost. It will also, therefore, severely impact non WiMAX based WiFi mesh technologies
What sorts of things will we be hearing about during your presentation at ITEXPO?
I will explain the key differences between IMS and WiMAX and why ‘do they compete’– makes little sense.
I will talk about what I see people are doing right. IMS Architecture adoption (a rose is a rose is a rose…)
Why is your presentation a “Can’t Miss?”
If you want to clear the fog in your minds about whether IMS is dead, or whether WiMAX will overtake IMS and what it means for your products, you need to listen in.
What do you want the industry to know about your company?
Hughes Systique Corporation is a communications software company focused on Consulting, Architecture and development services in the areas of VoIP, SIP, Converged applications, IMS and WiMAX. We have deep expertise in communication technologies as well as emerging technologies such as Flash, Flash-lite, AJAX and similar which put us in an ideal position to help you meet all your communication architecture, consulting and development needs.
Please make one surprising prediction we will see in 5 years.
Companies will make a killing selling ‘dumbed down’ phones.