ITEXPO West Wrap-Up

Peter : On Rad's Radar?
| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

ITEXPO West Wrap-Up

I'm home from ITEXPO West in Austin. It was another great show for me. The folks at TMC did another wonderful job putting it together.

Jaime H. juggled my press room meeting schedule on Tuesday, despite my last minute schedule changes. 8x8, Hostway, snom, Centerbeam and others were all able to sit down with me. (Sometimes that isn't always joyful for the marketing/PR folks.) I'm always happy if I can have one or 2 good conversations out of these meetings - and I did.

The sessions were mainly full. I noticed a couple of things: people were not leaving the session rooms but staying for session after session - and they were not just doing that to use a power plug. Most people were not on their devices during sessions, which is unique.

In my Cloud Services Broker Panel, I asked all the attendees why they were there. All said to Learn.

I think our industry is in a lot of turmoil caused by too much cloud hype and consolidation.

The economy, the change, the cloud, and the consolidation makes everyone stressed and fearful of losing their job, when there isn't likely another available (at least immediately).

The marketing machine has ballooned the hype on cloud to ridiculous proportions. The term doesn't mean much to anyone - customers, prospects, vendors, service providers, employees.

With access revenues flat, apps and cloud services are the only way for many service providers to gain revenue. The CLEC industry HAS to be successful in selling cloud services to survive.

Every show has a lot of cloud - so many titles, headlines, banners, etc. It is worse than VoIP was a few years ago. The noise level is deafening - and boring. The industry has to fix this fast.

Startup Camp Comms was enjoyable. Watching Tampa's own startup, Phonism, pitch was exciting. RingDNA won the popular vote though.

I have to say that the keynotes were very good. I have remarked in the past about the commercialized quality of the keynotes, but this time the keynotes were interesting, tweet-worthy, and informative. Thanks to Shortel's CEO Peter Blackmore, IBM's Mike Riegel, and Siemen's CMO Chris Hummel.

Most significant sound byte: "joy of use" is an expectation not a nice to have "

It is not about the technology or the marketing buzz. It is about Outcomes and UX (user experience). Without outcomes and UX, cloud is just a clumsy way to push technology on a user. That won't last. they won't use it. Then they will stop paying for it. Then you have a lot of CAPEX tied up in dust.

IBM used a Tire Store as a case study. A tire store. You can't get any less tech than that. If a tire store worries about the UX, then shouldn't tech/telecom companies???

Personal note: I either need new shoes or more exercise because my back and feet hurt from walking around the show floor, the halls, the podium and downtown Austin. The parties were mobbed, but I was in bed before midnight most nights. (It's about Outcomes :).

We go to these conferences to learn, to mingle, to network. (That's one reason I organize a dinner at each event.) This show definitely delivers on those attributes.

What did you think?

Want to learn more? Read my tweets or search #itexpo

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