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This week, we sat down with our own Steve McCaffery, Senior Vice President, Sales, EMEA & Asia Pacific and asked him a few questions…from the biggest trends in the region to his advice for individuals seeking a career in the video and broadband industry. Here is what he shared with us.
In your mind, what are three of the biggest trends facing service providers?
We’re seeing a number of key trends impacting decisions by our service provider customers over the coming year. Firstly, with the onset of 4K, we’re seeing a change in requirements for new compression techniques like HEVC, stimulating a refresh in the headend for HEVC encoders and also in the CPE space for HEVC set-tops. Secondly, the growing trend for wireless video delivery around the home is driving the demand for the highest standards in Wi-Fi such as 802.11ac. And finally, service providers are looking at how they can move content to the cloud for access from multiple screens – discussions around nDVR will continue throughout 2014.
Innovation is a word used fairly often in our industry. How would you define it? Better yet, what’s one of your favorite moments that could be defined by this word?
Innovation is something that creates an industry or defines a marketplace by being disruptive to the norm. For example, innovation in compression and encoding has disrupted how we consume media, making it possible to view HD video on a tablet screen.
What should the industry do to hire and inspire more people to drive the future of content and communications experiences?
Our industry is heavily engineering-focused, but to make the services that we enable more intuitive, we should encourage more marketing-led skills to balance the engineers. The technology is there, but it’s now about adoption, and that will come when we can make these experiences more intuitive – we need a shift in our industry to inspire and develop these skills.
What excites you the most about the next 3-5 years for ARRIS?
This industry really excites me! Last year, we brought together two great companies in this space and are on the threshold of some new developments. Also, vendors like ARRIS continue to move up the value chain, and I’d expect over the next 3-5 years to see video service providers engage with us more to take advantage of our operational experience to help design and manage their video systems, allowing them to focus on their customers and the service they deliver.
What was one of the best pieces of career advice given to you?
Communicate, communicate and communicate... Don’t assume people know and understand what you are doing or thinking. To bring along an organization with you, especially on a global level, it’s important to communicate across all levels in the organization, up, down, sideways. For our team, it’s about communicating across regions, business units and with the corporate functions that support us.