Upbeat Mood at OFC Signals Market Potential
By OFC | Posted: 26 March 2015 8:26:48 PM
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Five hundred sixty exhibitors, 106,000 square feet of exhibit space, 12,375 registered attendees, five days in Los Angeles, countless business cards exchanged, meetings taken, pens and Jolly Ranchers handed out and it has all come down to this: Thank you! That was the message from The Optical Society CEO Liz Rogan, greeting the closing breakfast of exhibitors in a corner of the crowded exhibit hall. She thanked the exhibitors for coming but more importantly for what they do—their technologies and services, all of which make a huge difference, Rogan said.
“We couldn't be happier to cosponsor a conference of this quality and this impact,” she added, also thanking cosponsors IEEE Communications Society and IEEE Photonics Society, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.
This year marked the 40th anniversary of the OFC, the largest global conference and exposition for optical communications and networking professionals. The program featured expanded content on the show floor, including the popular market watch briefings on the state of the industry and the service provider summit, sponsored by Juniper Networks, which was kicked off Tuesday by keynote speaker Yukio Ito, senior vice president of service infrastructure, NTT Communications Corporation, Japan. He talked about the first successful deployment of SDN OpenFlow technology.
"That was a good moment to experience here," Rogan said. The upbeat mood was reflected by a number of exhibitors as well.
"OFC was a tremendous show for Oclaro this year, with higher booth traffic and more attendees than previous years," said Adam Carter, Chief Commercial Officer at Oclaro. "We came to the show armed with our powerful line up of 100G solutions and were able to connect with hundreds of customers and leaders throughout the industry looking to see the latest optical innovations."
In her introductory remarks, Rogan also mentioned the International Year of Light, of which OSA is a founding sponsor. The yearlong UNESCO-sponsored celebration of light and light technologies gives our community the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to promote optics and photonics on the world stage, she said.
Changes Afoot in the Industry
Tom Hausken, The Optical Society’s senior industry advisor, spoke about the market trends in the nearly $500 billion global photonics industry. He started with a slightly rosy forecast for the industry.
"Despite what happens in the global economy, it looks like 2015 will be a little bit better for the photonics industry," Hausken said. He added that U.S. component suppliers should be up slightly in revenue by around 3 percent.
One of the big trends Hausken mentioned was the dramatic growth in data center traffic, about 25 percent per year, which has pushed some companies to the top of the food chain. “Arguably Facebook and Google are now the largest communications companies in the world,” he said. The mood at OFC this week has been pretty good, he added, and this trend in data centers is what a lot of the excitement is about.
Hausken showed a busy slide with dozens of company logos and talked about major trends in the tech/telecom landscape, particularly shifts like Google getting into infrastructure while companies like Comcast, which were traditionally devoted to infrastructure, are getting into content .
"There's a lot of big changes going on," Hausken said.
Other trends he touched on were services, mostly in Asia, that provided fiber to the home and a major project to lay two subsea cables beneath the arctic ice. They will cut 60 milliseconds off the latency in connecting the important financial markets in Tokyo and London. Those are positive portents for the market.
Posted: 26 March 2015 by
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