Tuesday – Despite a relatively late start, cable is now staking out its own turf in the software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV) space, even leading the way in such aspects as the virtualization of access networks. Now that CableLabs has identified three new components of next-gen cable networks-—service orchestrator, NFV orchestrator and master SDN controller—engineers are developing the interfaces and standards to make cable virtual network functions (VNFs) a reality. But much more work remains to be done to bring virtualized functions and services to market. This breakfast forum will assess the market’s current state, explore cable’s pioneering virtualization efforts, examine the early trials and pilots and look at what comes next.
Wednesday – Over the last couple of years, North American cable operators have embraced mobile as a critical component of their expanding product bundles. In the U.S., for example, Comcast, Charter, Cox and Altice have all launched MVNOs with either Verizon or Sprint/T-Mobile. But now, with the rollout of fifth-generation wireless technology, the big question is whether cablecos can take advantage of 5G, by locking in lucrative backhaul deals, or will lose out to the telcos harnessing this technology to deliver speedy, competitive in-home broadband services. During this breakfast, we will focus on the opportunities and challenges that 5G presents for the cable industry.