By Wim Sweldens, President of Alcatel-Lucent wireless business.
Last day in istanbul.
Beautiful Istanbul summer eve skyline
Started the day at LTE Forum instead of the World Eonomic Forum. Main topic of discussion was the benefits LTE brings over existing 3G technologies. Not all the local operators are convinced but many speakers presented evidence that LTE is moving faster than anyone expected in countries like US, Korea, Japan and others. This is driven by benefits for end users as well as operators. Yet, Turkey has not issued the licenses yet, so 4G is not immediately around the corner. What everyone did agree on that small cells as well as wifi will be part of the solution to provide capacity in a context of growing opposition against more macro sites. What did help the debate was the fact that we were able to demonstrate over 100MB/s using a single lightRadio metrocel.
In the afternoon at the WEF we discussed in an interactive panel various ideas on how to bring innovations to market. We had representation from startups, VC, incubators, and big companies. We discussed and debated vigorously and at the end agreed on the following points:
- the essence of a new business is typically not the idea but the team and that ideally the idea evolves but the team is a constant
- the team needs to be driven by courage instead of fear
- innovation more often comes from solving customer problems than solely from a research lab
- disruption is needed for big and small companies and open collaboration and cocreation is the way forward.
A lot of rapid fire responses consistent with moving at the speed of ideas.
As I rush to the airport and look back for the airplane window at a beautiful Istanbul summer eve skyline, I smile at the work done, the connections made, the discussions had and I focus on the future of the wireless business in this region and beyond!
Till next time Istanbul.