Canadian Telecom Summit - Quick Take

Yesterday was Day 1 of the 16th Canadian Telecom Summit here in Toronto, and I was happy to attend. Hosts Mark Goldberg and Michael Sone always put together a strong program, including an opening keynote from the Hon. Navdeep Bains, Canada's Innovation Minister. He is strongly advocating for more affordable access to mobile broadband, especially for lower income Canadians. It's long been a charged issue, as previous efforts to legislate more competition to bring down prices hasn't really worked, and maybe things will be different this time around. For more on that, here's some coverage of his keynote in today's Globe and Mail.

Following that, we had a full day of other keynotes and panel sessions, and the all-day espresso bar kept the audience alert and focused. The highlight for me was the cybersecurity panel, and as always, Dr. Ann Kavoukian pulled no punches about the dangers of new technology and how it's pushing us closer to becoming a surveillance state. I totally agree with her message about taking our personal privacy very seriously, because it's impossible to get back once you give it up.

Closer to home for me, I really enjoyed the customer experience panel, and while Canadian companies have a long way to go, we heard some great examples of how companies like Telus and Rogers are working hard to reinvent CX around how people engage with technology today. That message also came through loud and clear from keynote sponsor Netcracker, as their CTO, Aloke Tusnial talked about the need for CSPs - communications service providers - to evolve into DSPs - digital service providers. Totally agree.

While I'm not able to attend CTS today, I'll be back tomorrow, and here are some photos from Day 1. Otherwise, the twitter feed has been active, so you can follow all the buzz there - #CTS17.

Michael Sone and Mark Goldberg with their opening remarks

Hon. Navdeep Bains, Canada's Innovation Minister

Panel sessions - customer experience, and cybersecurity