Cable Show 2013: Powell Says Cable is Conduit To Future

NCTA President Opens Show with High Praise for Always On, Always Innovating Industry
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National Cable & Telecommunications Association president Michael Powell opened the Cable Show in Washington roaming the stage to sing the praises of cable, particularly as the always-on, anytime everywhere broadband conduit to the future.

Powell said the industry was on an innovation tear, “expanding the user experience to any screen you want, anytime you want, and anywhere you want."

But cable is more than just TV, he said.

Powell said the Internet has been hailed as the greatest invention of our time, “and it is,” he said. It bolsters economies, empowers learning, overthrows governments and transforms industries. But he also pointed out that the cable industry has transformed the Internet.

From a dial-up world that required Zen-like patience, he said, cable answered the call with the better, more powerful, faster and always-on world of broadband cable.

Powell said that all took energy, effort and money—“lots of money.” That worked out to $200 billion over the past decade, and resulted in a speed increase of 1500%, broadband rollout to 93% of the country, and continued innovation.

He said adoption continued to be a “serious” problem, but one that cable was working on via programs like Connect2Compete and Internet Essentials.

He also said a problem was the bogus comparisons between U.S. broadband stats and countries like “France and Latvia.”

Powell said cable's job is to keep its nets humming, meet explosive demand for capacity, and innovate aggressively--but always fairly. "This is the American way," he said.