Title: Director of network and applications business development for Scientific-Atlanta.
Background: Before rejoining Scientific-Atlanta in 1997 (she had worked for the company from 1981 to 1987), Ms. Cistola was director of marketing for an IT networking services company.
Network support: “A lot of what we’re doing that’s different is a result of having a network out there that actually supports this stuff. We took longer to develop the network and get it out there; that was the downside. The good side was every box we’ve ever shipped can support video on demand. So in a way we’ve got it easier in the CreativEdge [developer] group compared with some of these other companies because we’ve got something to work with. We can deploy these apps and they’ll work across a system because it was always designed to support that stuff.”
Trends: “Until recently we’ve focused on [testing] a single application. But what’s happening is the operators are saying, `It’s expensive to launch a single application. So I’m going to tell you the two or three applications I want, and I want you to test those together.’ We call that a multiple apps assessment. The good news is we’re getting a lot of push for that from the operators, so that tells me ITV is not dead.”
The future: “It’s going to be an interesting time, because we’re going to have people from all different backgrounds all targeting the same goal-to make more entertaining and more convenient programming. Historically I think there were a lot of silos and, `I’ve got to protect my information.’ But to get this stuff out there, I think we’re going to see a lot more collaboration in the industry between the operators, the programmers, the application developers and the vendors. That’s exciting, because with all those different factions coming together we’ll come out with some really great products for consumers.”