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Profile: Carl Furgusson

Jan 27, 2003  •  Post A Comment

Title: Director of business development for the Americas, Tandberg Television
Background: Mr. Furgusson joined Tandberg Television in 1995. He most recently served as head of the company’s segment business management group before assuming his current post in September 2002. He relocated from Tandberg’s Southampton, U.K., headquarters to the company’s Americas office in Orlando, Fla.
New opportunities: Mr. Furgusson’s position as director of business development is a newly created job designed to move Tandberg into new markets in cable and broadband. Tandberg has traditionally served the local television market and is now aiming to expand into providing digital television equipment to cable operators and to telephone companies offering video services, Mr. Furgusson said. “We believe this year the FCC will finish regulations regarding the must-carry rules for digital channels [from local broadcasters] on cable systems,” he said. Tandberg is currently developing a device that can receive a digital feed from local stations off-air and transmit it on the cable network. He expects that Tandberg will introduce the device at the SCTE show in May. In addition, the company is looking at video-on-demand products to serve the cable market. “Our objective is to come into the market with more integrated lower-cost solutions to be more competitive,” he said. Tandberg has been supplying products to the broadband telco market in Europe and Asia and hopes to make inroads into the U.S. market, particularly with rural, independent telcos that want to stream broadcast video over their networks.
Back to the front burner: “As ad spending starts to increase and budgets increase, broadcasters are then able to rekindle projects they have had on the back burner, such as digital distribution. A lot of projects we’ve seen in the past have been delayed, waiting for budgets to be approved. This year these projects will start to come back.”
Pushing the bit rate: “Going forward the challenge is to push the envelope on video quality vs. the bit rate it takes to encode video. As it takes less bit rate, there is more opportunity [in new market areas] such as pictures to cellphones, PDAs. As bit rates lower we can consider other market opportunities and places to deliver video.”
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