JANUARY 10, 2008 By Stephen Hardy -- Japan will hold its equivalent to OFC/NFOEC next week in Tokyo. The Eighth Fiber Optic Expo (FOE 2008) will take place January 16-18 at the Tokyo Big Sight. Show organizers expect as many as 15,000 people will walk through the exhibit hall and conference rooms.
The conference portion of the event will focus on market and technology trends at both the component/subsystem and networking levels. The keynote session Wednesday morning will feature presentations from both East and West. Kazuo Ohki, senior executive vice president, senior executive manager, Network Business Headquarters of NTT East, will review his company's efforts in next-generation networking and optical broadband. Pieter D. Poll, CTO, network operations - products and services at Qwest Communications, will follow with a description of the RBOC's broadband business strategy.
Friday will open with special sessions in which representatives from major Japanese system suppliers will review advances in next-generation optical network technology. Speakers will include Terumi Chikama, corporate senior vice president, executive vice president, Telecom Business Group and president of the Photonic Systems Group of Fujitsu Ltd.; Hiroyuki Tsutsumi, managing director, service provider operations, Cisco Systems GK; Botaro Hirosaki, executive vice president and member of the board of NEC Corp.; and Tetsuo Takemura, corporate officer, network systems business, information and technology systems at Hitachi Ltd.
In between, conference attendees will have the opportunity to hear discussions on advances in 40G and 100G technology, FTTH (including next-generation systems and transceivers), next-generation network strategies, video delivery, and emerging component/subsystem and interconnection technologies.
Meanwhile, show organizer Reed Exhibitions expects as many as 300 exhibitors to vie for the attention of attendees. As might be expected, most of these companies will hail from Japan. However, the percentage of FOE exhibitors from China and Korea has grown over the last several years. While Western vendors have found cracking the Japanese market a daunting task, several Chinese vendors interviewed at last year's show suggested that Asian companies have a comparatively easier time than Western competitors negotiating the intricacies of doing business in Japan because the cultural differences aren't quite as pronounced.
That said, several Western firms will take up positions on the show floor. Some will do so through Japanese subsidiaries or distributors, but others will wave their native flags. The FTTH/FTTP Zone, one of four application-specific areas within the exhibition hall, will see several of these companies, including Colorchip, Discovery Semiconductors, Gemfire, New Ridge Technologies, and Optoplex. Other Western vendors expected to exhibit include Albis Optoelectronics, BERTScope/Synthesys Research, JDSU, Finisar, Opnext, Oz Optics, Peleton, Picometrix, Princeton Lightwave, and Proximion Fiber Systems, among others.
Besides the FTTH/FTTP Zone, the exhibit floor will feature zones that address optical interconnection, connectors, and fiber-optic cabling and construction.