UK at risk in comms battle, warns CMA

The Communications Management Association's annual conference opens today (8 February), with a call for closer co-operation...

The Communications Management Association's annual conference opens today (8 February), with a call for closer co-operation between users, service providers and government to ensure the UK communications infrastructure does not fall behind international competitors.

CMA chief executive Glenn Powell said, "The conference is a snapshot of the business, technology and regulatory issues facing our members, who represent a broad cross-section of UK businesses from both the public and private sectors."

The wide range of IT issues being discussed at the conference reflects what the CMA sees as the rapidly changing role of the telecoms manager. Simply managing an organisation's PBX is the least of their problems, the CMA said.

Issues on the agenda include appropriate outsourcing versus genuine in-sourcing, regulation, business continuity, single supplier partnerships and broadband.

Technical issues being discussed include IT integration, the capitalisation of technology, peer-to-peer networks, voice over IP, radio frequency identification, transforming legacy systems and grid computing.

CMA leaders hope to bring together suppliers and users at the event but some differences of opinion on how the UK can remain a world leader in business communications technology are expected to emerge.

New CMA chairman Phil Sayer will jointly chair the conference. He said, "The government may be impressed with over one million broadband users with 512kbps access, but this has come about three years too late - other countries are leaving us behind.

"In countries such as Japan and South Korea, users can enjoy 5mbps to 10mbps access for less than $25 a month, so we still have a long way to go."

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