SCTE: The (virtual) Expo show must go on

After cancelling its live conference last month, the SCTE•ISBE Cable-Tec Expo 2020 conference is now a virtual event Oct. 12-16. (FierceTelecom)

After the cancellation of the live event in May, the SCTE•ISBE Cable-Tec Expo 2020 conference is now a virtual event Oct. 12-16. The first virtual iteration of the cable industry's flagship event is also free thanks to sponsorship from Charter Communications, Comcast, Cox Communications and the SCTE Foundation.

SCTE Cable Tec Expo was first held in Dallas in 1983, and since that time it has never skipped a beat, including in 2009 when a blizzard swept through host city Denver, which led to lower attendance numbers due to cancelled flights.

On May 27, SCTE cancelled the conference that was slated to take place in Denver due to Colorado Governor Jared Polis’ executive order that designated the Colorado Convention Center as a temporary medical facility for the remainder of the year.

From the glass is half full side, SCTE said on Tuesday that the new free, virtual format would allow a larger, more diverse group of professionals to take part in the virtual event from their homes and offices around the world.

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The Fall Technical Forum will draw on a record 267 abstracts across artificial intelligence, operational transformation, advancements to cable’s 10G platform, lessons learned from COVID-19, and more.

"Cable-Tec Expo plays a vital role for the industry. We’re looking forward to expanding its reach in 2020 with a fully immersive, interactive virtual format,” said Tony Werner, president of Technology, Product, Xperience at Comcast Cable, in a statement. “Cable-Tec Expo gives professionals in our industry a platform to share their insights, learn from one another and allied industries, and shape the future in an increasingly connected world. We’re confident this year will be no exception.”

Expo 2020 is co-chaired by Ed Marchetti, senior vice president of operations for Comcast, and Tom Monaghan, senior vice president, field operations for Charter Communications.

The SCTE Foundation will support the virtual education portion of Expo 2020 and will partner with various educational facilities and minority universities to provide free educational invitations, facilitate interactions between students and executives, and create internships and career opportunities.