The Key Things We Learned at OFC 2017

Apr. 18, 2017

OFC2017.JPGThe value of tradeshows are hotly debated in our digital age. With hundreds of ways to interact, communicate and advertise, tradeshows can be seen as less and less relevant, and increasingly time consuming and costly. Many companies find themselves questioning whether tradeshows are worth the investment.

After participating in numerous technology tradeshows over the decades and across a wide range of markets, MACOM fully recognizes the value of attending these events. In a previous blog, we discussed the numerous benefits of attending and participating in technology tradeshows, including the opportunities to announce breakthrough technology, display compelling demonstrations, interact with diverse attendees, and engage in vigorous exchanges of ideas and harmonization. And when it comes to doing technology tradeshows right, no event stands out more prominently than the Optical Fiber Communication Conference (OFC).

What exactly is OFC doing right?

  1. Enabling Technology Innovation – Every big player in the optical industry gathers for OFC, which means every hot and relevant topic in the industry is represented. Perhaps most outstanding this year were the advances taking place in Data Center and Long Haul/Metro solutions to support escalating need for bandwidth growth. The buzz this year was all about speeds and feeds, and getting the fastest speed with the least number of feeds. Enabling 100G to 400G on a single wavelength was a major accomplishment. Over 140 product, service, partner and technical advancement announcements were made during the event, including MACOM’s own L-PIC for Data Centers and 600G on a single wavelength for Long-Haul/Metro announcements.
  2. Offering Unlimited Networking Opportunities– OFC is undeniably a must-attend event for anyone in the optical industry. Drawing around 15,000 attendees and over 660 exhibitors this year, OFC is the premier show in the optical space, showcasing the latest innovation in technology and creating a prime avenue for networking. With every year, the demand for meeting room spaces increases as open marketplace booth space shrinks to accommodate. Exhibitor hours set no constraints on the willingness of attendees to enclose themselves in open air meeting rooms or claim a few chairs in the coffee area to talk. Customers, competitors and students alike are given an opportunity to discover and discuss. OFC offers a tremendous opportunity to engage, share and shape thinking, allowing the industry to actively develop their understanding and further enhance technology innovation.
  3. Empowering Information – More than a tradeshow, OFC is a conference that aims to inform and educate its attendees. Presentations, panels, interactive workshops and technical speakers use the week to share expertise and field questions; during the OFC 2017 event, over 1,100 peer-reviewed papers were submitted, and conference hours expanded into the weekend to accommodate the thriving industry. In a recent video interview with OSA, MACOM’s Ray Moroney summarized the resulting value of OFC: “By bringing the entire industry together for a week, it really enables innovation across the whole supply chain.”

As an enthusiastic OFC attendee and component vendor sitting in the middle of this optical ecosystem, MACOM values the opportunities to share and grow at each event. This year we had a host of product announcements, and took full advantage of representing our developments in presentations, forums and panel discussions throughout the week. We welcomed the opportunity to meet with customers and offer private demonstrations to further solidify our position as the preeminent supplier of optical components supporting the industry’s growing demand for data capacity. With another exciting tradeshow behind us and plenty of information gleamed, MACOM is already looking ahead to OFC 2018 and the possibilities that await. For all these reasons, we continue to find tremendous value in technology tradeshows—especially those like OFC.


All financial guidance projections referenced in this post were made as of the publication date or another historical date noted herein, and any references to such projections herein are not intended to reaffirm them as of any later date. MACOM undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statement or projection at any future date. This post may include information and projections derived from third-party sources concerning addressable market size and growth rates and similar general economic or industry data. MACOM has not independently verified any information and projections from third party sources incorporated herein. This post may also contain market statistics and industry data that are subject to uncertainty and are not necessarily reflective of market conditions. Although MACOM believes that these statistics and data are reasonable, they have been derived from third party sources and have not been independently verified by MACOM.