Sitting Down with Sri Solur of Comcast

Sridhar SolurSenior Vice President, Product and Development - Xfinity Home, IOT and Data Services at Comcast

What was your introduction into the IoT sector?  
 
My introduction to IoT began at HP Labs, in 2006, where I built technology that we used to connect tens of millions of printers to the cloud with HP Mobile Print. Here’s a fun video from younger days:

Name a big IoT trend that isn't getting enough attention?  
The mobile revolution occurred as a result of a perfect storm of mobile / social / cloud innovations, coming together to form a unique force for change.  In the world of IoT, a similar perfect storm may be brewing with huge leaps in IoT, machine intelligence, and ambient interfaces (voice, haptics, etc.) all coming together.
 
Advice to your younger self... if you had to do it all over, what would you do differently?   
I’d tell my younger self to start with a focus on tier 1 problems, not just niche problems and use cases. I’d also have told myself to focus earlier on Artificial Intelligence-based technologies, including deep-learning, applied machine intelligence, or regression-based.  Maybe I would have also told my younger self to buy Tesla stock. 
 
What are you most excited about in IoT?  
The ability to transform industries and business models, solving tier 1 problems, and most importantly, contributing positively to changing lives.  Personally in my role, I’m excited about the possibility of bringing physical and digital security together, and the potential to humanize experiences, in order to bring wellness and enhanced peace of mind both inside and outside our customers’ homes.  

Are there any sites/people/articles or books that have really inspired you lately?
For anyone who hasn’t yet read Matthew Syed’s Black Box Thinking, you owe it to yourself to do so. It explores the ability to engage with failure and learn from it in a way that should be a must for anyone even thinking of building products. Also, at the risk of making a shameless plug, I had the huge honor ofcontributing a guest chapter to Vitaly Golomb’s excellent Accelerated StartupI can’t speak for my small contribution, but the rest of the book provides an excellent manual for modern entrepreneurship.