TFI Speaker

TFI President Dr. Lawrence Vanston


President, Technology Futures, Inc.

Focus Area: Communications Trends and Forecasting


Dr. Lawrence Vanston is an internationally recognized authority on technology forecasting for the communications industry. As president of Technology Futures, Inc., he has conducted and managed future-looking studies for the communications and other high-tech industries for over thirty years. His current research interests include broadband, wireless, video, and emerging technologies. An expert on the impact of technology change on equipment depreciation and valuation, Dr. Vanston has served as an expert witness in regulatory, tax, and other proceedings.
Dr. Vanston has been the director and principal author of numerous reports and papers commissioned by government agencies, industry organizations, and individual companies, including all of the major U.S. broadband and wireless providers. The Communications Technology Forecasting Group (CTFG), currently comprised of AT&T, Charter, Comcast, and Cox, has been actively supporting TFI research since 1985. Dr. Vanston is Editor of the CTFG blog and resource website.

Dr. Vanston is a popular speaker on the future of communications and on forecasting methods. Programs he has spoken at include the Broadband Tax Institute Conference, the International Institute of Forecasters International Symposium, the Society of Depreciation Professionals Conference, and the Wichita Program for Appraisal for Ad Valorem Taxation. Dr. Vanston also directs the annual TFI Technology Conference which he launched in 2006.

Before joining Technology Futures in 1984, Dr. Vanston was with Bell Labs and Bellcore in network planning where he proposed and evaluated potential new long distance, billing, access, and data services. His academic achievements include a B.A. in government (1975) and an M.S. (1977) and Ph.D. (1979) in operations research and industrial engineering, all from the University of Texas at Austin.

Corporate Bio


Sampling of Topics


Telecom Technology Convergence
The telecommunications industry is navigating convergence from all sides: convergence of industries (cable, telephone, and data), convergence of digital media ,wireless and wireline convergence, and convergence of devices (handhelds, computers, and video), to name a few. Dr. Vanston reviews these developments and points out the key things to look out for.

Transforming the Local Exchange Network
The local exchange telecommunications industry is transitioning from a narrowband network of circuit switches and copper cables to a broadband network of packet switches and fiber optics. Dr. Vanston presents the latest TFI forecasts for this transition, covering switching, circuit equipment, and outside plant. He also discusses the competitive impacts from wireless, broadband, cable telephony, and VoIP. Optionally, depending on the audience, he also provides TFI's latest recommendations on depreciation lives for telephone plant.

Gigabit Broadband Access: Status, Forecasts and Observations
This presentation reviews the status of Gigabit service in the U.S., the motivations of the players, and the drivers and constraints for its continued deployment and adoption. Historical data and forecasts on the generations (characterized by typical data rates) of broadband access are presented, which puts the adoption of Gigabit service in context. While Gigabit may be premature in terms of its data rate, there are technical, strategic and marketing reasons, it is likely to grow.

Technology Forecasting for Telecom: An Overview for Everyone
Dr. Vanston reviews the methods TFI has successfully used for over two decades of forecasting telecom technologies and markets. Participants will gain an appreciation of the practical aspects of forecasting in a rapidly changing environment, including how to use forecasts to avoid big mistakes. Dr. Vanston will review previous forecasts that have stood the test of time, as well as TFI's current forecasts for key telecom technologies.

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What Audiences Say

"Thank you for making our Telecom Executive Forum such a success. You gave our members many provocative ideas and some great insights into what might be coming down the telecom road in the future."
—National Telecommunications Coorporative Association

"We received excellent reviews from your presentation and hope to have you back next year."
—iHollywood Forum

"The advancement of our program is a tribute to your personal presentation skills. On behalf of all of us, I would like to thank you for your fine work. We look forward to working with you in the future."
—Wireless Data Forum

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Speaker Contact

For more information on Dr. Vanston's speaking services, please contact Carrie Vanston at (800) TEK-FUTR, (512) 258-8898,, or fill out contact TFI. We appreciate your interest and welcome your inquiries.

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Lawrence Vanston, Editor
Communications Technology Forecasting Group Resources & Blog
Assets Outlook
Website and Blog

Lawrence Vanston Conference and Seminar Director
TFI Asset Valuation Conference

Pre-Conference Seminar:
TFI Technology
Forecasting for

Recent Publications by Dr. Vanston

Transforming the Local Exchange Network: Sixth Edition
Transforming the Local Exchange Network: 6th Edition

Practical Forecasting Tips Article Practical Tips for Forecasting New Technology Adoption

Technology Forecasting for Telecom Article Technology Forecasts for
US Tele-
communications Network

Forecasts of Access Line Competition Report CoverTransforming the Local Exchange Network: Fourth Edition
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