Execs tackled the latest trends in technology at the WICT Leadership Conference this week, from apps to VR to drones.

Apps are here to stay, according to A+E Networks international & digital media president Sean Cohan. “I think they’re not going anywhere,” he said in a WICT Leadership Conference panel on tech trends Monday. But they’ll evolve, and consumers will end up with their favorites—much like your favorite TV channels in a linear package. There’s currently a proliferation of apps, but “there will be a rationalization of each of our offerings,” Cohan predicted. “We’ve left the phase of, ‘everything needs an app’,” said Discovery Digital Networks evp & gm Suzanne Kolb. Now it’s on to matching purpose and audience to the product.

How about drones? They have enduring value, Cohan said, as they’re able to “get shots and angles on things we never would have thought of before,” he said. Kolb said we’ve arrived at “Drone 1.0,” but there’s so much you can do with storytelling that could not have been achieved otherwise. “We’ve found a lot of use for drones when you’re shooting virtual reality,” she said, adding that the industry is pursuing “a very voyeuristic point of view,” though it’s still early days. It will evolve into more storytelling-based content, Kolb said. The panel also tackled wearables, with Cohan dismissing them as a fad. But Neustar president & CEO Lisa Hook sees them taking off in the healthcare industry, as they have the ability to lower costs dramatically when applied to heart and blood sugar monitors.

Meanwhile, she’s learning to integrate digital natives into her workforce. “The adjustment was in my management style… I’ve given up phone-free meetings,” and learned to communicate with people who have fractured attention spans, she said. (Though she still misses throwing phones against the wall.) Hook also remarked that while the focus used to be on career development, digital natives are much more interested in learning new projects. “Now it’s how can you change the world really quickly,” she said. Another adjustment: accepting different levels of churn—with employees sticking around for somewhere in the 3-5-year range. But the plus side of that is you’ll get new people in with fresh ideas, and the workplace remains exciting. Cohan added that he’s moving away from annual performance reviews and instead looking at projects and setting goals in terms of the next 90 days.

The Daily

Subscribe

Programming

Chris Berman is sticking around. The sports commentator, who has been with ESPN since one month after its 1979 launch, signed a multi-year deal with the network. The contract was announced Monday, which marked

Read the Full Issue
The Skinny is delivered on Tuesday and focuses on the cable profession. You'll stay in the know on the headlines, topics and special issues you value most. Sign Up

Calendar

Jun 10
The FAXIES Awards – Virtual CelebrationSave the Date! - June 10, 2021
Jul 16
Diversity List – 2021 Nominations Due: July 16, 2021
Sep 10
Most Powerful Women – 2021 Nominations Due: Sept 10, 2021
Dec 7
Most Powerful Women CelebrationSave the Date!
Full Calendar

Jobs

Seeking an INDUSTRY JOB?
VIEW JOBS

Hiring? In conjunction with our sister brand, Cynopsis, we are offering hiring managers a deep pool of media-savvy, skilled candidates at a range of experience levels and sectors, The result will be an even more robust industry job board, to help both employers and job seekers.

Contact John@cynopsis.com for more information.