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Dennis Oniki is an AT&T veteran. With the company through “every single name change,” he says, Oniki launched his technology career with the telecommunications company nearly a quarter century ago. These days, Oniki’s focus is on VPNs, virtual private networks, specifically, IP VPN Services. As companies move to the cloud, IP VPN is “the freeway, the on ramp into the Cloud,” says Oniki. “You need a reliable, secure network to get to the Cloud.” As the Lead Marketing Manager, VPN Solutions at AT&T, Oniki points out that AT&T’s IP VPN services offer a scalable, efficient way for remote workers, customers and partners to connect—to “tie everything together,” he says.
While Oniki spends the bulk of his time chronicling the benefits of AT&T’s network as a pathway to the Cloud, IPv6 is also top of mind. The sheer number of new IP addresses IPv6 makes possible allows for a new era in computing. Everything from refrigerators to medical devices will have an IP address. “That allows us to think much broader in terms of how we use these things,” Oniki says, “but Cloud is even bigger.”
Oniki’s favorite technology gadget is his smartphone. He’s amazed at what people have come up with in terms of applications for the device. Not only that, but Oniki can compare the current crop of mobile phones to first generation cell phones because he had one. “You had to have a briefcase to carry it,” he recalls. “And the newest technology at that time was voice mail.”
When asked what he thinks the next great thing will be, Oniki doesn’t hesitate. “Convergence of the smartphone and computer,” he states—and it’s nearer than you think. He believes the Motorola ATRIX is a first step in that direction. Right now, the ATRIX can sync with a laptop or PC. Predicts Oniki: “Pretty soon device makers will just build it into one [device.]”
Born and raised in northern California, Oniki lives 35 miles from the town where he grew up. Unapologetically, he describes his life as “Kind of boring.” His wife and he have two young girls. “But for a couple of rounds of golf,” he says, the daughters are the couple’s life.