Manny Hernandez
Manny Hernandez

As a former member of the Marine Corps, Manny Hernandez has cultivated an exceptional career through his company, Queclink Wireless Solutions. As one of the leading suppliers of telematics devices and IoT solutions, Queclink’s mission is to bring the most innovative and reliable technical products together as one. By doing this, Queclink provides its customers with different solutions to their needs, no matter how diverse and complicated.

Thankfully, Manny was able to take some time away from his business and answer some questions we had about Queclink and the wider industry.

Interviewer:

Welcome, today we are getting to know Manny Hernandez, vice president of North America at Queclink, recently named in 2020’s 40 Under 40 by San Diego Metro Magazine.

Hi Manny, and thank you for joining us. You’ve been in the wireless industry for over 15 years, for context, can you give us some details about your background, what made you decide to get in to IoT?

Manny:

I would say that I got lucky.  Before I got into the wireless industry I was in finance and before then I was in the military working in logistics for transport and communications equipment, and so I was hired to do logistics job for a wireless company.  A few weeks after I started the position, the project manager left the company so I just started doing the job and no one stopped me.  In fact, I was encouraged by Chief Operating Officer of the company, David Lee.  He was my mentor and I learned so much from him, I am very grateful.

Interviewer:

It was said that you were part of the first 4G launch in 2008, what role did you play in that?

Manny:

I was the lead product manager for the first 3G+4G device from Franklin Wireless.  We launched on the first commercially available 4G network with Sprint in 2008.  It was significant because it would work in both 3G and 4G coverage areas, which is to say that it worked every where.  That launch sparked a race for carriers to built the leading 4G network. I was so happy to be a small part of it.

Interviewer:

What have been some of the biggest challenges you have faced in your career?

Manny:

The challenges I faced had more to do with my own personal development.  Developing my management skills, learning how to drive performance, and how motivate people to perform their best.  Those are all skills that you can just learn by experience.

Interviewer:

You have been in the IoT industry for well over a decade. How much has it changed in that time?

Manny:

Lots has changed, not just in technology, but in how we use the technology.  The internet is how we consume content, connect with people and explore ideas. Today, we use the same amount of data in one day than we did all year, ten years ago.  Businesses and Governments are using IoT solutions to solve real problems, in real time, in every place and that’s amazingly different than where we were 10 years ago.  Its easy to see the contrast when you look at timelines in decades.

I think by far the biggest changes in the industry come at the carrier level, where we see faster, more reliable coverage.  We also see cloud development services catching up to the market.

Interviewer:

What do you think about the next 10 years?

Manny:

I think the next 10 years will be a lot more actionable.  We’ll see the roll out of a true 5G network that will introduce ultra low latency, which will propel existing ideas and fuel new innovations.  We’ll see bandwith and speeds that will threaten to disrupt the cable business and ISPs; we’ll see more unlicensed spectrum usage, especially with private networks. So it’s all hard to imagine, but there’s a lot of investments and a lot of big things happening in the industry.

Interview:

In thinking about the coronavirus, how do you think the industry will be impacted? And do you think the coronavirus pandemic undermined innovation for the time being?

Manny:

The coronavirus was an incredibly tragic situation that impacted so many lives, and it’s changed our routines.  Lots of people are working from home, kids are doing school from home, and people have lost jobs, yet the economy is still going – so it’s really difficult to say if there will be a long term impact right now.  That said, there was a big slow down in the quarters 2 and 3, but it looks like we’re getting back on track and ready for 2021 and beyond.  So whatever impacts there are in the wireless industry, I don’t expect them to last long.

Interviewer:

Having said that, are you currently working on 5G?  If so, how will 5G impact the IoT market?

Manny:

5G is definitely on our roadmap. 5G will have a profound impact in a way that cellular connectivity hasn’t been able to achieve in previous time.  The bandwith will probably outperform cable so I anticipate growth in gaming consoles, and new players like Google’s Stadia platform, and as I mentioned earlier, an erosion of cable internet traffic.  I think you’ll see a lot more autonomous objects and self managing solutions, so the impact will be significant once the 5G ecosystem is more mature.

Interviewer:

How quickly will 4G be phased out once 5G becomes the mainstream?

Manny:

4G isn’t going anywhere, anytime soon.  Think about it, we still have 2G in the market from 2002.  We still have millions of devices in the market and it’s still a really strong technology, especially for IoT.  I anticipate that we’ll be using 4G well into 2030.

Thank you Manny for your time!
You can follow up with Manny Hernandez on Twitter @mannyhernandez or visit Queclink online at
www.queclink.com