Growing demand for custom solutions that seamlessly integrate with third-party business software is catalysing service-based business models in the unified communications and collaboration (UCC) market. Innovation in cloud communications is breaking the IP telephony and UC as a Service (UCaaS) silo, enabling players in the UCC market to expand their service portfolios. Multi-level disruption at the pricing, packaging, feature, functionality, and business model levels is also accelerating innovation and intensifying competition.
2017 Global UCC Industry Outlook is part of Frost & Sullivan’s Conferencing & Collaboration Growth Partnership Service program. The research studies the essential factors that customers consider when making UCC purchase decisions and offers insights into how providers can ride the application programming interface (API) economy, enable hybrid architectures, and capture a larger share of the customer wallet.
“Diversified solutions portfolios and more holistic approaches are a necessity to support business transformation, but simultaneously maintaining core competencies is the key to success,” said Digital Transformation Principal Analyst Robert Arnold. “Mobility, device independence, social capabilities, mashups and personalisation will be significant elements of future-proof cloud communications solutions.”
The challenges for companies operating in the global UCC space include continuing reliance on unamortized and premises-based solutions, preference for newer operating expenditure (OPEX)-based business models, and security and reliability concerns surrounding cloud-based deployments.
Market majors, such as Vonage, Orange, AT&T, BT, Cisco, Slack, IBM, Vodafone, Microsoft, Tata, and others are attempting to overcome these issues by offering solutions with the deployment and integration flexibility customers increasingly require for UCC integration with workflows, along with the high quality and reliability that are expected of mission-critical services. This will validate for customers that making UCC integral to their digital transformation efforts will result in the best return on investment (ROI) as demonstrated through uninterrupted productivity, agility of business operations, and performance efficiency.
“Cloud communication services adoption is accelerating as premises-based equipment markets decline,” observed Arnold. “Mergers and acquisitions in all market tiers and into adjacencies will persist as competitors seek scale and financial stability to round out their portfolios, enhance development resources, increase reach, and grow installed bases.”