Unified Communications Featured Article

UC Week in Review: UC to Reach $30 Billion by 2013

January 15, 2010

Thanks to the growing adoption of telepresence, video conferencing and Voice over Internet Protocol services, the Unified Communications industry is on pace to jump 50 percent to $30 billion by 2013.

That was the top headline on unified communications that had the industry buzzing this week. According to a report by Wainhouse Research, the complexity of premises-based UC solutions will fuel business for UC service providers. What’s more, Wainhouse Research predicted that UC services revenue, which is smaller than product revenue today, will likely outpace traditional conferencing services by 2013 or 2014. 
The report also said that while the market is expected to experience a declining compound annual growth rate on the product side of the UC industry, increases in the services sector will mitigate that impact.
And as companies look to boost their competitive edge while trying to economize, such UC services, like conferencing, is gaining ground. Greg Plum, director of business development for The Conference Group, which provides Web, audio and video conferencing services, told unified communications in an interview that more and more businesses are leveraging conferencing and collaboration tools to save on travel costs and enhance their productivity.
Plum will discuss conferencing trends as part of a session at ITEXPO in Miami next week.
“The slower economy has forced people to look at their latest needs of communication,” Plum said, who will join a panel of experts to discuss the future of the Web conferencing and collaboration marketing and emerging trends during a session called, “The Future of Web Conferencing and Collaboration” at 11 a.m. Jan. 20 at the Miami Beach Convention Center.
In other conferencing news, BT Conferencing, a provider of audio, video and Web collaboration services, announced it revised its Web site.
The site at www.btconferencing.com gives BT Conferencing customers the ability to schedule, change or cancel all conferences including audio, Web and video in a single global portal. The new site, which offers ease of use as well as greater functionality, comes in responses to customer comments, company officials said.
Also making headlines this week was news that VoIP provider 8x8 announced all of its services were back to normal after a service outage on Tuesday for some of the company’s customers.
An unaffiliated Tier-1 ISP interfered with the proper routing of an Internet Protocol address blocks, which caused the outage, company officials said today. 8x8 uses several non-contiguous IP address blocks by Tier-1 Internet Service Providers to offer service to its customers from three, redundant data centers.
The outage impacted the company’s VoIP service called Packet8, as well as the firm’s Web sites www.packet8.net and www.8x8.com. Service was restored by 4:30 p.m. PT on Tuesday. But during the outage, some customers turned to Twitter, the popular micro-blogging service, to alert others about the problem, as well as offer updates. Others used the outage and Twitter to promote their own VoIP services.
8x8 is in the process of planning and implementing additional mechanisms to protect customers from any similar routing interference in the future, officials said.
That’s it for this week. Check back for more UC news on unified communications.

Amy Tierney is a Web editor for unified communications, covering business communications Her areas of focus include conferencing, SIP, Fax over IP, unified communications and telepresence. Amy also writes about education and healthcare technology, overseeing production of e-Newsletters on those topics as well as communications solutions and UC. To read more of Amy's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Amy Tierney

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